Friday, March 4, 2011
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder (R) thought it was a great idea to eliminate the very popular tax credits for movie studios in Michigan. Over the past three years, Michigan developed into "Hollywood Midwest", bringing lots of jobs, tax revenue, and prestige as many big-budget and independent movies took advantage of the tax credits to make a variety of films in our state. Studies showed that for every $1 of tax credits, $6 was deposited into state coffers--the tax credits INCREASED the amount of money coming into the State of Michigan. Plus, many people who hadn't thought of visiting metro Detroit or Michigan had to chance to experience our area and gave rave reviews to various media outlets. In addition to the jobs, many previously unemployed people took advantage of the new industry to receive training for all of the ancillary film careers.
However, just the announcement that the governor MIGHT decrease the tax credits has already started a snowball effect of movie filming decisions being made to film in other states. The Avengers movie, for which the 2012 trailer has already been made, was scheduled to start filming in Michigan in the spring of 2011. Now, however, the state of Ohio is thrilled to host the filming of "The Avengers", and as a thank you, offered generous tax credits.
Michigan loses a burgeoning new industry--just the threat of reduced tax credits has already resulted in the loss of millions of dollars of badly needed revenue. Thanks, Gov! Great way to "move Michigan forward"! What a nerd!