This Morning: East Lansing income tax meeting provided for community members


Starting January 1st, people in East Lansing will start paying a city income tax.

Voters approved the measure earlier this year. 

Now city officials are making sure people are prepared for the change.

Starting next year, those who live and work in East Lansing will pay a 1% income tax.

Non-residents who travel to the city for work will pay half a percent.

The Income tax will generate nearly $5 million a year for 12 years.

That money will be split between police and fire, infrastructure, and legacy costs including the retirement fund.

Though the tax won’t take affect until 2019, city manager George Lahanas says they are already preparing.

“We have already started a hiring process for those extra police and fire positions. those are positions we’ve had to do without for some time,” says Lahanas.

In addition, Lahanas says residents will soon see a new plan for parks and city streets.

That information will be delivered through the city’s Dialog newsletter.

“That will be a pretty aggressive plan to show when we’re going to be resurfacing people’s streets and sidewalks,” says Lahanas.

Lahanas says it’s important to note the city of Lansing also has a tax…meaning if you live in Lansing but work in East Lansing or vice versa starting next year you’ll have two city taxes taken out of your paycheck.

“If people live in both cities East Lansing and Lansing, they would pay no more than the one percent but they would pay half percent to each municipality because there’s this coordination that happens,” says Lahanas.

If you’re unsure whether you’ll be paying the income tax, East Lansing city officials created a boundary map for residents to use.

“You can go down to the parcel level to see where your office is. If you’re on Michigan state’s campus and work you can see all the campus buildings on this map and you’ll know if you’re paying the income tax or not paying the income tax based on where you fall on campus,” says Lahanas.

In an effort to east into the change, East Lansing city officials will hold a meeting this morning from 11am-1pm at the Hannah Community Center.

It will include an overview of the tax and a question and answer session.

If you can’t make it, there is another meeting next week.

  • Tuesday, Nov. 20; 11 a.m.-1 p.m.; ELHCC’s Executive Conference Room (a meeting for residents/employees)

  • Wednesday, Nov. 28; 6-8 p.m.; ELHCC’s Banquet Hall (a meeting for residents/employees)

  • Monday, Dec. 3; 1-3 p.m.; ELHCC’s Banquet Hall (a meeting for corporations, partnerships and trusts)

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