BRITISH COLUMBIA

B.C. offers aid to entertainment sector; critics says it's not enough

01/31/2013 04:33 EST | Updated 04/02/2013 05:12 EDT
VANCOUVER - The B.C. government has unveiled a plan to help the entertainment industry, including the film sector, which has complained it's losing business to eastern provinces that offer richer tax breaks.

The $6-million program includes an effort to foster new talent, a strategy to identify new opportunities for the industry and support for the already-announced new Emily Carr Art School building in Vancouver.

Cultural Development Minister Bill Bennett said at an announcement in Vancouver that the plan will provide the foundation for the continued growth of the film, TV, digital media, music and publishing industries in B.C.

But a man in the audience who works in the film industry said the strategy won't be enough to save 25,000 jobs that are being lost to eastern provinces such as Ontario, where better tax credits are offered.

And NDP critic Spencer Chandra-Herbert says the government claims it's solving the problems in the film sector with the same budget it had in 2008.

But he admits the New Democrats still havn't formed their own TV and film strategy, saying the party is working on the issue. (The Canadian Press, CKNW,News1130)