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ENTERTAINMENT
November 13, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
At least one prominent state senator is throwing cold water on the idea of expanding California's film tax credit. “I'm not a fan of tax credits in general," Sen. Lois Wolk (D-Davis), chair of the Senate committee on governance and finance, said in a statement. "In fact, I'm a real skeptic of all of them and have done everything possible to limit their size and duration and to build in as much accountability as possible. " Industry advocates and city officials, including Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, have called on state lawmakers to strengthen and expand California's film tax credit, contending it is not doing enough to keep productions from fleeing Southern California.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 8, 2013 | By Patrick McGreevy
SACRAMENTO -- In a rare break from silence, state Sen. Ronald S. Calderon (D-Montebello) on Friday criticized another lawmaker for repeatedly calling on him to resign in the face of an FBI investigation into corruption in the Capitol. Calderon does not plan to resign, said spokesman Mario Beltran. Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) said on Nov. 1 that Calderon should resign from office “to allow this black cloud to be removed from over the Capitol and over the state of California.” Garcia repeated her call a couple of more times, most recently on Wednesday when she said a recommendation by Senate Democratic leader Darrell Steinberg that Calderon be suspended from his committee assignments did not go far enough.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 31, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
Will the federal probe into the activities of state Sen. Ronald S. Calderon delay or derail efforts to expand California's film tax credit program? That's the question many in the film industry were privately asking after reports emerged that federal investigators were examining Calderon's role in seeking tax credits on behalf of the film industry. Gov. Jerry Brown signed a Calderon bill last year that extended for two years California's $100 million in annual tax breaks for films and TV shows made in the state.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 30, 2013 | By Patrick McGreevy and Anthony York
SACRAMENTO -- Federal investigators probing the activities of state Sen. Ronald S. Calderon (D-Montebello) have asked other lawmakers about proposals he made to expand tax credits for the film industry, officials said Wednesday. Calderon pushed to extend tax breaks to productions of less than $1 million. He and family members received a total of $10,800 in campaign contributions from an independent producer who could have benefited from the change Calderon advocated. FBI agents raided Calderon's Capitol office in June and seized documents as part of an investigation into his finances.
NEWS
October 25, 2013 | By Kathleen Hennessey
WASHINGTON - The government's troubled health insurance website will be running smoothly for the “vast majority” of users by the end of November, administration officials said Friday, for the first time setting a public deadline for fixing the problematic centerpiece of President Obama's healthcare law. “Healthcare.gov is fixable,” Jeffrey Zients, an economic advisor brought in to manage the repair project, told reporters on Friday....
NEWS
October 24, 2013 | By Kathleen Hennessey
WASHINGTON -- Nearly 700,000 applications for health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act have been completed, administration officials said Thursday, although they would not release data on how many people successfully enrolled in insurance plans despite problems with the online marketplace. The updated figure comes as administration officials tried to respond to complaints and finger-pointing from the contractors who built the troubled website, www.healthcare.gov . Testifying before a House committee Thursday, the contractors blamed the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which essentially was project manager, for not conducting complete “end-to-end” testing of the site until two weeks before the Oct. 1 launch date.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 9, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
A group of entertainment industry executives and labor leaders called on state lawmakers to beef up California's film incentives -- or risk losing a homegrown industry to rivals. At a state committee hearing held at SAG-AFTRA headquarters in Los Angeles, industry officials praised California's film and TV tax incentives, which were adopted in 2009 to stop the migration of film and TV work.  They cited the Oscar-winning film "Argo" and the TV series "Teen Wolf" as examples of projects that have been filmed in California specifically because of the tax credits they received.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 4, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
California needs a new and improved film tax credit program to prevent more productions from leaving the state, the industry's chief lobbyist said Friday. Speaking at a luncheon in Burbank hosted by the Valley Industry and Commerce Assn., Chris Dodd, chairman of the Motion Picture Assn. of America, called for an expansion of the state's film tax credit program, which allocates $100 million annually but excludes large feature films with budgets greater than $75 million. The program also exempts TV pilots.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 4, 2013 | By Melanie Mason
SACRAMENTO --Two Los Angeles legislators announced this week they'll be pushing a new plan for tax breaks for film and TV production when the Legislature comes back to work in January.  California has had incentives for the entertainment industry since 2009, in an effort to fend off other states trying to lure film and TV shoots with generous tax breaks. Gov. Jerry Brown signed the latest round of tax credits last year, which authorize $100 million in credits annually until July 1, 2017.
BUSINESS
October 1, 2013 | By Michael Hiltzik
Among the many delusions guiding the Republican campaign against the Affordable Care Act, surely the most consistent is the idea that the public detests the law and is clamoring for repeal. Here's the truth: The American public loves Obamacare, with as many as 88% in favor, according to one survey. How can that be, when polls regularly show a plurality of respondents with an "unfavorable" view of Obamacare? (In a September Kaiser Family Foundation tracking poll , the difference was 43% unfavorable to 39% favorable.)
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