This news article about changes to NC’s film industry tax credit program not only highlights the obvious, but illustrates how ridiculous progressive liberals sound when they try to argue against tax cuts.
First, the obvious. Without special tax breaks, there will be less investment in the film industry in NC. As stated by HBO series “Homeland” producer Alex Gansa in 2013: “I don’t think we would have been here if there hadn’t been tax breaks, and I believe if the tax breaks end, we’ll have to pick up and find another place to shoot.”
“I just feel like the rug has been pulled out from under me,” said Karl Golden, 50, who was a location scout for “Homeland” and now is a van driver for “Banshee.” He predicts the makers of the Cinemax show will pick up and move after they wrap this season, and that he’ll “probably file for unemployment if I don’t get the work that I need.”
So when investors see a better rate of return in other states due to a lower tax burden, those investment dollars (and the jobs that go with it) will leave NC for greener pastures. As the old saying goes: the less you tax an activity, the more of that activity there will be (and vice versa).
This must come as shocking news, however, to the liberals at the NC Budget & Tax Center (a project of the Blueprint NC-affiliated NC Justice Center). Just last year, as NC was debating tax reform, they insisted that state taxes don’t matter to business investment.
A well-educated, highly productive workforce, access to markets and suppliers, sound infrastructure, and a high quality of life for employees are more important to corporate leaders than state taxes, according to numerous surveys, studies and popular rankings of “business friendly” states.
Hmmm, that’s funny. Because I haven’t once heard a film industry spokesperson or worker say they would stop filming in NC due to changes in the workforce, infrastructure or quality of life. Nope. Just the tax burden. I guess those “numerous surveys” didn’t include film industry execs.
Of course, many progressive liberals are now lobbying to re-instate the film industry tax credits by warning us that investment in film production will go to other state’s where the tax treatment is more favorable; apparently all the while completely oblivious to their self-contradiction to earlier proclamations that state taxes don’t matter to investment decisions.