Docs: NY Was Prepared To Offer Amazon Much More In Tax Incentives

Steve Burns
January 05, 2020 - 6:02 pm
Long Island City

Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- We're learning that the tax breaks offered to Amazon to move to New York—tax breaks that sparked protests and eventually Amazon pulling out—were initially even higher than what was publicized.

The final number in tax incentives offered by New York State’s economic development arm, Empire State Development, was $1.3 billion.

But ESD was initially prepared to fork over $2.5 billion in incentives to get Amazon to come to the state.

Documents obtained by the Wall Street Journal also showed the state was ready to pay part of the salaries of some Amazon employees if those employees that were recruited from nearby colleges.

The ESD was also prepared to offer up Governors Island as a so-called “retreat” for employees.

Different localities also put forth their own plans. Nassau County proposed $2.2 billion in tax breaks for Amazon to build at Belmont Park.

An ESD official told the Journal the initial higher offer reflected the initial larger scope of the project and that it was intended to draw Amazon to the negotiating table.