• For more information on Green Party membership or to contact Green Party leadership, email info@greensofarlington.org Join the Arlington Greens on Wednesday April 6, 2019 at 7:30 pm at Ballston Firehouse Community Room (George Mason Drive & Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA)

March 6, 2019

March 16th County Board public hearing on Amazon HQ2 subsidies: Attend and tell them no local tax dollars for Amazon

Please attend the Arlington County Board public hearing on Saturday, March 16, starting at 9 am on whether to give Amazon $26 million in county tax funds as an inducement to open a new headquarters in Crystal City. We ask you to oppose giving any of our local tax dollars to the wealthiest corporation in the world. Location is 2100 Clarendon Boulevard, third floor, Arlington, VA 22201, adjacent to the Courthouse Metro.

Arlington Greens voted to oppose any county funds going to Amazon as a waste of scarce local funds better used for our schools, our community needs and affordable housing for current Arlington residents.

In addition to the $26 million in cash the county board proposes to give Amazon at least $300 million to upgrade infrastructure around Amazon’s office buildings. These $300 million in bonds could be better spent for schools, for Metro rail operations helping all Arlington residents on the Blue, Silver, and Orange lines or for our streets, community centers, our water treatment plant, and storm water management. Adding another entrance to Crystal City Metro station, a new passenger bridge, more sidewalks and such will not reduce the expected traffic congestion in south Arlington because current Metro rail operations cannot handle another 25,000 daily riders there.

Amazon HQ2 will significantly raise rents and housing costs in our community that will hurt tenants. Amazon has offered nothing to help affordable housing programs in Arlington, and its corporate pattern in Seattle Washington is to refuse to do anything to help reduce homelessness and high rents. Why should local tax funds be used to raise rents here and make life difficult for renters?

Amazon is one of the wealthiest corporations in the world; its principal owner Jeff Bezos has a net worth in excess of $150 billion. Amazon has a reported over $20 billion in cash reserves; pay no U.S. income tax, and is extremely profitable. It does not need Arlington County’s millions, and frankly we do not need Amazon because we have less than 2% unemployment, a rising tax base, and scores of companies opening here without a dime of subsidy. It is grossly unfair to help the richest businessman in the world and not help the thousands of small businesses already operating successfully here.

Whatever additional tax revenues Amazon will bring to Arlington County will be rapidly absorbed by rising school student costs and other non-school costs, according to economic reports. The Arlington County Board should spend our limited tax funds on schools, libraries, recreation, public safety, and community assistance that make our community a great one already.

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