Published: Sun, February 10, 2019
Markets | By Erika Turner

The evidence is mounting that Amazon's HQ2 deal is in trouble

The evidence is mounting that Amazon's HQ2 deal is in trouble

The Washington Post reported Friday that Amazon is reconsidering its plan to bring 25,000 jobs to ny in the wake of opposition from local politicians, citing people familiar with the company's thinking.

Amazon is likely threatening this pullout to concentrate minds among NY politicians, in an effort to pin blame on them for "losing" Amazon. One of the people said a complete pullout from the project in Queens was unlikely.

Amazon has not yet bought office space for the NY headquarters, and officials in other cities have been more enthusiastic about hosting the company.

The Post story said Amazon has not leased or purchased office space in NY.

It's possible the reported threat to leave could be a negotiating tactic, the Post said.

Amazon might be miffed over the tough time it's getting, but the likelihood of the company walking away seems slim.

On Friday, Cuomo reacted angrily when asked during a pre-planned, unrelated news conference about the possibility that Amazon might bail on NY.

Amazon's second headquarters may not be coming to New York City after all.

Governor Andrew Cuomo is pushing back on resistance to a new Amazon campus in New York City, as word comes the online giant is considering pulling out of the deal.

The initiative has faced loud opposition from the Long Island City neighbourhood, who say that Amazon's expansion could bring more crowded subway stations, an overburdened sewage system and rent increases that would drive out long-time residents. "This is the beginning of a process where the public and the City Council and other elected officials are going to continue to seek answers and understand whether or not this is a good deal for New York City, or if we got played".

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The source noted that Amazon was still working toward winning approval from NY officials and has not yet given up completely on NY as the location of their headquarters, which plans to create 25,000 Amazon jobs.

NY Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez took to Twitter Friday to comment on the reports.

Ocasio-Cortez tweeted a link to the Post story on Friday and said: "Can everyday people come together and effectively organize against creeping overreach of one of the world's biggest corporations?"

Meanwhile, New York's final approval for the headquarters isn't expected until 2020.

No specific plans to abandon the NY location has been made. It's building a similar project in Arlington, Virginia. A company official said January 30 that the company wouldn't avail itself of the incentive.

"If the Amazon deal falls apart, they will have nobody to blame but themselves", said Stuart Applebaum, president of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union.

The deal hasn't closed yet. Michael Gianaris, a bitter critic of the deal, to the Public Authorities Control Board, which reviews and approves state-based economic development subsidies.

The company, which announced a year ago that it had chosen a site in Long Island City to house 25,000 employees, has not leased or purchased office space for the project yet, making it easy to withdraw the commitment, according to the Washington Post.

"The change in scope - given jobs and investment were ultimately divided among multiple communities - further enhances Miami's opportunity to successfully deliver on the kind of partnership we know Amazon is looking for", he said.

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