ALBANY, N.Y. (WENY) – Opposition of the proposed new Amazon Headquarters in Queens may put the promise of 25,000 jobs in jeopardy.
Citing unnamed sources, the Washington Post reported Friday Amazon is reconsidering its decision to build a massive headquarters in Long Island City because of pushback from local leaders and residents.
Last year, New York won the national bidding war for the project along with Virginia. The Empire State is offering $3 billion in incentives.
However, political leaders from the area, including recently-elected Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, have come out against the public subsidies, questioning if the area in Queens could handle the influx of people and what effects the new headquarters could have on current residents.
The Washington Post reports Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has yet to lease or purchase office space for the project.
State Senator Mike Gianaris, a Democrat from Queens, is on a public authority board which will have some say in the public subsidies given to the project. He has been one of the most vocal opponents of the headquarters.
However, Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York City's Mayor Bill de Blasio have said the project will be a boon for the New York City area.
On Tuesday during an interview with WAMC, a public radio station in Albany, Cuomo said the Amazon deal was “probably the greatest economic transaction in 50 years in the State.” Cuomo went on to say among the 25,000 jobs promised, the average salary will be $150,000.
“It was a national competition; it went on for years,” Cuomo continued. “States and cities all across the country were competing for it. We don't get a business to come with 25,000 jobs anymore. I spend hours and days trying to get 100 jobs, 200 jobs.”
The Governor says the state's $3 billion in incentives will turned into a $30 billion investment by Amazon. He went on to say that without the incentives, Amazon would have chosen another state to do business with, such as New Jersey, which offered a larger package than New York.
“They had hundreds of cities competing here for them,” Cuomo said. “This is the wrong issue for the Senate to play politics.”