Travelers question corporate freeloading

8th Mar 2007

David Stempler President of the Air Travelers
Association has submitted a letter
to the Senate Aviation Subcommittee for their March hearing on FAA
reauthorization, complaining about the subsidy of corporate jets.Mr Stempler said “aviation taxes and fees must be adjusted so that airline
passengers are no longer forced to subsidize the operation of corporate
jets. Corporate executives, entertainers, real estate moguls, and other fat
cats have been getting a free ride from airlines passengers for over 25
years and this must stop!”
  Stempler continued, “According to the FAA’s most recent analysis,
airlines and their passengers use about 70% of air traffic control costs,
yet contribute almost 95% of the revenue into the Airport and Airways Trust
Fund that funds the system. Who benefits from this inequity . . . the users
of Learjets, Gulfstream jets, Falcon jets, and the like. If they can afford
these planes, believe me, they can afford the fair and equitable taxes that
go with using them.”
  Stempler continued, “As airline passengers we have been taxed, charged,
and ‘fee’d’ to excess. We pay the passenger ticket tax, passenger facility
charges, flight segment fees, international flight taxes, and airline
security fees, all of which can add up to more than 20% to 50% of an
airline ticket. Without aviation tax reform this could get even higher and
threaten the continued availability of low airfares.”
  Stempler then said, “The ‘air-limo’ crowd says that the airlines are
just trying to shift the aviation tax burden to corporate jets. That’s
right! Aviation taxes should properly be shifted from airline passengers,
who have been overpaying for years, to the corporate jet crowd that has
been underpaying for years.”
  Stempler concluded, “all that passengers are asking is that corporate
jets pay their fair and equitable share of what they use of the aviation
system . . . no more, no less. Airline passengers have been footing the
bill for corporate jets for too long, and it must stop.”


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