Where The Tax Credits For Film Are In America These Days

by Ted Hope
August 27, 2011 2:00 AM
8 Comments
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Tax credits and subsidies for the film business are job stimulus. As a producer asked to ALWAYS squeeze a buck, I simply won't shoot my films where the tax credits are not. Luckily I live in the wise and wonderful state of New York, that has one of the best tax subsidies for film and television any where in the world, not to mention the BEST talent pool in the universe too.

But it's not the only place to go. The Incentives Office offers a clear MUST READ review of the state of the union of where to go for how much.

I received this email from The Incentives Office today. You should visit their site to receive such emails yourself.

Although many states have curtailed or terminated their incentives programs, others have expanded or enhanced their programs. There is still a substantial amount of money available - to find it:

THE INCENTIVES OFFICE TELLS YOU WHERE TO GO...

Alabama - $6 million available now, with new funds will be available on October 1st. $10 million annual cap.

Alaska - $50 million is available. Alaska has no caps on talent or projects, but requires a CPA audit to sell their 30-44% credits.

Colorado - $500,000 remains for their 10% rebate.

Connecticut - no annual cap. Regulations have tightened up for this (up to) 30% transferable credit.

Florida - (film only - see below for television). Only Florida resident cast and crew qualify, plus FL goods and services.

Georgia - 20% transferable credit, plus 10% uplift for logo (totaling 30%), requires audit/tax return. New sound stages, lots of post facilities. No annual ceiling.

Hawaii - refundable credit of 15% to 20%, requires a tax return. No annual cap.

Illinois - only resident cast and crew qualify, but Chicago is a major production center. Transferable credit of 30%. $100,000 per hire cap, but no annual ceiling.

Indiana - $2.5 million remains for the remainder of this calendar year.

Louisiana - top choice of producers, transferable credit of 30%, plus 5% bump for resident labor. The state redeems credits at 85 cents after CPA audit, or they can be sold (brokered). Many films now in prep or pre-production, so crew is getting strained. No annual ceiling, and three great stages.

Massachusetts - 25% transferable credit; state redeems at 90 cents. No caps or ceiling, and the credits are easy to sell after CPA audit.

Mississippi - a rebate of 25% for materials and non-resident crew, 30% for resident crew, $1M per hire cap. "The Help" was shot in Mississippi. Not a lot of crew depth, but growing. New sound stage in Canton. Costs are low, and the state is eager for production. $18 million is available.

Montana - refundable credit of 9% to 14%. No annual cap.

New Jersey - $14 million available, but half of this will be gone very soon, as earlier shows complete their submissions. 20% transferable credit, sellable after the CPA audit.

New Mexico - annual allocation is $50 million, for this 25% refundable credit which requires a NM tax return. First come, first served; if funds not available when you apply, you wait a year. Depending on total amount, credits awarded over 1, 2 or 3 years.

New York - fiscal year started July 1st, so new funds are available. Below-the-line credit of 30%, payable over 1-3 years with filing of NY state tax returns.

North Carolina - refundable credit of 25%, $1M per hire cap, and project cap of $7.5M. NC requires a tax return. No annual ceiling.

Pennsylvania - Some funds remain, but not for long. However, applications are stil being accepted, as films may drop out of the queue, freeing up funds for new projects.

South Carolina - $14 million currently available for their 10% to 30% rebate.

Texas - The incentive has now been raised to 15% for video game production. The previous rate was 5%. Only Texas resident cast and crew qualify, plus TX goods and services.

Utah - $11 million of fully refundable credits at 25% (with tax return), $3 million for 25% cash rebates (up to $500,000 per project).

West Virginia - $10 million annual cap, $10 million available. 27-31% credits.

AND WHERE NOT TO GO (FOR NOW)

Arizona - program was allowed to sunset, new legislation was defeated.

Florida(television only) - funds for the TV queue are exhausted, and without new legislation, new application will not be accepted.

Missouri - the film commission was not funded.

Idaho - program is not funded.

Iowa - program has been terminated.

Ohio - all funds gone until next fiscal year. Applications are being accepted in case something drops out of the queue

Oklahoma - no funds available until fiscal 2013, which starts July 1, 2012. Applications will be accepted beginning January 1, 2012.

Oregon - a good program, but they are out of funds until July 1, 2012.

Washington - program was allowed to sunset.

Wisconsin - allocation of $500,000 per year.

OTHER LOCATIONS TO CONSIDER

California - all funds allocated. Applications will be accepted starting June 1, 2012, for the next fiscal year, which starts July 1, 2012.

Michigan - Funds currently exhausted, but $25 million via a grant becomes available October 1, 2011. $2M cap per hire, and qualifying rates vary from 30-42%.

Minnesota - $1 million has been allocated; please contact the commissioner for details. Rules and requirements will change - no additional information is available.

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8 Comments

  • Rosi Acosta | September 6, 2011 5:37 AMReply

    Puerto Rico should be added to that list. The Incentives Office is very aware of our incentive. Puerto Rico offers a 40% tax credit on all payments made to local companies, suppliers, salaries and/or services. On top of that it also offers an additional 20% on all cast and stunts salaries. The incentive is applicable to commercials, music videos and live recordings, among other type of projects. Please contact me at The Puerto Rico Film Industry Cluster at 787-632-8720 for additional information on Puerto Rico as a location.

  • Peter | August 30, 2011 6:48 AMReply

    Oh - saw it. Never mind.

  • Peter | August 30, 2011 6:47 AMReply

    No info on Michigan?

  • Aaron Syrett | August 29, 2011 1:17 AMReply

    The North Carolina information on this page is incorrect. The per project cap is $20 million. If producers want correct incentive information, they should contact the film commission directly and not rely on third party information.

    http://www.ncfilm.com/new-25-tax-credit.html

    919.733.9900 NC Film Office

  • Caroline Savage | August 28, 2011 10:05 AMReply

    I must amend my PA correction as it was not as up to date as the info from Jeff at Tax Incentives who spoke to Leni Sloan director of the PA Film Office last week. Amazing that $60 million in tax credits is almost gone. The budget just passed at the end of June! Means there's lots of filmmaking activity, good for PA.

  • Film Budget | August 28, 2011 8:11 AMReply

    Filmmakers require an accurate film budget now more than ever for film tax incentives and film financing. As competition for these funds is tighter one's budget must likewise be in top shape and created by someone who knows the incentives and all state and worldwide production center details. FilmBudget.com | http://filmbudget.com

  • CAROLINE E SAVAGE, PIFVA | August 28, 2011 3:31 AMReply

    Correction: PA Film Tax Credits are alive and well. This website's info is pre-2011 PA state budget approval. Pennsylvania is now accepting applications for projects that qualify for the Film Tax Credit program. Qualified projects will be awarded credits available under the $60 million tax credit allocation available for FY11-12

    http://www.FilminPA.com
    http://www.newpa.com/programDetail.aspx?id=180

  • Zak Forsman | August 27, 2011 6:14 AMReply

    Thank you. Very useful for us at Sabi as we prepare our slate.

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