Film subsidies depress corporate tax revenues

Twitter is a useful and frustrating tool. Bill Jordan who lobbies on behalf of one of the many liberal groups that lobbies the Legislature here in New Mexico recently posted the following. Now, we know that the rich don’t really pay less taxes than the poor in NM (we’ve had this discussion/argument with Bill numerous times). And, New Mexico corporations also pay millions of dollars in corporate income taxes as well as other taxes to the State of NM (much of which is used for education).

You can see the corporate tax data on page A-2.1 of the Gov.’s budget which shows that the State collected an estimated $133 million for FY 22.

But, Bill DOES have a point. A line item called “refundable” CIT credits vastly reduces the corporate tax burden. A friendly lobbyist in Santa Fe helped us figure things out. Much of that “refundable” loss comes in the form of film subsidies. 

Check out the paragraph below which is from page 11 of this report from the Legislative Finance Committee:

In other words, thanks to film subsidies being “booked” against corporate income taxes in ways that seem to reduce New Mexico’s corporate tax revenues to zero (or even below). The Rio Grande Foundation has consistently opposed film subsidies from day one, but Voices would rather misleadingly claim that corporations don’t pay taxes and ignore what is really happening.