Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Aviation industry tax break bill heads to Nevada Senate

CARSON CITY — A bill designed to give lift to Nevada’s aviation industry cleared its first legislative pylon Tuesday with passage by a Senate committee.

Senate Bill 93 would provide partial sales and personal property tax abatements to companies that own, operate, manufacture, service, test or assemble aircraft or aircraft components.

The Senate Committee on Revenue and Economic Development amended and approved the bill, sending it to the Senate floor.

Steve Hill, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, stressed that tax breaks do not apply to buying an airplane.

Backers of the bill say Nevada will see almost immediate economic benefits because of an already present workforce, aviation companies and demand, especially in tourist-driven Las Vegas.

During a hearing last month, a transportation economist said Nevada is one of only five states in the continental United States and the only one in the West that does not offer aviation tax incentives.

Unlike surrounding states, Nevada charges full sales tax on aviation parts. Hill said that means aircraft owners — from business travelers to helicopter tour operators — more often than not fly their aircraft short distances to other states where they can buy parts and maintenance more cheaply.

The committee Tuesday also amended and approved Senate Bill 74, which would update tax abatements available to companies moving to or expanding in Nevada to reflect the state’s improving economy.

As Nevada’s unemployment rate improves, tax abatements would be limited or not available for companies that fail to pay above the state average wage, currently around $20.62 per hour.

Hill said the change fits with the state’s goal of trying to attract higher paying jobs.

Original article can be found at: http://www.reviewjournal.com

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