NDP offers more movie tax breaks

An NDP government would increase tax credits for movie and TV production in B.C., to counter higher tax breaks offered by Ontario and Quebec

Scene from Man of Steel

Scene from Man of Steel

An NDP government would increase tax credits for movie, TV and video game production in B.C., to counter higher tax breaks offered by Ontario and Quebec.

NDP leader Adrian Dix said Tuesday that if his party forms a government in the May 14 election, it will increase the tax credit for labour expenditures by foreign and domestic productions in B.C. from 33 per cent to 40. That would cost the provincial treasury $45 million a year, assuming increased movie and TV production.

In 2009, Ontario stepped up its tax credits to 25 per cent of all spending for movie and TV production by foreign companies in the province. Dix said the bigger tax break is to reverse a decline of 3,500 direct and indirect jobs in B.C. last year, with early results for 2013 showing a 32 per cent decline compared to last year.

B.C. Liberal MLA Bill Bennett, minister of community, sport and cultural development, said earlier this year that Ontario’s tax credits are not sustainable. Bennett pointed to more than $2 million provided last year for BC Film + Media, which offers financing and marketing support to domestic projects, and the BC Film Commission, a provincial office that helps producers secure permits, crews and shooting locations in B.C.

Surrey North Delta Leader