The aviation community held its Advocacy Day on Beacon Hill in Boston May 11 to thank legislators for protecting the Massachusetts aircraft sales tax exemption and to discuss the importance of making this and other key exemptions permanent to stabilize the aviation industry in the state.
Massachusetts legislators’ understanding of the importance of aviation to the economy has been key to setting the sales tax exemption for aircraft purchased in the commonwealth on course to remain law. AOPA, along with the Massachusetts Airport Managers Association (MAMA), the Massachusetts Business Aviation Association (MBAA), the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), and prominent aviation business leaders, gathered with state legislators to build on that success and emphasize the roles of airports and aviation businesses in fueling economic growth and job creation across the commonwealth.
“General aviation is a critical sector of the Massachusetts economy,” said AOPA Northeast Regional Representative Craig Dotlo. “Events such as this are important in illustrating the many positive effects of GA so that lawmakers will continue to support policies that retain the economic benefits of airports and aviation-related businesses.”
When Gov. Deval Patrick proposed repealing the sales tax exemption for aircraft purchased in the commonwealth, AOPA and other industry stakeholders reached out to legislators to emphasize the role of the exemption in drawing aviation businesses to the state. House lawmakers rejected the proposal last month, and the budget is now being debated in the Senate.
Aviation groups and business leaders again reached out to lawmakers at the advocacy day, making a brief presentation to some of the 70 members of the Massachusetts Legislative Aviation Caucus, including its chairman, Rep. Donald F. Humason Jr., and addressing questions. The groups also expressed their gratitude to the caucus, Humason, and Senate Pres. Therese Murray for their recent support in providing the general aviation industry with the most suitable environment to bolster the state economy.
Members of the aviation community also met personally with Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo; Rep. Jay Kaufman, chair of the Joint Committee on Revenue; staff of Sen. Steven Panagiotakos, chairman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee; and other state legislators to discuss the recent state budget proposal and other ways to preserve and promote GA activity as a means to increase the state’s economic prosperity.
“These discussions, with the help of the entire aviation community, members of the Legislative Aviation Caucus, and other allies, will assure that aviation will always be part of the legislative discussion,” Dotlo said.