NEW ASSEMBLY BILL TO INCREASE JOB CREATION AND TAX REVENUES
Santa Barbara Film Commissioner Leads Effort on Groundbreaking Film & Television Incentive Program
Santa Barbara, CA (September 18, 2014) — Governor Jerry Brown just signed the California Film and Television Job Retention and Promotion Act of 2014, Assembly Bill 1839, which expands and improves upon the state’s current Film and Television Tax Credit Program. Santa Barbara County Film Commissioner Geoff Alexander serves on the Board of Film Liaisons In California Statewide (FLICS) and is Chair of the FLICS Legislative Committee. He led the effort of the forty-two Film Commissions to get the bill off the ground and include additional elements designed to bring greater economic benefits to California and the Santa Barbara area.
“We believe that AB 1839, the California Film and Television Job Retention and Promotion Act, will help stem and reverse the tide of runaway production, bringing back good paying, professional work to California and our area,” said Alexander. “As a board member of FLICS, and the chair of the FLICS Legislative Committee, I have been fortunate to work with the Entertainment Alliance, comprised of the MPAA and various Guilds, Unions, and Professional Associations for the past year to support the passage of this legislation. I am proud of the fact that we played a key role in including an additional incentive in the legislation for production taking place outside of Los Angeles County, which provides 5% more in tax credits to productions that shoot here in Santa Barbara County and through-out California.”
Since the Film and Television Tax Credit Program was enacted in 2009, it has distributed $400 million to production companies, prevented approximately 51,000 jobs from leaving California, and helped produce $4.5 billion economically. Significant financial incentives are currently available in 44 states, contributing to the rise of production outside of California. As a result, California has seen a loss of more than $1.5 billion in wages and economic activity from 2004 to 2012.
Assemblymembers Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles) and Raul Bocanegra (D-Pacoima), along with 59 other legislators, authored AB 1839 in an attempt to enhance and extend the influence of the existing Program, which is smaller than most throughout the nation. With the new bill, the current incentive has more than tripled from $100 million to $330 million per year, and the budget cap has been lifted for eligible feature films with expenditures of at least $100 million. In addition, the bill alters the requirement that 75% of production days must occur in California to 75% of principle photography days, which will lead to more exposure for California.
With the expansion and enhancements of the new bill, California can compete with other state programs for high budget film and television productions that boost economic activity, increase tax revenue and create thousands of jobs.
ABOUT THE SANTA BARBARA COUNTY FILM COMMISSION
The Film Commission, under the umbrella of Visit Santa Barbara, is the hub for production in the County. The Film Commission markets Santa Barbara County as a production destination, assists with the permit process, makes referrals to local services, acts as the liaison between the production and the community, and more. FilmSantaBarbara.com provides local vendor, crew, permit and location resources. For more information contact Film Commissioner Geoff Alexander at 805.966.9222 or Geoff@FilmSantaBarbara.com.
ABOUT VISIT SANTA BARBARA
Visit Santa Barbara is a non-profit 501(c)(6) organization jointly funded by the City of Santa Barbara, the County of Santa Barbara, the South Coast Tourism Business Improvement District (TBID) and by a membership of hospitality-related businesses. The primary mission of Visit Santa Barbara is to enhance the economies of the City of Santa Barbara, South Coast communities and Santa Barbara County areas through tourism marketing that increases business revenue, tax revenue and creates jobs. Stay informed about Santa Barbara news with our Media Center, press releases and blog, TheSBPost.com.
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