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Joe Chianese and John Hadity of EPFS will be moderating three panels at this year’s AFCI Global Production & Finance Conference, April 6-8 in Burbank:

Around the World in 90 Minutes Part 1: Opportunities, Options, and Outcomes
Thursday, April 6, 9:30 – 10:00 am

Filming in the Tropics
Friday, April 7, 9:45 – 10:45 am

Around the World in 90 Minutes Part 2: A Win-Win Proposition
Friday, April 7, 11:45am – 1:15pm

Click here to register.


Updates by Jurisdiction

U.S. Updates

For more information on incentives in each state, visit the Production Incentives map on our website and click on the state of interest.

CALIFORNIA

  • AB 1664 was introduced, which is aimed at building the state’s below-the-line workforce by increasing funding for entertainment industry job-training programs. The proposed legislation would increase funding by $1M for current hands-on training programs geared towards high school and community college students. (See Deadline)
  • A legislative informational hearing was held earlier this month to explore whether adding diversity benchmarks to the state’s film incentives program would help increase the number of below-the-line jobs filled by women and minorities. (Illinois requires a diversity plan under its film incentive, and New York has pending legislation to set aside $5M of its incentives for productions that promote diversity for writers and directors.) (See Deadline)

A record four television series are relocating to California from other jurisdictions and will receive allocations of the state’s production tax credits. The California Film Commission estimates the $57.3M tax credits reserved for the latest 15 qualifying shows will generate $620M worth of in-state spending, $235M of which will cover over 4,400 crew and cast member jobs. (See Daily News)

FLORIDA

  • HB 7005 was introduced last month, which would repeal the entertainment industry tax credit and remove the tax exemption for equipment used in motion picture of television production.
  • HB 1345 and SB 1576 were introduced, which would establish the Florida Film Investment Corporation. The corporation would be authorized to make equity investments in scripted productions in the state, giving preference to productions meeting specific criteria.

GEORGIA
HB 199 provides a 20% tax credit for post-production companies that have a Georgia payroll of at least $250K and spend at least $500K during a taxable year. The bill, introduced in late January, has passed the House and the Senate. (See Atlanta Business Journal)

HAWAII
SR 84 was introduced, which urges the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism to create a plan to develop the West Oahu Creative Lab and to relocate the Hawaii Film Studio to West Oahu. It also urges the University of Hawaii Board of Regents to approve a certain transfer of land.

KENTUCKY

  • HB 263 was introduced last month, which would amend the incentive program to allow productions to receive a non-refundable, non-transferable tax credit in place of the current refundable tax credit.
  • HB 425 was introduced last month, which would add members to the Tourism Development Finance Authority, one of whom shall represent the film industry.

LOUISIANA
SB 40 was prefiled, which would sunset the state’s motion picture production tax credit on January 1, 2018.

MASSACHUSETTS

  • HB 1491 was introduced, which would remove the film tax credit expiration date.
  • HB 1588 was introduced, which would require a motion picture to include credit and a logo, with the title: “Proudly Made in Massachusetts”.
  • HB 3335 was introduced last month, which would allow for video games to qualify for the Massachusetts Production Tax Incentive.
  • SB 1571 was introduced last month, which would allow the film incentive tax credit program to sunset within one year of the bill’s passage, unless the program is reviewed and reauthorized. Upon reauthorization, the legislature shall include a sunset provision to take effect within five years.
  • HB 3344 was introduced, which proposes film tax credit transfers become subject to certain public disclosure requirements.

MINNESOTA

  • HB 2403 and SB 1518 were introduced, which would create a motion picture investment incentive fund to produce feature-length films and television series in Minnesota.
  • HB 2508 was introduced, which would create a refundable tax credit against taxes equal to 25% of film production and post-production expenditures made within the state.

MONTANA
HB 602 was introduced, which would reenact the “Big Sky on the Big Screen Act,” providing production companies a tax credit for resident wages and qualified expenditures within the state.

NEW MEXICO
SB 390 was introduced last month, which would reduce the lot size requirement for a qualified production facility from 50 acres to 45 acres.

NEW YORK

  • AB 5870 and SB 4999 have been introduced, which would allow writers’ and directors’ fees and salaries to be eligible production costs provided that in each case such writer or director is a minority group member or a woman. Tax credits for eligible fees would be capped at $5M per year.
  • SB 4565 was introduced, which includes a section to repeal the Empire State Film Production Credit and the Empire State Commercial Production Credit.

NORTH CAROLINA

  • SB 198 was introduced, which would require the joint legislative economic development and global engagement committee to study the efficacy of a tax credit in comparison to a discretionary grant fund for purposes of stimulating film productions in the state and the relative return on investment.
  • SB 358 was filed, which would allocate $55M to the Film and Entertainment Grant Fund for fiscal year 2017-2018. The act would become effective July 1, 2017.
  • The governor’s budget calls for the conversion of the current grant program into a “Film & Entertainment Tax Incentive,” effective January 1, 2018. The tax incentive program would provide a refund, based on qualifying expenditures. Those would include most in-state spending, from wages and food to hotel and equipment rentals. The program would return up to 25% of those expenses in the form of a tax credit. (See Port City Daily)

PUERTO RICO
Puerto Rico’s government announced earlier this month that it is freezing all future tax credits and nearly $2B in funds for special assignments to help improve cash flow and balance the budget. There will be a review of tax credits, most likely to include the film credit, to determine which will best assist Puerto Rico’s economy with a return on investment. (See Star Tribune)

TEXAS
HB 3346 was introduced, which would add a requirement for qualified productions to engage in no less than 120 days of production activity in the state.

VIRGINIA
SB 982 was signed by the Governor, which extends the sunset date on the motion picture production tax credit until January 1, 2022.

WEST VIRGINIA

  • HB 2816 and SB 484 were introduced, which would eliminate the West Virginia Film Industry Investment Act transferable tax credit on and after July 1, 2017. Any taxpayer entitled to a credit provided prior to July 1, 2017 would continue to be eligible.
  • SB 661 was introduced, which would create the Film and Entertainment Grant Fund in order to encourage the production of motion pictures, television shows, movies for television, productions intended for on-line distribution, and commercials within the state.

WYOMING
SB 24 has failed. We reported on this bill in our December newsletter, which would have recreated the state’s Film Industry Financial Incentive Program. Wyoming’s prior program reached its sunset date on June 30, 2016


International Updates

For more information on incentives around the world, visit our website and click on the country of interest.

CANADA
New figures from the Canadian city unveiled earlier this year indicate the film and TV industry invested $2B in local production last year, surpassing the previous high of $1.5B in 2015. (See The Hollywood Reporter)

GERMANY
The German government has approved a €50M boost in the country’s German Federal Film Fund (DFFF), up to €150M in film funding for 2018, in a bold bid to grow the local and international film business in Germany. (See Screen Daily)


DISCLAIMER: These materials have been prepared by Entertainment Partners for informational purposes only and should not be construed as tax advice or relied on for specific projects. Though every effort has been made to remain current, laws and incentives change and therefore this information may have been revised. Please contact your legal or tax advisors to confirm any laws or the effect of incentives on your project. For updates and more information, please visit our website at epfinancialsolutions.com.

Providing links to other sites shall not be construed as an endorsement by Entertainment Partners of the linked websites or the opinions expressed on such websites.