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Florida Use Tax Exemption Bill Awaits Governorís Signature

May 6, 2010 — Beginning July 1, new aircraft owners will be exempted from Florida’s “use” tax if they fly their newly purchased aircraft into Florida during the first six months of ownership. House Bill 173, approved by the Florida State Senate last week, exempts visiting aircraft from the state’s onerous use tax and has been sent to Gov. Charlie Crist’s desk for his signature.

The current law exposed visitors who flew into the state during the first six months of aircraft ownership to a use tax of up to 6 percent of the aircraft’s total value. The new law will exempt non-state residents who fly newly purchased aircraft to Florida and remain for up to 21 days during the first six months of ownership without fear of the use tax.

Nonresident-owned aircraft are also exempt from the use tax if the aircraft enters or remains in the state exclusively for purposes of flight training, repairs, alterations, refitting, or modification.

In 2008, EAA joined the aviation community in calling for a moratorium on the use tax because of its inconsistent application. EAA also cited general aviation’s $2.3 billion economic impact on the state’s economy, fueled in part by out-of-state visitors to the U.S. Sport Aviation Expo in Sebring, the Sun 'n Fun Fly-In in Lakeland, and a large number of EAA chapter fly-ins and activities.

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