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Hawaii lawmakers explore more tax breaks for films

Anita Hofschneider, Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) -- The state Senate committee on the arts has approved a bill aimed at convincing more people to shoot films and TV shows in Hawaii.

Sen. David Ige introduced the proposal, which extends and increases tax credits for the film industry.

The arts committee approved an amended version of the bill Thursday. The Senate economic development committee approved the bill previously.

Ige says the high cost of shooting films in Hawaii deters moviemakers from coming.

He says tax incentives could help filmmaking grow to be a billion dollar industry in the state.

Opponents of the bill say Hawaii's uniqueness is enough incentive to attract filmmakers.

Hawaii has been the site of several popular TV shows and movies including "Lost," ''Hawaii Five-0" and "The Descendants."