NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Many state leaders credit the state’s tax incentives for the successful film industry. Now, some lawmakers believe it’s time to end those tax credits productions receive.
“I want to make sure that our taxpayer dollars are being appropriately spent to benefit New Mexico taxpayers,” said Hobbs Republican Rep. Larry Scott.
Currently, New Mexico gives out a 25-35% tax credit to film production companies that shoot here and employ local cast and crew members. In 2019, the state passed another credit of 5% for productions that film in smaller communities outside of Bernalillo and Santa Fe counties. Scott worries New Mexicans are losing out on that money.
Scott mentioned, “Little of that money would remain in the state, and studies in other states that have evaluated these programs find that they returned very little on the state dollar.”
Though Rep. Scott said he sees the positive economic impact of the industry, he and the other sponsors question if this particular program is a good use of taxpayer dollars.
The New Mexico Film Office told KRQE in a statement, “Eliminating the film incentive program would be devastating to the industry.” They added, according to a recent study, more than 90% of productions in the state would not be here if it weren’t for the tax incentives.
According to the film office, in the past 3 years, the film industry brought $1.5 billion into New Mexico. The House bill is scheduled to be heard in its first committee next week.