During the VFX Progress Group meeting yesterday some of the attendees wanted to find out how they could help with our legal effort to apply anti-subsidy duties to subsidized visual effects work. While we setup fundraising channels, we want to cast a wide net to not just people in the VFX industry, but groups that would be interested in helping with our effort. One great idea that came up yesterday was to get local governments and chambers of commerce to help fund our effort.
So why am I proposing we seek the help of local government?
Entering the subsidy race is very very expensive so supporters would need a big government to front the costs. For example, it’s estimated that the increase to the California film subsidy program would have to be at least $400 million and while this is something that cities near Hollywood would be for, cities like Fresno would not be interested. It’s likely that the bill will ultimately be whittled down to something much less.
On the other hand, our legal effort will cost orders of magnitude less than the proposed film subsidy programs. So given that the barrier for success is lower for us, we don’t need to go to very large governments and bureaucracies to seek support, we can go to local governments that could donate funding that would lead to a potentially big return.
What you can do to help
Just as an example, here is a list of local cities in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York. Each of this cities have local council meetings that you can find online. You can also find local chambers of commerce associated with these cities. If each of you are willing to take the time to contact or even attend council meetings in your city to speak about our effort to end subsidies they may be receptive to helping us.