UPDATE: While Georgia filmmakers are celebrating, their Arizona counterparts are mourning the demise of their efforts to restore their state’s production tax incentive. “Our film incentives program expired in 2010,” a local source said. “And the current bill for film tax incentives is dead as of Tuesday. We were working to get Senate Bill 1159, Arizona’s Film incentive bill, assigned to the Commerce Committee. It was supposed to be heard by the House Ways & Means committee, but on Tuesday, March 22, the head of the committee, Republican Representative Jack Harper, refused to introduce it (effectively kiling it), saying he fears “possible attempted bribes” of legislators. So the bill is dead. That means more business for New Mexico, Louisiana and Georgia, and even less for Arizona.”
PREVIOUS: Good news for the producers of two pilots filming in Atlanta, ABC’s Partners and CBS’ Hail Mary, as well as all other film and TV projects looking to shoot in the Peach State. Georgia’s generous 30% production tax credit, which had been in jeopardy after the state’s Special Council on Tax Reform and Fairness in January recommended its elimination, will stay put. The decision, which will be made official with a committee vote Monday, comes after lobbying from Hollywood, including industry executives making the case for keeping the incentives in place at a hearing with lawmakers earlier this month.
Strapped for cash, several states including Georgia, Michigan, New Mexico and Rhode Island have been considering capping or eliminating their Hollywood tax credits. Yesterday, Rhode Island filmmakers met with state lawmakers to try to convince them not to follow the governor’s recommendation to eliminates the tax credit for films and television shows. New Jersey and Kentucky already placed caps on film incentives last year; Connecticut, Iowa, Kansas and Wisconsin all slashed spending on their programs in 2009. Here is the formal release on the pending decision in Georgia, which has seen a 500% increase in film and TV production since 2007, to keep the state’s tax credit:
ATLANTA, GA – The Georgia Production Partnership (GPP) Government Relations Committee and Executive Board are pleased to report that the Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act and Entertainment Production Sales & Use Tax Exemption will stay intact, and that each will be withdrawn from the Georgia Joint Special Committee on Revenue Structure’s substitute HB385 bill, plus any subsequent or related bills during this session. HB385 is scheduled for a full Joint Special Committee vote on Monday, March 28, 2011 before it can move to the two legislative chambers for further ratification.