According to a recent Los Angeles Times story, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa vowed to step up to the plate for the movie and television industry in front of a small crowd of Hollywood higher-ups last Wednesday.
“We’re doing some things, and that’s nice and good, but we can do a whole lot more,” stated the 58-year-old mayor, who’s been in office since 2005. “This is one of the most important industries for us.”
Among the possibilities explained by Villaraigosa last week: offering free parking on city lots for Hollywood’s 140,000 workers, installing additional electrical nodes in downtown Los Angeles and passing a one-percent sales tax refund program for those involved in the entertainment industry. The mayor is also supporting the extension of California’s film tax credits, which total $100 million annually. “There are limitations to what we can do,” Villaraigosa cautioned, citing his city’s $200 million budget deficit. “This is part of a larger initiative to talk to the business community and ask them what we can do to create more jobs and make it easier for them to do business in the city.”
[Lance here – my question is, he’s just now getting to this? Where has he been since ’05?]