Legislative Advocacy

Legislative Advocacy

New York State Film Tax Credit Program

The New York Production Alliance has been urging Gov. Cuomo and Albany legislators to reauthorize the NYS Film tax credit program.
Our members have been writing letters, making calls and contacting their area legislators to approve Governor Andrew Cuomo’s 2017-18 Executive Budget proposal, which includes a full extension of the program, at $420 million per year, through 2024.

NYPA is currently reaching out to small businesses across New York State to facilitate a letter writing campaign in support of extending the film and television tax credit program. Our database has tens of thousands of small businesses where “ancillary spend” happens beyond the on camera set. These businesses know the value of huge economic impact of dollars spent by the industry.
The jobs industry spend creates beyond the action helps local small businesses thrive in the unique communities across the state. Examples are family owned restaurants, hardware stores, dry cleaners, florists to name a few – where you shop, eat and play are the same places the industry frequents.

Small business testimonials

Industry supports $10.4 billion in economic activity and 89,000 jobs in New York
NEW YORK – Small businesses across New York State are calling on Governor Cuomo and the State Legislature to extend a tax credit program they say is critical to sustaining thousands of good paying jobs in New York’s booming television and film production industry. The New York State Film Production Tax Credit Program has proven overwhelmingly successful, generating over $10.4 billion dollars in economic activity and creating more than 89,000 high paying jobs, relayed to the New York
Production Alliance, a consortium of New York-based film producers, small businesses and labor groups. Empire State Development (ESD), the agency that administers the program for the state, says that at least 541 movies and TV series have been shot
in New York utilizing the incentives, which have provided meaningful economic benefits to small businesses and communities across the state. First implemented in 2004 and expanded under Governor Cuomo in 2013, the program is set to expire in 2019 but
will likely run out of funding later this year. Small businesses are urging the state to extend the tax credits and their funding in order to provide certainty to an industry that typically plans productions months and sometimes years in advance.
Long Island native Maria Stewart, whose family runs two production related businesses (Mutual Hardware, which sells materials needed for production rigging, and Alcone, a professional makeup company) says that when the tax credit program took effect
she was able to double her staff to more than 50 employees.

“These are real people who wouldn’t have a job if it weren’t for the important benefits provided by this program. They moved to New York because they believe in the industry and want to be a part of it. We need the state to show that they believe in the industry as much as we do,” Ms. Stewart said.

It’s not just major film studios that rely on the tax credit program. There are countless small businesses around the state that depend on the tax credit program, such as Cari Swanson, owner of Swanson Productions, based in Amenia, N.Y.

“Training horses and animals might not sound like a film or television industry related job, but my company provides trained animals on sets. Since the program has been offered, television work is exploding and business has been booming while the local economy is raking in money because of it. During the time I was working two seasons of HBO’s show ‘The Knick,’ directed by Steven Soderbergh, I provided 25 horses as well as 30 carriages and wagons. Besides creating more jobs for employees and contractors, the film industry causes local businesses to flourish. In addition, I spend around $800 a month on horse feed. All of this is money that gets put into the local economy thanks in large part due to the film and television industry incentives granted by the state,” Ms. Swanson said.

Al Kharieh, owner of Walton Hauling in Brooklyn, says the program allowed him to expand and hire more people.

“Five years ago, my brother and I bought Walton Hauling. At the time, the competitive film tax credits were just taking off. In less than five years, we went from 18 box trucks to 84, all thanks to the tax credit program. Our company deals exclusively with the film and television industry and with Local 817 Teamsters. When you look at the numbers for the amount of revenue created from the film tax credits, also consider the small business owner that is able to expand, the Teamster who is able to stay busy working, and the good-paying careers that are created. We must foster this environment and encourage the film industry to continue filming here or we will lose it all. Without the renewal of the New York State Film Production Tax Credit Program, our company would go under.”


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