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Film industry fears job losses with proposed tax credit cap

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WKAR file photo
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About 800 Michigan State University students major in programs related to the film industry.

By Kevin Lavery, WKAR News

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wkar/local-wkar-954160.mp3

East Lansing, MI – Supporters of Michigan's film industry say they fear Governor Snyder's proposed cap on the movie production tax credits will stifle job prospects for college graduates.

Michigan doled out some $60 million in tax incentives to film production companies last year. Governor Snyder wants to cap the credit at $25 million per year.

Charles Steinfield, who chairs the department of Telecommunication, Information Studies and Media at Michigan State University, says fewer movie companies doing business in Michigan would also reduce the number of local support business who hire his program's graduates.

"Fewer production houses in the state directly affect the job opportunities for students when they're graduating; they're going to hire fewer people," Steinfield says. "So basically, the industry which has been expanding will shrink."

MSU has about 800 students majoring in programs that are related in some way to the film industry. Steinfield says the tax incentive program has been a great vehicle for keeping students from leaving the state.

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