Georgia Chasing Amazon Headquarters, But Few Details On How | WABE 90.1 FM

Georgia Chasing Amazon Headquarters, But Few Details On How

Sep 20, 2017

Tuesday was a celebration of sorts for state officials and business people who came together at one of the tech headquarters that's already in Atlanta: Honeywell corporation’s software division.

Many in the crowd were those who help bring new businesses to Georgia. They’d love to celebrate Amazon next, but the companies they’ve won for the state look almost microscopic in comparison.   

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Georgia and Atlanta are making a play for the new headquarters Amazon plans to build in a North American city, which could mean more than 50,000 jobs.  

The event was a chance for Gov. Nathan Deal to brag about how many companies the state has won.

"Numbers are sometimes boring, but if you're in the right spirit, these numbers will be meaningful to you,” Deal said.

Forty-two tech companies moved to Georgia since last July, creating nearly 10,000 jobs, according to the state Department of Economic Development.

"We're committed and going to put our best foot forward in order to bring [Amazon] to Georgia,” said Pat Wilson, the state’s economic development commissioner.

Amazon wants mass transit, good Internet, tax breaks, really good universities nearby, and more.  

Dropping 50,000 high-paying jobs in metro Atlanta might exacerbate traffic and housing problems.

But Wilson says with average salaries of $100,000, Amazon would make the region look different.

"That in itself is a way to change the dynamics of an area, change the dynamics of a community. Those are all positives,” he said.

Wilson says Georgia is recruiting Amazon just like it does any other company, but didn't give more details.

Bids for the headquarters are due to Amazon next month.