Amazon wins record US tax breaks to expand delivery network

10/06/2021

Photo shows the words "Amazon Fulfillment Center" outside one of the company's warehouses.

The Financial Times wrote about what is shaping to be one of Amazon's most lucrative years yet for receiving taxpayer-funded subsidies. Amazon's more than $650 million haul comes as the company scores new records for profits, as the pandemic temporarily shuttered brick-and-mortar businesses and more people went online to shop.

Good Jobs First Research Analyst Kasia Tarczynska has all the deals she's been able to nail down at Amazon Tracker.

From the story:

"Amazon has won a record amount of tax breaks this year as local officials try to lure the online shopping giant to expand its one-day or same-day delivery networks in their areas.

According to data from Good Jobs First, an economic development watchdog based in Washington DC, Amazon has so far secured about $650m in sweeteners from local and state governments in 2021, a mixture of grants, tax exemptions and other incentives. This was likely to be a conservative estimate, the group said, because of the secrecy around some of the deals.

With three months still to go, 2021 already has the largest yearly tally since Good Jobs First began collecting the data in 2000, excluding incentives for non-logistics projects, such as filmmaking and office development, and the more than $750m package Amazon was awarded in 2019 to build its “second” headquarters in Arlington, Virginia.

The bumper deals for Amazon’s delivery network come as local authorities grapple with rebuilding their economies and job markets in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, a crisis that has seen Amazon’s profits soar because of its pivotal role in distributing goods during lockdown and beyond.

'I was hopeful public officials would step back and say: ‘We’re in such a difficult situation, we have to stop subsidising very wealthy companies’,' said Kasia Tarczynska, research analyst at Good Jobs First. 'Unfortunately, it’s the opposite.'

'Amazon should stop asking for any kind of incentives,' she added."

Read the full story at Financial Times.