North Dakota, time to unite! NDstrong is proudly signing this petition in an effort to provide more opportunities for film around the state. Please show your support by signing!


Petitioning North Dakota State Legislators:
Support House Bill 1420 and House Bill 1422 during the 64th legislative session.

Matt Bern
Bismarck, ND

North Dakota filmmakers and multi-media professionals are at a disadvantage. Every surrounding state, Montana, Minnesota and South Dakota, all have developed government supported film offices and/or tax incentives. To the north in Canada, film and TV production companies spent over $1 billion in 2010 alone.

Call logs show that North Dakota’s Tourism Department regularly receives inquiries from outside production companies about our state’s film and TV industry. Unfortunately, without a film office and developed infrastructure, we are not in a position today to make the most of those opportunities.

That’s why we support House Bill 1420 and House Bill 1422. These bills provide a 14% tax credit (up to $6500) to production companies that work with North Dakota residents on film and TV productions. The credit only applies to money spent on creating jobs. The bills also establish a full-time employee, with a small discretionary budget, to focus on organizing, regulating, and promoting North Dakota’s film and TV industry.

Here’s how the tax incentive, a growing film industry, and just one staff member can benefit us all:

  • Economic growth. Neighboring state Montana uses incentives and staff to support filmmakers and reports that every $1 invested in the industry returns $89 to the economy. Job opportunities grow too. In the past few years, New Mexico has increased employment in the industry by 600%.
  • Education. Video production skills aren’t just for Hollywood and TV anymore. Corporations and institutions of all sizes use high-quality video for marketing, training, investor communications, and recruiting. Unfortunately, many North Dakota filmmakers could not hone their skills in our state. With more professional productions here, more opportunity and experiences open up for our state residents.
  • Oversight. An essential role of a film office would be to match up credible productions with local professionals. Today, North Dakota video crews and companies often receive calls from national and international companies seeking footage or crew members. But not all of these calls are credible, many don’t offer compensation, and few of our state professionals have resources to protect themselves. At the same time, outside companies don’t know how to find our local talent—and as a result often bring in contractors from outside the area for in-state work.
  • Tourism. Iconic places and objects from popular media draw people. Take the wood chipper made memorable in the movie Fargo. Today, it sits inside the Fargo-Moorhead Visitor’s Center drawing hundreds of tourists eager to don a Fargo hat and snap their photo standing next to it.

Without a film office and tax incentives, we believe North Dakota is regularly missing opportunities to enhance our economy and promote our state and our talent.

Please support House Bill 1420 and House Bill 1422 during the 64th legislative session. Incentives and staff to support the film industry in North Dakota offer a great way bring investment into our state, make the most of inquiries, and provide more opportunity for residents.

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