Excluding light general aviation aircraft is no way to stimulate economic development in the aviation industry, but that's what a bill in Maine's legislature is proposing. AOPA is pointing out the obvious flaw in that reasoning and urging the legislature to extend the benefits to all of GA.
The state's legislature amended Legislative Document 1074 so that only turbine aircraft weighing more than 6,000 pounds or that are used by an FAA Part 135 operator would not be subject to the state's sales tax, while buyers of all other aircraft would continue to pay the full state tax. Also, the amended LD 1074 eliminated the sales tax exemption on aircraft repair and replacement parts that was included in the original legislation.
AOPA argues that the state would benefit more by extending the exemption to include smaller GA aircraft. Most states have tax policies that treat GA aircraft equally, regardless of size. The association also requested that the legislation be amended to its original form to include this vital segment of aviation.
"These lighter planes are greater in number than all other aircraft, and this new pool of customers would increase significantly the amount of aviation business conducted in Maine and stop the flight of aviation jobs to other states," explained Roger Cohen, AOPA vice president of regional affairs, in a letter to the Committee on Appropriations and Financial Affairs.
May 19, 2005