New York Poll: Majority opposes entertainment tax credits

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New York continues to offer the film and television industry the largest tax breaks in the nation.

Gannett’s Albany Bureau reports that New York gives $420 million in film tax credits a year, with 48 productions receiving $180 million between April and June. Three CBS shows—Madam Secretary, Elementary and Person of Interest—received the largest tax credits, a combined $79.6 million for four seasons in the most recent state records.

New York claims its program “drives billions of dollars in New York State spending and generates hundreds of thousands of jobs each year,” Howard Zemsky, the president of Empire State Development, which manages the program, said.

Critics disagree, with the Reclaim New York Initiative, a conservative group, calling the state’s reports “a fiction straight out of the Hollywood productions they’re forcing New York taxpayers to finance.”

Studios received about $42,300 for every direct job created in 2015 and 2016, according to an investigation by the USA Today Network in New York that was released in June.

This week’s Snap Poll asked readers their opinions on New York’s film tax-credit program.

Nearly 400 respondents participated in this week’s poll, which was conducted Oct. 3 and 4.

How do you feel about New York’s tax breaks for film and television productions in the state?

Strongly support:10%

Support: 25%

Oppose: 27%

Strongly oppose: 37%

See more at RBJ.

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