Working to restore Florida motion picture production
February 24th: We’ve reached the end of the line as far as the 2018 legislative session is concerned. Support in both chambers has increased measurably over the past few months, and media attention has been more widespread and positive than ever before. But session ends in two weeks and – with legislators wholly focused on gun issues and the need to finalize a budget – we must acknowledge there will be no more committee hearings for our bills this year. We’ve gone as far as we can go.
There’s a lot of work to do over the summer and fall to prepare for 2019, of course. We also plan to initiate an effort to put our model in motion on a more regional basis. So please stay tuned over the coming months for new developments.
COMPASS represents the Florida men and women who work in feature film and episodic television production and the Florida-based businesses that provide materials, equipment, provisions, and other support to this industry.
Since May of 2012, the Congress of Motion Picture Associations of Florida (COMPASS) has maintained an unwavering legislative presence in Tallahassee and around the state, building credibility as the primary advocacy group for Florida motion picture production.
We know that, of the various entertainment industry sectors, the greatest economic impact comes from feature film and episodic television production – through its singular ability to create good long-term jobs for Floridians and inject maximum production spending into Florida communities.
In 2017, COMPASS responded to opposition to corporate subsidies by introducing legislation to create a new business model based on sound financing principles. Our legislation was heard and passed by one Senate committee.
We returned to Tallahassee for the 2018 legislative session with an updated and refined bill, a broader legislative and business support base, and a fire in our belly. Again, we passed one committee in the Senate and hit a stone wall in the House, where conservative opposition blocked our every attempt to get a fair hearing for our program.
As always, we learn from the effort. Now we prepare to make a regional push over the summer and fall of this year, and then re-energize our state level campaign after November elections are over and the first committee weeks begin in December.
“The playing field is no longer level and that must be fixed. Florida’s actors, filmworkers, producers, and small business owners deserve to be able compete with other Southeastern states for our share of the domestic market for feature film and episodic television production. We must persuade Florida legislators, business associations, community and educational leaders, the tourism industry, and the public in general to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with us and support our effort to bring motion picture production back to the Sunshine State.”
Chris Ranung, COMPASS chair