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Whitmer signs law to end tax on feminine hygiene products

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Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed legislation Thursday to lift the state sales and use tax on tampons and other feminine hygiene products.

“We’ve been trying to get this done for a long time,” Whitmer said after signing the first of two bills in the package.

Whitmer noted she supported similar legislation when she served as a House and Senate lawmaker.

“This transcended many different legislatures and legislators,” she said. “But we are here today and I know it is going to make a difference for every menstruating Michigander.”

Whitmer said the burden of the 6% tax on feminine hygiene products falls most heavily on young women and low-income families, and the estimated $6 million reduction in state revenues is a pittance in comparison. She said for women, feminine hygiene products are a necessity.

“So, repealing this unfair, one-sided tax is the right thing to do,” she said. “Over the course of a lifetime, the average menstruating Michigander will use 17 thousand tampons. That’s 456 periods, costing 7 to 10 dollars a month.”

Michigan joins 20 other states that don’t have similar taxes.

The governor said women have no choice on whether to buy menstrual products, and the tax is a burden that falls most heavily on lower-income women.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987. His journalism background includes stints with UPI, The Elizabeth (NJ) Daily Journal, The (Pontiac, MI) Oakland Press, and WJR. He is also a lifelong public radio listener.
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