Posted by Melanie Nathan, 03-08-10. Republican Stephen Precourt has proposed a new bill, now being considered in the Florida house, which would make movie and TV productions with gay characters ineligible for a tax credit.
Current state law gives tax credits on productions that are “family friendly,” i.e. no smoking, sex, nudity, or profane language.
Included in a bill, that would increase the dollar amount of the credit, is a nasty little adjunct in a tacit and implied, yet loud and clear anti-gay discrimination clause - to expand the disqualifications to productions that include any “exhibit or implied act” of non traditional family values. (associated with wording “gratuitous violence. ”)
Precourt claims he’s not targeting the gay community, yet provides a moronic contradiction when he qualifies his statement by saying that he does not want to invest public dollars in shows with gay characters.
Who is he targeting? What is a non-traditional family? Unmarried couples like Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russel? Single Mom’s Like the Palin kid? I know these are not characters in a movie, but these are examples of what Mr Righteous may perceive as Traditional family.
Florida’s tax incentives for the film industry would be greatly expanded under a measure announced this morning by Orlando Rep. Steve Precourt. Joined by Senate President-in-waiting Mike Haridopolos, the Republican argued the incentive is a good way to encourage economic development. The proposal would offer up to $75 million in credits for qualifying films each year for three years. Credits could be issued immediately but could not be claimed until 2012. Florida’s film incentives peaked in 2007 with a $25 million budget. That has been slashed to $10.8 million. In the current fiscal year, half of that budget is taken up by the hit TV show Burn Notice.
Hollywood your voice needs to be heard now, before the legislation – send Precourt a letter asking him to withdraw his prejudicial clause and please DO threaten to boycott Florida as a film location. In any event – imagine going ahead with a production only to find out that Mr. Family Values has decided that one character in your movie disqualifies the credit the Producer thought would be due.
I joined his FB as a fan , just to get the point across that everyone has a gay person in their family. Does that mean no tax credit for anyone by association? http://www.facebook.com/pages/Steve-Precourt/261281122088?v=wall
Update:Dear Stephen Precourt,
Gay Rights Advocates Call for Boycott of Filming in Florida – http://lezgetreal.com/?p=27912Please get rid of your hate clause in the Bill for film tax credit increase. Hollywood is pro LGBT equality and Gay people will continue to be portrayed in the positive light deserved. For the most part we have every family value attribute possible. That is why we want equality.
You should get to know a few of us before you make such bland judgment calls, probably based on your inability to honor our constitution by separating church from state.If you came to my home for dinner, you would be impressed with our values and the modeling we provide for our two daughters. You will see the normalcy and love in our family.
In film, we will be increasingly depicted for exactly who we are and your shoddy legislation will never eradicate our de facto and soon to be de jure existence. In fact all it will serve to do is isolate Florida from the industry; as the film industry will rather suffer the loss of tax credit than the freedom of speech and the right to equally portray every kind of family that depicts our real world.
We will Boycott Florida if you fail to withdraw your discriminatory legislation.
By Melanie Nathan,