Zann says government must act immediately on Eastlink Fund
May 4, 2016
For Immediate Release
May 4, 2016
Halifax, NS – An email obtained by the NDP Caucus demonstrates that Nova Scotia Business Inc has been dragging its feet for six months around getting the Eastlink Fund operational. The Eastlink Fund is an investment fund that supports local television production and is one of the few sources of funding for television after the Liberals axed the Film Tax Credit one year ago. The recent email is below this release and the original letter from the CRTC is attached.
The CRTC gave conditional approval for the Eastlink Fund to be managed by NSBI on October 19, 2015. The conditional approval required NSBI to submit additional information. A new email from the CRTC dated April 27, 2016 says that NSBI only “recently” provided a response to the CRTC.
“Why did NSBI wait six months to reply to the CRTC about the Eastlink Fund? The Liberals have devastated and mismanaged the film and television industry, first by cutting the Film Tax Credit, and now by delaying access to the Eastlink Fund. Are the Liberals trying to eliminate the film and television industry altogether in Nova Scotia?” says Lenore Zann, NDP Film and Television Critic and MLA for Truro-Bible Hill-Millbrook-Salmon River.
When the Liberals cut the Film Tax Credit, they also needed to transfer responsibility for the film and television industry to Nova Scotia Business Inc. The CRTC was required to give approval for the Eastlink Fund to be administered by NSBI.
“NSBI is failing to support the film and television industry in this province with their inaction on the Eastlink Fund,” says Zann. “Because the Film Tax Credit was eliminated, the industry is in dire straits and the Eastlink Fund is one of the few places left for local television productions to get the funding they need to get back to work as Premier McNeil keeps telling them to do.”
Access to the Eastlink Fund is immediately needed by Studio Black, a miniseries produced in Nova Scotia about stories from the African Nova Scotian community. CBC ran the first season and has ordered a second season. The window of time for production to begin on this project is quickly closing. There is no guarantee the miniseries will receive funding from the Eastlink Fund, however the producers of the show, and other producers across Nova Scotia, have been patiently waiting for details on when and how to apply to the fund. To date, they have received no answers.
The Liberals claim they don’t want to be subsidizing the film and television industry, but research done by PriceWaterhouseCooper demonstrates that every dollar spent on the Film Tax Credit generates seven dollars in new economic activity – an incredible economic multiplier. Prior to the elimination of the Film Tax Credit the film and television industry generated $180 million in economic activity and provided about 3,200 jobs.
“Nova Scotia’s creative industries are an economic engine for our province, creating full-time jobs and telling our stories around the world. The NDP calls on the Liberals to bring back the Film Tax Credit and immediately make the Eastlink Fund available to local television productions,” Zann concluded.
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For more information please contact Kyle Buott at (902) 266-2068
Email from CRTC and sent to a local television producer:
From: “Valladao, Patricia” <email@example.com>
Date: April 27, 2016 at 11:29:14 AM ADT
Attached a letter dated Oct 19th which conditionally approves the fund.
The Commission recently received docs from NSBI and staff is in the process of analyzing it to see if NSBI meets all the requirements.
Note that if found satisfactory, the fund will be published on our website.
That is all the information I have at this point. Hope that helps.
Manager Media Relations/Gestionnaire, Relations avec les médias
Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission/
Conseil de la radiodiffusion et des télcommunications canadiennes
Ottawa, Canada K1A 0N2
media line/ligne des médias 819-997-9403
Government of Canada | Gouvernement du Canada
CRTC Letter: crtc letter Oct 2016