What an adrenaline rush at the State Capitol! Rhett and several other filmmakers, producers, screenwriters, and actors testified in favor of Senator Coash's LB1018.  The bill would setup a grant program to fund film through the Nebraska Arts Council. This is the third time Rhett has sat in the Appropriations Committee during the hearings for film incentives but FIRST time he's testified. Rhett says he tried to "Spell out the reality of independent film in 2016. From the perspective of both president of NIFP.org nonprofit and as a producer with AB Productions. Thought it went over swimmingly,  Hopefully the bill passes and we get to help YOU make a film in 2017."

Special shoutout to Nebraska Film Association, Nebraska Arts Council, and Nebraskans For The Arts.   Thanks Nebraska Film Office and Laurie Richards for the photo!

LINKS AND OVERVIEWS:

http://nebraskalegislature.gov/bills/view_bill.php?DocumentID=28317

There is hereby appropriated $500,000 from the General 2 Fund for FY2016-17 to the Nebraska Arts Council, for Program 327, to 3 establish a grant program to support Nebraska communities for the purpose 4 of film production and of investment by the filming company in the 5 economic and cultural development of the host community. It is the intent 6 of the Legislature that $250,000 be appropriated from the General Fund 7 annually for the purpose of continuing the grant program established under this section.8 9 It is the intent of the Legislature that the Nebraska Arts Council 10 provide an annual report to the Appropriations Committee of the 11 Legislature regarding the status of the grant program established under 12 this section, including, but not limited to, program inquiries, grant 13 applications, and the number of grants awarded.

http://nebraskalegislature.gov/FloorDocs/Current/PDF/FN/LB1018_20160210-133225.pdf

The Nebraska Arts Council does not have in-house expertise for establishing outreach to the film industry, which is a necessary component to promoting and administering the grant program. As a result either a new staff position would be needed, which is estimated here, or, consideration could be given by the legislature to move the Film Office contract from the Department of Economic Development to the Arts Council. Salary and benefits for 2017-18 are based upon a 2.25% salary increase.  $51,234.77

 

LB840 LOMED existing incentives overview: http://www.neded.org/community/community-info/community-improvement/local-option-municipal-economic-development-act-lb840