With the official start of the 2016 Legislative Session this week and as a first positive step forward, we wanted to share with you that Senator Jack Latvala has included the film, television and digital media industry program within his filed Economic Development Package. This is very good news for our industry and we would like to encourage our members to thank the Senator for understanding the importance of our industry in the state of Florida. More information on this and how this will affect our legislative strategy soon to follow.

Many of you have asked how you can help or what should you be doing now. In an effort to not flood your email inbox we have devised a plan to make things as easy as possible for everyone to participate and contribute.

First, make sure you like Film Florida on Facebook and/or follow @FilmFlorida on Twitter. Throughout the next two months, periodically, sometimes as often as daily, we will be posting calls to action on Facebook and Twitter. Within these calls to action posts we will be giving very specific directions as to which legislators to call/email and what message you’ll need to convey to them. Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for you to help during the two-month legislative session that starts January 12th and ends March 11th.

Today, you should go to MyFloridaHouse.gov and FLSenate.gov and find your local Representative and Senator. That way when you’re asked to contact your local legislators, you will already have those names, email addresses and phone numbers on hand.

We know you are very busy so you may not check social media on a regular basis, but please set a reminder for yourself to check at least once a day so you do not miss any important calls to action since timeliness will be extremely important over the next two months.

In addition, we continue to use #EntertainThis on social media. During the Legislative Session, the content of the #EntertainThis messages are particularly important because they include specific messages. If you see a message with #EntertainThis, please make a point of it to share it (Facebook) and retweet (Twitter) to ensure our most important messages are seen and heard.

The weeks that follow will be crucial for Florida’s film, television and digital media industry. We are more prepared than ever to showcase the far reaching benefits our industry has on the state of Florida and convince our legislative leadership that Florida’s financial program is crucial to compete for a multifaceted business that creates jobs, spurs economic development and generates tourism.