House Bill Says "No" To User Fees, "Yes" To Modernization!
July 30, 2009
7/02/07 The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee introduced its version of the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2007 last Wednesday, June 27. “The House version of the FAA funding bill is a welcome sign for the general aviation community,” said Paula Derks, AEA president. “Quite simply, they got it right: Authorizing significant funds for the modernization of the air transportation system, yet recognizing the current stream of funding through aviation excise taxes is right for America.” The bill authorizes $13 billion for facilities and equipment required for the implementation of the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). While the bill contains no user fees to fund NextGen and FAA operations, it does include a proposal that increases registration and certification fees, along with slight increases in aviation gas taxes. The bill recommends an increase of current aviation gas tax from 19.3 cents per gallon to 24.1 cents per gallon and the Jet-A fuel tax rate from 21.8 cents per gallon to 30.7 cents per gallon. “AEA thanks not only its members who participated in letter-writing and phone-calling campaigns to oppose user fees, but to the members of the House Aviation Subcommittee who listened to our concerns and agreed that the airlines proposal of significant user fees and fuel tax increases was the wrong method of funding the future,” Derks said. “However, there is still a fight ahead and the battle is not yet won,” she continued. “The airlines will not rest with this latest release of the House’s version of the bill. From here, both the House and Senate versions of the bill will be discussed in a conference committee. Most certainly, more changes and additions will be made to reach a final bill. “AEA members need to continue to contact their elected representatives in both the House and the Senate to express support of the House bill, No. 2881.” The AEA encourages members to visit the Alliance for Aviation Across America website, a coalition of general aviation entities fighting the user-fee proposal. The AEA is a strong supporter of this coalition. On its website, you will find sample letters and an automatic e-mail option to send letters to your elected representatives. Please visit the website atwww.aviationacrossamerica.org. http://www.aea.net/aeatodayDetail.asp?ID=492