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Mon, Mar 05, 2012

NBAA Thanks U.S. House Leaders For Letter Opposing User Fees

Bolen Says Organization Will Continue To Advocate Against The White House Proposal

The NBAA has gone on record supporting a move by 195 members of the U.S. House of Representatives who sent a letter to President Obama opposing the $100 per-flight user fee proposed in the administration's fiscal 2013 budget.

(L-R) Representatives Costello, Petri

The strongly worded letter was circulated by Reps. Jerry Costello (D-12-IL) and Tom Petri (R-6-WI), along with Reps. Sam Graves (R-6-MO) and John Barrow (D-12-GA). The signatories to the letter express stalwart Congressional opposition to this year's proposed aviation user fee and remind the President that when past administrations have proposed such fees, "Congress has repeatedly and overwhelmingly rejected them."
 
Rep. Costello is the Ranking Member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee's Aviation Subcommittee and Rep. Petri is the Aviation Subcommittee Chairman. Reps. Graves and Barrow are co-chairs of the House General Aviation Caucus.
 
In the letter, the Representatives told the president that commercial and general aviation, including the manufacturing sector, are vital industries providing millions of jobs. "We should work together to support policies that encourage job growth and strengthen U.S. economic activity," the Representatives wrote. "Imposing a $100 per flight fee on commercial and general aviation is the wrong approach, and we respectfully request that you abandon this idea once and for all."
 
The Representatives' request was the latest salvo in the general aviation community's unified battle against aviation user fees. NBAA has strongly supported the effort to gather signatures for the letter.

NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen praised those who signed the letter, saying, "We thank the Congressional leaders whose letter reinforces a clear message of Congressional opposition to user fees. Their staunch support on this critical issue is appreciated."
 
Bolen added that NBAA would continue its grassroots mobilization to ensure that the industry's position on user fees is well understood by Washington policymakers.
 
He said the general aviation community has long supported the well-established and efficient fuel tax now paid for use of the aviation system. At the same time, the industry has long opposed new user fees, which would require a large bureaucracy for management and collection of the fees, and would also impose an onerous compliance burden on many small and mid-size businesses that rely on aircraft for business.
 
Reps. Costello and Petri organized similar letter initiatives in 2009 and in 2011, both also with strong bipartisan support.

FMI: www.nbaa.org

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