Georgia Lawmakers Pass Bill Punishing Delta for its Stance on the N.R.A.
The Georgia legislature approved a bill removing a tax break proposal sought by Delta Airlines. The bill is the strongest punishment that the nation’s pro-gun supporters have put forth. This is a result dye to many companies that changed its policies and positions regarding firearms after the recent Florida high school massacre.
What Georgia Legislators Did
State lawmakers got rid of a $50 million sales tax exemptions on jet fuel. This tax exemption was part of a larger tax-relief bill. Not surprisingly, Delta is one of the companies to benefit from the tax break. Several Georgia Republicans, including Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, successfully sought to remove the tax break. They did so in response to Delta’s decision to end its promotional discount for members of the National Rifle Association (N.R.A.).
Lt. Gov. Cagle threatened Delta just days after it announced its changes to their promotional fares. At least one other commercial carrier, United Airlines, also cut ties with its NRA-friendly promotions. Both the Georgia Senate and House, approved the changes to the bill without the jet-fuel tax break. The bill still needs to be signed into law by Republican governor Nathan Deal. Governor Deal, who is a supporter of the jet-fuel tax break, has pledged to sign the bill into law. However, only because it also includes significant reductions in personal and corporate tax rates.
Other Companies Changing Policies
When the airline announced the change, it asserted that it was trying to remain neutral in a national gun debate sparked by the recent mass school shooting that left 17 dead in Parkland, FL. Delta was not the only company to react to the massacre. Other American companies such as Kroger, Walmart, Dick’s, Hertz, Best Western, and MetLife also ended their discount-friendly relationships with the N.R.A. since the Valentine’s Day shooting.
Georgia’s Economic Engine
In addition to being one of Georgia’s biggest employers, Delta also has several flights in and out of Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson airport. Atlanta’s airport is one of the busiest in the word and has brought the city national and international recognition. Other states, including New York, offered Delta to move its headquarters in response to Georgia’s punitive bill. Delta is headquartered next to Hartsfield-Jackson’s runways. It has an estimated economic impact of $71 billion on Georgia’s local economy. Less than two years ago, Delta signed a 20-year lease to stay in Atlanta; the city has been home to the airlines for the past 77 years.
It is important to keep up-to-date with legislation, particularly in our current environment where the national gun debate is affecting other aspects of the law. If you have any legal issues you need addressed, contact a knowledgeable attorney.