Young Pilots USA, America's association by and for young aviators, strongly condemns the proposed Massachusetts bill S.2305, "An Act to Mitigate the Climate Impact of Private and Corporate Air Travel," originally proposed in late March by state Sen. Julian A. Cyr, a Democrat representing the Cape and Islands region.
Mr. Cyr, whose seat was previously held by Daniel A. Wolf, the founder and President of Cape Air, introduced the bill with the aim of mitigating the carbon footprint of general aviation, with the stated goal of issuing landing fees of no less than $1,000 every time a non-commercial aircraft lands in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
The move is the latest in a long string of efforts by lawmakers and regulators to damage the vibrant general aviation community in America, and the negligible climate impact of student pilots' touch and goes is the newest target. Sean Collins, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association's director for the Eastern Region, which includes Massachusetts, said that the bill would "blow up thousands of jobs." Whatever general aviation remained after the passing of this bill would be incredibly expensive, with an hourly cost of operating any airplane likely rising into thousands of dollars.
The nearly 7,000 jobs in aviation in the commonwealth bring an economic output of nearly $670 million, and have significant benefits to the state's residents, from pilot training to tourism. It's worth noting that Senator Cyr's district, which includes Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket, is especially dependent on travellers arriving to the area via air– an economic boost to the area that would vaporize if the bill is passed.
As regards our work to broaden the aviation community, especially for young people, Young Pilots USA finds this to be one of the greatest threats yet to young people being involved in flying. Besides the already often prohibitive economics of general aviation, this landing fee would make GA evaporate completely in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, in which Young Pilots USA has 3 chapters and dozens of members. Our valuable work to bring aviation and its benefits, both for personal and commercial flying, would all be for nought.
As representatives of the community of young pilots (and as an organization that cares deeply about the climate and the potential impacts that aviation has on it), we strongly condemn the sheer idiocy of the bill, and the attention-seeking of those who introduce and back it, given its lack of real benefits for the climate and the destruction of the general aviation community in Massachusetts.
Young Pilots USA is America’s only nationwide members’ association of young aviators that’s actually run by young people, with an annual fly-in, guest speaker series, a great aviation community, and chapters in 12 states and growing!