Aircraft registration fees in New Hampshire are now more equitable for all aircraft types, thanks to legislation recently signed by Gov. Chris Sununu.
House Bill 124 also addresses the discrepancy that existed between registration fees in New Hampshire and those in neighboring Massachusetts, which led many aircraft owners to base their aircraft at Massachusetts airports such as Bedford’s Hanscom Field (BED).
“Previously, New Hampshire aircraft registration fees were based on the age and price of the aircraft, meaning that newer business aircraft could pay upwards of $300,000 in first-year registration fees, compared to a flat $300 fee in Massachusetts,” said Brittany Davies, regional representative for the Northeast for the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA).
“We have been working for a long time to try and get a fix to this issue, which is definitely a win-win in that it is revenue neutral to the state, with the revenue much more equally spread out over all aircraft types,” said NBAA member Lee Rohde, president and CEO of Essex Aviation Group. “The legislation is a big fix to what was a real problem for New Hampshire to attract aircraft to base in this state.
The bill also assures continued funding of New Hampshire’s airports, which the state’s aircraft registration fees help subsidize. In order to make the new legislation revenue neutral, fees for smaller, older aircraft will increase. For example, aircraft weighing from 3,001 pounds to 8,000 pounds will see their fees increase from the current $128 to $250.
“New Hampshire legislators understood the importance of attracting business aircraft to base in the state,” said Davies. “Significant additional revenue can be expected in the form of fuel taxes, leases, new businesses relocating, and other businesses coming back to the state.”