Senate Bill: SB 318
Report Title: Business development in Hawaii; Motion Picture, digital Media and film production tax credit.


Amends the motion picture, digital media, and film production tax credits to increase the tax credits to unspecified percentages and dollar amounts and to provide additional non-refundable tax credits for qualified media infrastructure projects in certain qualifying counties; provides an additional tax credit for qualified special or visual effects and animation production costs; raises the tax credit caps to unspecified amounts. Effective 7/1/2011

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Discussion Forum

Lace Up for the Next Round!

It's very important that we don't get discouraged! Significant legislation often takes more than one session.  Let's address any "weaknesses" in the bill and submit a "new and improved version in…Continue

Started by Jo-Ann Marie Adams Apr 30, 2011.


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Comment by Michael Snoopy Wells on January 5, 2012 at 7:50pm

Hawaii Actors Network Hawaii Actors Network is ready for an awesome season in 2012! Productions can now use social networking before coming to Hawaii to film! Saving productions money by casting locally is where HAN can help!

Comment by Brenna A Charlebois on June 29, 2011 at 5:53pm
Mahalo Louie!  It worked for California, it will work for Hawaii!!  Let the campaign begin!  We must keep this measure alive!
Comment by Louie Boria on June 29, 2011 at 1:21pm
posted by Tim Ryan Hawaii. newly released study from the Los Angeles Economic Development Corp. concluded that the state’s tax credit program pumped $3.8 billion into the state’s economy and created more than 20,000 jobs in since 2009….”The first two years of the program have been net positive to the state as far as the fiscal impact,” said LAEDC economist Christine Cooper, who authored the report. “The state is getting more in return than it has paid out.”

The report reportedly is the most comprehensive review to date of the state film tax incentive program, which took effect in 2009. 110 projects have been approved under the program, which offers a 20% to 25% credit on qualified production expenses. Companies can apply the credit to offset any sales or business use tax they have with the state…The LAEDC based its findings on a detailed examination of budgets from nine projects that were allocated $41.4 million in tax credits and included a new TV series, a movie of the week and small and medium-sized budgeted feature films.

Those films produced $847 million in overall spending that qualified for the credit. That included not only direct production expenses, such as wages for crew members, but also secondary expenditures on restaurants, hotels and construction supplies. The projects generated 4,440 jobs and $312 million in wages, contributing $44.6 million in total state and local taxes, according to the report.

California’s tax credit program is not as competitive as other states’ incentives, allocating only $100 million annually, a quarter of what New York state offers. Advocates said the tax incentives have slowed the pace of runaway production, fueling a 15% increase in overall location shoots in the L.A. area last year…
Comment by Michael Snoopy Wells on June 25, 2011 at 9:35am
Man I'm hoping they pass this bill for film in hawaii I already voted soActor'Teddy Wells Actor'Michael Snoopy Wells do yall thing, so I can
Comment by Hawaii Film Industry on June 5, 2011 at 3:18pm

Future of tourism called into question

The state economic director surprises business leaders with his stark outlook

By Dan Nakaso

POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Jun 03, 2011

Hawaii business leaders received a “wake-up call” Thursday from the new director of the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism, who told them they need to help pay for public-private projects to drive the local economy.


The director of the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism outlined new ideas for Hawaii businesses Thursday:

» Invest in improving state lands.
» Build a 21st-century infrastructure.
» Support high-growth industry “clusters,” such as film and digital media, culture and the arts, and music and entertainment.

Source: DBEDT

Businesses need to partner with state government and provide private capital to develop new industries, improve public lands and link the islands with an undersea cable to deliver broadband technology and renewable energy, Richard Lim told the Hawaii Economic Association.

Lim, who has been running DBEDT for six months, outlined a gloomy economic picture for the islands and said tourism has essentially remained stagnant for the last 20 years and can no longer be relied on to move the economy into a prosperous future.

The state continues to wrestle with a projected $1.3 billion deficit while programs such as Medicaid, education, health and human services, debt payments and retirement and health benefits for public workers make up 80 to 90 percent of the state’s budget, Lim said.

“We’re not looking for any money from the state,” he said. “We really need the private sector to kick in. … In all successful efforts in the United States, it was the private sector that led the way.”

Lim’s one-hour presentation surprised some of the members of the association, a nonprofit group that promotes discussion of economic issues.

Lucien Wong, a member of the governor’s Economic Momentum Commission, said Lim’s speech was a “wake-up call.”

Paul Brewbaker, principal of TZ Economics and chairman of the state Council on Revenues, told Lim that his ideas “provoked a lot of good thinking in this room. This is the first time I’ve heard any of this.”

Lim acknowledged reluctance on the part of business leaders in the islands to invest in projects not directly linked to tourism, the state’s No. 1 industry.

“When I talk to some of the people on Bishop Street, they’re skeptical and you can’t blame them,” Lim said. “Tourism has been such a mainstay in our economy for so long. And they believe that we’ll be taking our eye off the ball of tourism and detract from tourism.”

But businesses must adjust to economic realities and keep up with changing needs and technologies for tomorrow, Lim said.

As he stood before the group at the Plaza Club downtown, Lim imagined someone just like him “30 or 40 years ago … standing here making the case for tourism. ‘We just can’t be thinking of pineapple and sugar. … There’s this new thing called tourism. Even though it’s not an industry, we need to think about it because sugar and pine won’t be around forever.’”

Today the state wrestles with a projected budget shortfall, but “unfortunately the problem is much deeper,” Lim said.

He cited “a high level of debt,” “outsized obligations” and “the burden of an aging population” at a time when Congress is considering capping Medicaid reimbursements and Hawaii’s seniors are already relying on emergency rooms for basic health care, which ends up stressing the health care system.

“We all end up picking up the tab in the form of higher medical bills,” Lim said.

Part of the solution is asking businesses to partner with state government to improve parks and other state lands that have been taken over by “undesirable elements … and drain our economy due to the vicious maintenance costs (caused by vandalism).”

He said a dozen companies remain interested in Gov. Neil Abercrombie’s plan to deliver renewable energy to Oahu from the neighbor islands and offer broadband service throughout the state via an underwater cable.

Businesses also need to lobby legislators and push back against community opposition that killed projects such as the Hawaii Superferry, Lim said.

“Ten surfers and a couple of well-heeled NIMBYs can wipe out economic development in the state,” Lim said, referring to “not in my back yard” opposition.

Businesses also can lead the way in developing companies focused around film and digital media, culture and the arts, and music and entertainment, Lim said.

He called them “high-growth industries” that overlap with tourism and can help provide returning visitors with new experiences in the islands.

“While we have three key priorities — making better use of our land, building a 21st-century infrastructure and supporting high-growth industry clusters — they all have one thing in common,” Lim said. “They all need public-private partnerships to be successful.”

First Choice
Comment by Tony Valencia Jamieson on June 4, 2011 at 10:38am

@ Brenna...yipee, "The River", is coming. Don't worry I know, and I am sure others know, to stay on this one and continue to grow in unison supporting the filming industry in Hawaii. I still feel dumb being the silent majority in the past on this Bill. :(


Comment by Kenneth McArdle on June 2, 2011 at 3:05pm
I just sent an e-mail to the governor  HAN can get it done
Comment by Brenna A Charlebois on May 27, 2011 at 10:21am
Hi Tony,  The reason there is no hearing scheduled for the Bill is because it has been deferred until the next legislative session, which reconvenes in January 2012.  Unfortunately, a "special session" was not called by the Governor which could have brought the Bill back for vote sooner.  Please encourage your friends and family to support this measure.  You may have heard the ABC series "The River", which was considering filming in Hawaii, will continue to film in Puerto Rico because they offered a 45% tax credit! 

First Choice
Comment by Tony Valencia Jamieson on May 27, 2011 at 1:14am

Aloha, I just sent in my e-mail in support of SB318. I notice that there isn't even a Hearing scheduled for the Bill right now. So it's obviously a long battle up hill.


Comment by Louie Boria on May 26, 2011 at 9:32pm
Aloha Actors, I just sent out my e-mail to support SB318. We the people are powerful. Please send your e-mails to the Governor.

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