Learn more about events, news, updates and information on Washington State's Film Incentive and Legislation around it.
Increases the annual cap amount on tax credits, effectively increasing the Program's annual budget, to $7 million in 2011 and incrementally increases the cap by $1 million every year until it reaches $10 million in 2014. (While our collective goal is to increase the funds available annually, our primary focus is to get the program renewed. WF acknowledges the political and economic realities of the current budget cycle and we continue to work with our legislative supporters in Olympia to determine whether increasing the fund is a viable possibility. While we continue to advocate strongly for additional funds, the size of the fund in the bill may decrease as the legislation evolves).
Expands the definition of "motion pictures" to incorporate projects shot for digital distribution platforms including video on demand services, direct internet transmissions, and viewing on digital computer-based systems which respond to users' actions or interactive media.
The amount of funding assistance is changed for episodic series to 35 percent of the Washington state production budget rather that the current 30 percent, given a 6-episode minimum. The board may approve up to 15 percent on wages and benefits for previously approved non-state labor working in Washington, given that at least 85 percent of the crew are Washington Residents. A new fund within the program may be established to set aside no more than ten percent of the total program amount (e.g. $350,000 of $3.5 million) to provide funding support for filmmakers who are Washington residents, new forms of production, and emerging technologies.
Given the recently released JLARC recommendations finding that current law does not have adequate reporting requirements for WF projects, the legislation will also have proposed new reporting procedures for incentive recipients which are currently being developed. WF proposes to add a board member who represents the Washington interactive media or emerging motion picture industry.
To find your Senator and Representatives use the Find Your Legislator tool on the Access Washington Website.
It is advisable to get to know your legislator. Each legislator has a different voting record and different goals and objectives they would like to achieve during their service. Understanding your legislator may help you communicate a message in a way that they will be more receptive to in the event they do not support the film incentive legislation at first or to reinforce their support of the legislation. You can find a wealth of information about your legislators on their webpage located on the State of Washington Legislature website. You can link to their pages through the Find Your Legislator tool.
Take the time to gather your thoughts on how this legislation has a positive impact on you and your family. Think of personal examples and have them ready for when you communicate with your legislator. You will find their contact information on their webpage on the State of Washington Legislature website. You may wish to write them a letter, call them, email them or set up a personal meeting. Any option you choose is fine and you may want to, overtime, incorporate a couple different methods.
Visit the bill webpage(s) HB1554, SB5539 on a regular basis for information about public hearings. There will be committee hearings and hearings by the House of Representatives and the Senate. When large groups of supporters attend public hearings it shows the legislators that the bill is widely supported by their constituents and should be given serious consideration and passed into law.
Once the bill is passed by both the House of Representatives and the Senate it will go to the Governor to be signed into law. It is important that the Governor know that these bills have strong support. Letters and email are the best way to let the Governor and her staff know that you support the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program and that it should be signed into law. You can find contact for the Governor on Governor Gregoire’s webpage.
Incentives by State
- $100,000,000 Tax Credit Fund
- Must spend at least $100,000 in a consecutive 24 month period
- 30% transferable tax credit on qualified expenditures
- Claim an extra 10% for wages paid to Alaska residents
- Claim an extra 2% if filming in a rural area
- Claim an extra 2% if filming between October 1 and March 30
- No salary cap per employee per production
- The Big Sky on the Big Screen Act
- No Fund Limit
- No Per Production Cap
- 14% incentive on Montana Labor
- Applies to first $50,000 of wages per Montana resident
- 9% incentive on Montana expenditures
- Includes hotel and lodging expenditures, production equipment rental, fuel costs, expendables, lumber/construction materials, vehicle rentals, and food expenditures.
- Montana has no sales tax.
- Funded at $3,500,000
- No per Production Cap
- 20% return on all qualified in-state expenditures (including Washington based labor and talent)
- Production must spend
- $500,000 Feature Films
- $300,000 Television
- $150,000 Commercials
- State sales and use tax off rental equipment, services, vehicles
- Hotel/Motel tax exemption on 30-day stay
- Vendor Discount Deals for below-the-line services
- Seattle permit $25/day, including city owned property