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Senate committee approves MI film incentive measure

By Laura Weber, Michigan Public Radio Network

LANSING, MI –

A film-incentives program would distribute money to film and video game companies under a proposal approved by the state Senate Wednesday. Republicans have been looking for a new way to attract film companies to Michigan. A tax-credit program created by Governor Jennifer Granholm was largely unpopular with the GOP.

Republican state Senator Mike Kowall says he thinks the proposal for a grant-based system of funding for the film industry could still attract big-name productions to the state.

"Yeah I think it has the potential for that, and I think it has the potential for helping keep the smaller studios going as well as a variety other things involved too," he says. "It's the video games, it's commercials "

If the Legislature approves the new incentive program, the question among lawmakers will be how much money to budget for the film industry. The state Senate is expected to vote on the film-incentive program proposal Thursday.

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