CHICAGO — The mayor of Warren, Mich., said he has filed a lawsuit seeking to overturn a ballot proposition passed last week that will phase out the state's personal property tax.

Warren Mayor Jim Fouts said he directed the city's attorney to file a lawsuit in the Michigan Court of Claims on Aug. 8. He said he paid the $150 filing fee out of his own pocket and the city attorney donated his time.

Revenue from the personal property tax goes to local governments. Ballot Proposition 1 focused on replacement revenue, which will be generated by diverting a piece of the state's use tax. Fouts argued that the language was skewed to encourage voters to pass the proposition, and that it was "confusing," "one-sided," and "blatantly unlawful."

"State of Michigan law is crystal-clear prohibiting slanted ballot language for any proposal," he said in a news release.

Warren, located in Macomb County, could lose $10 million or more a year due to the repeal of the personal property tax, levied on large equipment owned by businesses and manufacturers, according to Fouts.

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