Local municipalities brace for COVID-related revenue loss

Sep 10, 2020

Credit Courtesy cmich.edu

The COVID-19 pandemic may strike a hard economic blow to local governments in Michigan in the coming years.

In an online forum hosted Thursday by the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce, panelists representing cities, counties and townships said municipalities are bracing for steep revenue declines. Some of that loss may come from taxes levied on people who work in certain cities.  Summer Minnick with the Michigan Municipal League says income derived from working at home is untaxable.

“What if half of those people end up staying home?" said Minnick. "So, it could be an issue for them going forward as the culture of work changes.”

MSU municipal finance expert Eric Scorsone says unless the federal government provides direct funding, local governments could collect up to two billion dollars less over the next several years.