By Rebecca Martin
Come on city officials. It’s one thing to have a lack of ideas on how to create jobs in the area, specificially in the city of Kingston. It’s a whole other ball of wax to be potentially chasing away the lucrative film industry from coming to set up shop here. Good grief.
Lets get real about our budget woes. It’s a tricky, inflated pandoras box not because of the growing costs of city services. It’s due to unrealistic contracts and pensions. So collecting a few thousand dollars from a film production company who stands to pour tens of thousands into our local economy (not to mention a good amount of free press) doesn’t make any sense what-so-ever.
In today’s Daily Freeman, the always sensible Ward 9 Alderman Hayes Clement is quoted as saying, “By all means, continue to charge, as the city has, for all direct costs associated with film shoots, such as police or other municipal workers. But beyond that, we should be looking at local film producation as an opportunity to market Kingston and develop a new local industry, not as an opportunity to generate fees for City Hall”.
You can count on me being at the front of the line to speak in support of welcoming film production to Kingston. I’m sure there will be dozens of others who will be happy to speak in favor as well.
That IBM chip on our shoulder has got to soften. Those days are over, and Kingson better get with the program to reinvent itself if it wishes to be successful and competitive. We sit in an opportune position right smack dab in the middle of New York City and Albany. It’s a bedroom community waiting to happen if I’ve ever seen one.