Michigan - Sales Tax on Services, Self Storage

February 16, 2010 10:38 PM | Melissa Huff (Administrator)

Post from the SSA Monday Morning Memo dated 2/15/10

Michigan First State in 2010 to Propose Sales Taxes on Services, Self Storage
Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm proposed last Thursday that the state sales tax be extended to consumer services, including "self-service storage," and the rate dropped from 6 percent to 5.5 percent. This isn't the first time self storage has been caught up in the Michigan budget mix. Two years ago officials also proposed a tax overhaul that expanded sales taxes to services, listing self storage among those businesses that would be affected. The Michigan SSA and national SSA, working with a group of other targeted sectors, successfully defeated the plan. With the new budget expected by the summer, the Governor's proposal will be the subject of heated debate in the months to come. The national SSA Legislative and Regulatory Advisory Committee voted to support the Michigan SSA with funding for the battle this spring. The SSA contends that self storage is the rental of real property and should not be subject to any sales tax. Last year Arkansas became the first state to repeal sales taxes on self storage. Read more by clicking here.

Other recent legislative developments include:
-  The SSA and California SSA met with Judiciary Committee reps last week and expect that state's lien improvement bill to be introduced in late April or early May. Last year the national and state associations worked to improve the current statute, which includes the troublesome "Declaration of Lien Opposition." The bill was tabled until this year when California's government became mired in a lengthy budget debate.
- A hearing will be held on Wisconsin's lien improvement bill this coming Wednesday. The bill championed by the WI-SSA improves notification procedures.
- A new law on Maine self storage privacy would hold operators harmless in the case of abandoned records, with certain provisions about transferring custody to a state authority/department. Last year the Maine SSA and national SSA successfully won a delay of the initial proposed law that would have put the onus on self storage companies. Legislators in the state's capital of Augusta seem resistant to imposing new regulations on small businesses, which may put any new law in doubt.

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