January, 2013

From the Roundhouse: Lights, Camera… Action?

January 31st, 2013 at 7:22 pm by under Latest Posts, Politics

The glamour of Hollywood is tough to ignore.

Forty-four states including New Mexico have some form of a film production incentive on the books.

New Mexico’s 25 percent film tax credit, relative closeness to Los Angeles and dramatic and varied scenery make the state an especially attractive destination for TV and movie producers.

Projects such as the hit TV series “Breaking Bad” and “In Plain Sight” and movies such as “Transformers” and “The Avengers” have all come here as a result.

It was even more attractive when it was an unlimited pool of money. If your production qualified, you got paid.

That is until 2011 when state lawmakers and Gov. Susana Martinez made a big push to cap the incentives at $50 million each fiscal year.

Two years later, there’s a new fight brewing over whether the incentives should be uncapped again.

The governor has stood firm saying a cap lets the state budget its money, while some Democratic lawmakers like Sen. Phil Griego, D-San Jose, say the industry could create more jobs in New Mexico without a cap.

Given the governor’s firm stance right now, the return to uncapped days for the film industry is unlikely, but something else is.

Rep. Moe Maestas, D-Albuquerque, who says he’d prefer it if the cap were gone, has proposed a compromise bill instead.

Currently, if the $50 million in film incentives isn’t spent, it goes back to the general fund. Maestas’ bill would allow that money to roll over and be spent in the next fiscal year if not enough projects come to the state.

With the cap looming, a number of producers made claims in the 2011 fiscal year artificially inflating the amount of credits paid out to $96 million. That also artificially deflated the amount paid out in FY12 to just $9.4 million, well under the cap.

So far TV and movie productions in the state have gotten $21 million paid out about halfway through FY13, meaning the cap might not be reached.

Maestas’ bill also would give TV series special treatment, bumping the credit for any show that commits to at least six episodes from 25 percent to 30 percent.

The idea behind that is that without knowing, you would be hard pressed to watch “The Avengers” and realize much of it was filmed in Albuquerque. But with a show like “Breaking Bad,” the setting is unmistakable.

Because of that branding advantage and the longevity of some shows, Maestas believes investing more there would ultimately benefit the state’s economy.

The compromise bill was just introduced today, but a positive critical review may be in the cards for it in Santa Fe.

Bill of the Day:  House Bill 369 / Senate Bill 368

This bill, introduced by Sen. Bill Sharer, R-Farmington, and Rep. Tom Taylor, R-Farmington, was the talk of Santa Fe today.

It would scrap most of New Mexico’s tax code, including personal and corporate income tax and all deductions, in favor of a 2-percent gross receipts tax on everything spent.

It’s a big idea that isn’t being immediately dismissed by Democrats with Sen. John Arthur Smith, D-Deming, saying he likes the proposal if it’s revenue-neutral, but an idea that almost certainly won’t get implemented this year.

The House version has to go through a whopping six committees and the Senate version has to go through a still high four of its own. Most bills get referred to just two committees.


It’s All About The Temps…

January 31st, 2013 at 3:04 pm by under Weather

Overnight tonight temps will crater thanks to light winds, clear skies and a dry airmass.  Lows overnight in the metro will be in the low 20′s while the mountains will once again drive into below zero territory.  Mostly sunny skies will rule again Friday and into the weekend.  Highs will approach 60° late in the weekend and into next week.

Our next shot at a significant storm looks like it could roll into next weekend.  Here is how the storm looks on the models right now.


Lawyers plans free foreclosure clinic

January 31st, 2013 at 2:27 pm by under Latest Posts

Homeowners facing foreclosure can learn about their options from volunteer attorneys in a free clinic next week.

The clinic on Wednesday, Feb. 6, is open to homeowners who have been notified that they face a foreclosure action, according to an announcement.

The homeowners should bring all relevant documents with them, and the attorneys will assist them in understanding the foreclosure process and available options.

Those options may include restructuring loans and other resources.

The clinic is scheduled for 10 a.m.-1 p.m. in the third-floor conference room of the Second Judicial District Courthouse on the southwest corner of Fourth Street NW and Lomas Boulevard in Albuquerque.

Visits with attorneys will be handled on a first-come, first-served basis, and Spanish-speaking attorneys and interpreters will be available.

Sponsors of the ongoing series of foreclosure clinics are the New Mexico Volunteer Attorney Program and the Second Judicial District Pro Bono Committee.

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The 5 Things You Need To Know Before You Go | January 31, 2013

January 31st, 2013 at 6:35 am by under 5 Things, Latest Posts, Morning Show

Here are the five things you need to know before you go this morning.

5) This is not good timing with the Superbowl here on Channel 13 this Sunday. Have you heard about the chicken wing shortage? Supposedly it’s going around the Country, but we did some checking and in Albuquerque there are plenty of wings going around. They’ll probably cost about the same as last year. Crisis averted.

4) Such a sad story–A teenager hit and killed by a train in Bernalillo. This happened yesterday afternoon as the boy was walking home from school. Investigators are still trying to figure out exactly how the crash happened. They could tell us who the boy was later today.

3) Go Lobos! The guys came out on top of the Wyoming Cowboys last night in Laramie…63-59. They’re now 18 and 3 and take on Nevada Saturday at The Pit.

2) Another shooting at an office building…this time in Phoenix. The man police say is behind it all is still on the run. They’re looking for Arthur Harmon, saying he killed one person and shot two others including Mark Hummels who was a reporter for the Sante Fe New Mexican and The Albuquerque Journal back in the 90′s.

1) Finally warming up a bit! Today will be sunny, with a high near 45 and a Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph. Then tonight will be clear, with a low around 29 and a Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph.


Weekday Planner | January 31, 2013

January 31st, 2013 at 6:15 am by under Latest Posts

Good Morning!

Today will be sunny, with a high near 45 and a Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph. Then tonight will be clear, with a low around 29 and a Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph.

Have a good Thursday!
Kristen Van Dyke
Meteorologist