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Posted: Thurs., Jan. 13, 2005, 6:31pm PT

Protests target B.C. tax breaks
Producers threatening to move projects to Ontario

VANCOUVER -- The Motion Picture Industry Assn. of British Columbia is trying to scuttle demonstrations scheduled for Saturday by film and TV industry workers.

The demonstrations were slated for Vancouver and Victoria to push the B.C. government into matching Ontario's more generous tax breaks. Producers here are threatening to move projects to Ontario.

The org said the protest rallies are "well intentioned" but would slow any move by the B.C. government.

"We (MPPIA) are at a crucial point in our discussions with the government and a protest would delay or even sabotage any positive announcement that will be made in the near future," the directors of the MPPIA said on Thursday.

"Peter Leitch (MPPIA chairman), the B.C. Film Commission, the B.C. Council of Unions and many of our other members of MPPIA that represent labor, vendors and suppliers have been working with (finance minister) Colin Hansen's office over the past week to work toward a positive decision on tax credits for B.C.

"Please do not now ruin the hard work of those who have been working very hard to represent our industry by adding fuel to the fire. We must work with government, not against them, in this quest to save our industry from further decline."


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