The House Committee on Ways and Means amended the Student and Family Tax Simplification Act last Thursday and has issued a comprehensive report on the bill. The bill, or H.R. 3393, was developed by Representatives Diane...
- The Tax Policy Blog
- Corruption and Abuse in Iowa's Film Tax Credit Program
Corruption and Abuse in Iowa's Film Tax Credit Program
Iowa's film tax credit program is coming under scrutiny after allegations of corruption and lax accounting. The Iowa Independent reports:
Last week allegations of misconduct surrounding the tax credits, known officially as the Film, Television and Video Promotion Program, led Gov. Culver to suspend the program. An internal audit of the program found that credits were not used properly. For instance, some credits were used to purchase luxury vehicles (a Mercedes and a Land Rover) that were not used directly on the film and the amount of credits claimed was the full purchase price rather than the lease cost during the project. The audit found numerous irregularities, ranging from substandard reporting of how credits were used to using venders who reside outside of Iowa.
The debacle has led to the resignation of Mike Tramontina, director of the state's Department of Economic Development, two days after he sent this memo containing the results of an independent audit of the Film Office. Tom Wheeler, manager of the Iowa Film Office was then placed on administrative leave. Governor Culver has put a freeze on the credit program and filmmaker reimbursements.
The Governor wants to ensure he "protects the interests of Iowa taxpayers," but even a well-run film tax credit program is a bad use of hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money. It amounts to a corporate welfare for movie producers.
Subscribe to the Tax Foundation Newsletter
Join the Tax Foundation's fight for sound tax policy Go
About the Tax Policy Blog
The Tax Policy Blog is the official weblog of the Tax Foundation, a non-partisan, non-profit research organization that has monitored tax policy at the federal, state and local levels since 1937. Our economists welcome your feedback. If you would like to send an e-mail to the author of a blog post, please click on that person's name to locate his or her e-mail address or visit our staff page here.