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October 27, 2017
Benton Harbor, MI —Friday, October 27, 2017: Cornerstone Chamber of Commerce has passed a resolution in opposition to the City of Benton Harbor income tax that will be on the ballot for the November 7, 2017 elections.   

Chris Heugel, President of the Chamber of Commerce, stated, “Our members have spoken with a clear voice on this issue and they are scared about the ramifications on their business from this tax that will occur should it pass. Our members drive jobs in this community and they have said that an income tax is detrimental to their operations and hinders their ability to grow and hire more individuals.  Cornerstone Chamber of Commerce members are in full support of the Chamber taking a ‘Vote No’ position.”

Cornerstone Chamber members were surveyed in early August on the proposed income tax. Based upon the survey results and since that time, Chamber members have continued to comment on the negative impact such a tax would have on their operations and may have on the community overall. Many members expressed concern as to how the timing of an income tax could be interpreted as a punishment by those  businesses who have taken a risk to invest their capital in Benton Harbor in the past few years. One Benton Harbor based business owner noted, “This income tax will greatly hinder economic development in the City.  It will be an additional barrier, added to a list of many others, to overcome when trying to attract businesses to the City..”  

Another business owner indicated that they currently have two locations, one in Benton Harbor and should this proposed income tax pass, they will likely consolidate into an outside-the-City location. A business advisor member said, “With proximity to St. Joseph, Stevensville, Coloma, and many more locations.  If this tax goes through moving a business will be a viable option.”  

About Cornerstone Chamber of Commerce
Cornerstone Chamber of Commerce is a member-driven organization encouraging the growth of business through networking, advocacy, visibility and benefits for all of our members. The Chamber represents 700 businesses that provide 36,000 jobs for our community.

Media Contact:
Chris Heugel

Chris Heugel, President
(269) 757-0216