Are You Happy To Pay for Business Incentives If They Create Jobs?

WDET’s Jake Neher and Michigan Public Radio’s Cheyna Roth talk about why tax giveaways are so controversial.

Gov. Rick Snyder will soon decide if the state will give away $200 million in tax incentives to attract new manufacturing jobs to Michigan. It’s the latest in a long line of controversial tax giveaways to corporations coming from cities and the state.

WDET’s Jake Neher and Michigan Public Radio’s Cheyna Roth talk about why the issue is causing divisions among Democrats and Republicans alike.

“These weren’t votes on party lines,” says Roth. “And some Republicans… said this isn’t small government, which Republicans are for, this isn’t helping taxpayers.”

[Hear Stephen Henderson talk with experts about the controversy surrounding tax incentives on Detroit Today]

Other Republicans say the incentives are critical for attracting new jobs to Michigan, and note that they’re a unique kind of tax break in Michigan.

“They have to create hundreds of new jobs, they have to pay at or above average wages,” Roth continues, noting that the level of incentives are based directly on the number of jobs these companies create.

Click on the audio player above to hear the full conversation.


  • Cheyna Roth
    Cheyna has interned with Michigan Radio and freelanced for WKAR public radio in Lansing. She's also done some online freelancing and worked on documentary films.
  • Jake Neher
    Jake Neher is senior producer for Detroit Today and host of MichMash for 101.9 WDET. He previously reported on the Michigan Legislature for the Michigan Public Radio Network.