While California supposedly made an offer to the network to lure the show to LA, CBS will keep the ‘Late Show’ in New York City. It didn’t hurt that the corporation accepted a combined $16 million package of tax credits and grants from the state to be dispensed over the next five years, according to an announcement this past Wednesday from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.
That $16 million breaks down into $11 million in Excelsior tax credits over the next five years — this will offset the company’s investment and “job commitment” in the show — as well as a $5 million grant specifically created to renovate the existing Ed Sullivan Theatre for Steven Colbert, as he’ll move in after Dave Letterman leaves the stage next year.
While some in our industry might object to giving that money to a thriving corporation, perhaps CBS had to save something somewhere so that it could handle its other expenses, such as the compensation package dropped on Leslie Moonves. The CBS Corp. president and CEO received $66.9 million in 2013, which made him the best-paid CEO in American media, not to mention making him among the world’s highest-paid executives in any industry.