California Gov. Jerry Brown signs a bill increasing the state's incentives for film production (via TCL Chinese Theatres)
California Gov. Jerry Brown signs a bill increasing the state’s incentives for film production (via TCL Chinese Theatres)

Elected officials gathered in Los Angeles at the TCL Chinese Theater in downtown Hollywood Thursday for a signing ceremony for the state’s new film and television tax incentive bill, which more than triples the amount of money California will offer in subsidies annually.

“Today, we remind the world that the Golden State is the home of the silver screen,” Gov. Jerry Brown (D) said. “This bill helps thousands of Californians, from stage hands and set designers to electricians and delivery drivers.”

AB 1839 sets aside $330 million a year for the next five years, an increase over the $100 million a year that has been previously offered. It’s an effort by the state to woo back production that has fled to other states and countries that offer their own subsidies. California was late to the film incentive game, approving them in 2009, about a decade after other states began experimenting with them.

“They call the problem ‘runaway production,’ but let’s be clear, production and production jobs aren’t running away from California,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said. “They’re being lured away by big financial incentives from other states. Today, we fight back.”

The increase comes as other states stand down in the film tax incentive race. Nevada’s $80 million in incentives was slashed to $10 million to help pay for a subsidy deal for carmaker Tesla, and North Carolina’s program, which didn’t have a cap but paid out $61 million last year, will be down to $10 million next year after lawmakers failed to pass an extension.