DJJ-niks voice opposition to billionaire tax subsidies for Future of Health

On Thursday, February 8th, the Detroit Planning and Economic Development Committee held hearings on the Future of Health proposal. Some of our members attended the hearing, but did not get a chance to make public comment due to the hearings' length and other obligations. As such, we are posting their testimonies here. 


"I'm a District 5 resident who lives near the proposed Future of Health site. I have no objection to the project itself, but do oppose the subsidies requested for the development's residential component. Tom Gores could pay for these apartment buildings in full out of his own pocket and he'd still be a billionaire several times over. It is unjust, and evidently unnecessary, for the biggest developers in the city to enjoy preferential tax treatment while homeowners and small businesses continue to pay every single millage levied on them. Real economic development isn't just about attracting private investment, it's also about public investment in public goods and services. That requires revenue, and if we want more of that, then billionaires need to start paying their fair share." - Jacob

“I think the expansion of the medical research center is fantastic. What I don’t understand is the $190M from tax captures that would go to Tom Gores, whose net worth is $9.1 Billion. He can’t find funding? I volunteer as a tutor at Pasteur Elementary School. The students and the families have so many problems that haven’t been resolved since the pandemic. These schools need social workers, they need building updates, they need air conditioning. Even in May and June, it’s stifling and students simply can’t concentrate on their work. There is no greater return on investment than public education and I don’t like how this deal diverts funds from our children, the schools, and the libraries without addressing any ways to pay it back dollar for dollar.” - Ronit

“I support the hospital expansion, research center, and more housing, but I am totally opposed to the tax incentives being given to the apartments and parking garage. They make no sense. The hospital receives no tax incentives, Henry Ford and MSU research center receive $39 million, while the apartments and garage cost $381 million and will receive $190 million in tax incentives. Much of that money comes from tax captures, including $36 million from schools, $8 million from libraries, and $35 million from the general operating fund. But even 50% AMI translates to $900 for a one-bedroom. Why are we sapping tens of millions of dollars in public funds for private housing developed by Tom Gores, he of 9 billion in net worth. The Pistons wouldn't qualify for the transformational Brownfield on their own, but are riding the coat-tails of Henry Ford and MSU. This is a bad deal for the city. Protect taxpayer money, and fight for a plan that doesn’t take public money to line Tom Gores’ pockets.” - Solomon 

Get involved in the fight to tax Tom Gores by coming to our Housing & Development Committee meeting on Monday, or coming to the next Planning and Economic Development committee meeting on Thursday

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