Re: “Movie-tax glitch unfair to Island,” Jan. 22
As Victoria-based TV writers and producers, and creators of the made-in-Vancouver series, Primeval: New World, airing on SPACE, we don’t consider BC’s film and TV tax incentives a “gift” to film companies. On the contrary, we believe they’re a practical investment that returns far more than its cost, what economists call the “multiplier” effect.
We recently developed the budget for a series we hope to shoot in Vancouver. Our budget for 13 episodes lists 146 direct jobs, including 10 B.C. actors, as well as an army of carpenters, electricians, drivers, accountants, camera operators, security guards and office staff. Dozens more people will be employed part-time, including guest stars, extras, and set construction workers. Scores more will benefit at truck and equipment rental companies, visual effects studios, dry cleaners, caterers, and suppliers of building materials.
Most importantly, the majority of the millions of dollars spent locally will come into the province from U.S. and other foreign broadcasters. This influx then ripples through the economy as employed B.C. residents buy groceries and gas, go to restaurants and shops, thus, as a rule of thumb, multiplying each $1 given as a credit into a $5 to $6 increase in local business.
When our partners looked at our budget’s bottom line, the disparity between B.C. and Ontario tax incentives prompted them to ask how much it would cost to produce the series in Toronto. That’s the sound of 146 jobs leaving the province, joining too many thousands of others.
Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens
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