Brothers & Sisters:
Since the enactment of the New York State Film Production Tax Credit Program, we have experienced a dramatic increase in all three points of data used to measure the level of production within the jurisdiction: the number of days of principal photography, the number of days worked by represented employees, and the wages earned by those represented employees.
Much of this production is a direct result of the incentive program. It is largely as a result of that program that the film and television industry has seen continued growth here, in both our talented crew base, as well as support businesses and infrastructure. Our industry is now in jeopardy, because the New York State incentive is set to expire in less than four years at the end of 2022. Although four years may seem like a long time, it is not.
An episodic series requires a longer commitment of investment, an investment that demands even greater long term stability and certainty in the tax incentive program. With many production companies either scripting for a multiple year series from the start, or hoping for that long-term success, the looming 2022 sunset of the program will soon become a deterrent in the decision of basing a series in New York.
The growing number television series in production, has increased the need and demand for more infrastructure like sound stages and specialized industry vendors. However, in order to make that kind of major financial commitment, investors must have long-term certainty of the incentive program beyond the current 2022 sunset. Who can get a loan for infrastructure or a business with a four year return on investment?
In collaboration with other industry stakeholders (IATSE New York Production Locals, Theatrical Teamsters Local 817, DGA, WGA, and SAG-AFTRA), we will be supporting a bill in this legislative session to extend the New York State Film Production Tax Credit Program.
You are a Crucial Part of the Campaign
This will be a tough campaign and a chief component, if we are to succeed in our efforts to save our jobs and businesses, is the grassroots participation of you and the entire film and TV community in New York.
You can participate right now by calling and writing your NYS representatives. New York residents should familiarize yourselves with your State Assembly member and Senator (Click here to find your Legislators!) and their contact information. Give some thought to your own successful story working in motion pictures. Go to the Document Library on the USA 829 website to find a sample letter and sample phone call script to use in communicating with your NYS representatives. A phone call is the most potent form of communication, followed by an email or snail mail letter. Encourage your family and friends to act as well.
If you do not live in New York, forward this to friends and relatives who do and ask them for their support. Very soon, look for email on messaging and calls to action. You will be asked to call and write your Legislators and participate in events to support this effort to keep this great industry going and growing.
The campaign to secure our future will take the time, money, and resources of the IATSE Locals and all the stakeholders in New York. When called upon, please take the time to participate in this effort in any way you can.
Look for more email on messaging and calls to action!