Maine location filming incentive plan causes controversy in north-east US
A plan to launch a location filming incentive in the state of Maine in the north-eastern US is proving controversial. One local politician wants to offer a production rebate for feature films, but he’s battling suggestions that the economic benefits for the state will be hard to measure.
Representative Lance Harvell wants to introduce a short-term programme that would make features eligible for a rebate of up to USD800,000 on eligible expenditure, reports Maine Public Broadcasting Network. An incentive of this sort would complement existing tax rebates.
“Maine has got a coastline that, stretched out, is as long as the entire east coast,” Harvell told the outlet: “We’ve got mountains, we've got a lot of rural areas and there are a lot of movies that can take advantage of that kind of background and scenery ... I just think that because of our tax policies, they would go other places rather than here.”
Many in the state are wary of the plan as there’s a belief – increasingly common throughout the US – that filming incentives only really benefit the movie studios. Authorities want more evidence that potentially pricey rebate programmes channel money more directly to local businesses.
For an interview with Maine-based Location Manager Lynn 'Kip' Kippax, click here.
(Maine still: Terry Ross)
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