Metro Nashville approves $17.5 million Amazon incentive deal

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Metro Nashville will give Amazon millions in city funds in exchange for thousands of jobs created at its future retail operations hub in downtown Nashville.

The Metro Nashville Council approved at its March 19 meeting a $17.5 million incentive package to Amazon in exchange for 5,000 jobs. The council passed the resolution by a 30-3 vote.

The package requires the city to pay $500 per job created—up to $2.5 million annually—for seven years, according to the resolution. The second of two amendments limits the number of jobs included in the package to 5,000 in total.

“We’re not saying we don’t want more jobs from Amazon; we would welcome those, but we’re not going to incentivize them,” District 34 Council Member Angie Henderson said.

Amazon announced in November its plans to open its Operations Center of Excellence, the company’s eastern U.S. hub for retail operations, at the future Nashville Yards development. The online retailer’s intention to create 5,000 jobs is the largest commitment made by a company in Tennessee history, according to former Gov. Bill Haslam following the announcement in November.

“Just because the resolution is passed tonight, it doesn’t mean the conversations end here tonight,” District 28 Council Member Tanaka Vercher said. “The tough questions will still come, and you will still have a voice as we continue throughout this process.”

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