A Policy Proposal: Suspending Renaissance Zone Status When a Business Poses Significant Public Health Risk

The proposal is to add a section to the Michigan Renaissance Zone Act of 1996 that does the following for any Renaissance Zone established after January 1, 2006:

  1. Requires the Michigan Strategic Fund to suspend the status of a Renaissance Zone when a business is found to be in violation of a federal or state laws or regulations and such violation poses a significant risk to public health
    1. During a suspension, a business in this zone is responsible for all applicable taxes
  2. Allows the Michigan Strategic Fund to retroactively suspend a Renaissance Zone if it is found that the business in the Renaissance Zone was in violation of federal or state laws or regulations and such violation posed a significant risk to public health during a previous time period
    1. If retroactively suspended, a business in this zone is responsible for all applicable taxes during the time period of suspension

The exemptions given to Renaissance Zones are primarily focused on property taxes and some business taxes.  What this change to the Renaissance Zone Act would do is provide a mechanism for the state to recoup funds if a business is not being responsible.

Currently the Renaissance Zone Act allows for revocation of the Zone in certain instances, but does not allow for, nor require, suspension of the Zone benefits.