Budgeting Decisions: Filmkakers vs. Child Abuse?

The Tennessean has a couple of interesting stories on state budget issues that, perhaps, present a bit of a contrast.
One features entertainment industry folks lamenting that the state doesn’t give away enough incentive money to movie producers so that they are enticed to film in Tennessee.
Even as states like Louisiana, Georgia and North Carolina sweeten the pot for filmmakers, Tennessee’s film fund, along with proposed legislation to expand incentives, is not gathering steam under Gov. Bill Haslam’s administration…. Whereas other states cover up to 30 percent of an in-state film’s production, sometimes without spending limits, Tennessee offers filmmakers a 17 percent production discount.
The other features concerns over the pending end to funding for Healthy Start, a program that aims to prevent child abuse and neglect in enrolled families.
The state spends a little over $3 million a year on the program, which is funded through DCS and administered by the state Health Department. There are eight community-based agencies throughout the state, including Middle Tennessee sites in Nashville and Shelbyville.
The Metro Public Health Department serves about 160 to 180 families in the program annually and has seen significant outcomes, said Dr. Kimberlee Wyche-Etheridge, director of the Family Youth and Infant Health Bureau. Families stay in the program for three to five years and are offered services to improve parent-child interaction and decrease dependency on public assistance, among other things.
“It’s not a quick fix of one or two home visits, but it’s a long-term commitment to a family to get them in a place where the child’s well-being is optimized,” she said.

Note: The Haslam administration is opposing both new handouts to the film industry and renewed funding for Healthy Start.

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