Corporate giant Amazon has amassed a record amount of corporate welfare in 2021 to bring its total to an astounding $4,148,000,000, according to the economic development watchdog Good Jobs First.
In 2021 alone, Amazon has netted $650 million in grants, tax exemptions, and other incentives from states and municipalities in 2021 — "its most lucrative year of perks yet," notes this commentary at Nasdaq.com, citing Good Jobs First data. And that's with three months left in the year.
"Amazon is famously great at delivering — but, it turns out, the e-tail giant is pretty good at receiving, too," the commentary notes. "States and municipalities have bent over backwards to entice the incredibly profitable firm to open up warehouses in their backyards. But it remains unclear how much good that will do for anyone but Amazon."
It added this:
"Amazon says it's worthy of subsidies because it created more than 400,000 jobs last year alone. But a 2018 study by the Economic Policy Institute found that, while new Amazon fulfilment centres increased warehouse jobs by 30% in an area, they attracted staff from other employers and thus led to no net job gains.
"There's also the matter of pay. Take New Jersey: a UPS driver there makes an average of $38.35 an hour, according to recent congressional testimony. An Amazon driver? Just $19.25, the Financial Times notes. The company recently raised its average starting wage from $17 to $18 — and is increasingly touting perks like signing bonuses and college tuition help — as it aims to fill 125,000 warehouse and delivery jobs."
The "Amazon Tracker" page at Good Job First weighed in as well:
"Since we began collecting and exposing subsidies the company has received, we have encountered greater secrecy surrounding the packages awarded to Amazon. This sometimes makes calculating such costs difficult. Secret project names, non-disclosure agreements, and a reluctance by public officials to fully disclose costs -- even after a deal has been awarded -- suggests Amazon and public officials know these deals have become controversial."