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Tax Incentive Expected To Boost Music Industry in Georgia

ATLANTA — Georgia Music Partners (GMP) and more than 200 music-related businesses applaud the passage of the Georgia Music Investment Act (House Bill 155), signed into law by Georgia Governor Nathan Deal. “We have started another phase in the progression of the State of Georgia as a hub for the production of entertainment”, said Governor Deal. “I am pleased with the resulting legislation and look forward to a bright future for our music industry.”

The bill passed the Georgia House of Representatives 157–11 and the Georgia Senate 46-7, thanks especially to the leadership of Representative Amy Carter (R. Valdosta, GA) and Senator Jeff Mullis (R – Chickamauga). HB-155 is expected to create thousands of new job opportunities for Georgia’s diverse music industry — currently $3.7 Billion economic impact — just as other tax incentives have expanded Georgia’s film, TV and video game industry to more than $7 billion.

On Tuesday, May 30, Governor Nathan Deal gathered with members of the music industry and their supporters to mark the passage of the Georgia Music Investment Act.

FIRST IMAGE: (L to R) Mala Sharma (Georgia Music Partners), Tammy Hurt (Georgia Music Partners), Brian Hudson (The Hudson Group), Governor Nathan Deal, Michele Caplinger (The Recording Academy), Steve Weizenecker (Barnes & Thornburg)

SECOND IMAGE: (L to R) Peter Stroud (Sheryl Crow), Rep. Amy Carter, Melissa Sanders (Watkins McGowan Communications), Shachar Oren (Neurotic Media), Jai, Alisha and Mala Sharma (Georgia Music Partners), Charlie Hendon (Hendon Properties), Tammy Hurt (Georgia Music Partners), Brian Hudson (The Hudson Group), Brandon Bush (Sugarland), Kristian Bush (Sugarland), Michele Caplinger (The Recording Academy), Peter Stathopoulos (Bennett Thrasher), Sen. Jeff Mullis, Steve Weizenecker (Barnes and Thornburg), DiAndria Green (Bennet Thrasher), Tyler Adams (The Hudson Group), Randie Brooks (City National Bank), Shani Sammons (SSMG), Craig Hoffman (Monarch Private Capital)

Photos: Andrea Briscoe

“We applaud Governor Deal and the Georgia legislature for recognizing the economic and cultural significance of music production,” said Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) SVP of State Public Policy and Industry Relations Rafael Fernandez, Jr. “The Georgia Music Investment Act will serve to attract businesses and music creators, securing Georgia’s place as a leading music state.”

“This is a great day not only for Georgia and Georgia music, but for musicians and artists all over the world,” said musician Chuck Leavell. “I have no doubt that this bill will result in a tremendous influx of activity in music in our state, and all of Georgia will benefit. Thanks to Governor Deal, Senator Jeff Mullis, Representative Amy Carter and all the legislators for supporting this important bill!”

The Georgia Music Investment Act (HB-155) is a 15-20% incentive that will incentivize recording and scoring projects as well as live tours from around the country and the world to rehearse and start in the state. To qualify, a production company must meet a minimum threshold of $500,000 for live performance rehearsals, $250,000 for stand-alone scoring projects (aggregate in a year) and $100,000 (aggregate in a year) for recorded music performances. If the production takes place in lesser-developed Tier 1 and Tier 2 counties, it can qualify for the additional 5% credit.

Georgia Music Partners President Tammy Hurt added, “Now the work of capitalizing on opportunities can begin as we look forward to working with the talented Georgia music creators and businesses to attract new opportunities to Georgia.”

The bill was sponsored by Rep. Amy Carter (R – Valdosta). Co-sponsors are Rep. Bert Reeves (R – Marietta), Rep. Matt Hatchett (R – Dublin), Rep. Spencer Frye (D – Athens), Rep. Lee Hawkins (R – Gainesville), Rep. Ron Stephens (R – Savannah) with support from Sen. Jeff Mullis (R – Chickamauga).