The New Jersey Business & Industry Association testified Thursday in support of a bill that extends the film tax credit, while calling for the urgent need to re-authorize a comprehensive tax incentive program.

New Jersey has been without a tax incentive program, a fundamental tool in most states’ economic development strategies, since July 1.

NJBIA Vice President of Government Affairs Chris Emigholz said that bill S-3842 (Weinberg, D-37; Sarlo, D-36), which was released by the Senate and Budget Appropriations Committee today, could ultimately be included in a broader tax incentive program.

“It has now been more than half a year that New Jersey has been without a tax incentive program,” Emigholz said. “Without this tool, we continue to put future job creation, economic development and prosperity at risk.”
The film tax credit bill would extend by five years the availability period for tax credits to offset expenses incurred for the production of films and digital media content in New Jersey. Emigholz added that the bill increases the caps for this film credit program without a formal net benefit test in place.

“NJBIA believes that increasing these caps is a good first step, but caps are unnecessary for tax incentive programs as long as there are strong net benefit tests to protect taxpayer dollars,” Emigholz said.

“The goal should be not to cap success, but allow incentive programs shown to be successful through net benefit tests to create as many jobs as possible. We believe the broader tax incentive program should follow that theme wherever possible of greater flexibility with enhanced accountability,” Emigholz said.