Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Letter from the President of TxMPA

Incentive Program receives funding for 2012-2013 budget cycle

In what was a very challenging legislative session, we emerged with $30
million in funding for the next budget cycle for the Texas Moving Image
Incentive Program. Our funding is included in HB 1, the state budget
that was passed by the Texas Legislature on Memorial Day.An additional
$2 million is included in the budget for the Governor's Trusteed
programs for film and music to cover administration and marketing. This
is a tremendous victory since it is an increase of $20 million from the
original $10 million dedicated to the program when the budget was filed
in January.At one point during the legislative process the Texas Senate
removed all funding for the program.

The Governor called a special session that began May 31st to address
several key bills related to funding the budget that died at the end of
the regular session.It is widely expected that other issues may be added
to the special session agenda, including congressional redistricting,
but the moving image incentive program is not expected to be impacted.

This was a very difficult budget year for the Texas legislature, with
school districts and health care programs facing onerous reductions in
funding.TXMPA representatives worked hard to make sure the legislature
recognized the significance of the moving image incentive program to the
state's economy.Key to the success this session was the involvement of
TXMPA membership. Membersthroughout the state met and contacted their
legislators about the personal impact of the program and what it means
to film, television, video game, commercial and other production in
Texas.Thank you.Your efforts paid off.

Our mission doesn't end with the inclusion of program funding in HB 1.It
takes a year-round effort to make sure the message of the importance of
our industry to Texas is heard.TXMPA will continue to work with the
legislature, the Governor's office, and the Texas Film Commission during
the special session and the interim to ensure the ongoing success for
the Texas Moving Image Industry Incentive Program and our industry at
large.As TXMPA matures to better handle this task, we need all industry
members to stay involved.Please mark July 23rd on your calendars and
plan to attend the TXMPA annual meeting that will be held in Houston
this year.Keep an eye out for further announcements on meeting details
and on this year's election of representatives to the board.

Again, thank you for all of your efforts and support that kept our
incentive program alive and put us in the position to build it in the
future.

Don Stokes
President, TXMPA

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