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Politics & Government

Snyder: Film credits should be phased out, not shut down

Gov. Rick Snyder
Michigan Municipal League
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder will travel to Italy and Germany in March.

Governor Rick Snyder says he thinks it would be a mistake to abruptly scrap Michigan’s incentives to attract film and video productions.

The state House is poised to vote this week on a bill to end the film incentives when the new budget year begins Oct. 1.  The governor’s not a fan of industry-specific tax breaks, but he says it would be unfair to simply eliminate the film credits.

“I don’t view simply turning it off as the appropriate answer, and I’ve had a cap at $50 million a year for a number of years and as the industry has had it for some time period, we should have some gradual ramping down of it,” he says. “People have been relying on it, making decisions based on it, so you do it in some gradual fashion because the industry should be self-sufficient at some point in the future.”

Snyder acted early in his administration to cap them at no more than $50 million a year. At their highest point, Michigan awarded about $200 million a year in credits. 

Backers of the credits, begun seven years ago under Gov. Jennifer Granholm, say they have not been given enough time to work. They also say the continued controversy over whether to continue the credits is scaring away some movie and video business. 

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