Pratt and Whitney engine on an Airbus airlinerClick image to enlargeThe U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has launched a program to pay up to half of the payroll costs for eligible aerospace manufacturing companies, covering a period of sis months.

The Aviation Manufacturing Jobs Protection (AMJP) program will provide funding earmarked in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

The DOT says AMJP funds can be used to pay up to half of the compensation costs for certain categories of employees engaged in manufacturing or repair in the aerospace sector for up to six months. Companies taking part in the program must agree to not furloughs workers without employee consent, or lay off employees within that group, during the six-month period for which they receive funding.

To be eligible, a company must meet the following criteria:

  • Actively manufactures an aircraft, aircraft engine, propeller, component, part, or systems of an aircraft or aircraft engine under a Federal Aviation Administration production approval; or
  • Hold a certificate issued under part 145 of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, for maintenance, repair, and overhaul of aircraft, aircraft engines, components, or propellers; or
  • Operate a process certified to SAE AS9100 related to the design, development, or provision of an aviation product or service, including a part, component, or assembly.

Once these conditions are met, companies must:

  • Be “established, created, or organized in the United States or under the laws of the United States;”
  • Have “significant operations in, and a majority of its employees engaged in aviation manufacturing activities and services, or maintenance, repair, and overhaul activities and services based in the United States.”
  • Have “involuntarily furloughed or laid off at least 10 per cent of its workforce in 2020 as compared to 2019 or has experienced at least a 15 per cent decline in 2020 revenues as compared to 2019.”
  • Have not received a credit against applicable employment taxes under section 2301 of the CARES Act (26 U.S.C. 3111 note) for the immediately preceding calendar quarter ending before entering into an AMJP agreement;
  • Have not received financial assistance under section 4113 of the CARES Act (15 U.S.C. 9073) (providing payroll support to air carriers and contractors); and
  • Not currently be expending financial assistance under the paycheck protection program established under section 7(a)(36) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 636(a)(36)), as of the date the employer submits an application under the AMJP.

While Canada does not have a similar program, the federal budget for 2021 outlined a $250-million investment plan to boost regional aerospace companies.

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