State Says Audit Reveals Serious Concerns With Control And Oversight Of Film Incentives Programs

Monday, January 28, 2013

Auditors from the Comptroller’s office found that the Tennessee Film, Entertainment and Music Commission; the Department of Economic and Community Development; and the Department of Revenue have failed to ensure that public incentives for filmmaking businesses were properly administered. Auditors could find little to no evidence the incentives have led to new film producing facilities or permanent film jobs in Tennessee.

In 2006, the General Assembly passed laws giving the film commission authority to provide certain financial incentives to attract movie production companies to the state. However, auditors questioned whether the incentives provided have been properly determined and whether certain incentives intended for filmmaking facilities located in Tennessee have been improperly awarded to out-of-state businesses.

The Comptroller’s report, which was released Monday, can be found online at: http://www.comptroller.tn.gov/sa/AuditReportCategories.asp

The auditors found that incentive payments were based on expenditures that did not always meet the program’s guidelines or have adequate supporting documentation.  

The audit also revealed a former executive director had a potential conflict of interest that was not properly disclosed. The former director’s spouse worked for a legal firm that was involved with at least three film projects which received incentives.

Auditors will give a presentation on their findings on Monday at a meeting of the General Assembly’s joint subcommittee on commerce, labor, transportation and agriculture. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. in Hearing Room 12 at Legislative Plaza in downtown Nashville. 



CCA Has Holiday Vocal Concert Dec. 5

The Center for Creative Arts Vocal Department will host its annual holiday concert on Tuesday, Dec. 5, at 7 p.m. in the CCA Auditorium.  The concert will include various holiday favorites that are reminiscent of such classic groups as the Beach Boys and other holiday favorites. Guests may come early and have a picture taken with Santa at 6 p.m. for $5.   ... (click for more)

Tom Carter: Electric Guitar Ventures And Adventures Is Tuesday At Barking Legs

CoPAC will present Tom Carter: Electric Guitar Ventures & Adventures Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. at Barking Legs Theater. Review for Tom Carter:  His electric guitar work weaves strands of melody, drone, fuzz, and charged silence into intricately detailed instant compositions. There's nothing like a night of psychedelic electric guitar to help you find your holiday zen! (click for more)

City Council Votes On 1st Reading To Lower Rain Retention Requirement In South Chickamauga Creek Basin

The City Council on Tuesday voted to lower the requirement for rainwater retention in the South Chickamauga Creek basin. The move from holding the first 1.6 inches to one inch had been requested by the Home Builders Association and the Berke administration. Sandy Kurtz, longtime leader of the South Chickamauga Creek Greenway Alliance, said the resolution was "not yet ready ... (click for more)

Former Pilot Regional Account Specialist Says Former President Mark Hazelwood Approved Of Fraud

When well-known attorney Rusty Hardin on Tuesday asked a former Pilot regional account specialist if she believed that former president Mark Hazelwood knew of a plan to cheat trucking firms he didn't get the answer he expected. Holly Radford told a jury in Chattanooga, "I know he had knowledge of the rebate schemes that were going on. "I had conversations with him about it ... (click for more)

Thankful For Tennessee

While Christmas reigns supreme as a holiday marking the birth of our Lord, I have always felt a special connection with Thanksgiving. These days Christmas unfortunately includes ubiquitous commercialism which can distract us from the true meaning of the day. Thanksgiving stands apart from all that. This day gives us an opportunity to reflect and take stock of our many blessings.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Thanksgiving Eve

I don’t know who was the first to do the Famous Pregnant Turkey prank but I’ll bet you a handful of giblets there will be a lot of copycats who try it today. The trick is finding a Cornish hen that is small enough to stuff inside the larger turkey. Then you skillfully pack the bird with some of that sausage-sage dressing and put your Thanksgiving dinner in the oven. When all ... (click for more)