Pennsylvania Film Production Tax Credit

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The Pennsylvania Film Production Tax Credit is a tax credit program supporting the production of feature films and television programs in Pennsylvania. The tax credit was signed into law by Gov. Ed Rendell in July 2004.[1]

The tax credit for qualifying productions equals a 25% reduction in Personal Income Tax, Corporate Net Income, Capital Stock/Foreign Franchise Tax.[2] However, because most productions filming in Pennsylvania do not incur a tax liability in the state, the credits are fully transferable, which means they can be sold to a company or individual in the state who does have a tax liability. In order to qualify for the tax credit, the production must incur 60% of its total production expenses within Pennsylvania.[2] The credit also applies to individual television shows that are 15 minutes or longer and intended for a national audience.[1]

Watchdogs, including the Pennsylvania Common Cause criticized lobbyist Leslie McCombs for failing to properly register as a lobbyist for Lions Gate Entertainment while lobbying on behalf of the tax credit.[3]

A 2009 report from the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee in the Pennsylvania General Assembly found that the tax credit supported 4,000 jobs and produced $4.5 million between 2007 and 2008.[4]

During the 2009 Pennsylvania budget impasse, the tax credit was in danger of being repealed.[5] Instead, its total amount was reduced from $75 million to $42 million, with that number increasing to $60 million the next year.[5] The tax credit was expanded again during the state budget negotiations in summer 2016. $65 million will be available for fiscal year 2017-18.[6]

The tax credit brought the production of Zack and Miri Make a Porno, The Road, Shelter, Shannon's Rainbow, Sorority Row, and She's Out of My League to the Pittsburgh region in 2008 and 2009.[7] The majority of filming for I Am Number Four also took place in the greater Pittsburgh area in 2010 due to the tax credit.[8][9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Rendell signs film production tax credit law". Philadelphia Business Journal. July 21, 2004.
  2. ^ a b "Film production Tax Credit". September/October 2004, No. 111. Pennsylvania Department of Revenue. 2004-10-25.
  3. ^ Bumsted, Brad (September 5, 2007). "Lobbyist cites 'oversight' in registration snafu". Pittsburgh Tribune Review.
  4. ^ "Report: Pa. Film tax credit brings in $4.5 million". Pittsburgh Business Times. American City Business Journals, Inc. June 3, 2009.
  5. ^ a b Schooley, Tim (October 13, 2009). "Pennsylvania film tax credit reduced in 2010 budget, but survives". Philadelphia Business Journal. American City Business Journals, Inc.
  6. ^ Gigler, Dan,(July 13, 2016) "Pennsylvania Senate Expands Film Tax Credit Program by $5 Million", Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
  7. ^ Vancheri, Barbara; Owen, Rob (February 21, 2009). "Tax credits could end up on cutting room floor". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
  8. ^ "The East at a glance". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. May 20, 2010. Retrieved January 14, 2011.
  9. ^ Yerace, Tom (April 6, 2010). "Vandergrift's architecture lures big-budget film". Valley News Dispatch. Archived from the original on January 4, 2013. Retrieved January 14, 2011.