HB 661 is a tax increase that’s bad for Montana’s passengers and businesses

Rather than unnecessarily raising costs for passengers, Montana legislators should follow other states that have reduced or eliminated the jet fuel tax. This move promotes travel by encouraging new and diverse flight options, and motivates the airline industry to continue to invest in the state’s future.

Commercial aviation is helping Montana thrive through travel, tourism and solid jobs. Why put all of that at risk with an unnecessary tax hike that could raise the cost of travel in and out of the state?

  • Scheduled air service levels to the state are currently the highest they’ve been this decade – higher taxes could dampen growth or result in cuts, as airlines evaluate the higher cost of doing business.
  • Travel and tourism brings more than 12 million visitors to Montana who spend about $3.7 billion each year and support nearly 59,000 local jobs. An increase in taxes on airline jet fuel will jeopardize this growing industry.

Montana travelers want low fares, not higher taxes.

  • Domestic one-way airfares to and from Montana are at their lowest rates since 2005, adjusted for inflation.
  • Montana airfares have declined 10 percent on average since 2015.
  • Airlines, passengers and shippers already pay for the vast majority of Montana airport operations via rents, landing fees, parking fees, concessions, ticket taxes and cargo waybill taxes.

HB 661 would impose an enormous, unneeded tax hike that makes Montana less competitive.

  • The tax on jet fuel would jump a staggering 175% compared to today, which could make the price of your next flight more expensive.
  • For cargo carriers, HB 661 would impose a 63% tax increase, which could make it more expensive for Montana residents to buy or ship goods by air.

Check out some of the recent local news coverage on HB 661 to see what others are saying: