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Jeff Hall

L.A. Soundies: Mileage "zone" question

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Hello all in L.A:

 

I just finished a (good) gig where the Deal Memo specified that mileage would be paid. Now, however, I'm being told that there is a "zone radius" of 30 miles they use in LA that is considered "local", and in that zone, mileage isn't paid--payment apparently starts at mile 31. I don't expect mileage to go across town or even over to the next town when I work, but it's the radius that makes me curious. Is it an established thing, or is it news to you guys, too?

The gig wasn't in California. And my base city is nowhere near the size of LA.

 

Thanks for any info!

 

 

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Hi Jeff, I’m local to SLC and have worked shows where I get mileage as well as shows where I don’t and wouldn’t expect it. Union shows have a bunch of different rules for mileage based on location and other factors. Non union shows usually follow the union show rules in SLC. Would be great to meet you sometime. I live in Sandy and I’m always up for a lunch meetup. PM me if interested. We can chat more about working as a mixer in SLC and mileage if you’re up for that. I start a show May 14th but I’m mostly free before that.

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There is a 30 mile studio zone in Los Angeles, and it is well established. So you may spend two hours getting to set, and it is up to you to logg those miles for tax purposes. Otherwise, outside of that zone you get mileage, and you should also be reimbursed for company moves. 

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Thanks, Jon.

I appreciate the reply. In my case, the original memo never mentioned the zone--I only found out after the fact. Ultimately it's not a big deal. I find it interesting that I was being held to LA "rules", even though I was working hundreds of miles away. I've also worked with many, many LA-based production companies in my area, and this is the first time this has happened.

Well, now I know to ask one more question in the future.☺️

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In general (and I have worked in LA and London recently) you are expected to make your own way at your own expense for anything that's considered in the area you are supposed to be living. So if the job is in SLC and the location is "out of town", then it would be typical to add time and mileage to your daily rate. But without specific rules, it's something you need to agree on ahead of time.

 

Nobody lives in London, but if you work in London then you're expected to get there. If you live in LA, you're expected to get to location within the 30 mile zone from LaCienega and Beverly, even if that means you're on one end of the zone and need to get to the other.

 

It's an imperfect system, and may people elect to turn down jobs with bad commutes.

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I'm confused as to how a zone might be "L.A. rules." (I expect I have company in this.)

 

The studio zone in Los Angeles has a precise definition; it is a thirty mile radius from the southeast corner of the intersection of Beverly and LaCienega Boulevards. There are also a couple of agreed upon "bulges" to accommodate Vasquez Rocks Park and one or two other commonly used locations. This is by agreement between the AMPTP producers and the various guilds and unions (IATSE, DGA, etc.). It's applicable in the context of that negotiated agreement. It wouldn't ordinarily be transferable to another location. 

 

Of course, many things occur in the world of bootstrap film making. 

 

David

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It doesn’t seem like this would be applicable to SLC unless there is an agreement in place that is common between studios and unions. In the future I’d include a no studio zone clause in my agreement when working outside of LA. 

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But at least your memo specified that up front.

My main questions are 1) Why apply the zone when the gig wasn't in LA, and 2) Most important, why wasn't the zone specified in the Deal Memo?

Everything is good, it was an interesting project with a great client and crew. The difference in money is negligible, but the multiple back and forth emails to iron this thing out have cost me (and them) time. 

Well, I'm better informed now...

 

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