Posted on

DEAR AMAZON

UPDATED: Now that we know Detroit didn’t make the cut for Amazon’s HQ2. We need to remember just how much of our resources those in power are willing to give away to attract projects. Based on their willingness to give it away, we know community must continue to organize to protect, maintain and empower majority-black Detroit.

Last year, Detroit was one of hundreds of cities that submitted ‘bids’ for the second Amazon headquarters.

Detroit People’s Platform and many of our partners have signed on to the national campaign around Jobs, Tax Incentives, Accountability and Transparency for Amazon’s new headquarters, wherever they end up. Read More about the national campaign: www.ourhq2wishlist.org

The bid, authored by Dan Gilbert, city officials and others, was kept confidential until the Detroit Free Press uncovered a copy in December.

We don’t know Detroit’s chances for being chosen as the location for Amazon’s HQ2, but we’ve seen how much of our resources those in power are willing to give away to attract this and other projects. We also know that, no matter where Amazon lands, community must organize to leverage benefits and, if they end up in Detroit, to protect, maintain and empower majority-black Detroit.

From “10 things Amazon would get if it chooses Detroit for its second headquarters”

  • “One campus in two countries on a busy international border.”
  • A new Detroit River ferry between the cities.
  • A big tax break package. The total value of the tax breaks and subsidies was blacked out in the version of the documents given to media organizations, but the offer includes breaks on personal income taxes, property taxes, corporate income taxes and a utility users tax. For just Windsor, the incentives total $106 million in U.S. dollars.
  • Cheaper rent. Class A office space in downtown Detroit goes for $22 per square foot. That’s half the rate of other major cities.
  • Cheaper labor. Software developers make an average salary of $88,000 in Detroit, lower than the $113,000 average in the top 15 metropolitan areas.
  • DTE Energy and EnWin in Windsor could supply Amazon with “100% wind power.” (No word on what happens on non-windy days).
  • A trained tech workforce, bolstered by the state’s commitment to make a new $120-million investment in training.
  • First dibs on the 200-plus-acre site containing Southfield’s shuttered Northland Center mall.
  • A potential partnership with Dan Gilbert’s Quicken Loans “to put Echo/Alexa into the homes of millions of Quicken Loans Mortgage clients.”
  • More public transportation, including a new commuter bus linking downtown Detroit with Ann Arbor.

source: www.freep.com/story/money/business/Michigan/2017/12/20/amazon-detroit-second-headquarters/971050001/

 

From Detroit People’s Platform NEWS #12, MLK Day edition, January 15, 2018. Download the Detroit People’s Platform NEWS at http://detroitpeoplesplatform.org and learn more about our work in REAL Community Benefits, truly affordable housing and transit that meets the needs of everyday Detroiters. Join the conversation #DetroitPeoples