FAA User Fees Bad for Helicopters, Too

 - March 26, 2007, 10:41 AM

Ed Bolen, president and CEO of NBAA, described the recently released FAA funding proposal as “one of the greatest threats business aviation has ever faced.” According to Matthew Zuccaro, president of the Helicopter Association International (HAI), it is an even bigger threat to the helicopter industry. The FAA’s plan would more than triple general aviation fuel taxes, from 21.8 cents per gallon to 70 cents per gallon, and create a mishmash of new or higher fees for such things as pilot licensing, aircraft certification and other services. A result of strong lobbying by the airlines, the funding proposal gives them a major tax break and reduces the control Congress has over the air traffic system. The general aviation “alphabet associations” have been fighting this “toxic mix of tax increases, user fees and airline power,” but need grassroots support. To make it simple for individuals to contact their representatives in Congress, NBAA is providing a quick and easy way to send e-mails at www.nbaa.org/userfees.