Nova Scotia

Business Minister Mark Furey urges filmmakers to use Nova Scotia fund

Nova Scotia's minister of business is standing by the government's $10-million film and television production incentive fund brought in a year ago to replace the Nova Scotia film tax credit.

$7.4 million out of $10 million still available for film producers, minister says

Business Minister Mark Furey says producers need to exhaust what money is available from the province before he'll consider increasing the $10-million incentive fund. (CBC)

Nova Scotia's minister of business is standing by the government's $10-million film and television production incentive fund brought in a year ago to replace the Nova Scotia film tax credit.

In an interview with CBC Cape Breton's Information Morning, Mark Furey said 12 film productions have received money from the fund.

With $7.4 million still remaining, Furey suggested producers should get busy and apply for some of that cash. 

"We've encouraged the film industry to continue to exhaust the existing funds," he said.

Some critics of the incentive fund have said the new system is too cumbersome, and the $10-million total cap is a deterrent to big-money productions. 

Furey suggested he's prepared to look beyond that $10-million cap, but film producers must first use up what's still available. 

"Until such time as that occurs, we don't know that the $10 million we've budgeted is enough," he said, adding that a process to "seek additional funding" could be activated after that.

The minister also responded to criticism the application process is unduly complicated. 

"That's a process that has improved," he said.

The fund is administered by Nova Scotia Business Inc. Furey said there's a turnaround time of two weeks for applications that are completed properly.

That's consistent with industry standards across the country, he said.