Some teachers upset with GOP tax plan - WNEM TV 5

Some teachers upset with GOP tax plan

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

Michigan teachers said the new math in the GOP tax plan adds up to a big subtraction from their paychecks.

Lawmakers are proposing to eliminate a tax deduction that helps ease the financial strain of up-keeping a classroom. Lawmakers are considering getting rid of a write-off that allowed teachers to deduct $250 for out of pocket expenses for school supplies.

Some educators might be able to make up the difference through another tax provision.

"I'm hoping this tax bill gets defeated," said Frank Burger, teacher.

He is upset about the recent proposed Republican tax bill. He is a teacher and union representative in Genesee County.

The bill would eliminate tax write-offs that educators can use when paying for school supplies out of their own pocket.

"It was a little bit of a help. It's an automatic to deduction that we can get for buying supplies for our classroom. Whether it's scissors, whether it's construction paper, glue sticks," Burger said.

The most a teacher can get back is $250, but Burger said the write-off goes a long way since many teachers are low paid.

"Every time you pinch the pennies of the middle class that's only hurting your local economy," Burger said.

While Burger opposes the proposed tax plan, many Republicans said it will be good for teachers.

"Right now, teachers have a standard deduction of $6,000, plus $250 deduction school supplies," U.S. Congressman John Moolenaar said.

He said the standard deduction for all middle class taxpayers will double under the new plan, including teachers.

"Under this new plan teachers will have a standard deduction of $12,000 so parents and teachers pay nothing on their first $12,000. So that's a significant benefit," Moolenaar said.

He said the revision is a way to simplify how people do taxes.

The GOP hopes to pass the new tax plan by the end of the year.

As for Burger, he adds many teachers have received pay cuts in recent years. He said taking away this benefit is adding insult to injury.

"I believe it's only going to continue to get worse unless you change what's happening," Burger said.

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