Incentives Watch: Film Tax Credits Retain Starring Role, Despite Mixed Reviews

Tentative budget provisions in New York contain funds aimed at luring The Tonight Show back to the state, according to recent news reports. This might be good news for Jimmy Fallon, who is rumored to be the show’s new host, but others, such as the Tax Foundation, have consistently given the incentive a “thumbs down.”

Another critic of film tax credits is Louisiana’s Legislative Auditor, which recently released its finding that the state’s film tax credit program cost Louisiana $512 million in lost revenue from 2006 to 2011.

To cut down on revenue costs, Governor Jindal proposed to set limits on the film tax credit, according to a Fox8article. Specifically, the Governor is proposing to place caps on certain credit amounts and exclude certain costs from being eligible for the credit.

The Louisiana Legislative Auditor's report, entitled Tax Credits and Rebates in Louisiana, looked at the impact of all the state’s tax credit and rebate programs on revenue.

The report appeared to cast doubt on the effectiveness of tax incentives in general. It found that Louisiana’s tax credit and rebate programs resulted in a $6.13 billion revenue loss for the state over the last seven years, notes a press release. From 2006 to 2011, the state tax credits alone counted for a revenue loss of $5.4 billion, according to the report.

For more information about film tax credits, check out Bloomberg BNA’s Credits and Incentives State Tax Portfolios.

In other developments . . .

The Montana Department of Commerce recently adopted final regulations implementing its certification procedure for production companies seeking the state’s film tax credits, according to a Bloomberg BNA Weekly State Tax Reportarticle.

By: Kathleen Caggiano

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