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Unions and the CityNegotiating Urban Change$
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Ian Thomas MacDonald

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781501706547

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501706547.001.0001

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New York Film Production Unions Enter the Political Arena in Search of Tax Subsidies

New York Film Production Unions Enter the Political Arena in Search of Tax Subsidies

Chapter:
(p.79) 3 New York Film Production Unions Enter the Political Arena in Search of Tax Subsidies
Source:
Unions and the City
Author(s):

Maria Figueroa

Lois S. Gray

Publisher:
Cornell University Press
DOI:10.7591/cornell/9781501706547.003.0004

This chapter explains how labor's preference for tax incentives is conditioned by the highly concentrated ownership structure, flexible production system, and fragmented bargaining relations that characterize the film industry. Labor's preference for a tax incentive-based approach in New York encouraged greater coordination between local film unions, policymakers, employers, and local studios, and was successful in generating employment in the specific context of the city's deep talent and qualified labor pool. The chapter also shows how the strategy induced tensions among local film unions over the distribution of tax benefits within the sector, and between film unions and representatives of low-income urban residents, who find themselves subsidizing a high-skill/high-wage industry from which they are largely excluded.

Keywords:   tax incentives, film industry, film unions, employment, tax benefits, urban residents

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