479 NEWS

Empire Anywhere App

Empire BlueCross BlueShield provides the free ‘Empire Anywhere’ app to its customers using the Android or iOS mobile device platforms. This app provides users with convenient access to much of the same information available from (more…)

Empire BlueCross BlueShield Insurance

This is the first in a series of articles providing an explanation of insurance benefits (medical, dental, vision, and prescription drugs) available to members of Local 479.

Members of IATSE Local 479 receive a variety of benefits under the IATSE National Health & Welfare Fund, Plan C. These benefits include hospital and medical coverage through Empire BlueCross BlueShield (referred to more simply as “Empire”). If you are a member with insurance through Empire you are strongly encouraged to (more…)

Governor Predicts More Growth for Georgia’s Film Industry

From the Desk of Michael Akins, Business Agent

Please take a moment to read the following passage from Governor Deal’s final State of the State address “Orchards of Opportunity”, delivered to the Georgia General Assembly yesterday morning. Our members should be aware that we have supported the Governor and his efforts throughout his administration and are looking forward to a very prosperous 2018 thanks to the staunch support of Governor Deal and our state legislators. As the Governor stated, we expect to break new records this year, and that’s just good for Georgia.

Thank you,

Mike Akins, Business Agent IATSE Local 479


2018 State of the State Address

[the following is an excerpt from Georgia Governor Nathan Deal’s State of the State address, “Orchards of Opportunity”, delivered on January 11, 2018]

“As we consider the achievements of their respective dedicated teams, we should also take note of a tree we “re-planted” – you might say – which has taken deep root in recent years and borne greater and greater harvests with each passing year. I am referring to the film production industry.

Just ten years ago, this industry generated $241 million in economic impact for the state. This past fiscal year alone, it generated $9.5 billion in economic impact. That’s quite impressive growth for this (more…)

2017 Education Report: A Year of Expansion

From the Desk of Kevin Amick

WOW… What a Year!

The Education Department began 2017 with a mission to exceed its performance from the previous year, which had been its biggest yet. With the enthusiasm of our members, the mentorship of our experienced members, and the guidance of our outside professionals and equipment providers we have not only met those 2017 goals, we have surpassed them.

More than 2,400 people attended at least one (more…)

Reviewing 2017 and Looking Ahead to 2018

From the Desk of Michael Akins, Business Agent

I am happy to report that 2017 has been a banner year in the Local 479 jurisdiction! The number of projects produced in both Georgia and Alabama has increased 15% from 2016 to 2017, and all of the stars seem aligned for an equal or greater increase as we move into 2018.

Atlanta, in particular, is home to over 60 purpose-built stages spread throughout the metro area among 8 studio lots, with another studio still under construction boasting an additional 9 stages. This growth is expected to bring new production to our jurisdiction, providing even more work opportunities as production companies increase their desire to hire locally.

I am proud to report that at any given time throughout 2017, an average of 80-90% of our Local 479 members were found to be working. This number is based on a couple of factors: our Availability List was continually being requested by productions and seemed inefficient in providing the amount of labor requested, and I received more requests than ever before from people living outside the jurisdiction asking permission to work in town, as productions needed the extra (more…)

How Does the New Tax Reform Law Affect You?

Tax Reform & You

Earlier this month the President signed a $1.5 trillion tax cut known as H.R. 1 into law and financial advisors have been scrambling to provide their customers with detailed information on the tax implications associated with this new piece of legislation. With the exception of some changes to medical expense deductions your 2017 taxes will be unaffected by this new law, but beginning on January 1, 2018, all of your business will fall under these new rules. Please consult with a tax expert to understand how your taxes may (more…)

Plan C Health Benefits Open Enrollment

Logging in to the National Benefits Fund online

At the end of each November the IATSE National Benefits Fund (NBF) sends members an Open Enrollment statement for the IATSE National Health & Welfare Fund Plan C.  Open Enrollment is an approximately three-week period in which new members may select insurance coverage and existing members may elect to change their coverage. You must select your desired coverage for the upcoming quarter or you will be automatically assigned a default selection, based on (more…)

Maintaining Good Standing in the Local

Good Standing or Bad Standing

One of the primary requirements for being a member of Local 479 is maintaining a status of “Good Standing”. This simply means that you have met all financial obligations to the Local in a timely manner. If you do not meet those obligations you will be considered to be in “Bad Standing” by the Local. Members who remain in bad standing for a period of time will be expelled. Regardless of the amount owed, all outstanding balances are the responsibility of each member. Most members maintain Good Standing throughout (more…)

Lending Solutions for Members Seeking a Mortgage

Learn how to find a lender who can help you get a mortgage

People who work in film and television have traditionally faced great difficulty in qualifying for mortgages because traditional lenders do not understand the unique income structure of the entertainment industry. This article explains some misconceptions by our members, contributing factors as to why most traditional lenders are reluctant to issue loans to film/television technicians, and provides (more…)

Kickball Tournament Delivers Big Win for Atlanta’s Youth

Get Scene Studios win the 2017 Kickball Tournament

The Young Worker’s Committee of IATSE Local 479 held their 3rd Annual Atlanta Film Community Charity Kickball Tournament at Central Park, Atlanta, Georgia on Sunday, September 24, 2017. This year’s charity was Atlanta’s own Castleberry Hill Athletic (more…)