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Wed May 18, 2011
Film advocates push for preserving tax credit
Supporters of Michigan’s film industry are conducting an eleventh-hour push to convince Lansing politicians to keep the state’s generous film tax credit.
Nancy Skinner has been a vocal opponent of plans to scrap the credit and replace it with a much more modest grant program. She runs a Web site that’s brought in donations from thousands of people:
"And what we are trying to do is put names and faces to these numbers. The spreadsheet wars that are going on in Lansing? We want these folks to see the names and faces of people who will be affected by this."
The ads will run on Comcast cable channels over the next week. They emphasize the economic impact of the film industry, and the threat of a continued “brain drain” if the film industry pulls out of Michigan.
Just the threat of the elimination of Michigan’s 42 percent tax credit caused her to lose business, says Rose Gilpin. She and her partner Kathy Remski own Real Style Extras Casting:
"They evaporated immediately. Kathy and I right off the bat lost three projects in February right after the announcement was made. So immediately gone."
Legislation has been introduced to preserve the tax credit. The governor has proposed replacing the tax credit with grants totaling 25 million dollars for film and video projects.