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3 Companies Terminate City Of Austin Incentive Agreements

Updated: Wednesday, June 11 2014, 05:01 PM CDT

Three major companies say "no" to economic incentives in Austin. Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell says that could cost Austin "close to 1,400 quality jobs." 

On Tuesday, U.S. Farathane canceled an incentive agreement to help bring 228 full-time jobs to Austin.  Earlier this week, Dropbox opted not to take a cash grant that would have helped create 170 new jobs. And National Instruments will not proceed with an incentive agreement to help bring 1,000 jobs to Austin.           

Mayor Leffingwell released this statement on the loss of City of Austin incentive agreements: 

"Over the past few weeks the City of Austin has learned that three companies, well respected on the global scale, have opted out of economic incentive agreements which would have assured their expansion in Austin.

The Dropbox, National Instruments and US Farathane agreements represented close to 1,400 quality jobs, potentially for Austin residents...  some of which would have paid an average annual wage of up to $72,000 a year, just about what I make as Mayor of this great city. 

I have long championed the benefits of economic incentives and strongly believe they have contributed to our City's economic success.

In recent months, Austin City Council action instituted stringent requirements in regard to economic incentives.  It concerns me that we have greatly diminished the effectiveness of our incentive program by placing burdensome conditions into the agreements.  These obligations range from exceedingly difficult reporting requirements, to new provisions regarding prevailing wage and minimum living wage, and other requirements.

The disappointing news from NI, Dropbox and US Farathane brings a total of nine companies out of twenty-one deals that have canceled for various reasons.

I maintain that these incentives have played an important part in Austin setting the pace in regard to our unemployment rate, and well respected national economic standing.  We must remember that past and present success is no guarantee of future success." 
-Lee Leffingwell, Mayor of Austin

By Bettie Cross

3 Companies Terminate City Of Austin Incentive Agreements

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