Ohio offers Amazon tax breaks to build $1.1 billion data center

Reuters News
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Posted: Sep 16, 2014 4:11 PM

By Deepa Seetharaman

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - State and local officials in Ohio are courting Amazon.com Inc with tax breaks and other perks to convince the No. 1 U.S. online retailer to build a $1.1 billion data center in central Ohio and create 120 jobs, according to public records.

The records offer a rare look at the typically tight-lipped company's growth plans for its popular cloud computing division, Amazon Web Services, founded in 2006. There are 10 AWS data centers, called regions within the company, around the world, including four in the United States, AWS said.

"We are constantly evaluating a long list of additional target countries and U.S. locations," AWS said in a statement.

In late August, the Ohio Tax Credit Authority extended an estimated $81 million in tax breaks to an Amazon subsidiary called Vadata Inc, according to state filings.

In exchange for the tax deal, Amazon has committed to invest at least $1.1 billion over the next three years to build a data center. It will also create 120 jobs with an average salary of $80,208 by the end of 2018, according to the filing.

Separately, city officials in Dublin, Ohio, are also looking to transfer 68.7 acres of city-owned land to the company from 2015 until 2024 - worth $6.75 million - among other perks, according to city documents posted online.

The Columbus Dispatch newspaper reported that Dublin city officials are expected to vote on whether to proceed with the Amazon offer on Sept. 22.

(Reporting by Deepa Seetharaman. Editing by Andre Grenon)