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Snyder responds to Supreme Court ruling

LANSING, Mich. - Gov. Rick Snyder issued the following statement in reaction to the Michigan Supreme Court ruling on the constitutionality of PA 38 of 2011:

"I'm pleased by today's ruling from the Michigan Supreme Court that the removal of the income tax exemption for public pensions is constitutional. We appreciate the court's willingness and work to review this critical issue on an expedited basis.

"Our administration has been unwavering in its position that the removal of the public pension income tax exemption was the right and prudent thing to do. It will provide for the long-term structural stability of the state's budget while minimizing the impact on current retirees and seniors. This will help get Michigan's fiscal house in order and economy back on track.

"The court agreed that the equal treatment of public and private pensions and safeguards for older taxpayers are appropriate and constitutional.

"In our efforts to ensure a simple, fair and efficient tax system, we believed it was appropriate for those individuals at the higher end of the income scale to contribute. This ruling still protects the exemptions for those at lower income levels, but also now applies equally to everyone across the board.

"We will be working closely with the Legislature to address the estimated $60 million shortfall this one change creates in the FY 2012 budget."