My name is David Puopolo. I have been working in the film business in one form or another since 1989. I was born, bred, and educated in Massachusetts. I am a graduate of Bunker Hill Community College and Fitchburg State College (now University). I have worked in just about every facet of the business, from PA to production.
Before the film tax incentive, the film business was just a small cottage industry, with many struggling to make ends meet. Since its inception, this little industry has grown to be an industry leader in not only production, but in training as well. I for one have gone from a third grip to a key rigging grip. As the head of a department, I am responsible for hiring crew, who are all locals. I procure equipment, which is all from local vendors, and I work with other departments that may not have the wherewithal to know that local vendors exist for their needs. Every cent that my crew and I make is spent locally, whether it’s from a lumberyard, a restaurant, a local hardware store, or even a coffee shop. I like to call it “spreading the wealth.”
The film tax incentive has also made it possible for me to stay home and work as opposed to traveling to make a living. It has also provided health insurance for my family.
The cutting of the film tax incentive is, in my opinion, just another example of outsourcing, and, quite frankly, I’ve seen enough outsourcing in my lifetime. This incentive creates jobs and allows people to work without having to leave their families for extended periods of time. Not only does this create jobs, but it pours massive amounts of money into the state’s economy; without it, not only will many people be out of work or have to travel, but there will be a huge hole in many vendors’ yearly incomes.
My crew and I take pride in the work that we do. We believe that we are making one of the last surviving products that can truly be called “Made in the USA.” And what better place to do this than in Massachusetts, the birthplace of the nation. Keeping the film tax incentive intact would mean continuing to make this product in Massachusetts.