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Should Michigan Taxpayers Have Been Forced to Spend $30 Million on 'Iron Man 3'?
Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 10/25/2011 | Tom Gantert

Posted on 10/25/2011 11:32:27 AM PDT by MichCapCon

News reports state the movie makers of "Iron Man 3" left Michigan for North Carolina because Michigan wouldn’t meet demands for up to $30 million in incentives for the production company.

While Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville, R-Monroe, implied Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration made a mistake in losing Iron Man 3, the Mackinac Center for Public Policy’s James Hohman says politicians should have much higher priorities for state tax dollars.

For instance, Hohman, assistant director of fiscal policy, estimated that 4,892 families that were kicked off welfare this year could get assistance again with $30 million.

Also, it would take all the tax receipts of nearly 2,000 small businesses to pay for that $30 million subsidy, Hohman estimated.

Sen. Richardville said negotiations for film tax incentives were ongoing to bring a Steven Spielberg movie to Michigan. Spielberg’s net worth is estimated to be $3 billion.

“Legislators have serious prioritization problems if they would rather give $30 million to Steven Spielberg than to improve Michigan's business climate or bolster its human service programs,” Hohman said.

(Excerpt) Read more at michigancapitolconfidential.com ...


TOPICS: Government; TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: film; movies; subsidies

1 posted on 10/25/2011 11:32:33 AM PDT by MichCapCon
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To: MichCapCon
Should Michigan Taxpayers Have Been Forced to Spend $30 Million on 'Iron Man 3'?

Not after the crap that was Iron Man 2

2 posted on 10/25/2011 11:34:23 AM PDT by Puppage (You may disagree with what I have to say, but I shall defend to your death my right to say it)
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To: Puppage

I thought IM2 was ok.

But I guess to give $30 million dollars in tax credits, the film company was prepared to spend enough to generate at least $30 million in tax revenue.

I doubt that.


3 posted on 10/25/2011 11:37:41 AM PDT by Jonty30
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To: MichCapCon

They’re making a third Iron Man? Cool!


4 posted on 10/25/2011 11:39:47 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: Puppage

—Not after the crap that was Iron Man 2—

It wasn’t that bad. It was fun light entertainment.


5 posted on 10/25/2011 11:40:32 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: MichCapCon
Why would the taxpayers of any state want to subsidize Hollyweird??
I think "Jersy Shore" was getting a million from the NJ taxpayers whose reputation were the victim of its smears.
6 posted on 10/25/2011 11:41:32 AM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: Jonty30

—But I guess to give $30 million dollars in tax credits, the film company was prepared to spend enough to generate at least $30 million in tax revenue.—

I don’t think that is the right way to look at it. If they had not been given the tax credits they would not have made the movie there. That means zero dollars. But they did make the movie there, and it no doubt increased the money coming in, if just for meals and gas for those involved. They probably bought some nice clothing from time to time and maybe gambled a little at Greek Town.


7 posted on 10/25/2011 11:42:32 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: Jonty30

I am sure they created some minimum-scale jobs that lasted a few weeks though.

lol


8 posted on 10/25/2011 11:43:25 AM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: cuban leaf

My entire post talks in the wrong context. I was talking AS IF Michigan had granted the tax credit. Sorry about that...


9 posted on 10/25/2011 11:44:14 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: MichCapCon

Occupy Hollywood....those rich aren’t paying their fair share.


10 posted on 10/25/2011 11:44:36 AM PDT by dfwgator
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To: MichCapCon
Hohman, assistant director of fiscal policy, estimated that 4,892 families that were kicked off welfare this year could get assistance again with $30 million.

Oh,yeah....there's some stimulus for ya!
11 posted on 10/25/2011 11:45:15 AM PDT by gimme1ibertee ("Criticism......brings attention to an unhealthy state of things"-Winston Churchill)
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To: cuban leaf

The tax payers should not be funding business. period. Not Solyndra, not Hollyweird.


12 posted on 10/25/2011 11:45:24 AM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: MichCapCon

Not unless we get royalties.


13 posted on 10/25/2011 11:50:48 AM PDT by cripplecreek (A vote for Amnesty is a vote for a permanent Democrat majority. ..Choose well.)
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To: MichCapCon

Put Bill Richardson in some red and pink tights, and send him in as the hero to arbitrate the problem. He was a big friend of Hollywood while governor of New Mexico.


14 posted on 10/25/2011 11:52:20 AM PDT by pallis
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To: GeronL
The tax payers should not be funding business. period. Not Solyndra, not Hollyweird.

Michael Moore agreed.......and then he took a million dollar subsidy himself.
15 posted on 10/25/2011 11:53:13 AM PDT by cripplecreek (A vote for Amnesty is a vote for a permanent Democrat majority. ..Choose well.)
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To: GeronL

—The tax payers should not be funding business. period. Not Solyndra, not Hollyweird.—

You won’t get any argument from me. I feel the same way about professional sports, btw.


16 posted on 10/25/2011 11:59:06 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: cuban leaf

I think Ironman 3 has a different director.


17 posted on 10/25/2011 12:26:24 PM PDT by EEGator
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To: cuban leaf
I don’t think that is the right way to look at it. If they had not been given the tax credits they would not have made the movie there. That means zero dollars. But they did make the movie there, and it no doubt increased the money coming in, if just for meals and gas for those involved. They probably bought some nice clothing from time to time and maybe gambled a little at Greek Town.

Bingo! Thanks for nailing the crux of the situation.

The state is not literally taking money out of a general fund and giving it to the filmmakers! In shooting a film with a budget presumably around $200 million, the filmmakers were asking about a competitive discount typical in many other states for the very purpose of drawing in movie production dollars. These discounts tend to be a flat amount or a percentage of the entire budget when completed.

Just presuming that $30 million is 25% of a $120 million on-location shoot (the other $75 mil being post-production, star salaries, etc.) Michigan missed out on $90 mil worth of taxable business operations.

One more thing: films tend to make mini-tourist attractions via their location choices. While most tend to be short-lived some of the more famous ones (think "Rocky" and the stairs in Philly) tend to take on a life of their own. Woodstock, IL reaped the ongoing tourist benefit by allowing the filming of "Groundhog Day" in their small town after the powers-that-be in the similarly-sized "Weather Capitol of the World," Punxsutawney, PA., turned down a bid to film in their hamlet a movie that highlights exponentially the very object of their economic health, Phil the Groundhog.

18 posted on 10/25/2011 12:26:47 PM PDT by torchthemummy (Obi-Wan Palin: "If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.")
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To: GeronL
Michigan was not “funding” Iron Man 3 - they were either going to give it a tax credit (and thus collect less in taxes) or not give it a tax credit (and thus collect the full amount in taxes - that being ZERO if the movie makers decide to NOT film in Michigan).

So you have three scenarios - none of which involve Michigan funding the making of Iron Man 3.

Scenario A: Michigan gives a tax credit and money is spent in Michigan but 30$ million in taxes that might otherwise be collected is not collected.

Scenario B: Michigan doesn't give a tax credit and money is spent in Michigan and 30$ million in taxes IS collected by the State government of Michigan.

Scenario C: Michigan doesn't give a tax credit and the money is NOT spent in Michigan and Michigan collects nada, nothing, zip, zilch, zero.

Now the libtard idiots think Scenario B is the best, not realizing that Scenario C is much much much more likely.

Follow?

19 posted on 10/25/2011 12:33:05 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send the GOP to D.C. to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism.)
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To: allmendream

If tax breaks work, then make them blanket and uniform for everyone.


20 posted on 10/25/2011 12:39:57 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: GeronL

No argument from me as far as that goes, no doubt there IS legislation in Michigan that this tax credit would either fall under or not - according to how the law was written and how Michigan lawmakers want to interpret it.

All for taxes being fairer, flatter and evenly applied.

One set of rules for the rich powerful and politically connected and another set of rules for the rest of us is not consistent with American ideals - but it is par for the course these days.

My point is that this is NOT a case of Michigan giving money to or Michigan taxpayers being “forced to spend” $30 Million on Iron Man 3.

The idea that tax breaks are giving away government money, money they own, is the language of the left.

Don’t buy into it.


21 posted on 10/25/2011 12:47:43 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send the GOP to D.C. to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism.)
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To: MichCapCon

So Michigan democrats believe that “progress” is getting 30 million from a private company (film) and then using it to ADD 4892 families to welfare.

THAT’S FRIGGING PROGRESS?!?!?!

TO liberals, yes. Anytime they get to TAKE from producers AND ADD to the welfare roles, to them they’ve just made the world better.

These people all just need to be cordoned off in a huge thunderdome. Nobody gets out.


22 posted on 10/25/2011 12:47:51 PM PDT by Secret Agent Man (I'd like to tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.)
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To: GeronL
...NJ taxpayers whose reputation were the victim of its smears.

While I do not watch "Jersey Shore", I don't believe the show could have lowered my opinion of the reputation of NJ taxpayers any lower than it already was upon observing the usual political animals they elect at both the state and national level. Just in Lautenberg alone they lost points they can't make up ever again...

23 posted on 10/25/2011 12:49:23 PM PDT by T-Bird45 (It feels like the seventies, and it shouldn't.)
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To: cuban leaf

Should the government pick the winners in all industries or just motion pictures?


24 posted on 10/25/2011 12:54:03 PM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: GeronL
If tax breaks work, then make them blanket and uniform for everyone.

There are tax burdens and tax breaks from said burdens. Tax burdens overall deal with permanent tax payers via permanent businesses. This particular flat tax break would have been for a large temporary work force bringing in out-of-state funds (and employing many locals) that otherwise would go to another state. So when you say uniform you should be talking about lower tax rates in general of which, of course, I would agree.

What's unique here is that there are not many businesses that swoop in, spend large amounts of money, and then swoop back out. Thus attracting them is important since, discounts aside, the money added to the economy is still enormous positive cash flow that otherwise would simply have gone somewhere else.

25 posted on 10/25/2011 12:57:25 PM PDT by torchthemummy (Obi-Wan Palin: "If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.")
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To: torchthemummy

—Woodstock, IL reaped the ongoing tourist benefit by allowing the filming of “Groundhog Day”—

My wife and I have actually been there, and for the very reason that the film was shot there. We even used google maps to find the actual building where Bill Murrey stayed as a “bed and breakfast”. It took a while. We used street view and paused the movie when he is looking out the window.


26 posted on 10/25/2011 12:57:57 PM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: Mr. Lucky

—Should the government pick the winners in all industries or just motion pictures?—

All. Each community has the right to control its taxes to enhance the local economy as they see fit. It’s also one reason I really like a flat tax or 999. I hate that governments can control people by playing with taxes.


27 posted on 10/25/2011 1:06:39 PM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: Mr. Lucky

—Should the government pick the winners in all industries or just motion pictures?—

There is a reason Boeing is now an “Illinois” company, even though they have just a small presence there. And Washington STILL gave them huge tax breaks that no small number of smaller Washington businesses are complaining about.


28 posted on 10/25/2011 1:07:52 PM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: torchthemummy

It’s a bad idea. It sounds like a bad idea from the get-go. There are no redeeming qualities to this sort of favoritism.


29 posted on 10/25/2011 2:20:44 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: GeronL
If tax breaks work, then make them blanket and uniform for everyone.

Then you've eliminated competition among the states. Competition is the essence in a FREE MARKET.

30 posted on 10/25/2011 3:35:40 PM PDT by Cobra64 (Too many people are incapable of critical thinking. Common sense isn't common anymore.)
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To: Cobra64

competition?

Who chooses who gets the tax breaks? It’s favoritism and cronyism. This is no real difference from Solyndra and Stimulus. Most of that film money LEFT the state anyway because they bring most of their own crew and cast with them. The rest are paid about a hundred a day, those people are too poor to pay much tax on that. This is a loser for the taxpayers and a plaything for the politicians.


31 posted on 10/25/2011 3:43:04 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: torchthemummy

You’re overstating the number of film locations that become tourist attractions.

And vastly overstating the local revenue generated by film shoots.

Film crews are middle-class workers who rent motel rooms and eat at moderately-priced restaurants. Will Smith brings his own chef.

Post-production is rarely if ever done on location.

Films bring their own crews. Regardless of what lies they tell you to get a chunk of your tax money, they’re not going to hire and train your kid to be a camera operator or other skilled technician. They might hire a few locals as gofers.

Handing money to movie producers from out of state is never offset by local spending. Never. You’d be much better off just cutting some checks to local motels and restaurants and eliminating the middleman.

In my opinion, handing taxpayer money to movie producers to attract them to your state is colossal idiocy. And it’s so easy to figure out it’s a non-starter with a little simple arithmetic, the politicians who engage in such should be prosecuted for unauthorized gifts of public funds.


32 posted on 10/25/2011 4:40:43 PM PDT by Blue Ink
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