Michigan legislature overrides Snyder veto on trade-in tax cut

For the first time in Gov. Rick Snyder’s tenure, the Legislature has voted to override one of his vetoes.

The Republican-led Legislature voted Wednesday to support a tax cut for people who trade in their car for a new one. It is just the fourth veto override in Michigan in the last 67 years.

In July, the Republican governor turned down legislation to accelerate the sales tax break. He cited “additional financial strain” for the state and said the bills conflicted with a previous compromise to phase in tax relief for buyers of cars and RVs.

But Republican and Democratic lawmakers say the tax cut would put money in people’s pockets and boost the auto industry.

The Senate voted unanimously to override Snyder. The House voted 85-23 – more than the two-thirds needed.

Snyder responded questioning how they plan to budget for the speedier tax cut for car buyers and a separate tax cut.

The Republican governor issued a statement Wednesday saying that “changing the tax code without a plan to pay for it challenges the conservative fiscal responsibility of the past seven years.”

In overriding Snyder, the Republican-led Legislature voted to speed up an existing law that lets those who purchase a car or RV subtract the value of their trade-in from the sales price of a new one for tax purposes. The legislation more quickly phases in how much of the trade-in value can be deducted.

Lawmakers say car buyers deserve a break from the “double tax.”

Snyder counters that under his watch, Michigan already is phasing out personal property taxes on businesses and increasing the property tax exemption for homeowners. The Senate on Wednesday also voted to raise Michigan’s personal income tax exemption.