General aviation supplied 1.1 million jobs and contributed $219 billion to the U.S. economy in 2013, according to a study (PDF) conducted for eight major GA groups. The General Aviation Manufacturers Association released the study Wednesday at its annual news conference in Washington. The study, conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers, examined GA-related industries and their direct and indirect benefits to the economy, such as aircraft component makers selling parts and charter flight passengers spending money on hotels. It used the latest data available from 2013.
In state-by-state data, California had the highest total economic impact at $30.2 billion. The top 10 states ranked by total output attributable to GA in 2013 were California, Texas, Georgia, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Arizona, Connecticut, Ohio, and New York. They accounted for 57 percent of the total output nationwide.
The study will help GA organizations in lobbying efforts at all levels, the participating groups said. “While many people may equate general aviation with only business aviation, there is so much more to it,” said EAA Chairman Jack Pelton. “Cities, counties, and states all have local grassroots businesses that rely on general and recreational aviation for their livelihoods, so the potential of this economic benefit should be welcomed and nurtured by civic leaders and citizens alike.” The group also released a white paper (PDF), “The Wide Wings and Rotors of General Aviation,” highlighting the variety of GA operations around the country that contribute to the economic impact outlined in the study — from maintenance operations to air ambulance flights.