Rep. Todd Tiahrt has opposed new user fees on general aviation to boost revenues for the Aviation Trust Fund.
According to Tiahrt, The fees carry the threat of decreasing aircraft sales and that could affect jobs in Kansas, Tiahrt said. General aviation operators now contribute to the trust fund by paying taxes on fuel.
Has Tiahrt looked at figures over the last several years showing that high paying manufacturing jobs are leaving Wichita and Kansas?
“The Wichita metropolitan area has lost 10,100 transportation-manufacturing jobs since December 1998, according to Wichita State University's Center for Economic Development and Business Research.
Aviation jobs lost since Sept 11, 2001, represent as much as 17 percent of the $50,000-and-over jobs in the Wichita area that were counted by the 2000 census.
Other communities have faced similar -- or worse --job losses in aerospace and bounced back stronger.
But recovery takes strategic planning and hard work by government and the private sector to identify and attract new industries.”
Once again Tiahrt leaves his constituents like a sinking ship (or tanker).