Amid Amazon HQ Contest, Kasich Says Ohio Doesn't Use Tax Incentives to 'Buy Deals'

Oct 23, 2017
Originally published on October 23, 2017 9:20 am

Several Ohio cities put in bids with Amazon for its second headquarters, complete with offers of tax breaks. But Gov. John Kasich maintains, while he’s hoping high-tech firms are looking at Ohio, the state does not “buy deals.” Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler talked with Kasich about luring technology companies to the state.

Facebook’s Columbus-area data center will create about 100 jobs, with $37 million in state and local tax incentives. Three Amazon data centers in Ohio will create 120 jobs with $82 million in state and local tax incentives. Kasich said the state calculates a return on investment before offering incentives to companies.

“If they do not pay back the investment of the state over a reasonable period of time, ... we don’t offer them the deal. And we don’t get in a race with other states to buy deals," Kasich said.

Though he didn’t elaborate on the return-on-investment formula, he cited the deal offered by Ohio to Foxconn. Kasich said it was a third of what Wisconsin offered, which was nearly $3 billion in incentives.

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