The White House targets business aviation

US President Joe Biden proposed a phased 500% increase in jet fuel taxes for private aircraft users and lengthening the depreciation terms for business aircraft as part of his USD109.3 billion budget request for the Department of Transportation issued on 11 March. Taken together with the recent White House directive for the IRS to step up audits of business aircraft users, this is being seen as a targeted attack on business aviation sector.

In his annual State of The Union Address in March, the President referenced corporate jet users and pledged to ensure that they “pay their share”. The administration claims that private jets account for 7% of all flights handled by the FAA but generate less than 1% of taxes that fund aviation and airports. Under the proposals, tax on private jet fuel will rise from the USD0.22 per gallon to USD1.06 over five years, while the depreciation term for purchased business aircraft will increase from five to seven years, the same level as commercial aircraft.

The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) called the measures unfair. “The Biden administration’s sweeping plan would hurt business aviation and the jobs and communities that depend on it and make it harder for US companies to compete in a global economy,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen.

“Among the proposals that single our business aviation for onerous treatment is a five-fold tax increase, even though current fuel taxes already cover the incremental cost imposed on the aviation system. We urge Congress to tell the president that his gambit won’t fly with the citizens, companies and communities that rely on business aviation.”

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