Michigan Tax Agreement Benefits

Notice of Administrative Changes for Resident Tribal Members

As part of the tax agreement Between the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi and the State of Michigan, a Pokagon citizen may qualify for certain exemptions from some Michigan taxes, defining the qualified tribal citizen as a Resident Tribal Member (RTM). Resident Tribal Member (RTM) refers to those citizens whose principle place of residence is within their own tribe’s negotiated agreement area, and that have been added to the official RTM list maintained at the State of Michigan.  

Auto Enrollment

Previously a tribal citizen was required to fill out a Resident Tribal Member Application to become an RTM, and be placed on the tax agreement benefits eligibility list at the State of Michigan.

Beginning February 1, 2018, the Pokagon Band Finance Department will automatically add all citizens who live in the agreement area to the Active RTM list at the State of Michigan, thus qualifying them for the available tax exemptions. A pre-application is no longer required.

To remain on the list of Active RTMs, it is critical that the RTM maintain a current physical address on file with the Pokagon Enrollment Office. The physical address should be the address of the primary permanent residence of the RTM.  This address must also be a deliverable address.

RTMs will remain on the list at the state and remain eligible for the tax agreement RTM benefits, until they either move out of the tax agreement area or they cannot be reached to update their address if it becomes undeliverable. In these instances, the citizen’s RTM status will be deactivated both at the tribe and at the State of Michigan.  The citizen will be notified of such change, if the tribe has the necessary resources in the citizen’s enrollment file, to make it possible for the Pokagon Finance Department to reach them.

Resident Tribal Member Application
Request for Sales Tax Exemption for Vehicle Purchase

Gas Stations

Tribal citizens can make tax exempt fuel purchases at the following gas stations: The Bent Tree Market near Four Winds Dowagiac, the Benton Harbor Marathon, the Niles US 12 Liquor and Gas, the Sister Lakes Marathon, and the Hartford Citgo on Main Street.

Gasoline purchases should be paid for inside the gas stations so the tax exemption is given at the time of purchase. The only exceptions should be if the gas station attendant informs you that the system is down or that your card is not working when they attempt to scan it. In these cases, you may bring your receipt within 30 days of purchase to the Pokagon Band Administration office to receive your discount money, or you may mail it to the address below and the amount will be added to your next per capita check (and it won’t be taxed). Please be sure to write your enrollment number and sign your name on each receipt submitted.

If you lose your card, you may call the Enrollment Department at (269) 782-8998 as soon as possible to get a replacement. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact Julie Rodriguez.

Tax Agreement Documents

The first is an overview of the Tax Agreement written by the Pokagon Band. The links are to the official tax agreement between the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi and the State of Michigan, and three amendments to the Tax Agreement, from the Michigan Department of Treasury.

Are you eligible for tax breaks? Michigan State Tax Agreement Overview
Tax Agreement with the State of Michigan First Amendment-Tax Agreement
Second Amendment-Tax Agreeement Third Amendment-Tax Agreement
Fourth Amendment–Tax Agreement  

Tax Agreement Maps

Benton/St Joseph Townships Bertrand-South Niles Townships
Buchanan Township Coloma/Watervliet Townships
Decatur/Hamilton Townships General Location Map
Geographic Descriptions Hartford/Bangor Townships
Howard/North Niles Townships Keeler Township
New Buffalo Township Ontwa Township/Edwardsburg Area
Pokagon/Lagrange Townships Silver Creek/Wayne Township

Julie Rodriguez Staff Accountant
58620 Sink Road
Dowagiac, MI 49047
(269) 782-8998
julie.rodriguez@pokagonband-nsn.gov