User Fee Proposal Dead?
Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Kan., is close to declaring the FAA’s proposal to impose user fees on general aviation dead. "I think we’ve finally gotten the stake out and are about to drive it through user fees," he told The Wichita Eagle's editorial board last week. Tiahrt told the Eagle brass that he’s made fighting the funding proposal his top priority and enlisted the support of other members of Congress to defeat the plan. On the Eagle's editorial board's blog, Tiahrt’s tenacity was applauded but it appears that not everyone in aviation-centric Wichita thinks user fees are a bad idea. "I have my 'stunned disbelief' hat on today," wrote one respondent to the blog. "I'm stunned that Tiahrt's top priority is a user fee for wealthy people." Others mentioned that there are some other issues in front of Congress (wars, famine, pestilence, that sort of thing) that might be more deserving of Tiahrt’s less divided attention, while others pointed out that "user fees" exist for everything from boat launches to freeways.