- Jun 29, 2011
- Reaction score
https://qz.com/977207/californias-p...tly-what-spacex-ula-and-virgin-galactic-want/California has come up with a remarkable plan to tax rocket launches from its coast.
Specifically, their tax payments will be determined by how often they fly the 62 miles (100 km) from a California launchpad to the very edge of space while transporting goods or tourists. After 62 miles, the companies are deemed to be in space, and would not incur further taxes.
The proposal comes as the states technology sector ploughs increasing amounts of money into aerospace start-ups, and homegrown company SpaceX asserts itself as the leader in low-cost space access. California is home to highly skilled aerospace engineers and technicians, thanks to the long presence of companies like Boeing and Lockheed Martin, as well as research centers like Caltechs Jet Propulsion Lab and NASAs Ames research center.
At the moment, however, the proposed rocket tax will apply mainly to just two companies: SpaceX and United Launch Alliance, the only launch firms that regularly operate in the US. A third California company, Virgin Galactic, intends to fly space tourists in California and launch satellites, but is likely more than a year from commercial operations.
Yet all three companies have backed the new tax rule in meetings with the California government, according to government records and sources familiar with the matter, because the change would clarify their tax status.
There is no word yet, however, if SpaceX will also be taxed for the 62 mile space-to-Earth return flight of its reusable rocket boosters.