HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Lawmakers are pushing for a new tax credit that would benefit local theatres by incentivizing production companies to build shows in Connecticut.
House Bill 6919 would offer a 30% tax credit to theatre productions, that cost $30 million or more, to build the production in Connecticut. The building process is called ‘teching,’ and includes building the set, creating light displays and making the costumes. The process normally spans a three to four-week period. Once the production is set to go, it would perform at the theater and then continue on tour across the country.
Other states like New York and Maryland offer already offer these tax credits. The potential legislation would put Connecticut among these states as an option for production companies.
“This bill provides support to theaters to continually be the leader in surrounding areas,” state Rep. Treneé McGee (D-116th) said.
Connecticut is home to many major presenting theaters that would benefit from HB 6919, including:
- The Bushnell in Hartford
- Palace Theater in Waterbury
- The Palace in Stamford
- Shubert Theatre in New Haven
- Garde Arts Center in New London
“It has a huge economic impact on hotels and restaurants as those resident touring companies coming through our venues have to eat somewhere, have to sleep somewhere, and all that is a boom to our local businesses and our local economy,” Frank Tavera, CEO of the Palace Theater in Waterbury, said.
The current language of the bill refers to pre-Broadway and post-Broadway productions. Anthony McDonald, the executive director of the Shubert Theatre in New Haven, said the bill needs to be amended to include more shows.
“While this language is meant initially for pre-Broadway and post-Broadway tours, there are still other tours that get started on the road that have nothing to do with Broadway yet,” McDonald said.
The next step for the legislation is the screening committee.