Airlines for America opposes new and higher taxes on airlines and passengers.
New York (AirGuideBusiness - Business & Industry Features) Wed,
Mar 5, 2014 - Airlines for America (A4A), the industry trade
organization for the leading U.S. airlines, opposed on Mar. 5 the FY2015
White House budget proposal, which calls for an additional $4.2 billion
in new and higher taxes on airlines and their customers, calling it an
unprecedented cash grab that will hurt jobs, service to small
communities and the economy. A4A urged Members of Congress to say no to
this proposal, and recognize that commercial aviation is a key enabler
of job growth and U.S. economic activity that could contribute at an
even greater level, if not impeded by excessive taxes and regulations.
On a typical $300 roundtrip domestic ticket, customers today pay $61 in
federal taxes, or 20 percent of the ticket price. That number will go up
in July when the Transportation Security Administration fee more than
doubles, costing passengers an additional $1 billion. If the
Administrationas proposed budget is approved, taxes on that $300 ticket
will increase to 26 percent or $77. The tax burden on aviation and its
customers has more than tripled since 1998 to more than $19 billion
annually. aEnough is enough: the White House needs to understand it can
no longer use airlines and their passengers as its own personal ATM
without consequences,a said A4A President and CEO Nicholas E. Calio.
aItas like playing a game of whack a mole on Groundhog Day because the
same ill-conceived proposals keep popping up no matter how many times
Congress and airline passengers and shippers knock them down. Coming on
the heels of a 125 percent increase in the TSA tax on passengers to
offset the deficit, this proposal is particularly egregious.a
Specifically, the FY2015 budget proposes to: Increase the
Transportation Security Administration tax from $5.60 per one-way trip
(in July) to $6, costing passengers more than $217 million per year.
Raise the passenger facilities charge (PFC) from $4.50 per flight
segment to $8, costing passengers and airlines an additional $2.2
billion annually. Reinstate the Aviation Security Infrastructure Fee,
which Congress eliminated last year, costing $420 million. Increase
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) customs fee from $5.50 to $7.50
and immigration fees from $7 to $9, costing $318 million annually. Add
an 18th unique tax on aviation--a new mandatory $100 per flight
departure tax--costing $1 billion annually. Calio noted that increasing
the PFC cap is unwarranted, as airport revenues hit a near-record level
of $23.9 billion last year, including $2.8 billion in revenue from PFCs,
just below the all-time high. Congress has previously rejected proposals
to increase the PFC cap, recognizing that it would cost passengers
billions of dollars annually while discouraging airlines from
maintaining existing or growing service levels to local communities.
aRaising the PFC will drive up the cost of flying for millions of
Americans who rely on air travel, cost jobs, limit service options to
small and medium communities and ultimately harm the U.S. economy,a said
Calio. aPassengers, airlines and the U.S. economy simply cannot afford
higher taxes on air travel and we urge Congress to hold the line by
rejecting the unnecessary PFC hike and other tax increases.a
Annually, commercial aviation helps drive more than $1 trillion in
U.S. economic activity and more than 10 million U.S. jobs. A4A airline
members and their affiliates transport more than 90 percent of all U.S.
airline passenger and cargo traffic. America needs a cohesive National
Airline Policy that will support the integral role the nationas airlines
play in connecting people and goods globally, spur the nationas economic
growth and create more high-paying jobs.
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