Eclipse Aviation, developer of the six-seat Eclipse 500 very light jet, has secured a $45 million industrial revenue bond package from Albuquerque City Council, New Mexico. Eclipse will get a property tax abatement worth more than $777,000 over 10 years. In return, the council expects to gain about $2.1 million in taxation over the same period, mostly from new employee spending.

Eclipse is required to repay some or all of the tax breaks if it abandons its Albuquerque operations within six years.

Eclipse plans to build a manufacturing facility at Double Eagle II airport in west Albuquerque by early 2009, which could eventually lead to the creation of 2,000 jobs. The company says the proceeds of the bond would be used to buy equipment for various manufacturing, research and office support functions. The Pratt & Whitney Canada PW610F-powered Eclipse 500 is on target for its first flight in December, leading to certification and first deliveries in 2006, says the manufacturer.

Meanwhile, Safire Aircraft plans to reopen this week under a fresh round of funding from a Swiss private equity group. Safire president and chief executive Camilo Salomon says the funding package, originally expected to have closed on 31 May, should be sufficient to fund the Safire Jet to certification.

Source: Flight International