06/13/2013 08:00 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Amazon Considering Hillsborough County Site


The day Gov. Rick Scott announced a deal to bring Amazon to Florida, Hillsborough County officials followed up with news of their own: The online retailer is considering a site here that could create 1,000 permanent jobs.

The location under consideration is in the South Shore Corporate Park, located in southern Hillsborough County off Interstate 75 at the Sun City Center/Wimauma exit along State Road 674.

Hillsborough County staff was also told that 375 of the jobs at the "fulfillment center" would be higher-paying, $47,581 on average; there would be additional seasonal temporary employment; and the center would generate up to $200 million in capital investment including a 1-million-square-foot, state-of-the-art complex.

The county commission also will consider a proposal to approve public contributions toward the 375 jobs because they would meet the required wage criteria of at least 115% of the State average wage.

In addition the county will consider a property tax exemption for a portion of the property for seven years.

The public contribution will be considered at the county commission meeting Wednesday and the tax break will be considered July 17.

Overall, Amazon plans to create 3,000 full-time jobs with benefits and build more than $300 million worth of new warehouses, Scott announced, saying Amazon would complete its arrival by the end of 2016.

"Amazon's commitment ... is further proof that we've turned our economy around," Scott said in a statement.

"Amazon will continue to work with Enterprise Florida on its ongoing projects which will include a return on any taxpayer investment," he said. "We look forward to the company's announcements as it chooses locations and creates jobs in Florida."

Enterprise Florida is the public-private partnership that serves as the state's economic development organization. Its spokesman wasn't immediately available, and the governor's press office declined further comment.

Amazon spokesman Ty Rogers declined to elaborate, referring a reporter back to Scott's statement.

"We thank Governor Scott for his commitment to creating jobs in Florida," Paul Misener, Amazon vice president of global public policy, said in that statement.

Amazon will "work toward enactment of the federal Marketplace Fairness Act, which will protect states' rights to make their own revenue policy choices," Misener said.

The act would impose a sort of "internet tax," allowing state governments to collect sales tax from online retailers and out-of-state businesses.

Scott said, "Amazon will begin collecting Florida sales tax at such time as it is required under current Florida law."

Also unclear was where in the state Amazon would build its new warehouses.

"The availability of economic development incentives will be a material factor in any final location decisions," the governor said. ___



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