As KSC maps out its future plans, Rubio worries about commercial competitiveness

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center is embarking on a long-range master plan that, over the next two decades, foresees major changes to the center as it evolves from one that primarily supported the Space Shuttle to one that is a “multi-user” spaceport. The master plan includes, among other features, a proposed second runway and as many [...]

Arizona passes spaceflight liability bill

The governor of Arizona has signed into law a bill that provides commercial spaceflight companies in the state with liability protections similar to those in several other states. Gov. Jan Brewer signed HB2163 on Wednesday, a days after both the Arizona Senate approved an amended version of the bill and the state House then concurred [...]

WSJ editorial criticizes California tax break bill that benefits SpaceX

Earlier this month, the California Senate approved AB 777, legislation that would exempt space companies from paying taxes on certain property related to spaceflight, including an “orbital space facility, space propulsion system, space vehicle, launch vehicle, satellite, or space station of any kind,” as well as components of such systems.

The bill is slightly different [...]

In its Aerospace Day proclamation, Colorado legislators demand accelerated space program

The letter from House members calling on the White House for a “vision and timeline” for space exploration looks positively mild compared to what they’re asking for in Colorado. In a resolution passed by the Colorado Legislature designating Monday as “Colorado Aerospace Day,” members criticized the federal government for ceding the lead in human spaceflight. [...]

Arizona and Colorado legislatures consider space industry legislation

The Arizona House approved this week legislation to provide liability indemnification for commercial spaceflight operators in the state. The bill, HB2163, passed unanimously Wednesday after goes on to the state Senate. The bill is similar to laws in several other states that requires spaceflight participants to sign a liability release agreement, and protects companies in [...]

In JSC’s district, space is a minor issue for GOP congressional candidates

On Tuesday, voters go to the polls in Texas for party primaries. Among the more interesting races will be the Republican nomination for the state’s 36th congressional district, which is up for grabs after the district’s current representative, Steve Stockman, decided to run against incumbent Sen. John Cornyn in the Republican Senate primary. The 36th [...]

Briefs: NM spaceport legislation update, Lick letter

When the New Mexico Legislature adjourned Thursday, supporters of Spaceport America there breathed sighs of relief. Two bills that would have altered use of a spaceport-related sales tax failed to pass before adjournment, and thus died, the Las Cruces Sun-News reported. As previously noted here, one bill would have prevented the state’s spaceport authority from [...]

Spaceport tax debate reaches climax in New Mexico this week

In April 2007, voters in Doña Ana County, New Mexico, which includes Las Cruces, voted for a quarter-percent gross receipts tax that would be used primarily help fund construction of Spaceport America, with a portion going towards educational programs. A year later, voters in Sierra County, where the spaceport is located, approved the same tax. [...]

California offers tax break jackpot for space companies; New Mexico wants better use of spaceport tax

California has lagged other states in enacting measures to support commercial space companies, but is now working hard to catch up. On Wednesday, the California Assembly passed AB 777 on a 69-5 vote. The bill would grant an exemption to property taxes for equipment “that has, or upon manufacture, assembly, or installation has, space flight [...]

McKeon’s retirement opens the door for a commercial space advocate

According to multiple reports yesterday, Rep. Buck McKeon (R-CA), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, has decided not to run for reelection in 2014. McKeon has not made a formal announcement of his plans, although there had been rumors for weeks that the congressman, first elected to his southern California seat in 1992, would [...]