Texas officials are ready to give Tesla millions of dollars in tax breaks to build its next factory in the Austin area. Commissioners in Travis County voted Tuesday to give Elon Musk’s electric-car maker at least $14.7 million in property tax rebates if it spends at least $1.1 billion on the proposed plant near the …
Texas officials are ready to give Tesla millions of dollars in tax breaks to build its next factory in the Austin area.
Commissioners in Travis County voted Tuesday to give Elon Musk’s electric-car maker at least $14.7 million in property tax rebates if it spends at least $1.1 billion on the proposed plant near the Austin airport, according to reports.
Tesla shares were off 1 percent at $1,501.49 in early Wednesday trades.
The approval marked Texas’s latest salvo in its battle with Oklahoma to host the factory that will produce Tesla’s futuristic Cybertruck along with its Model Y SUVs. The Lone Star State has put together nearly $65 million in tax incentives to lure the California-based company, including some $50 million from the Austin area’s Del Valle school district.
“The local economy is in the midst of a pandemic-induced recession, and those most vulnerable to job loss possess the skill and educational levels that tend to align with the requirements of many of the jobs that Tesla will provide,” Travis County officials wrote in a memo recommending approval of the tax breaks.
Tulsa, Oklahoma is also making a spirited push for the factory with a confidential incentive package that includes personal and business tax breaks. A Tesla owners group even made over the city’s giant “Golden Driller” statute to look like Musk.
Local residents reportedly pressed Travis County officials to act quickly so the area wouldn’t lose the project and its expected 5,000 jobs. Rohan Patel, senior global director of public policy at Tesla, acknowledged that the company was in active talks with other jurisdictions, according to The Verge.
“We had a call with the governor of another state and mayor of another town just yesterday to go through a whole bunch of things, similar to what we’re going through right now, so I I can’t say much more than that,” Patel reportedly said during Tuesday’s meeting. “We have to make a decision early because these things take a long time and there’s a lot that we have to put in place.”
But critics pointed to Tesla’s troubled history of labor relations and workplace safety problems, according to the Austin American-Statesman newspaper. Musk has faced controversy for restarting production during the coronavirus pandemic at Tesla’s factory in California, which has reportedly seen a surge in COVID-19 infections.
With Post wires