The U.S. Senate passed a bill yesterday to extend the charter of the U.S. Ex-Im Bank for another three years and raise its debt ceiling from $100 billion to $140 billion, at least temporarily issuing a reprieve to Boeing and other U.S. aerospace companies that depend on government-backed loan guarantees to sell their products to foreign customers unable to access pri
United States Department of the Treasury
With the House of Representatives scheduled to vote this week on H.R.7, a Federal Highway Administration reauthorization bill, NATA is lobbying to get a provision included in the bill that would repeal the “onerous fuel fraud tax.” The fuel fraud provision, which was included in a 2005 FHA bill, changed the collection of taxes for noncommercial aviation jet fuel and required the funds to be deposited into the Highway Trust Fund.
The failure of Congress to agree on an extension of the FAA’s operating authorization by July 23 forced the agency to furlough nearly 4,000 employees and issue stop-work orders on projects ranging from the construction of new towers to the rehabilitation and modernization of ATC facilities because the agency was no longer authorized to access the Airport and Airway Trust Fund.
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) warned this week that the excise taxes that feed the Airport and Airway Trust Fund have been lower than previously forecast, while estimates of future revenues have declined because of a drop in passenger traffic, fares and fuel consumption. Moreover, the uncommitted balance in the trust fund has been decreasing since Fiscal Year 2001.
Just as business aviation was girding for a fight over a Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) amendment that would have forced companies receiving TARP funds to dispose of their business aircraft, the House of Representatives moved to strike the language from the legislation.
NBAA is fighting to eliminate from a bill to reform the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) wording that would “require divestment of private aircraft or leases.” TARP was passed by Congress in October to acquire banks’ troubled assets in an effort to unfreeze the credit market. The proposal regarding business airplanes was introduced on Friday by Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.
The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) and General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) have expressed support for the “General Aviation Industry Reparations Act of 2001,” which will provide $2.5 billion in grant funding and $3 billion in loan guarantees for aviation businesses.
Tulsa, Okla.-based Great Plains Airlines became the second regional airline to seek federal loan guarantees under the Air Transportation Safety and System Stabilization Act. The struggling Fairchild Dornier 328JET operator joined Aloha Airlines, Frontier Airlines and Peachtree City, Ga.-based charter company World Airways in applying for the guarantees just ahead of the government’s July 1 deadline.
NBAA, the National Air Transportation Association and General Aviation Manufacturers Association recently urged the Department of Treasury to suspend the changes to jet fuel taxation provisions that were contained in H.R.3, the Highway Bill.
Business aviation lobbyists yesterday applauded recent action taken by Republican lawmakers to shelve new tax rules in the 2005 Highway Bill designed to discourage truckers from using jet fuel to avoid higher taxes on diesel fuel. At the request of NBAA, NATA and GAMA, Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Ark.), Sen. Conrad Burns (R-Mont.) and Rep. Robin Hayes (R-N.C.) sent letters to U.S.
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