Residents protest tax reform bill

HOUGHTON — As the debate over tax reform continues, nearly 30 concerned citizens gathered over the weekend in downtown Houghton to protest the recently passed legislation.

Protesters picketed along Sheldon Avenue after marching across the Portage Lake Lift Bridge to demonstrate their dissatisfaction with Congressman Jack Bergman, who voted in support of the tax reform bill recently passed by the House of Representatives.

“I’m a voter here and I’m going to be affected by this tax bill just like everybody else in the U.P. I’m here to send a message to representative Bergman. He made a really bad choice in supporting it. It was just a terrible idea for him to vote for it and we’re out here saying he has one last chance to correct his mistake when it comes out of conference,” said William Keith, one of the protesters.

Protesters believe that the bill is unfair and will increase taxes for graduate students. They also say it will now count tuition waivers as taxable income.

“I’ve studied economics and finance my entire life and this myth of trickle-down economics is just that, it’s a myth. They’ve been lying to you for 30 years,” said Ken Summers, candidate for State Representative.

Both the house and senate have recently passed separate versions of the tax reform bill and are currently working together to consolidate both plans into final legislation. From there, the bill is expected to be passed by the President.