UPDATED 7PM: The California Film Commission completed its production tax credits lottery this afternoon and of 322 projects submitted today, 28 were selected to receive credits before this year’s $100 million total allocation runs out. Other qualified applicants go on a waiting list. The number of projects submitted this year approached double last year’s number. On the first day of last year’s application period, 177 projects were submitted and 27 were selected to receive the credits. Ultimately 74 projects received tax credits from last year’s $100 million allocation. The increase came from the large number of smaller independent projects that moved from the waiting list to be awarded credits as larger projects withdrew.
Today’s figures are subject to change as the commission reviews the applications. More information will become available Monday afternoon about the estimated total spend by approved projects, estimated wages, the number of cast and crew members employed and breakdown by production type — feature vs. TV, studio vs. independent.
READ MORE »
The battle over tax breaks for California film and TV production intensified today as scaled-back, pared-down legislation moved to the state Senate for final consideration. An extension of California’s showbiz incentive program (Assembly Bill 1069) was cut down from 5 years to just one year by the state Senate Appropriations Committee. The Assembly in May passed a version that would have extended the $100M per-year credit program through 2014. That time element could still be adjusted in the Senate, but the cutback is indicative of the scrutiny expenditures of any sort are receiving as the Legislature struggles with the state’s $9B budget shortfall.
Critics say California has far more crucial spending priorities than handouts to a wealthy industry at taxpayer expense and want to eliminate the tax breaks altogether. Industry advocates say the state needs the incentives to compete with other states offering similar or greater tax breaks to film/TV producers. They point to a study released in June by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp, which said the program has brought $3.8B in economic output and supported 20,040 jobs since its inception in 2009. Read More »
California’s film and television tax credits would be extended five more years if the State Assembly has its way, after a bill that would add an extra $500 million to the program was approved today by a 72-1 vote. The … Read More »