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California agrees to help keep Hollywood production at home

Harrison FordHarrison Ford
Harrison Ford

Gov. Jerry Brown and lawmakers in California announced Wednesday that they’ve reached a deal to expand California’s film production incentive program to $330 million a year, tripling the expiring program that was limited to $100 million.

The tax-credit provides money to local film and television production, which has been facing competition from other states like New York along with across the border in Canada. In the last 15 years, production has reportedly dropped by half, according to a release from Brown’s office.

The program kicks in for five years beginning during the 2015-2016 fiscal year. Although the amount agreed upon is $330 million, legislators had been pressing for over $400 million, according to The New York Times.

News of the increase in tax incentives, meanwhile, comes just a few weeks after the California Film Commission said that the state had lost $2 billion in four years, according to Reuters.

“This law will make key improvements in our Film and Television Tax Credit Program and put thousands of Californians to work,” Gov. Brown said.

The two California assembly members who introduced the legislation were Democrats Mike Gatto and Raul Bocanegra.

The tax credits will be allotted based on the productions that would create the most jobs and will have the biggest impact on California’s economy. This will replace the current lottery system which Gov. Brown’s office said is a”flawed” and “arbitrary system.”