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Gov. Whitmer's Plan to Repeal the Retirement Tax


January 26, 2022 



Gov. Whitmer's Plan to Repeal the Retirement Tax 

Rolling back tax on seniors would save half a million Michigander an average of $1,000 a year 


REDFORD, Mich. -?Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer proposed a repeal of the retirement tax in her State of the State address. Rolling back this tax on retirement income, including pensions, 401(k) accounts, and IRAs would save half a million households $1,000 a year 


"Repealing the retirement tax will put Michiganders first and save half a million households $1,000 a year," said Governor Whitmer. "Michiganders who have worked hard, played by the rules, and budgeted for their whole lives should be able to retire and keep all of their hard-earned dollars. Putting money back in the pockets of retirees will help them afford the essentials from prescriptions, rent, utilities, car payments, to gifts for their grandkids." 


"The repeal of the pension tax has been a priority of Michigan's labor movement since former Governor Snyder first taxed Michiganders' pensions," said Ron Bieber, President of the Michigan AFL-CIO. "Retirees across our great state are so grateful to have Governor Gretchen Whitmer as their champion, always prioritizing their dignity and the safety of the pensions they earned."  


"We support the governor's call to phase out the retirement tax that so egregiously pulled the rug out from under a large swath of retirees who planned and counted on a pension not diminished by taxation," said AARP Michigan Director Paula D. Cunningham. "Michiganders who have worked hard, played by the rules and paid their dues deserve to retire with dignity, but too many have been forced to go back to work to pay the bills. We urge state legislators to do the right thing by repealing this law and help build Michigan's reputation as the first 'age-friendly' state in the Midwest."   


"Many Michigan educators planned and saved for their retirement with the expectation that their pensions would be tax-free, as promised," said Paula Herbart, Michigan Education Association president and veteran music teacher in Macomb County. "The retirement tax was an unfair tax hike on retirees, and we strongly support Governor Whitmer's plan to repeal it. Retired educators and school support staff held up their end of the bargain through a lifetime of service to our students and families. Now it's time for state legislators to do the right thing and eliminate this burden unjustly placed on retirees." 


"Repealing the retirement tax is long overdue. Putting money back into the pockets of our retirees is welcomed news and removes a tax burden, plus allows Michiganders who worked hard for their money to have more discretionary income to spend on their medication and other needs," said N. Charles Anderson, President/CEO of the Detroit Urban League. "After working for decades, budgeting every month, and saving for years, our retirees deserve their hard-earned dollars.?I support?Governor Whitmer's proposal to roll back the retirement tax?and urge our elected officials to come together to get this done."? 


"Michigan has the fastest growing senior population in the nation and we need more disposable income to grow live in our communities," said retiree and senior advocate Georgia Crawford-Cambell. "We have worked long and hard to retire and paid taxes while working so repealing the pension tax will allow seniors like myself to keep our hard earned money that we have worked so hard for.? I deserved to keep what I have worked so hard for.?I support Governor Whitmer's proposal to roll back the retirement tax." 


"Repealing the retirement tax would put money back in my pocket and allow me to spend more time with my loved ones," said Clara B. Williams Retired Michigander. "After working for decades, budgeting every month, and saving for years, I deserve to keep all my pension. I support Governor Whitmer's proposal to roll back the retirement tax."  


"I worked for 31 years as a Steelworker. In 2004 I retired with a pension to provide for my wife and me. My pension is a lynchpin for our financial security," Steve Turri, a resident of Negaunee and retired Steelworker. "The law that taxed my pension years later has been unfair to us. I fully support the Governor's proposal to repeal the pension tax."  


"I retired in 2010 after 39 combined years of service to Palo Community Schools and Portland Public Schools, having made a lot of sacrifices to save and plan ahead for my finances," said Georgia Sharp, a resident of Portland and retired educator.  "I worked hard and played by the rules, but my pension was taxed to pay for corporate tax cuts under the previous administration. That's not right. I support the push to repeal the retirement tax. It will help me, it will help my family, and it will help so many other retirees in Michigan."  


The Plan 

Governor Whitmer is proposing a rollback of the retirement tax, which would save half a million households with pensions an average of $1,000 a year.  


Over the coming years, Governor Whitmer's proposal would again exempt public pensions?and restore deductions for private retirement income, including private-sector pensions, withdrawals from individual retirement accounts (IRAs), and the portion of a 401k account that is subject to an employer match. ? 


Governor Whitmer's Plan to Repeal the Retirement Tax (PDF)