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Variety Magazine: CA Film Tax Credit Hits Snag Over Industry Diversity

Source: Variety Magazine

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s push to extend the California film and TV tax credit has hit a snag over the issue of industry diversity.

Newsom’s budget proposal includes extending the $330 million filming incentive, which is currently set to expire in 2025, for an additional five years.

But at a hearing last month, Assemblyman Phil Ting, who chairs the Budget Committee, faulted the California Film Commission for failing to produce diversity data for productions that have already received tax benefits. He also questioned the need to “rush” the extension without first seeing the data.

State law requires the commission to produce annual reports — starting in January 2022 — on the diversity of projects. After the hearing, the commission belatedly posted the first annual report on its website.
After reviewing it, Ting said the numbers show that the studios have much more work to do.

“The studios need to really demonstrate a lot more results before we can move forward with any further tax credit,” Ting told Variety in an interview on Wednesday. “We may need to wait a year… California provided the money, but they didn’t provide the jobs to a diverse group of Californians.”