Memo To Mayors Courting Amazon’s HQ2: Now’s The Time To Be Stingy And Smart

September 27, 2017

By Greg LeRoy

Public officials should think carefully before offering extremely costly tax-break offers to a company valued at $450 billion and with a long history of tax avoidance. Inc.’s announcement that it will build a massive second headquarters—”HQ2″— and stage a public competition among metro areas for it, has set off a national frenzy. Over a hundred cities from Chicago and Cincinnati to Tacoma and Tampa Bay (and even 23 different neighborhoods in New York City) have expressed interest in bidding for the headquarters, offering everything from massive tax incentives to a 23-foot-tall cactus to court the online retail behemoth.