California State Senator Ron Calderon took tens of thousands of dollars from undercover FBI agents to makes changes to the state’s $100 million Film and TV tax credit program, says Al Jazeera America.
Citing a sealed FBI affidavit, the channel aired a report on Wednesday providing lucid details into the well-known investigation of the influential state politician. Calderon’s office was raided by the federal agency earlier this summer. The affidavit (read it here) alleges, among other actions, that in early 2012, Calderon agreed to help an agent posing as “the owner of a film studio in downtown Los Angeles that provides studio facilities to independent films and commercials” to get the $1 million budget required as a minimum under the Californian Film Commission program for a pic to qualify for credits lowered to $750,000. ...
I have misgivings about about paying corporate subsidies to wealthy conglomerates.
On the other hand, California movie makers are getting their butts kicked by Canada, Britain, New York and numerous other places because they offer bountiful guvmint handouts and California doesn't. So the starry-eyed idealists among us are faced with the usual conundrum: There is the way we would like things to be ... and there's the way things actually are. And (sadly) the present reality is, if you don't step up with money for the entertainment congloms, a lot fewer entertainment workers will be working over the next year or three.
Crappy, but there it is.
So it's not helpful when a corrupt politician gets his palm greased by an undercover agent and it turns into a news story. Kind of undermines what entertainment unions are trying to do here in the sunshine state.