Artists ask lawmakers for music tax breaks in Georgia - CBS46 News

Artists ask lawmakers for music tax breaks in Georgia

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(Source: WGCL) (Source: WGCL)
DECATUR, GA (CBS46) -

Georgia is home to some big name musical talent and artists across the state are coming together to keep that talent around. 

They're asking lawmakers to pass legislation creating incentives for artists in the form of tax breaks that could be a shot in the arm for the music industry.

The music industry has a nearly $4 billion economic impact in Georgia, compared to the film industry's $7 billion impact in our state. 

Musicians I spoke to say the two industries can be equal with the right tax breaks.

In a cozy Decatur music venue, Georgia Music Partners called on musicians across the state to help pass House Bill 155 -- the Georgia Music Investment Act.

The bill has three components:

  • Live productions: 20-25 percent tax credit to audition, rehearse and start tours in Georgia.
  • Recording: 20-25 percent tax credit for projects recorded in Georgia.
  • Scoring: 20-25 percent tax credit for music recorded for movies and video games in our state.

Performers like Aretha Lockhart say that will help keep homegrown talent in Georgia.

"We have music talent but a lot of times when it comes time to go do the scoring or post production, they don't use our musicians and our studios," says Lockhart.

"A lot of it is an education to make sure the lawmakers understand it does take 300 people to put a concert at Phillips Arena, that there are crews of 150 coming in and staying in hotel rooms, driving our rental cars, eating at our restaurants," says Georgia Music Partners president Tammy Hurt. "We want that business here in Georgia."

They are asking everyone in the music industry to contact their state lawmakers and tell them how important this bill is. Once they get it past the House, then they can focus on the Senate.

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