December 4, 2008
By AOPA ePublishing staff
AOPA is asking Michigan legislators not to increase aviation fuel taxes by changing the tax calculation from three cents per gallon to 3 percent of the wholesale price of a gallon. At current fuel prices, the proposed calculation method could double the amount of fuel tax pilots pay.
In a Dec. 1 letter to the chairman of the House Committee on Transportation, AOPA warned that increasing the fuel tax, which is levied in addition to a 6-percent sales tax on aviation fuel, aircraft, and aircraft parts, would further increase the cost of flying at a time when aviation is already suffering from high fuel prices and a slumping economy. Additionally, higher taxes could hurt the state’s transportation industry and economy by pushing business to neighboring states with more aviation-friendly policies. The letter also asked legislators to consider alternative means of raising revenues before upping the fuel tax, particularly in light of the current economic environment for general aviation.
AOPA has been closely monitoring Michigan’s aviation tax legislation, and AOPA has testified at hearings held by the state’s Transportation Funding Task Force. That task force presented several funding options to lawmakers, including the current tax increase proposal.
“Raising fuel taxes at a time when the general aviation industry is experiencing a financial crunch could stifle business more than it raises revenue,” said AOPA Vice President of Regional Affairs Greg Pecoraro. “This is not the only way to manage transportation revenues, and we will continue to oppose this measure and push for less burdensome alternatives.”
The Michigan House Committee on Transportation was expected to review the legislation, H.B. 6751, before sending it to the Senate next week.
AOPA members are urged to contact their representatives and senators to express their opposition to the measure and explain how it would impact their flying and businesses.
As the cold weather chills AOPA’s Headquarters in Frederick, many of us are inside generating new resources for flying clubs.
In my house, every Friday night is “Movie Night.” While the movies are rarely educational (I don’t think I learned anything from the Lego Movie), we look forward to the weekly opportunity to spend time together. Why not use the same concept for your Flying Club (with the addition of education, of course)?
AOPA Flying Club Manager Kelby Ferwerda posted the following on the AOPA Flying Club Facebook Page: “Recently I’ve talked with quite a few Flying Clubs about maintaining social activity through the cold winter months. Some clubs host Holliday Parties, others have Potluck Movie Nights. What does your club do to keep members involved during the chilly months?”
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