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Legislative Session Update



LEGISLATIVE CALENDAR
The Georgia General Assembly convened last Monday, April 4 for legislative day 40 marking Sine Die, the final day of the 2022 Legislative Session. Governor Brian Kemp and his administration have 40 calendar days in which to vet legislation passed by the general assembly and decide whether to sign or veto these bills. If the governor takes no action on any given bill by May 14, 2022, the legislation will become law according to the enactment date outlined in the proposal.
GSEC LEGISLATION OF INTEREST
House Bill 1053: Post Production Tax Incentive; Extend Sunset GSEC Position: Support Chamber Position: Support House Bill Sponsor: Ron Stephens (R-Savannah) Senate Bill Sponsor: Jeff Mullis (R-Chickamauga) House Bill 1053 would extend the film post-production tax credit set to expire on January 1, 2023 and allows for state revenue collection on residual income related to productions that have utilized an entertainment tax incentive. The bill was amended in the Senate, which removed transferability of the post production credit and limited the sunset to 2 years. On day 40 the House agreed and amended HB 1053, restoring transferability. The bill went back to the Senate for final agree, which did not occur before the legislature adjourned sine die, so the bill did not receive final passage. The post production incentive program will sunset on Jan 1, 2023 and will have to be re-introduced in the 2023 legislative session. Note: The post production tax incentive program is a separate program from Georgia’s “main” film production ax credit, the Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act which provides for 30% transferrable tax credit for eligible production expenditures. The GEIIA, or "main" film tax incentive program has not changed, and still allows for transferability and does not include a cap or sunset. House Bill 1437: Income tax; Revise Rates of Taxation on Income (See description below for the amendment specific to the film industry) GSEC Position: Tracking House Bill Sponsor: Shaw Blackmon (R- Bonaire) Senate Bill Sponsor: Chuck Hufstetler (R- Rome) House Bill 1437 is a comprehensive change to Georgia's personal income tax. This legislation now lowers the standard tax rate from 5.75% to 4.99% phased in over nine years. Additionally, it eliminates most deductions but raises the standard deduction to $12,000 per year for single filers and $24,000 for those filing jointly. HB 1437 passed out of the full House of Representatives on Wednesday, March 9 by a vote of 115-52. On day 36, the Senate amended HB 1437 to include language specific to the film production tax incentive program. The substitute capped the film tax incentive at $900M and removed transferability- two factors (uncapped, transferable credit) that has made Georgia’s tax incentive program so successful. The harmful language was removed from HB 1437 thanks to rapid and extensive lobbying and grassroots efforts. Working closely with Senate leadership, we were able to keep the harmful version of HB1437 from even hitting the Senate floor for a vote. HB 1437 was amended to remove all references to the film tax incentive and passed out of the full Senate on day 39 by a vote of 51-4. The bill went to conference committee, where an agreement was reached on day 40. The conference report for HB 1437 was adopted in the House by a vote of 167-2 and in the Senate by a vote of 41-13. It is now eligible for the Governor’s consideration. The bill no longer includes any language related to Georgia’s film industry or film tax incentive program. House Bill 469: Income tax; rehabilitation of historic structures; revise tax credits (See description below for the amendment specific to the gaming industry) GSEC Position: Tracking House Bill Sponsor: Ron Stephens (R- Savannah) Senate Bill Sponsor: John Albers (R- Marietta) House Bill 469 extends the sunset on the existing historic preservation tax credit program. The version passed by the Senate Finance committee on March 23 included Sen. John Albers' proposed amendment that added a sunset to the interactive entertainment production tax credit program (commonly called the video game development tax credit). Following a Senate floor amendment to remove the language referencing the video game industry, the bill passed 48-4. It was heard on the House floor near midnight on Sine Die, where it passed 155-11. HB 469 will now go to the Governor for his consideration. House Bill 1330: Georgia Music and Theatre Jobs Recovery Act; Enact GSEC Position: Tracking House Bill Sponsor: Rep. Calvin Smyre (D- Columbus) House Bill 1330 changes the name of the Georgia Musical Investment Act (commonly called the music tax credit) to the Georgia Music and Theatre Jobs Recovery Act. It extends the sunset on the credit and makes several changes including changing the parameters around eligible projects, allowing for lowered spending thresholds and combined production spending to meet the threshold, and requiring that royalties from projects utilizing the credit are reported as taxable income. HB 1330 passed out of the House by a vote of 146-26. The bill stalled in Senate Finance and did not receive final passage. The music incentive program will sunset on Jan 1, 2023 and will have to be re-introduced in the 2023 legislative session.
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