Amazon effect

Yesterday it was announced that Amazon has decided to pull out of their plans to relocate headquarters to my own city, New York City. Once again, the tail is wagging the dog in New York City as the smallest of minds in the smallest number, manage to win their way to costing New York City taxpayers millions of dollars.

Amazon had promised 25,000 jobs in HQ2 all to be in the range of $100,000/year. That would have generated over $2.5 billion in income to Queens, New York. In addition, the income tax generated would be over $1 billion to federal state and local municipalities. This is simply for payroll tax. Those 25,000 new jobs and residents would influence the local community and local economy in ways that would generate billions of dollars in additional revenue and thousands of other jobs being created in the process. Other industries impacted include restaurants, hotels, transportation, police, firemen, teachers, beauty parlors, service stations, nightclubs, taverns, and every other business imaginable that is currently struggling to make ends meet with skyrocketing city costs and burdensome taxes.

Queens had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help solidify New York’s presence as the East Coast tech capital of the United States. How could New York and its representatives be so shortsighted? State senator Michael Gianaris seemed to celebrate the loss of jobs, income, and revenue that Amazon would bring to the community.

Will additional tax dollars be generated by not having Amazon here? What about all the new construction in Long Island City? Who’s going to occupy those apartment buildings? Tax abatements are routinely given to drive business to zones that would help the local community. This was a golden opportunity to see Queens flourish but instead, as usual, the special interest groups backed by people with a vested interest in seeing queens go backward, won again.

Many people in the community were rejoicing at the opportunity to have such an important business player such as Amazon in our backyard. Our community has always welcomed diversity and inclusion which apparently doesn’t apply to successful tech companies coming with incredible opportunities for the communities at a time when it needs it the most.

Sadly, the concerns of few have won over the needs of many. The community, the borough, and the city are the immediate losers as undoubtedly business investment in this area will evaporate.

It’s understandable that Amazon pulled out, receiving a lukewarm reception from the city is in stark contrast with the other cities and states fighting to have Amazon. The tax revenue that would’ve been generated when they located to our community will now be the burden of the taxpayers that remain in Queens. It’s no wonder New York is no longer known as a business-friendly state. Nice job guys nice job…