Refreshing common sense is rare in politics these days.
“It was very disappointing,” said House Speaker Rep. David Ralston (R-Blue Ridge) of Bastian’s statement.
State House Republicans, under Ralston’s leadership, passed a repeal of a jet fuel tax break worth millions of dollars to Delta Air Lines.
“You don’t feed a dog that bites your hand. You’ve got to keep that in mind sometimes,” Ralston said when asked about the retaliatory legislation, which passed the House but never got a vote in the state Senate before adjournment.
That’s in response to Delta Airlines deciding to join the Democrat mob in attacking Georgia’s efforts to protect election integrity, falsely accusing Republicans of racism.
“They like our public policy when we’re doing things that benefit them, and they reap the rewards of those benefits and then turn around and do this,” Ralston told reporters, according to Georgia Public Broadcasting. “As all of you know, I can’t resist a country boy line or two, you don’t feed a dog that bites your hand. You’ve got to keep that in mind.”
Republicans need to keep it in mind period.
When I speak to Republican insiders, I repeatedly mention how many government contracts AT&T, Amazon, Verizon, and other lefty enemy corps benefit from.
It would be nice if it starts getting some traction.
You may have last heard about Delta and the jet fuel tax back when Delta Airlines and Bastian decided to go after the NRA. And you may be wondering if it’s the same tax.
Governor Nathan Deal was in favor of the exemption, NRA perk or not. On July 30, 2018, he issued an executive order suspending the collection of the 4 percent state sales and use tax on jet fuel as of August 1, 2018. He noted at the time that the tax is “the 4th highest tax burden on jet fuel among states with major airport hubs,” and that “many other states impose little or no tax on jet fuel.” The tax generated approximately $39 million for the state in the last fiscal year.
The state’s loss of revenue is a gain for Delta Air Lines. Yet the executive order offered only temporary tax relief. Although the state sales tax exemption for jet fuel is currently in effect, the executive order requires ratification by the General Assembly for it to endure.
On November 9, 2018, outgoing Gov. Deal convened a Special Session of the General Assembly to ratify his executive order dated July 30, 2018, and to provide emergency funding to state agencies and local governments in the wake of Hurricane Michael. Gov. Deal urged swift action: “For those who are the beneficiaries of this legislation, timing is of the essence. They need help now.”
On Saturday, November 17, the General Assembly approved both executive orders and sent them to Gov. Deal for his signature. He signed HB 5EX and HB 1EX without delay, along with HB 4EX, which creates a tax credit for the timber industry.
Yet we haven’t heard the last of the jet fuel sales tax saga. The newly approved sales tax exemption is set to expire at the end of the fiscal year, on June 30, 2019, so it will likely be taken up by the General Assembly after it convenes in January.
Deal, a former Democrat turned Republican, is out. That means Delta has lost one of its best friends.
This is the case in Georgia, where Governor Nathan Deal and his wife received close to $8,000 in airline miles and special privileges from Delta Airlines, a Georgia-based company, as a thanks for exempting the company from a sales tax on fuel, worth nearly $30 million over two years.
Let’s see if Delta manages to still gets its way on the jet fuel tax.