2007 Press Releases

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NBAA Welcomes House Leaders' Continued Rejection of User Fees

Committee's Proposal for Funding FAA, NextGen Preserves Proven Fuel Tax System

Contact: Dan Hubbard at (202) 783-9360 or dhubbard@nbaa.org

WASHINGTON, DC, September 18, 2007 – The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) today stated its support for congressional legislation to fund the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and modernize the nation's aviation system through excise taxes rather than new taxes or untested user fees.

The legislation, which was approved today by lawmakers on the House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee, was produced as part of Congress's multi-year "reauthorization," or funding process for the FAA.

"NBAA supports the legislation reported by the Ways and Means Committee earlier today," said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. "While no one loves to pay taxes, the general aviation community recognizes the importance of air traffic control modernization. The fact that the committee's bill dedicates the additional tax revenues exclusively to modernization is very significant.

"We applaud the committee for rejecting user fees and instead building upon a proven, stable, reliable and ultra-efficient system of fuel taxes that clearly reflects aviation system use," Bolen continued. "We believe this bill represents a key milestone in our effort to transition to the Next Generation air traffic system."

In testimony before Congress, Bolen has pointed out that user fees are costly for governments to administer, requiring a large, expensive bureaucracy. Additionally, user fees come with an administrative burden for operators – the International Air Transport Association (IATA) reports that it costs IATA members from $85 to $125 to process one invoice. User fees can go up when the industry can afford it least: In 2002, when air traffic was depressed as a result of the recession and terrorist attacks, Canada raised its user fees to cover its declining revenues.

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Founded in 1947 and based in Washington, DC, the National Business Aviation Association, Inc. (NBAA) is the leading organization for companies that rely on general aviation aircraft to help make their businesses more efficient, productive and successful. The Association represents more than 8,000 companies and provides more than 100 products and services to the business aviation community, including the NBAA Annual Meeting & Convention, the world's largest civil aviation trade show. Learn more about NBAA at www.nbaa.org.

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