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Date: November 27, 2018
Contact: mediacenter@freeandfairmarketsinitiative.org

 

What They’re Saying About Amazon’s HQ2 Decision In Pennsylvania

[T]he sad truth is that the whole cloak-and-dagger process was a sham from the start”

Free and Fair Markets Initiative Chief Spokesperson Robert B. Engel: “Amazon made off with sensitive city data on economic development plans and infrastructure investments that could give the company an unfair advantage over local businesses for years to come.”
“Now that Amazon has officially selected New York City and Northern Virginia for its second headquarters, Philadelphia policymakers are searching high and low for a silver lining to the city’s unsuccessful bid. But the sad truth is that the whole cloak-and-dagger process was a sham from the start, and Amazon made off with sensitive city data on economic development plans and infrastructure investments that could give the company an unfair advantage over local businesses for years to come. (Robert B. Engel, The Philadelphia Inquirer, “After HQ2, Philadelphia should know not to cave to companies like Amazon,” 11.19.2018)

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Editorial Board: “Amazon played Pittsburgh, Allegheny County and the other cities and regions that bought into its game.”
“After promising that it would deliver a $5 billion investment and 50,000 jobs to the winner of its HQ2 contest, the company pulled a fast one, announcing Tuesday that it would split the project between New York City and the Washington, D.C., suburb of Crystal City, Va. That’s how Amazon played Pittsburgh, Allegheny County and the other cities and regions that bought into its game.” (The Editorial Board, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Amazon lessons: City, county abrogated their duty to taxpayers,” 11.16.18)

The Philadelphia Inquirer Editorial Board: “Amazon learned a lot about cities, and we learned that Amazon is magic: It made billions of dollars that previously never existed suddenly appear overnight.”
“The 14-months-long Amazon drama concluded last week when the company finally announced its location choice for its second headquarters. In the process, Amazon learned a lot about cities, and we learned that Amazon is magic: It made billions of dollars that previously never existed suddenly appear overnight. For example, Philadelphia offered $1.1 billion in incentives, with an additional $4.6 billion from the state.” (The Inquirer Editorial Board, The Philadelphia Inquirer, “Here’s how Philly could invest the $1.1 billion it offered Amazon,” 11.16.18)

Ruth Ann Dailey, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Columnist: “It’s not power- and resource-sharing he’s after, but power- and resource-consolidation.”
“Amazon could have chosen five or six cities, or 10, distributing jobs and economic empowerment to many regions. Instead, Mr. Bezos chose the global hubs of political and financial power. It’s not power- and resource-sharing he’s after, but power- and resource-consolidation. Having so much, he wants more. What a shame.” (Ruth Ann Dailey, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Jeff Bezos, the tech tease,” 11.18.18)

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ABOUT THE FREE & FAIR MARKETS INITIATIVE
The Free & Fair Markets Initiative (FFMI) is a non-profit coalition of businesses, consumer advocacy groups, workers and community activists committed to scrutinizing and highlighting emerging market trends that are stifling competition and innovation, influencing federal and local government spending, putting consumer data in harm’s way and limiting consumer choice. For a list of members, please visit https://freeandfairmarketsinitiative.org/about-us/members/. For more information on the Free & Fair Markets Initiative, please visit https://freeandfairmarketsinitiative.org.