Council speaker says 'hell no' to Bezos helipad at Amazon HQ2

Jeff Bezos CEO and founder of Amazon at the introduction of the new Amazon Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Paperwhite personal devices in Santa Monica Calif. Thursday Sept. 6 2012

"You can see billions of dollars of private investment there already", said Don Peebles, a real estate developer based in NY.

On a per-job basis, New York's offer to Amazon is about typical for the state but well above the national average for such deals, said Timothy J. Bartik, an economist for the Upjohn Institute in Kalamazoo, Mich., who has studied tax incentives. He was joined by elected officials, labor leaders, and activists who gathered to speak out against the tax incentives, government subsidies and other perks - including a helipad - that NY is offering Amazon in exchange for the thousands of jobs the company promises to bring.

For its part, the Dallas Regional Chamber, which led the region's pitch for Amazon HQ2, sees benefits from its unsuccessful but "comprehensive and compelling" bid.

Agreement over the questionable deal earned a New York Post story quoting Carlson, a writer for The Federalist, and a university researcher who complained about the deal in a National Review story.

The online retail giant announced on Tuesday that it had selected Long Island City and Crystal City, just outside Washington, for two new headquarters that will each hire 25,000 people.

Amazon's NY site could also qualify for federal tax breaks under the tax law passed by Republicans late late year. "The best economic development strategy is not to lure existing companies to open offices or factories, but instead to birth the new companies that could be the Amazons of tomorrow".

With the news of Amazon HQ2 spreading across two East Coast cities, residents of both communities could soon experience a change in their housing markets similar to what Seattle has seen over the past decade.

"The government will also work with Amazon on record requests to redact portions of the materials to 'the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, '" the Washington Examiner continued, adding that helicopter access was also part of the deal, so Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos can fly into the headquarters.

The company says the investment is $5 billion heavy, and will mean plenty of new job openings - 50,000 of them.

"We should be investing in housing and hot water, not in helicopters", said Michael Blake, a NY assemblyman, at the rally Wednesday.

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The funds, which have to be appropriated by the Virginia General Assembly, are created to decrease slightly in value if more than 10% of the new hires are focused on federal government contracts.

Curtis, a longtime fixture in Austin's political and economic development circles, says he'd hoped Amazon would add 5,000 to 10,000 HQ2 jobs in Austin.

The city recently committed to invest $95 million in sewer upgrades, a new school, safer streets and more parks in the neighborhood, but Lewandowski said that infrastructure still remains far behind.

Amazon appears to have chosen NY and the DC metro area because they're already superstar cities and generally pro-development, especially when it came to the immediate corporate campus selected. As Gianaris lambasted his colleagues for granting subsidies to Amazon, a truck drove by honking and extolling the virtues of the company's popular Prime membership.

"It's really going to help our housing market".

TF Cornerstone will team up with the tech company to build 1.15 million square feet of office space on the Anable Basin properties it controls.

The suspense is over as Amazon made it official yesterday that its headquarters expansion will be to Arlington, Virginia and to New York City.

"I think it's good for both communities, and it's really smart for Amazon", Mullett said. No mention was made of Amazon at the time.

That could be a particularly bitter pill for local retailers, many already struggling to compete with Amazon, said Stacy Mitchell, co-director of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, an advocacy group long critical of Amazon.

Cuomo predicted the project would eventually bring in $27.5 billion in new state revenue over the next 25 years from 40,000 new Amazon jobs and other jobs created to serve the needs of the company and its employees.

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