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Schumer: Stage Act would benefit RBTL

By NATE DOUGHERTY - 5/23/2013 3:35:43 PM

Sen. Charles Schumer said this week legislation he plans to introduce would benefit the Rochester Broadway Theatre League in bringing in commercial stage productions.

The Stage Act of 2013 would amend federal tax code to promote financing in the “often prohibitively risky enterprise of commercial stage production,” said Schumer, D-N.Y., in a written statement.

As it stands, the tax code permits expensing of qualified film and television production costs up to $15 million when 75 percent of compensation goes to services performed in the United States.

The proposed act would add commercial theatrical productions to the list of activities qualifying for immediate expensing under Internal Revenue Code 181, which accelerates deductions and precludes investors from paying income tax on profits until profits are realized.

Schumer this week mentioned RBTL as a beneficiary of the new act.

“From New York City to Upstate New York, the entertainment industry should be offered the same federal tax incentives, regardless of whether it’s a filmed or live production,” he said. “Broadway shows provide billions of dollars to New York’s economy and support thousands of jobs, however, without these critical tax incentives, many production companies are moving elsewhere.”

Touring Broadway companies contribute a local economic impact typically 3.5 times greater than gross ticket sales, officials from Schumer’s office noted. In 2012 more than 13 million people attended Broadway shows, spending in excess of $8.9 billion in the state.

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