|(c) 2011 GBTA|
The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) joined the chorus of voices calling for immediate action to fund the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). For three years, GBTA notes, it has called for passage of a long- term re-authorization bill.
"This latest political gamesmanship is harmful to the economy and to the future of the aviation system," said the GBTA.
“I am outraged as to how Congress can adjourn and allow an agency that is important to the safety and efficiency of the traveling public to partially shutdown," GBTA executive director and COO Michael W. McCormick commented. "Not only is travel in general vital to the economy, but business travel in particular is essential to corporations and the private sector’s out-sized position in helping the economy recover. Congress needs to reauthorize the FAA. Enough is enough.”
Absent a resolution to the funding impasse, GBTA called on President Obama and the Internal Revenue Service to quickly clarify its policies and guidance for excise taxes purchased on tickets prior to the FAA shutdown.
GBTA said it is focused on the impact the partial shutdown of the FAA is having on its members, whose companies may be eligible for substantial tax refunds given the volume of air travel they purchase. GBTA is dedicating resources to this cause, providing real-time updates on the situation and offering other guidance to members.
Collectively, GBTA’s 5,000-plus members manage over $340 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually.