Thursday, November 8, 2007

Incentives keep NM in the news

For an overview of incentive programs, there's a good article in today's Backstage (which highlights Louisiana and New Mexico's programs... and how nice Wilmington is).

Some of the basics are below, but for more, visit the article here.

When looking at the specifics of the incentives offered by each state, it's useful to get a primer on the broad definitions of what sort of lures are offered. According to the Axium report, production companies need to be familiar with several key bits of terminology when researching enticements.

A "certified credit" is an investment tool, one that has been approved by the state for sale to investors. A "loan-out company" works as something of a headhunting service in the filming location, providing contacts of qualified actors and crew. A "qualified expense" is one that each individual state allows to be included when a rebate or credit calculation is made. A "refundable credit" is a payment made by the state to the production company, given that the production company doesn't owe any income tax and that a verifiable tax return has already been filed. Finally, there is the "transferable credit," one that may be transferred one or more times and is applied against a taxpayer's state income tax.

It's a lot of jargon, but knowing the ropes can truly help productions, according to Jeff Begun, who wrote the 2007 report for Axium. "Five years ago, it went from no incentives to a lot," he says. "New states are getting into it, amounts that are being given are going up, and regulations are being refined."

Read the full article, With Incentives, Filmmakers Remain Stateside

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