Demonstrators Rally In Support Of Film Tax Credit

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A big rally was held Friday in front of Gov. Tom Corbett’s office in downtown Pittsburgh.

Demonstrators are hoping that the governor will keep a special tax incentive in his budget. They say that incentive means jobs in Pittsburgh.

Next Tuesday, when Gov. Corbett presents his budget to the legislature, many who support movie-making in Pennsylvania are afraid that he will cut the film tax credit.

It is a special incentive the state began several years ago to lure Hollywood to the area. It’s worked and brought film-making and jobs to Pittsburgh.

However, that is now at risk and local film-making students say a lot more is at stake.

When students march in support of something as esoteric as a film tax credit, you really know something more is at stake.

“I’m in love with two things, film and the city of Pittsburgh,” said Benedict Baldauff, a native of Houston, Texas, at the rally.

Like many students marching downtown on Friday, Baldauff came to the city to study film at Point Park University and has already interned with a number of the Hollywood production crews shooting films in the area.

“I do not have a future in this wonderful city if this tax credit does not go through,” he said. “When the jobs leave, so must we.”

The tax credit is an incentive that jumped movie production in Pennsylvania from five a year to 27. Now though, Gov. Corbett, to balance his budget, is considering killing the tax credit and movie-making.

“It’s not just about us. It’s about the people here who work, and the local businesses we’re supporting by bringing these films here,” said Kallie Grove, a native of Baltimore.

Point Park professor Christopher Sepesy says without the tax credit, Pittsburgh will lose business this year.

“There are three possible films coming before the end of the summer, one of which would be the new ‘Batman’ film, and another television series,” said Sepesy.

“If it [the credit] leaves, I have to go with it, said Baldauff. “It’s part of life, [you’ve got to] go where the jobs are, and it’s going to break my heart to leave this city.”

Advocates of the film tax credit say it’s not just the young people who will leave; but hundreds of local jobs associated with movie-making, including lighting, transporting and feeding the crews.

So far, there is no word from Gov. Corbett on what he is going to recommend next Tuesday.

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One Comment

  1. jobe says:

    Does this really take comments or does KDKA just pulll our chain…or in Delano’s words…or never mind, you’d never believe the things that he’d say.

  2. over the hill says:

    Wondering why my first comment didn’t take. This is the THIRD time that KDKA has reported on this subject, but has failed to tell why the Corbett administration isn’t extending the credit. Can you say PRO-PA-GA-DA? Leave it to the funniest reporter to report on this (not being flattering here, he is literally laughable to my teenagers, they get a kick out of watching him make a fool out of himself)

  3. EaT IT says:


  4. Justice for All! says:

    Please if you want to make movies go to HOLLYWOOD!
    Keep these people off of our streets!
    It is so hard to get around in the morning with these people blocking the streets of Pittsburgh! Do not keep the tax credit get rid of it, a waste of tax payers money like they always do, waste our money!

  5. JW says:

    My husband is one of people that will have to leave Pittsburgh to work of the tax credit is not renewed. It has been proven how much money movies make to this state. Many people enjoy seeing their business, houses and neighborhoods on the big screen. How about all the fun when a star comes to town. Movies employ and support many businesses during a shot. If the governor wants to create jobs for Pa then getting rid of the tax credit will only make jobs go away. Is he really trying to make our state a better place to live? I don’t think so! Push to keep the tax credit so my husband and the people he works with can stay here and work and not another state. When they go so does their wage taxes.

  6. fred mertz says:

    Forget the tax credit and fund ADULT BASIC HEALTH CARE.

  7. Support the PA Film Tax Credit! says:

    I don’t understand why people wouldn’t support this? Right now Governor Corbett is in support of rescinding the regulations set against the Marcellus Shale drilling, a decision that is polluting our air and harming our supply of drinking water, and the companies that drill are contracted from out of state , and after all that, he opposes any sort of tax on them. And he does all this behind a campaign that says this will be beneficial to our economy and that landowners will receive significant payments, but the only one who is benefiting is the state, not the people, and it will take decades for landowners to even receive any such payments. So instead, he goes after the PA film industry, an industry that has actually boosted our economy and given jobs to Pennsylvanians, and freezes an incentive that gives a 25% tax credit to films that spend at least 60% of their total production budget in PA (which includes so much more than just filming, but also catering, transportation, hotels, people to build sets, and many other things that a production doesn’t just arrive with) and to be honest, films aren’t going to have much else of a reason to want to film in PA without such an incentive, especially when there are other states that also have this credit in place. People may not realize it, but this will effect jobs, and with our economy in the state that it’s in and our low-rate of unemployment, I don’t see how we can afford to lose any opportunity that comes our way. When it all comes down to it, movie-making is an industry, and in being so it creates jobs and relies on hiring people to make the movie happen in all aspects of the production. It’s decisions like these that will cost the governor support in the future.

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