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New Report: High Flyers 2017
New study looks at the massive tax advantages for private jets preserved by the Trump tax cuts and takes a deep dive into how the private jet lobby shifts costs to the rest of us, threatens our security, and fuels a warming planet.
Blogging Our Great Divide
November 29, 2017
Nothing symbolizes the growing concentration of wealth and power as much as the private luxury jet, flying high above the rest of us. The private jet lobby –and their super-wealthy passengers –have created a parallel universe of perks and privileges that would shock most commercial passengers if they knew about them. In both tax policy and homeland security, the high flyers have used their power to create one set of rules for themselves and another set of rules for the rest of us.
Our new report, High Flyers 2017, looks at the vaulted status of private jets in our tax code and the impact of the Trump tax cuts on the private jet set.
The private jet lobby spent $56 million lobbying over the past ten years to save more than $1 billion in annual taxes they avoid due to preferential tax treatment. This preferential treatment goes untouched by the Trump tax cuts while students, teachers, and middle class families are faced with tax increases.
Some of our findings include:
- The private jet lobby spent $56 million lobbying over the past ten years to save more than $1 billion in annual taxes they avoid due to preferential tax treatment.
- The tax cut package under consideration in the Senate maintains and expands the private jet tax carve-out, while the Republican budget plan increases fees on commercial airline passengers.
- Private jets contribute less than one tenth of the resources they use from the Federal Aviation Administration Trust Fund. Commercial airline passengers heavily subsidize private jet passengers.
This report is released in the midst of Congressional action on a Republican tax cut package that would maintain the private jet vaulted tax status, while a Republican spending bill would increase fees on commercial airline passengers.
At a time when private jets are taxed at levels so much lower than what could be conceivably considered fair, it’s absurd to consider further shifting costs to commercial airline passengers. It’s even more absurd to consider maintaining the vaulted tax status of the private jet set while increasing the taxes on the middle class, but that is what the Republican tax bill does.
Chuck Collins is a senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies and a co-editor of Inequality.org and the author of Born on Third Base. Josh Hoxie directs the Project on Opportunity and Taxation at the Institute for Policy Studies and co-edits Inequality.org.
For media inquiries about the new Billionaire Bonanza report, contact Jessicah Pierre: Jessicah@ips-dc.org