A Dallas-area representative says he will introduce a bill in the next legislative session to end taxpayer funding of the Texas Film Commission.
Rep. Matt Shaheen (R-66th District) cited the controversy surrounding Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein in his Monday announcement.
“Over the past week, our nation has grown increasingly alarmed over allegations of rampant sexual abuse by Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein and others in the motion picture and TV industry,” Shaheen wrote in a statement. “What is just as troubling is an apparent culture of acceptance and coverup by many in Hollywood. This is profoundly hypocritical given these are the people who constantly lecture the American people on how we should live our lives.”
Shaheen filed bills in the 84th and 85th legislative sessions calling to abolish the Moving Image Industry Incentive Program. Senate Bills 99 and 244 were also introduced during the 85th legislative session in 2017 that called for abolishing the program.
“During the 85th Texas Legislative Session, Shaheen was able to pass a measure to end funding for the Film Commission, garnering a significant majority of support in the Texas House. However, the funding was restored later in the final budget,” Shaheen’s office said.
KVUE reported earlier in 2017 how film industry experts were concerned about previous cuts to the program, and several shows moved production out of Texas due to other states offering better incentives.