West Virginia Ponders Aircraft Tax Exemption
More than half of the corporate aircraft that were once based in West Virginia have relocated since the imposition of a state property tax that includes aircraft. That’s prompted the West Virginia Aeronautics Commission to push for legislation that would exempt corporate and other aircraft from the tax. Before the tax, there were 23 corporate aircraft in the state, including one that was exempt because it belongs to a college. “Now there are 11 and the one is still exempt,” Commission Chairman Richard Wachtel told the Cumberland Times News. “It’s obvious we are losing corporate aircraft to the states surrounding us which have little or no corporate personal property tax.” A bill to exempt aircraft from the tax was introduced in the state legislature last year but failed, largely due to opposition from tax assessors. Wachtel said the bill will be re-introduced in the next session and he’s hoping the aviation community can convince state officials to support its passage. “Especially talk to the assessors; I’m convinced the assessors don’t understand the issue and the importance of keeping aircraft based in the state,” Wachtel said.