Steve Knight introduced his first bill upon being sworn in as a state senator this week.
Senate Bill 19 would expand the sales and use tax exemption for the space flight industry by granting a sales tax exemption for equipment and materials used to construct the facilities designed to launch a space vehicle. Currently, only the material and equipment on the space flight vehicle itself are tax exempt.
“We need to level the playing field before we irretrievably lose business to our competitors,” said Knight, R-Palmdale. “Without Senate Bill 19, we risk losing California’s vital aerospace industry to other states and countries that are more business-friendly to this and other industries.”
The purpose of SB 19 is to encourage and protect the space flight industry in California. Other states, notably, Florida, Texas (home of NASA) and Alaska are in direct competition with California for space launch sites.
Additionally, Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Virginia have stepped up their efforts to attract the high-dollar space industry. In order to retain the companies that we have in California and continue to bring in new companies, CA must provide additional incentives, such as tax breaks and upgraded facilities.
“SB 19 is a simple measure needed to inject much needed capital into or ailing economy,” Knight said. “This bill will be one of a series of reforms intended to assist the aerospace industry in California and create jobs in a down economy.”
Senate Bill 19 awaits referral to a policy committee in Senate Rules Committee. It is likely the measure will be referred to Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee sometime in February.