MADISON HEIGHTS – State Representative Jim Townsend (D-Royal Oak) helped local residents understand new changes to Michigan’s income tax, including the reduction of the Homestead Property Tax Exemption Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit, at a town hall meeting held Monday evening.

“With the due date for taxes drawing near, more families are seeing exactly what the changes to Michigan’s tax code mean to them,” Townsend said. “Many credits and deductions middle-class families relied on are reduced or gone. For some, the size of their refund has been slashed. Others will write a larger check to the state than ever before.”

Over the past two years, the Republican-led state Legislature increased taxes on middle-class families to fund a $1.8 billion tax break for corporations. The Homestead Property Tax Exemption Credit was slashed, and 400,000 taxpayers who used to qualify for it no longer do. The Earned Income Tax Credit has been reduced from 20 percent of the federal credit to 6 percent, further harming working families. The $600 per-child tax deduction and charitable giving deduction have been entirely eliminated as well.

Jim Reinert of Reinert and Co. of Royal Oak and the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants and Michigan State University economics professor Charles Ballard helped answer people’s questions at the town hall.

“Michigan’s families are clearly saying that these tax changes are making it harder for them to pay bills, buy groceries and save for retirement or college,” Townsend said. “I voted against this harmful tax shift and continue to restore equity to our tax code so that everyone, including wealthy CEOs, pays their fair share of the public goods on which all of us rely.”