After the NY Times revealed NBC's plan to move the Tonight Show to New York City and install Jimmy Fallon as host, some language in New York's tentative state budget stuck out. Like how tax credits would be available for a "a talk or variety program that filmed at least five seasons outside the state prior to its first relocated season in New York."
The Daily News reported the details, like how it says that the episodes "'must be filmed before a studio audience of' at least 200 people. And the program must have an annual production budget of at least $30 million or incur at least $10 million a year in capital expenses. In other words, a program exactly like 'The Tonight Show.'"
Governor Cuomo's aides said that this credit provision wasn't intended specifically for the Tonight Show, "It’s meant to attract shows to New York that are currently in other states that can generate economic revenue and tourism," but that's little comfort to Assemblyman James Tedisco. The upstate Republican issued a press release, slamming the credits:
Tedisco is calling on the state to allocate the $5 million the budget has set aside to bring Jimmy Fallon and the "Tonight Show” to New York toward restoring services for people with developmental disabilities. The Governor’s initial budget cuts funding for the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities by $120 million.
“The role of state government is to have spending priorities and protect our most vulnerable citizens in the state budget. Our priority should be looking out for families and people with developmental disabilities in communities like Ballston Spa, not giving taxpayer-funded handouts to support the lifestyles of the rich and famous in Beverly Hills,” said Tedisco.
Anything to win business from California, though, right? At least Jay Leno is laughing: