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Tax Incentives

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NEWS
April 25, 2014
From afar, the recent dramatics involving "House of Cards" and the size of the film tax credit it receives from Maryland have offered intrigue worthy of a Hollywood-produced political thriller like, oh, "House of Cards. " The producers threatened to leave, some legislators threatened to seize property, and when the dust cleared in Annapolis, the overall budget for the film tax credit stood at $3.5 million less than supporters wanted. Now that a deal has been struck for the popular Netflix TV series to return to shoot a third season in Maryland, the episode has raised an important question: Is spending so much money to attract or retain film or television productions worth the expense?
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ENTERTAINMENT
By David Zurawik and The Baltimore Sun | April 28, 2014
After more than two months of stories about the producers of "House of Cards" threatening to leave Maryland if they didn't get $15 million from the state to help offset the costs of production, the announcement Friday that they were staying was big news. And WJZ-TV, Baltimore's CBS-owned station, had the story in its 11 p.m. newscast Friday. Except it had the story wrong -- to the point where instead of viewers being told that the legislature and Gov. Martin O'Malley did not give the producers the final $3.5 million that they wanted, WJZ made it sound as if the producers got more than they had even asked for. I am posting a screen grab of the graphic that ran with the story, so you can see the bad math at the heart of the report.
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NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | August 23, 2012
For the first time in 16 years, the directors of the Baltimore Development Corp. met Thursday without M.J. "Jay" Brodie at the helm of the city's influential, quasi-public economic development arm. The BDC's acting president, Kimberly A. Clark, who has expressed interest in the open top job, briefed board members on several of the corporation's initiatives: •An expanded special tax zone for Under Armour Inc., a move that would allow the...
NEWS
April 25, 2014
From afar, the recent dramatics involving "House of Cards" and the size of the film tax credit it receives from Maryland have offered intrigue worthy of a Hollywood-produced political thriller like, oh, "House of Cards. " The producers threatened to leave, some legislators threatened to seize property, and when the dust cleared in Annapolis, the overall budget for the film tax credit stood at $3.5 million less than supporters wanted. Now that a deal has been struck for the popular Netflix TV series to return to shoot a third season in Maryland, the episode has raised an important question: Is spending so much money to attract or retain film or television productions worth the expense?
NEWS
By Jim Jaffe | January 26, 2007
... President Bush's suggestion that markets be introduced into medicine by taxing extraordinarily expensive employer-provided health insurance is a positive initial step. What would come next? A logical follow-up might be to reverse course and withdraw support for other tax incentives that lower what people pay for medical services and, economists tell us, thus increase demand and fuel inflation. The culprits are the increasingly popular flexible spending accounts that allow workers to avoid taxes on compensation that is put aside to pay medical expenses, and the newer, more expensive health savings accounts that deposit deductions into IRA-like accounts that can accumulate over time to pay bills.
BUSINESS
By Eileen Ambrose | August 7, 2005
ALTHOUGH businesses will get the bulk of the tax breaks, there are a few perks for green-minded consumers in the new energy legislation awaiting the president's signature. Tax breaks for hybrid car purchases or home improvements that conserve energy will take effect next year. Some of them, though, expire after two years. Still, these tax incentives might be just enough to prompt consumers to make environmentally friendly, energy-efficient moves, experts said. "There are good tax breaks for the consumer," said Brian Castelli, chief operating officer with the Alliance to Save Energy.
BUSINESS
By Sara K. Clarke and Sara K. Clarke,SUN STAFF | June 27, 2004
The old Tappan stove in Kirk and Jane Osborn's 1931 Tudor home is the showpiece of the kitchen, but it is troubled by controls that malfunction and an oven that leaks heat. The original white-trimmed brick look in Mike Vogel's home was lost during the 1970s when olive green adornments were hip. The wood cattle fence in Darla Byerly's yard has become a haven for wood bees; she plans to put in a more traditional wrought-iron fence. These homeowners in Mayfield are in luck -- in January, the community was designated a historic district.
NEWS
By Melody Simmons and Melody Simmons,SUN STAFF | May 11, 1998
On a small garden patch tucked inside the Beltway Trailer Park in Lansdowne, tomato vines are staked and stretching toward heaven. As winter's chill blends into spring, even the most experienced gardener might tsk at such optimism.But not in this blue-collar community, which has often seen rough times and toughed them out.Today, as the southernmost anchor of one of Baltimore County's enterprise zones, Lansdowne is poised to bloom as area businesses including Super Fresh, United Parcel Service and Baltimore Door & Frame Co., using tax incentives, have grown with $26.7 million in capital investments and jobs since December 1996.
NEWS
By Jamie Stiehm and Jamie Stiehm,SUN STAFF | December 1, 2001
Baltimore is poised to revive its midtown area as an arts district with a tax-incentive program designed to encourage new investment in old buildings, Mayor Martin O'Malley told civic activists and arts enthusiasts yesterday. O'Malley said the rundown rowhouses, empty warehouses and old city-owned buildings in a 100-acre area near Penn Station could be converted into artist studios, lofts and living spaces as part of the new Station North Arts and Entertainment District. "With bricks, mortar and new investment, midtown is ready to pop," O'Malley said at a news conference at the Heritage CinemaHouse, in the first block of E. North Ave. The mayor announced the city's nomination -- chosen from seven proposals -- for a statewide program that offers tax incentives to artists and developers.
BUSINESS
By Mary T. McCarthy and Mary T. McCarthy,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | January 5, 1997
Fixing up old buildings can mean countless hours of hard work, seemingly endless trips to building-supply superstores and -- thanks to some new government programs -- tax breaks.Douglas K. Clemens, a dentist, is the first "graduate" of a new Baltimore program offering tax credits for restoring or rehabilitating historic buildings, after overhauling a combined commercial and residential rental property at 935 S. Charles St."When I bought the building, it was in awful shape. I paid $45,000 for the building, spent nearly $70,000 to fix it up, and now, because of the new tax credit, I will pay tax on the original $45,000 price of the building instead of its renovated value.
NEWS
By Thomas Maronick Jr | April 17, 2014
The debacle regarding film tax credits at the recent legislative session could potentially cause Maryland to lose one of the finest TV programs around today, and all because of misunderstanding of an industry and reliance on failed history. "House of Cards," the Netflix series starring Kevin Spacey, has been filmed in Maryland for each of its first two seasons, mostly in Baltimore City and Harford County. But a failed negotiation between the House and Senate this legislative session left the show in limbo when $3.5 million in tax incentives were left out of a final bill subsidizing the film industry.
NEWS
March 12, 2014
District 12 (Howard and Baltimore Counties) has three House of Delegate seats up for grabs. That's a healthy 2.1 percent of our state's total. Here are my sanguine impressions from a Democratic candidate forum held March 6. Nine of 10 candidates present agreed that the Cove Point pipeline should not be built, and similar concern was expressed about hydraulic fracking more generally. Adam Sachs boldly noted that jobs in this case might not be the highest priority. All candidates support a $10.10 minimum wage with COLAs.
ENTERTAINMENT
By David Zurawik and The Baltimore Sun | February 4, 2014
NEW YORK - “House of Cards” executive producer and star Kevin Spacey said in an interview with The Sun on Tuesday that the program will be back for a third season - and that it will film in Baltimore as it has the for past two years. Season 2 of the widely acclaimed political thriller - that is set in Washington but made on soundstages in Joppa and Baltimore-area locations - will debut Feb. 14 on Netflix with all 13 episodes available for on-demand streaming. “I am shooting a Season 3,” Spacey told The Sun. “End of story.
NEWS
By Michael Fox and Rachel Kutler | September 12, 2013
The City Council's approval of tax increment financing for the Harbor Point development on Monday night is yet another example of our city's failing development trends — funneling public resources toward private developments while our communities are in need of housing, livable incomes, fire stations, rec centers and schools. In the past year alone, the city has privatized or closed two fire stations and 20 recreation centers. In a blatant display of the city's skewed priorities, in February, the city refused to house the 14 individuals sleeping under the Jones Falls Expressway, while nearly 40,000 homes remain vacant.
NEWS
July 9, 2013
Tomorrow City Councilman Carl Stokes plans to hold a hearing on a resolution calling on the developers of the tony Harbor Point project on Baltimore's waterfront to invest at least $15.6 million into the nearby Perkins Homes public housing development. It gets at a vital issue - whether tax incentives for downtown development benefit the city's poor residents - but does so by means of a number of misconceptions. Mr. Stokes has been a strong critic of the use of tax incentives for the construction of Harbor Point, and although we do not have a philosophical objection to such deals, we appreciate his diligence in the matter.
NEWS
By Erin Cox, The Baltimore Sun | March 9, 2013
As Maryland contemplates passing one of the nation's strictest gun laws, at least seven other states have courted its gun manufacturers, offering tax incentives and open arms elsewhere. The governor of Texas, West Virginia's House speaker and an Illinois congressman have written to Beretta USA officials, inviting a move and promising a better business climate if the 400-year-old Italian company chooses to abandon its U.S. headquarters on the Potomac. Another arms manufacturer and defense contractor on the Eastern Shore, LWRC International, received offers, some including tax incentives, from elected or government officials in Nebraska, Mississippi, North Dakota, Nevada, Texas and West Virginia, a company executive said.
NEWS
April 11, 2009
Hollywood producers may say they like a location's weather, or wax poetic about the great scenery or architecture, or love the people they hire as extras. But whether they decide to film in your state? That's largely a function of the bottom line. Despite the downturn in the economy and the resulting state budget crisis (and perhaps even because of it), California has started offering 20 percent tax rebates for big movies shot there and 25 percent for TV shows. That's a relatively modest deal - Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, New Mexico and New York are among the states either offering or contemplating giving even more.
ENTERTAINMENT
By David Zurawik and The Baltimore Sun | February 4, 2014
NEW YORK - “House of Cards” executive producer and star Kevin Spacey said in an interview with The Sun on Tuesday that the program will be back for a third season - and that it will film in Baltimore as it has the for past two years. Season 2 of the widely acclaimed political thriller - that is set in Washington but made on soundstages in Joppa and Baltimore-area locations - will debut Feb. 14 on Netflix with all 13 episodes available for on-demand streaming. “I am shooting a Season 3,” Spacey told The Sun. “End of story.
NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | August 23, 2012
For the first time in 16 years, the directors of the Baltimore Development Corp. met Thursday without M.J. "Jay" Brodie at the helm of the city's influential, quasi-public economic development arm. The BDC's acting president, Kimberly A. Clark, who has expressed interest in the open top job, briefed board members on several of the corporation's initiatives: •An expanded special tax zone for Under Armour Inc., a move that would allow the...
BUSINESS
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | June 23, 2012
It's not a matter of "if" but "when. " Medifast Inc., the No. 3 manufacturer of weight-loss food products, is growing so quickly in that industry that there will soon come a time when it outgrows its sole production facility in Owings Mills and builds plants elsewhere. To keep up with that rapid growth, Medifast plans on making $5 million in improvements to its headquarters and plant in Owings Mills over the next two years. But it's also considering other sites for the future, including a possible West Coast manufacturing site and one in Mexico to serve the growing Latin American market.
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