Local lawmakers joined with business leaders to urge support for Proposition 3
on in the Nov. 5 election as a boon to the aerospace industry and the Texas economy.
Former Deputy Secretary of Defense Gordon England, a Fort Worth area resident, said the aerospace and aviation industry is “the jewel in Texas” because it is a high-tech industry that will continue to be extremely important to the state economy.
England was also a keynote speaker Thursday at the Aviation & Aerospace Industry Manufacturing Summit hosted by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University at the Dallas/Fort Worth Marriott Hotel near Texas Motor Speedway. England, along with several other Texas officials involved with aviation and economic development in the state, held a press conference in support of the amendment.
If approved, the proposed constitutional amendment authorized by Proposition 3 would extend the tax exemption on parts and equipment from 175 days, less than six months, to two years. Under current law, local governments such as cities, counties and school districts can adopt freeport tax exemptions for up to 175 days but local leaders said that is not enough time for aerospace companies to warehouse the equipment and parts without paying taxes.
Approval of Proposition 3 would “level the playing field” for aerospace manufacturers that have built warehouses in Oklahoma to hold the parts and equipment tax-free for longer than Texas allows, said State Rep. Linda Harper-Brown, R-Irving, who sponsored to the bill to put the issue on the ballot. If parts and equipment could be held longer in Texas, then the state would be the beneficiary of those warehouses and warehouse jobs, she said. There has been no organized opposition to Proposition 3, officials pointed out.