New York’s governor jokes he’ll change his name to ‘Amazon Cuomo’ to win the HQ2 bid hours before a report that New York City will be home to one of the company’s new headquarters

  • “I’ll change my name to AmazonCuomo if that’s what it takes,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said to reporters on Monday in reference to his determination to land Amazon’s second headquarters, HQ2.
  • On Monday evening, The New York Times reported that Amazon is finalising plans to open HQ2 in Long Island City neighbourhood in Queens, New York, as well as Crystal City, Virginia.
  • Cities and states have proposed billions of dollars in economic incentives in an effort to woo Amazon into naming them the host of HQ2.
  • New York is reportedly still in active talks with Amazon, and the company now plans to split HQ2 between two locations, The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.

As the competition for Amazon’s second headquarters heats up, cities and states are getting increasingly desperate to win over the e-commerce giant.

“I’ll change my name to Amazon Cuomo if that’s what it takes,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo toldreporters at an event on Monday, referring to his determination to land Amazon’s second headquarters.

Hours later, on Monday evening, The New York Times reported that Amazon is nearing a deal to move HQ2 to the Long Island City neighbourhood, in Queens, New York. The Times reported that Amazon is also nearing a deal to have Crystal City, in Arlington, Virginia also host HQ2. New York City and Crystal City will reportedly split the second headquarters.

On Monday, The Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon is planning to split its second headquarters, crowning two HQ2 winners in two separate locations. Each of the HQ2 offices will create roughly 25,000 jobs, according to The Journal.

Amazon is in the final days of its journey to decide which city or cities will host its second headquarters, with the company saying that its pick will be made before the end of 2018.

The company has said it plans to invest over $US5 billion and accommodate as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs. If the company splits its second headquarters, each location will host 25,000 jobs, The Journal reports.

As a result, cities and states have been eager to offer Amazon massive incentives to win over the company.

Companies are offering billions of dollars in economic incentives. Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, for example, approved $US6.5 billion in tax incentives for Amazon, as well as an additional $US2 billion in infrastructure and transportation improvements for Montgomery County, according to The Baltimore Sun.

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Not everyone is pleased by the lengths city and state governments are willing to go to win over Amazon. A petition started by a group of elite economists earlier this year argues that cities – including the top contenders for HQ2 – should band together against such incentives because they “divert funds that could be put to better use underwriting public services such as schools, housing programs, job training, and transportation.”

However, others – including Amazon and Gov. Cuomo – argue that the infusion of jobs that would accompany the new headquarters far outweighs the negatives.