May 19, 2014
By Benét J. Wilson
Michigan’s Senate Finance Committee approved amended legislation on May 14 that would increase aviation funding levels by modifying the way the state collects aviation fuel taxes.
The committee approved Senate substitute bills for House bills 4571 and 4572, which would eliminate Michigan’s 6 percent sales tax and $0.03 excise tax and impose a 4 percent wholesale fuel tax with the entirety of the revenue generated deposited in the state aeronautics fund for aviation system improvements.
During the past several years, AOPA has fought against tax increase proposals in the legislature, including an attempt to raise aviation fuel by up to 3 percent or $0.18 per gallon. AOPA testified before several House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee meetings, met with state senators and representatives to advocate for passage of an aviation funding package, and engaged members several times to contact their legislators on the measures. Under the plan passed by the Senate Finance Committee, aviation fuel users would experience a modest tax decrease and would benefit from stronger aviation infrastructure, since all of the new tax revenue would be dedicated to aviation infrastructure.
“The bills passed by the Senate committee represent a win-win for the aviation community, with aviation fuel users set to experience a modest reduction in tax rates and the state aeronautics fund having the additional resources to help maintain Michigan’s critical aviation infrastructure,” said AOPA Great Lakes Regional Manager Bryan Budds. “The collaborative work of Senator Jack Brandenburg, Representative Wayne Schmidt, AOPA, and a variety of state aviation organizations allowed the entire aviation community to come together to support this set of bills.”
AOPA eNewsletter and Social Media Editor Benét J. Wilson joined AOPA in 2011. She is working on her private pilot certificate.
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