Demand the Amazon Deal is a Fair Deal for Nashvillians

Industrial Development Board and Metro Council

There’s no doubt the proposed Amazon hub would change downtown Nashville, with one million square feet of office space and the promise of up to 5,000 new jobs at the site. But whether Amazon benefits or harms current Nashvillians, especially working people and communities of color, depends on what we do now. Amazon has extracted promises of $102 million in public subsidies from our city and state for the project. As taxpayers prepare to subsidize the world’s second most valuable company, we have to ask: what are we doing to make sure we’re taking care of Nashvillian
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To: Industrial Development Board and Metro Council
From: [Your Name]

Dear Industrial Development Board and Metro Council,

The new Amazon development is exciting for Nashville. But at what cost? The $102 million taxpayer price tag could change Nashville forever but will it be for better or worse.

The $15 million offered to Amazon by the city of Nashville could make up almost half of last year’s budget shortfall that left schools underfunded and Metro employees without promised raises. The combined $102 million offered to Amazon could be used to rent a market rate apartment ($1,200/month) for each and every one of Nashville’s homeless residents (estimated in 2017 as 2,337 people) for roughly three and a half years.

Rather than hand out public dollars to corporations that don’t need it, we could boost our communities and economy directly by investing in public goods that create economic opportunity and stability for existing communities.
Will Amazon build up or push out current residents? Will the Industrial Development Board approve the incentive package without having all the facts in front of them?
You have a unique opportunity here to prioritize the people of Nashville and require that Amazon show it’s commitment to Nashville by adhering to the DoBetter Bill and also proposing a plan to address some of Nashville's most looming issues.

In Solidarity