By Robert McCartney and Laura Vozzella
The Virginia Senate easily approved state tax incentives of up to $750 million over the next 15 years for Amazon to build a headquarters facility in Arlington. It also narrowly rejected a proposal for a $15 minimum wage.
The Amazon package, which passed 35 to 5, would provide cash grants to the online retail giant on condition that the company create tens of thousands of jobs with average pay of at least $150,000 a year.
The bill still needs the House’s approval, but it is expected to pass there. Supporters from both parties said the state would reap several times more in tax revenue than it would give in grants to Amazon.
The bill would include giving grants of $22,000 per new full-time job for the first 25,000 jobs, for a maximum of $550 million. After that, grants of $15,564 per new job would be issued for up to 12,850 additional jobs, for a total of $200 million.