Hello film aficionados,
My last post was pre-election, so I want to thank you for your support and votes. I am happy to be serving now as the SAG-AFTRA Seattle Local President, representing the interests of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, and Washington. Now, I have a huge favor to ask, specifically Washington residents and friends.
Visit the website for Keep Film in Washington. Absolutely, sign the petition–if you haven’t already–and share the link with your voting-aged friends and family members. We need to let our legislators know that film production in Washington State is important. And, good for the economy. For every $1 invested, motion picture production generates more than $10 of benefit.
Currently, Washington’s motion picture competitiveness program (MPCP) allows $3.5 million annually in incentives for production companies. Washington Filmworks coordinates, so a company films a project here, using our resources and labor, staying in our hotels, eating at our restaurants, and we’ll give them back a portion of their expenditures. It’s a win-win, but the money goes so fast.
Washington State currently has only one television series filming: Z-Nation. While it is great to have this production, the one series occupies 49% of our MPCP’s available funds. The remaining funds are distributed to various film and commercial projects, but, alas, few and far between. With the existing cap, in 2014, all available funding was dedicated before May, and in 2015, March. With incentive funds depleted, Washington State lost over $65 million in potential economic activity. That’s a lot of jobs–that didn’t happen.
Keep Film in Washington hopes to change this. As I invited earlier, please visit the site and show your support.
In addition, Thursday, January 21, Washington will celebrate Film Day in Olympia. Supporters of the cause will be meeting with legislators to discuss House Bill 2542, which seeks to raise our MPCP cap to $10 million and to extend the program through 2023.
If you’re available, join us! Sharing with your elected officials is important. Mine have told me that in-person meetings do carry an impact. If you can come, be sure to RSVP before 5pm Tuesday, January 19.
Not available on Thursday, no worries. You can still send your support via email or phone calls to your district representatives at http://app.leg.wa.gov/districtfinder.
Thanks for reading,