New York business groups, community leaders and politicians took out a full-page ad in the New York Times Friday urging CEO Jeff Bezos to reconsider Amazon’s decision to cancel the company’s second North American headquarters.
The campaign comes weeks after the e-commerce giant backed away from its Long Island City, New York HQ2 location after receiving pushback from local officials.
Democratic Congressman Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) believes there’s still an opportunity for New York to lure Amazon back.
“I'd say 50/50. There's a reason Amazon chose New York. The talent that's here, the opportunity to grow that's here, the neighborhood that they're in is perfect, and those things have not changed,” Rep. Meeks told FOX Business’ Connell McShane on Friday.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) was reportedly asking the e-commerce giant to reassess its HQ2 location plans. However, in an interview on WNYC radio Friday, Cuomo said there’s no indication that Amazon would change its mind.
Meeks said the majority of New Yorkers are in support of Amazon’s HQ2 location in the borough of Queens.
“Overwhelmingly the majority of New Yorkers want Amazon here, I think that if you polled the elected officials, overwhelmingly they want Amazon here,” he said. “And I think that, we did not expect Amazon to pull out in the way that they did. We thought that we would fight, and that's what we do as New Yorkers, and in the end we would have this thing done.”
The e-commerce giant would have been awarded $3 billion in taxpayer subsidies by the city and state as an incentive to make Long Island City its new home. Amazon said it was committed to investing $2.5 billion and create 25,000 jobs in the nation's largest city.
The New York lawmaker said the Amazon tax incentive is a great return on investment for the city.
“That's basically the city making a 3 billion dollar investment, the return, the anticipated return is 28 billion dollars. I'll take that return on investment every time,” Rep. Meeks said.
The Queens location was expected to generate $10 billion in tax revenue for New York over the span of 20 years.