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Shooting Here? Might as Well Stay

By Eric Richardson
Published: Tuesday, March 31, 2009, at 06:36PM
Downtown Filming Eric Richardson [Flickr]

Filming takes place at 7th and Grand in August of 2007.

Could enticing production companies to locate Downtown lead to shoots becoming better neighbors? That's at least a bit of the thinking behind a push to extend the City's entertainment business tax incentives to Downtown.

Since 1997 the City of Los Angeles has capped business taxes for entertainment and multimedia companies located in Hollywood and North Hollywood at $25,000 per year, plus 10% of the tax normally due above that. A motion filed by Councilwoman Jan Perry this past week asks to extend that credit to companies located in Downtown. In the motion, Perry writes that

The City must do everything possible to provide and encourage growth in the entertainment industry, to create much-needed jobs in the City, and to support the creative and technical achievement this industry brings to the City. Expanding existing film incentives to Downtown would provide the entertainment industry with yet another region of the City where they can invest and grow.

The motion cites L.A. Live's new ESPN West studios and the L.A. Center Studios complex as nuclei for other entertainment companies to locate around.

Perry also thinks that getting production outfits to locate Downtown could make them more mindful of the neighborhood they're already shooting in. "When you're a part of a community in a very permanent way, you have a vested interest in it," she told blogdowntown.

With a million square feet of vacant upper floor space, buildings along Broadway could make a potential home for newly attracted -- or newly created -- creative companies. Asked about the motion, a representative for the Bringing Back Broadway project applauded the effort, pointing to the current commercial reuse effort and language asking for a "package of meaningful incentives" to attract companies to Historic Downtown.

Perry's motion -- CF 09-0633 -- was referred to the Council's Jobs, Business Growth and Tax Reform committee and its Public Works committee. Neither has yet set a date for a hearing.

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