Hawaii Film Blog

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Summaries of Film Bills

Here are some quick summaries of the pending film legislation for all you people who are allergic to legalese:

15-20% Refundable Production Tax Credit (SB2570 & HB3080)

  • Revises this existing law: Motion Picture and Film Production Income Tax Credit
  • Temporarily increases existing Motion Picture & Film Production Tax Credit from 4% to 15% on Oahu and to 20% on neighbor islands
  • Deletes 7.25% hotel room tax credit
  • Lowers minimum spending requirement to $200K
  • Forbids "double dipping" with high-tech business investment tax credit
  • Allows additional categories of film & TV projects to qualify for credit, including commercials, music videos, and print photography
  • Requires productions to provide evidence of contributions to educational or workforce development
  • Caps claims per production at $8 million
  • Sets effective dates of 7/1/06 to 12/31/15
Investment Tax Credit 20% Buy-Back Program (SB2384 & HB2421)

  • Revises this existing law: High Technology Business Investment Tax Credit (a.k.a. "Act 221" / "Act 215")
  • Allows the state to buy back investment tax credits of performing arts qualified high-tech businesses (QTHBs) at $.20 on the dollar, to be paid over 5 years
  • In a given year, a performing arts QHTB can only sell back all or none of its credits to the state; it cannot sell back only a portion of its credits
  • Forbids "double dipping" with refundable production tax credit, hotel room tax credit, and capital goods excise tax credit
  • Requires performing arts QHTBs to contribute .5% of its aggregate investments per year to the Hawaii TV & film development special fund
  • Caps entire state buy-back program at $25 million per year

Right of Publicity (SB2740)

  • Creates a "right of publicity" law to allow media celebrities to control the use of their identity for commercial uses during their life and after their death
  • Holds liable anyone who uses another person's name or likeness in a commercial manner without the latter's written consent
  • Sets liability in the amount of the greater of $1,500 or actual damages suffered, plus possible punitive damages and attorney's fees

All of these bills are being heard and voted on this Thursday and Friday. Make sure to get your testimonies in before they are voted on. More info here.

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