Digging into Spaceport America’s tax exemption

As we’ve noted repeatedly ONE of the problems with New Mexico’s gross receipts tax is the politically-motivated exemptions that are offered to well-connected interests. Spaceport America and Virgin Galactic are certainly among the most well-connected interests, so it is not surprising that they have been given favorable tax treatment by the Legislature.

Check out the 2019 ruling below:  But, as Kathleen Sloan writes in a new piece for the Sierra County Sun, Virgin Galactic has paid NO GRT on ticket sales “totaling $45 million, it would produce a windfall of $3.123 million dollars for the state and county.” To put it plainly, tickets are not the same as “launching, operating, or recovering space vehicles or payloads.”

Not only does the Spaceport benefit from a GRT exemption it also benefits from a very generous interpretation of that exemption.