Austin’s City Council unanimously approved a US$8.6 million incentive deal on Thursday for Apple to double its local workforce and build a new campus to house the extra employees. The city’s deal will be part of a $33.5 million incentive package Texas is offering Apple to get the new jobs and campus.
Apple’s growth plans include adding 3,600 more employees to its 3,100 already in the area, and expanding its office facilities in the city. The state so far is committing a $21 million investment to keep Apple from looking at other cities.
Austin Approves $8.6M tax deal for Apple Expansion
While the growth is good news for Austin and the Texas economy, not everyone was pleased with the city’s decision to spend millions on what they see as an unnecessary expense, according to The Statesman. Austin’s City Council decided the package was needed to lock Apple in after word surfaced that the Mac and iPad maker was also considering Phoenix for its expansion.
Apparently Arizona lawmakers said the city was never really a serious consideration for Apple, leaving Austin locals feeling like the new jobs would’ve come to their home town without any extra expense.
Without Austin’s incentive deal, however, the $21 million from the Texas Enterprise Fund program wouldn’t be available, and Apple had already said that it couldn’t move forward in the state without that package.
City officials see the deal as a small price to pay to bring new jobs to the area. Apple’s city incentive package will give the company the $8.6 million through a ten-year personal and real property tax waiver.
“There are 25,000 people in Austin, Texas, today looking for work who can’t find it,” commented Austin Council Member Bill Spelman. “We are only six months away from the worst unemployment figure since the city starting tracking it, and it would be premature for us to think we’re out of it.”