Posted by 21 August 2018
Two milk processing companies are making plans to build a $510 million facility in central Michigan. This would help support the state’s agricultural industry, but it comes at a price – millions of dollars in state subsidies.
Michigan is one of the top milk-producing states in the nation. It lacks adequate processing facilities to handle all of the milk its cows can produce. That is why a company is looking at building a $425 million dairy processing plant north of Lansing, with another company seeking to build an $85 million byproduct processing plant next door.
This would be a large investment in the central Michigan region, but it would not be a completely private investment, however. The state of Michigan is looking at offering these companies $26 million in tax incentives.
Proponents of the subsidies say that the processing center is vital to ensuring that Michigan has a healthy dairy industry. They say that subsidies are necessary to counter the offers coming from other states. Opponents counter that this is a taxpayer giveaway to private corporations. They note that if there is so much dairy supply in Michigan, then there is little need for these companies to receive taxpayer handouts to make this project work.
If approved, this facility would be completed in 2020.
Do you think that Michigan should provide subsidies to milk processing plants or other private businesses?