WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – A new study shows that North Carolina benefited from tax incentives given to the film industry over the past five years. North Carolina saw significant returns in taxes as well as job creation. The study also shows what could happen if the incentives are allowed to continue.
The study, released by the North Carolina State Poole College of Management, was conducted from 2007 to 2012.
Over that span of time, the film and television industry spent $1.02 billion in North Carolina generating an estimate $170 million in tax revenue, according to the study.
The industry was credited $112 million during that same time frame which means that for every dollar of credit issued, the industry generated over $9 in direct spending and contributed over $1.50 in tax revenue back to North Carolina.
The study's author Dr. Handfield said, "The objective of this study was to present a clear picture of the film and television production incentive, how it impacts North Carolina's economy, and how without it, the landscape for the industry might be drastically different."
He continued, "The findings are quite clear on these matters, and reveal the incentive to be the driving force behind the economic success of North Carolina's film and television industry."
In 2012, the study shows North Carolina collected over $85 million in taxes from the film industry. It also shows the industry was credited over $60 million; however, the study confirmed that still left North Carolina with a net positive cash flow of over $25 million.
The study shows film incentives have also allowed North Carolina to maintain a permanent crew base that provides over 4,200 jobs with an average wage of $66,000 a year. If the film incentives were to go, predictive models forecast about 4,000 jobs would be lost costing the state billions in tax dollars.
Predictions shrink the tax contribution to about $4 million a year with a loss of over $164 million in business revenue to more than 1,000 small businesses across the state.
Empirical survey results collected during the study project that if film incentives continue, the industry would grow to a projected $587 million. The extension would also result in almost 31,000 jobs, 6,400 of which would be full-time production jobs.
The study was sponsored by Charlotte Film, the Motion Picture Association of America, North Carolina's Piedmont Triad Film Commission, Triangle Film, Western North Carolina Film Commission, and Wilmington Regional Film Commission INC.