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Amazon: The Thread | 5,000 Jobs | 1M SQFT in Nashville Yards

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The problem with that article is HQ2 is mentioned no where in the interviews with the industry leaders. Not really worth the read unless you want to.

 

Here are the questions that some answered and some didn't respond.  I went through 21 of the interviews and H2Q was not mentioned once.

 

What does Nashville’s next mayor need to do to most effectively address our growth?

Tell us about your strangest day at work.

What mixed-use project currently in the works would be the most transformative for Nashville, and why?

Which Nashville CEO — in your industry or elsewhere — do you most admire, and why?

What is your level of concern about the city’s growth being stymied since Nashville’s transit vote failed?

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One woman is leading Amazon's search for a new headquarters — and her past may reveal important clues about where it will be.

Found an article from the Business Insider which gives an interesting take on another Nashville connection in the HQ2 selection.

The article is about Holly Sears Sullivan, the head of World wide Economic Development for Amazon and is leading the scouting for the proposed location of a second headquarters for Amazon. She is a native Nashvillian with a degree from the University of Tennessee and headed up economic development in Rutherford and Wilson Counties for 13 years.

.....from April 3, 2018...

Quote

In Tennessee, Sullivan led economic development in Rutherford County and Wilson County, both just east of Nashville, from 1999 to 2012.In 2001, at age 28, she was selected to be Wilson County's development director after a nationwide search of more than 42 applicants. She had been the county's planning director.Later she moved to Rutherford County's Chamber of Commerce, where she negotiated a deal that delivered a 1-million-square-foot Amazon distribution facility to Murfreesboro, about 45 minutes southeast of Nashville.In 2011, Sullivan was named to the Nashville Business Journal's "Forty Under 40" list, and in 2015 she was one of two cochairs named by the International Council of Shopping Centers to its Washington regional panel on leadership.

I know it's still a longshot, but so was Major League Soccer and Alliance Bernstein.

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53 minutes ago, Philip said:

Amazon STILL hasn't decided! I'm beyond caring.

I've heard September - October time frame for awhile, so you'll have to stay patient. 

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20 hours ago, Philip said:

Amazon STILL hasn't decided! I'm beyond caring.

I hear ya. I keep telling myself that I don't care anymore and that I don't want it here, but I actually do - on both counts. And my change of heart has come via the recent transit meltdown, pushback on Fairgrounds changes, a state legislature full of rural representatives dictating Nashville's present & future....and I'm worn out watching old Nashville fighting tooth and nail against change. I agree, we still have a small chance, I agree that if Amazon came here it'd bring some unwanted collateral consequences - but now I want it.

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Is the Nashville Yards / Tennessean site the only area, or is River North a possibility? I feel like Nashville wouldn't notice all the construction if Amazon HQ2 was located there. 

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1 hour ago, nashvylle said:

Is the Nashville Yards / Tennessean site the only area, or is River North a possibility? I feel like Nashville wouldn't notice all the construction if Amazon HQ2 was located there. 

I would think River North is the more likely possibility as there is so much more space there. 105 acres. Easy access to the interstate. So much river frontage. Seems the most desirable. 

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23 hours ago, Philip said:

Amazon STILL hasn't decided! I'm beyond caring.

The latest articles from a few days (or a week) ago suggest it may not be for a couple more months before a decision is made, and there will be another shortlist of 3 or 5 cities.

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3 hours ago, Flatrock said:

I hear ya. I keep telling myself that I don't care anymore and that I don't want it here, but I actually do - on both counts. And my change of heart has come via the recent transit meltdown, pushback on Fairgrounds changes, a state legislature full of rural representatives dictating Nashville's present & future....and I'm worn out watching old Nashville fighting tooth and nail against change. I agree, we still have a small chance, I agree that if Amazon came here it'd bring some unwanted collateral consequences - but now I want it.

I can't help but be a bit skeptical of the unwanted collateral consequences. It would bring lots of jobs, other businesses would probably flock here, growing the economy, it would bring lots of people with an education (as opposed to Memphis, America's Distribution Center with possibly the highest crime rate in the land). I'm just weary of all the reality-show-like  corporate welfare-fishing (a term someone else on here used, but don't remember who) just pick a dang place and get it over with.

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7 minutes ago, Philip said:

 I'm just weary of all the reality-show-like  corporate welfare-fishing (a term someone else on here used, but don't remember who) just pick a dang place and get it over with.

That is my least favorite part of the whole thing. It would be amazing for Nashville to take a stand and say, hey, you come here we will give you a break for 5 years (to get built out and up to full staff). After that you start paying your way and being a good corporate citizen. We will offer you everything the city has to offer but you aren't getting a free ride forever. 

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^^ I really do not understand your point of view. Where does that happen in the world? Why would any company not set desired criteria and then allow the cities meeting that benchmark compete to land the business?

On a personal level, my eldest son just graduated HS and throughout the entire process of shopping colleges we had several criteria to rank the offers. ...location, reputation, quality of academic programs, placement post graduation, quality of life, 'fit', and of course net cost - who is bringing the money?

This does not mean they are not being a 'good' corporate citizen. If the net good does not outweigh the aid package then look to your elected officials and not the corporation.

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The company has the right to set their criteria for sure. I just don't think cities should bend over backwards to accommodate them in perpetuity is all. 

You can be competitive but at some point you have to look at yourself/your city and be like, thanks but no thanks. 

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So, your criticism is reserved for the city/state economic development personnel and the politicians who vote to approve such deals. Fair enough, I read the post to be dinging the corporation. 

I wonder how far you would take such thinking. Almost all of the downtown and close-in notable developments/relocations/expansions (probably all, but I do not want to speak in absolutes) over the last 20-30 years have come at the cost of government tax coffers. Either we are in it to win it or let's just plan on being a slightly larger B'Ham.

A partial listing-
NFL Tennessee Titans relocation and stadium
NHL Nashville Predators expansion and Bridgestone Arena
MLS Nashville Soccer Club expansion award and to-be-built stadium
Minor LB - Nashville Sounds relocation and FTB Ballpark

Bridgestone expansion and relocation to new DT Tower
MCC
Omni
Westin
JW Marriott
Alliance Bernstein
5th & Broadway
UBS
Alliance Bernstien
Assurion
LP
Bank of NY
All of Vanderbilt campus expansion
Children's Hospital build and expansion
Belmont campus construction
Lipscomb campus construction
All State and city construction (of course)
NISSAN NA HQ (farther out but on point)

 

 




 

32 minutes ago, PaulChinetti said:

The company has the right to set their criteria for sure. I just don't think cities should bend over backwards to accommodate them in perpetuity is all. 

You can be competitive but at some point you have to look at yourself/your city and be like, thanks but no thanks. 

 

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That's a solid question, how far is too far. I'm not sure it's a hard and fast line for me. 

I think my biggest problem with the giving of concessions be it property tax breaks or whatever, is I think there should to be a time limiting component. Be it the give aways ending in a number of years or a increasing scale of what the corporation pays until it's on par with other companies. 

It just seems like a bigger headache in the long run than it's worth?

Just thinking of scenarios, say Company A has been in your city for years producing widgets and making  jobs. They pay their taxes and go about their business. The city brings in Company B with a huge tax break. How does Company A feel, do they start shopping around moving their HQ to other cities. I don't know, I'm just typing out loud. 

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1 hour ago, PaulChinetti said:

That's a solid question, how far is too far. I'm not sure it's a hard and fast line for me. 

I think my biggest problem with the giving of concessions be it property tax breaks or whatever, is I think there should to be a time limiting component. Be it the give aways ending in a number of years or a increasing scale of what the corporation pays until it's on par with other companies. 

It just seems like a bigger headache in the long run than it's worth?

Just thinking of scenarios, say Company A has been in your city for years producing widgets and making  jobs. They pay their taxes and go about their business. The city brings in Company B with a huge tax break. How does Company A feel, do they start shopping around moving their HQ to other cities. I don't know, I'm just typing out loud. 

I'm sure there's a way to calculate the cost benefits...but let's not forget that a company like Amazon will be paying out salaries to 50,000 residents of middle Tennessee.  Those people will be paying all kinds of different taxes back to the city, region, state, nation.   So...you have to weigh Amazon's tax breaks against what you'll be getting in return from the employees.  Not sure what that tax break should be...but for something this huge, I could understand the local government giving a tax break that lasts as long as the company hires middle Tennesseans (as long as the city and state come out on top).

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15 minutes ago, titanhog said:

I'm sure there's a way to calculate the cost benefits...but let's not forget that a company like Amazon will be paying out salaries to 50,000 residents of middle Tennessee.  Those people will be paying all kinds of different taxes back to the city, region, state, nation.   So...you have to weigh Amazon's tax breaks against what you'll be getting in return from the employees.  Not sure what that tax break should be...but for something this huge, I could understand the local government giving a tax break that lasts as long as the company hires middle Tennesseans (as long as the city and state come out on top).

property taxes (on individual homes) and sales tax from 50,000 new residents with money to spend. 

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15 hours ago, nashvylle said:

property taxes (on individual homes) and sales tax from 50,000 new residents with money to spend. 

Not to mention the many hundreds of businesses and thousands of jobs created to support  Amazon itself and to cater to the new city-sized population of 50,000 folks + their familes. Basically, you're adding a very affluent small city, needing to buy goods and services.

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1 hour ago, Hey_Hey said:

Nationally, these incentives don't create jobs. 

Exactly. When looking at these incentives on a macro level it's easy to see the net negative of corporate welfare. 

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Business is much more mobile than in the past generations and the unwise suggestion of banning incentives will just force more companies to consider more international moves. Plus, many incentives are for international companies to open offices or manufacturing facilities in the states. 

Also, I think you are making a false equivalency.... is Genesco growing? Creating hundreds of news jobs? If so, they would be fools Not to approach Metro/TN and negotiate an incentive deal to keep those jobs local a' la Bridgestone.  As for the 'mom and pop' analogy, I would offer the argument the double taxation hoisted on owners of Corporate stock is an unfair burden which non-incorporated entities do not suffer. They key is are you creating large scale jobs HERE, not nationally and not overseas. If you are, then incentives can be a great deal for the city and corporation. 

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On 6/26/2018 at 10:43 AM, Philip said:

possibly the highest crime rate in the land

While Memphis is in the top 10 for both property and violent crime among cities in the U.S., it is number 1 in neither category.

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2 hours ago, SoundScan said:

Exactly. When looking at these incentives on a macro level it's easy to see the net negative of corporate welfare. 

Correct. Yes you might steal some jobs from another city or state. But over time those states will steal from you the same. It is a race to the bottom. 

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20 minutes ago, Rockatansky said:

While Memphis is in the top 10 for both property and violent crime among cities in the U.S., it is number 1 in neither category.

It's bad enough. St. Louis and Detroit might be a bit worse, but there's at least 2 neighborhoods here where you have a 1 in 7 chance of being the victim of violent crime if you live there for 1 year, with large areas that are only a little bit better. Shoot, I heard gunshots as I drove into work just last Saturday. Another worker chuckled about working in the "hood". This place is the pariah of the state.

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I would say recent Bridgestone and Assurion incentive deals weight against your assertion which is wildly speculative and unable to be measured with the use of  the ambiguous wording 'over time'.

Define a the period of time and them test your theory.  Exempt mergers, takeovers, bankruptcies  and closures as they would have happened regardless of location. 

Anecdotal, but only Dell and Hemlock come to mind as MidTN incentive plays which have not paid off, but they have not been net losers.






 

58 minutes ago, samsonh said:

Correct. Yes you might steal some jobs from another city or state. But over time those states will steal from you the same. It is a race to the bottom. 

 

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7 minutes ago, nashville_bound said:

I would say recent Bridgestone and Assurion incentive deals weight against your assertion which is wildly speculative and unable to be measured with the use of  the ambiguous wording 'over time'.

Define a the period of time and them test your theory.  Exempt mergers, takeovers, bankruptcies  and closures as they would have happened regardless of location. 

Anecdotal, but only Dell and Hemlock come to mind as MidTN incentive plays which have not paid off, but they have not been net losers.






 

 

How would you quantify "net losers"? My assertion that incentives are a race to the bottom is definitely not wildly speculative. I am not sure why you are taking this point of view.  

 

http://theweek.com/articles/754007/are-corporate-tax-incentives-worth

 

Bridgestone, Asurion, Lifepoint, and HCA come to mind as companies that relocated within Middle TN and got millions each. How is this a positive thing? The money has to come from somewhere so it falls more on the invdividual taxpayer as opposed to the corporation. Lifepoint relocated literally down Old Hickory Blvd. Does that make sense to you as a small government conservative?

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