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Dallas reveals details of proposal for Amazon headquarters

🕐 2 min read

DALLAS (AP) — Dallas has revealed details of its bid to land Amazon’s second headquarters after the online shopping giant chose New York and Arlington, Virginia, as the joint winners.

Dallas Regional Chamber officials and Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said at a Nov. 13 news conference that Amazon was given dozens of options in the region, then narrowed it down to the downtown Dallas area.

Dallas offered a $600 million incentive package, including tax abatements. That doesn’t include the incentives offered from the state, which could have been as much as $500 million.

A portion of the incentive package was tied to hiring locals and the city proposed Amazon commit $100 million toward addressing race relations, poverty and creating green space.

Austin, which along with Dallas was among the 20 finalists, hasn’t revealed details of its proposal.

Amazon could have picked a city looking to be revitalized, like Newark, New Jersey. Instead, it decided to be in two of the nation’s centers of power. The reason Amazon gave: they are best suited to attract the high-skilled workers the company wants. The two sites will each get 25,000 jobs that Amazon said will pay an average of $150,000 a year.

The company will receive more than $2 billion in tax credits and other incentives. New York is forking over more than $1.5 billion, while Virginia and Arlington are offering about a third of that — $573 million. The hope is that Amazon will attract other companies and ultimately boost the local economies. But while many see it as an opportunity, not everyone is sold on the idea.

“Offering massive corporate welfare from scarce public resources to one of the wealthiest corporations in the world at a time of great need in our state is just wrong,” said New York State Sen. Michael Gianaris and New York City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, Democrats who represent the Long Island City area, in a joint statement.

Amazon, which started as an online bookstore two decades ago, has grown to a behemoth that had nearly $180 billion in revenue last year. It now owns well-known brands, including grocer Whole Foods and online shoe-seller Zappos. It also makes movies and TV shows, runs an advertising business and offers cloud computing services to corporations and government agencies.

The company has more than 610,000 employees worldwide, making it the second largest U.S.-based, publicly-traded employer behind Walmart.

But it was the prospect of 50,000 jobs that led 238 communities across North America to pitch Amazon on why they should be home to the next headquarters.

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