Ohio Governor Bob Taft (R-Ohio) on Thursday signed his state's budget into law without vetoing a huge increase in the state's aviation registration fee. For the owner of a typical four-seat general aviation aircraft, that's going to mean paying more than 800 percent more the next time the aircraft is registered.
AOPA is exploring legislative options to reverse the fee increase.
In a letter to Taft, AOPA President Phil Boyer had said, "As Ohio celebrates 100 years of aviation, do not let the birthplace of aviation become the first state to tax it out of existence."
Under existing Ohio law, aircraft registration fees were determined with a sliding scale based on seating capacity. The owner of a Cessna 172, for instance, paid $12. A Gulfstream V owner paid $85. Under the new law, the 172 owner and the Gulfstream V owner will both pay $100.
"State aircraft registration is an ineffective means of government financing," said Boyer. "Attempting to fund aviation maintenance and repair through raising aircraft registration fees will cause aircraft operators to register their aircraft in neighboring states with more attractive fee schedules."