Amazon Blames NYC Politicians for Canceling Second Headquarters

Trillion-dollar companies going shopping for billion-dollar subsidies should be publicly shamed.

Amazon Blames NYC Politicians for Canceling Second Headquarters

By Derek Thompson (The Atlantic, Feb. 14, 2019)

Amazon said on Thursday that it will cancel its plans to add a second corporate headquarters in New York City. The company had pledged to build a campus in Queens’ Long Island City in exchange for $3 billion in subsidies.

In a statement, Amazon blamed local politicians for the reversal. “For Amazon, the commitment to build a new headquarters requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials who will be supportive over the long-term,” the  statement read. “A number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project.”

In a period of growing antipathy toward billionaires, Amazon’s corporate-welfare haul struck many—including me—as a gratuitous gift to a trillion-dollar company that was probably going to keep adding thousands of jobs to the New York region anyway. The company has more than 5,000 employees in the five boroughs, including 2,500 at a Staten Island fulfillment center and at least one thousand more in the Manhattan West office building.

Read more: Amazon Got Exactly What It Deserved—And So Did New York

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