Whitmer proposes to suspend the tax on school supplies

LANSING, Mich. (WILX) — Governor Gretchen Whitmer has proposed a sales tax suspension on school supplies before the start of semesters statewide.

As part of Michigan’s back-to-school plan, sales taxes on school supplies are proposed to be suspended for the upcoming back-to-school sales for the 2022-23 school year. Governor Whitmer’s proposed plan aims to help families prepare for the new school year by reducing the costs of supplies and building on the education budget that was signed into law in July 2022.

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“As families prepare for the school year, they should be able to get what they need without spending too much money out of pocket,” Whitmer said. “That’s why I’m proposing the MI Back to School Plan, which includes a proposal to temporarily suspend sales tax on school supplies. Doing this would reduce costs for parents, teachers and students right now, and ensure they have the resources they need to succeed.

A Deloitte report found families spend up to $661 to get a child back to school. The price has risen from $612 per child in 2021. The proposed plan aims to reduce the average cost families have to spend for their child’s school year.

However, not all Michigan politicians agree that the governor’s proposed tax cut would have the intended effect. Comstock Township Rep. Matt Hall said he thinks the start of the school year is too close for the cuts to work.

“Many people across Michigan have already done their back-to-school shopping, and school is just days away for many families,” Hall said. “Some children have already started again. How would this plan help families in three or four weeks? »

Whitmer’s education budget focuses on six sections; Students, mental health, learning support, student safety, school infrastructure and teacher recruitment.

On Tuesday, Whitmer announced the proposed plans for each segment.

Students

“For our students, the highest per-student funding in Michigan history – $9,150 for every child, in every public school district. Additional support for Michigan’s nearly 200,000 special education students and 710,000 at-risk students. Increase funding for vocational and technical training programs by 27%. »

Mental Health

“Dedicated mental health dollars for every student in every school. Increase funding for adolescent centers, district mental health grants, and TRAILS, which provides training for school mental health professionals so they can better serve students with evidence-based services.

Teacher recruitment

“Funding the MI Future Educator Scholarships, which pays up to $10,000 in tuition for 2,500 future Michigan educators per year, $9,600 per semester stipend for trainee teachers, and Grow-Your-Own programs that help districts put support staff on free paths to become educators.

School infrastructure

“$250 million for building and renovating schools, helping them build or renovate classrooms, labs and libraries.”

Learning aids

“An expansion of before and after school programs to keep kids engaged. The budget provides every child in Michigan with tutoring to catch up and get on the path to long-term success, and resources for districts to develop learning modules for academically at-risk students and economically disadvantaged.

Student Safety

“School safety dollars for every student in every school. Funding to hire more school resource officers on campus, create an at-risk student response system that brings together law enforcement, schools and mental health professionals, and establish a commission of school safety.

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