As Broadway continues to reel from the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic, Governor Kathy Hochul is proposing to expand and extend a pandemic tax credit to help the commercial theater industry recover.
Ms. Hochul on Tuesday proposed a $200 million budget for the New York City Musical and Theater Production Tax Credit, offering up to $3 million per gig to help reduce production costs.
State budget director Robert Mujica told reporters: “They started to recover before Omicron, and then, as you can see, a lot of these venues had to close again, and the that location is very important to the economy. .
The tax credit program, which began last year under Governor Andrew Cuomo, was initially capped at $100 million. Matthew Gorton, a spokesman for Empire State Development, the state’s economic development agency, said early signs point to a high level of interest: Nearly three dozen products have notified the state of what they expect. apply.
The Hochul administration has decided to seek to expand the tax credit program – and extend the initial application deadline, from December 31, 2022 to June 30, 2023 – as it became clear that the Broadway recovery after a prolonged pandemic shutdown will be more difficult than expected.
Performances resumed last summer, and many of the shows have attracted large audiences – Mrs. Hochul visited “Chicago” and “Six” in October, while Mr. Gorton watched “The Lehman Trilogy” ” and “To Kill a Mockingbird.”
But the industry is struggling right now after a spike in coronavirus cases forced many people to cancel during the usually lucrative holiday season, and then attendance dropped. Last week, 66 percent of Broadway seats were occupied, according to the Broadway League; this is up from 62 percent the previous week, but down from 95 percent in the pre-pandemic comparable week.
“We’re clearly not out of the woods yet,” said Jeff Daniel, chairman of the Broadway League’s Government Relations Committee and co-executive director of the show. Broadway across America, which showcases touring programs in regional markets. Mr. Daniel, still recovering from a recent showdown with Covid, welcomed the governor’s proposal and said the League would work to urge the Legislature to approve it.
“Every show we can open boosts jobs and has an economic impact,” said Daniel, noting the close economic relationship between Broadway and other businesses, including hotels. and restaurant. “If we can maximize Broadway, we maximize tourism.”
Under the program, gigs can receive tax credits to cover up to 25% of many production costs, including labor. As a condition of the credit, performances must have a state-approved artistic and diverse vocational training program, and take steps to make their works accessible to those who are not. New York has a low income.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/19/theater/broadway-hochul-tax-credit.html When Broadway was in trouble, Governor Hochul proposed extending the tax credit