Wednesday, January 19, 2011

States Weigh Cuts in Subsidies for Hollywood (NY Times)

And then there is California, where Jerry Brown, the newly elected Democratic governor, is confronting a $25 billion budget gap. Mr. Brown is proposing to cut social services and state employee pay while extending tax increases that were supposed to be temporary. He has also provoked howls of protest by insisting that state workers return 48,000 cellphones by June 1 in a bid to save $20 million.

But film and television tax credits passed under his predecessor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, remain intact at a cost of $100 million a year.
This article looks at many other states in addition to California, and in some cases, it looks like cutting film subsidies would make sense to help bridge budget deficits. But here, I'd have to guess that keeping runaway production in check adds a whole lot more than $100 million to our state's coffers. Unfortunately, as the article points out, studies done on this topic come to conclusions that are all over the place.

But either way, I'm glad I get to keep my cellphone.

Read the full article here.

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