Five Subsidy Stories You Might Have Missed This Week


1. South Korean news reports that Samsung’s new microchip plant is going to Austin (Investigative Post), but the company continues to claim it is still negotiating with bidding regions (Buffalo Business First). Check out our write-up on the bidding process here.

Any such deal would dash local hopes about luring the plant – and its 1,900 jobs – to a 1,250-acre industrial park in rural Genesee County.

2. Amazon wants to build a SECOND distribution center in upstate Schodack, NY (Times Union). According to Good Jobs First, the first center received $13.7 million in subsidies.

The Birchwood residents say there are ongoing issues with the existing Amazon warehouse, including lights visible from their properties and complaints about traffic and noise.

3. For The New Republic, Kate Aronoff writes about how Wall Street is profiting from clean energy tax credits.

Since they were first introduced in the 1970s, tax credits for renewables have helped scale up and dramatically reduce the cost of clean power in the United States. But in recent years they have also created opportunities for a small handful of major investment banks to skim billions off the top, extracting lavish fees and control over clean energy projects as part of deals shrouded in secrecy. Public power providers—who serve nearly a third of retail electricity customers—have trouble accessing clean energy tax credits at all.

4. At Boondoggle, Pat Garofalo details the hidden costs of Las Vegas’s stadium subsidies.

While the city hasn’t had to dip into its general fund yet to cover bond payments, that possibility — though remote — always exists. And including interest payments, the total cost to Clark County for these bonds is going to be about $1.3 billion. That’s some real money!

5. The Houston Chronicle Editorial Board rails against corporate welfare in Texas.

How much has Texas lost? By one measure, Chapter 313 costs more than $1.1 million in tax breaks per new job created, according to state data the Chronicle analyzed. And the more than 500 projects active as of early 2020 are expected to cost nearly $10.8 billion in tax breaks over the life span of each project.

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