Corporate jet tax hike hits ailing plane makers

July 13, 2011 - 2:14 AM
Debt Showdown Corporate Jets

FILE - In this Nov. 4, 2004 file photo, workers service Cessna Citation business jets at Cessna's service center in Wichita, Kan. President Barack Obama aims at corporate fat cats when he calls for a tax increase on companies that own private jets. But he hits an American manufacturing industry that is just starting to show life after years of slumping sales and thousands of job losses. How corporate jets are treated by tax law reaches deep into the heartland, places like Wichita, where companies like Cessna, Hawker Beechcraft and Bombardier Learjet have been manufacturing private aircraft for years. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, file)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama aims at corporate fat cats when he calls for a tax increase on companies that own private jets. But he hits an American manufacturing industry that is just starting to show life after years of slumping sales and thousands of job losses.

Most business aircraft are made in America, and the companies and unions that produce them don't appreciate Obama's rhetoric or his plan to raise taxes on private jet owners. The proposal would scale back a tax break enjoyed by the private jet owners but not by commercial airlines.

The tax increase would raise $3 billion over the next decade, but that's a small part of a deficit-reduction package that could reach $4 trillion. Nevertheless, Obama hammers away at the issue on a regular basis.