Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Jan. 3 signed into law New York City's 5% tax credit for qualified film and television productions as part of its "Made in New York" incentive program.

NEW YORK (The Hollywood Reporter) -- Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Jan. 3 signed into law New York City's 5% tax credit for qualified film and television productions as part of its "Made in New York" incentive program.

The new law complements the state's existing 10% tax credit and provides tax credits up to $12.5 million per calendar year for below-the-line costs as an incentive to keep productions from heading outside the country.

"This film tax credit will make New York City more competitive and provide more jobs to professionals in this key economic sector," Bloomberg said. "This law will help return New York City to prominence as a location for film and television production, ensuring that films that are set in New York City are actually shot there."

Present to support the new legislation were such industry heavyweights as "Law & Order" executive producer Dick Wolf and Greene Street president John Penotti.

Penotti declared that the credit made an immediate difference in his choice of locales for the Jared Leto starrer "Awake." "We were a breath away from shooting it in Europe -- I was there scouting when the legislation was announced," he explained. "Within 24 hours, we changed strategies and are shooting it here in New York."

"Awake" is not the only production to have changed location since the legislation was announced: NBC has decided to produce a new police drama pilot in the city rather than in Toronto.

The "Made in New York" program also includes a marketing credit for film and television productions completing 75% of their work in the city. Qualifying productions will be offered outdoor media valued at 1% of New York City production costs in a co-branded advertising strategy.

"This is a major event," Penotti said, "and I'm not just being a cheerleader. Sometimes 5% is our initial profit margin."