15 Apr Entertainment software industry pushes for film incentive program
MADISON — Wisconsin’s growing entertainment software industry will be showcased from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Thursday at Madison’s Raven Software. The Game On! event is part of an effort to save the state’s film incentive program by a coalition including Film Wisconsin, Arts Wisconsin and the Entertainment Software Association.
Gov. Jim Doyle has said he wants to eliminate the year-old film incentives, which were shown in a report by the state Department of Commerce to be costly and ineffective at creating jobs.
But groups pushing for the program’s continuation say the gaming industry, which benefits from the incentives, creates jobs with an average salary of $85,000 and continued job creation around the state.
“The film incentive program has acted a catalyst for economic development around the state from production facilities in Green Bay and Milwaukee to new video software jobs in Middleton and future tourism opportunities in Columbus and Oshkosh,” stated Scott Robbe, executive director, Film Wisconsin. “In their first 14 months the incentives created over 750 Wisconsin jobs. Now is not the time to eliminate the incentives, let’s improve them and make them work even better for Wisconsin.”
Doyle argued this spring that the state cannot afford these incentives as it faces a projected $5 billion budget shortfall, advocating instead a focus toward economic development initiatives that create more jobs at les