Film tax credit headed for showdown
Senate sticks with pared-back approach
STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE
AFTER INITIALLY encountering bipartisan opposition, the Senate Ways and Means Committee’s plan to overhaul the state’s film tax credit program is poised to sail through the chamber into a conference committee showdown with the House.
The Senate on Wednesday afternoon rejected a batch of budget amendments from Minority Leader Bruce Tarr that would have replaced Democratic leadership’s plan to postpone the film tax credit’s sunset, eliminate its transferability, and change eligibility thresholds with permanent authorization for the program as it current functions.
Tarr’s amendments were included in a bundle of economic development-related changes the Senate shot down on a single unrecorded voice vote with no debate. Democrats who also pushed to alter the Ways and Means Committee’s proposal withdrew their amendments without seeking a vote.
Senate Ways and Means Committee Chair Michael Rodrigues said while unveiling the budget to reporters this month that “too much of the money, the tax credits and the benefits of the tax credit, go to out-of-state individuals and out-of-state companies.” Supporters contend that it is a valuable economic development and job-creation tool.