Late in the day on Friday, AOC took to Twitter to celebrate a win. At least it was what she called a win. Amazon has agreed to lease new office space in Hudson Yards, without any incentives from the city. AOC celebrated it as a win saving taxpayers billions.
Won’t you look at that: Amazon is coming to NYC anyway – *without* requiring the public to finance shady deals, helipad handouts for Jeff Bezos, & corporate giveaways.
Maybe the Trump admin should focus more on cutting public assistance to billionaires instead of poor families. https://t.co/BbqhXbB9MM
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) December 6, 2019
As is typical, her statement is wildly misleading. Let’s take a closer look shall we?
Amazon was initially looking to take it’s HQ2 location to New York City. AOC and other Democrats spoke out in resistance of the move. The space would have brought 25,000 jobs to the city, with Amazon receiving about $3 billion in incentives for locating in the city. HQ2 would have been located in AOC’s district in fact. Yet, progressive Democrats and politicians killed the plan due to the incentives that Amazon would receive.
AOC continued her statements on Twitter saying that she had saved the taxpayers billions of dollars. It was $3 billion as stated above. So what did she get in exchange for standing up to Amazon in this new deal. Amazon committed to 1500 jobs. That’s right, 23,500 fewer jobs than would have been located in NYC with HQ2.
According to a MSNBC report, those jobs would have paid an average of $150,000 annually to the employees that worked in NYC. If that were true, those 25,000 jobs would have brought $37.5 billion in salaries to the greater NYC area. So for roughly 8% of the total salaries in benefits, AOC and her team gave up all of that for 1,500 jobs. Even more, all of these jobs are outside of her district. Of course, AOC’s constituents already feel neglected by her.
I did a quick online search and found that the New York tax rate for these people would have been roughly 6.57%. The city also imposes an income tax rate of 3.88%. If you take this into consideration, looking at the salaries the same, AOC turned away $134.4 million in annual city income tax revenue and $220.5 million in annual state income tax revenue.
The city and state were both sharing the costs of the incentive package for Amazon. In return, Amazon was going to build a campus that would have raised property values and tax revenues from those properties as well for the city and state. So if you just consider the income tax revenue, and if Amazon hit all of the incentive targets, it would have taken the city and state roughly 8 years to recoup the investment.
But this does not consider the increase in property tax values or the collection of sales tax. There are other forms of revenue the city would have seen as well. For example, according to the calculations, the bring home pay for these individuals would have been around $98,000 annually. If each of them spent $50,000 back into the economy (very low figure considering basic needs), this would be approximately $1.25 billion annually.
That is $1.25 billion that is paying day care workers, restaurant workers, mechanics, small business owners, etc. So not only would Amazon be providing 25,000 jobs, but it would have created thousands more through the economic impact. The city and state would have recouped the tax breaks in less than 5 years.
Yet, this level of economic winning is not what AOC is interested in. She is only interested in government dependence. The one she calls socialism, but it’s really communism. She had the opportunity to really do a service for her constituents bringing them thousands of jobs and billions of dollars. Instead, she chose to sacrifice because “business is evil” settling for 1,500 jobs that will not do anything for her constituents.
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