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Local Film Folk to consider legislative session

Posted at 2:47 PM on May 6, 2009 by Euan Kerr

While it's not quite over yet, the legislative session is in its waning days, and the Minnesota Film and Television Board is holding a Town Hall Meeting to discuss the session's impact on local film making.

Executive Director Lucinda Winter admits the legislation which appears likely to pass does not contain the large amount of film subsidy money some local film makers had hoped might be included.

However her office has escaped any funding cuts so far, and there is a lump sum of $2.5 million in the general fund for Snowbate, which can be used for tax breaks for feature films made in the state. This money can be used at any time over the next couple of years.

She says there is also potentially another $1 million in the Senate bill for the distribution of the dedicated sale tax money for the arts which would be a Snowbate for indie films with Minnesota ties. Winter says having this designation would mean smaller films wouldn't be in competition with larger studio backed productions for the money.

It has to be said that the Senate and House bills for distributing the sales tax money are quite different, and things could well change in the conference committee which is now likely to happen next week.

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