Last legislative session, Gov. Martinez led the charge (along with Rep. Dennis Kintigh) to restrain and reform New Mexico’s film subsidy program. The cause was helped by the myriad scandals (and here) and shady bookkeeping around the nation.
Well, film subsidies, though reduced, haven’t gone away. And that means that scandals are still happening as well. Here is a story about a filmmaker in Massachusetts that was indicted on 10 counts of making false claims and larceny after receiving $4.7 million in tax credits from the state, according to the attorney general’s office.
Interestingly-enough, the program in Massachusetts appears to be quite similar to that offered here in New Mexico with filmmakers receiving a 25% rebate on all “eligible” expenses.
While eliminating the program in its entirety is probably not realistic, I’d like to see efforts to gradually wean the filmmakers off of the taxpayers’ teat over time.