Wanetta Ayers is the division director of the Division of Economic Development in the State of Alaska, Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development. It is the Department of Economic Development in Alaska that oversees the film office which awards film tax credits. David Worrell is a Development Specialist II and in charge of the Alaska Film Office who reports to Wanetta Ayers.
Ms. Ayers was kind enough to return my call last night and clarify the current status of the application for a film tax credit for Helping Hands, the “reality” show featuring Bristol Palin. She confirmed that the original application for Helping Hands was determined to be a “Qualified Project” on 7-22-11. That file is still open and no tax credits haven been paid to Helping Hands. A “final application” has not been submitted to the film office so the film office is not in a position to make a final determination as to whether the film will qualify for a tax credit. However Ms. Ayers added that the original application was initially approved based on the original concept of the film. Ms. Ayers explained that the film office is aware that the scope of the project has changed. Given those changes, Ms. Ayers doesn’t think the project, given its current scope, will qualify for a tax credit, if the final application should be submitted.
Thank you Ms. Ayers for sharing this information, and for paying attention to the use or abuse of tax payer money in Alaska.