Amazon Gets Tax Deal From Tennessee – To Create New Jobs

October 07 00:00 2011

New York, October 7 ( – In a controversial agreement that envisages that Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) will start collecting sales taxes from Tennesseans only from 2014, Gov. Bill Haslam has added a condition that Amazon will have to double the company’s distribution centers and the number of workers in the state.

According to the deal, Amazon will have to build two new centers and hire 1,500 to 1,700 full-time workers to staff the centers. These centers will be over and above the two new distribution centers that Amazon is planning to open in Hamilton and Bradley counties for which it has already spent $139 million and is employing 1,500 full-time workers. It had also announced plans to open a warehouse in Lebanon, Tenn., with 300 to 500 workers.

Pointing out to the agreements that Amazon had recently entered into with California, Mike Cohen, the Tennessee spokesman of the Alliance for Main Street Fairness, a Virginia-based coalition of mom-and-pop stores and major retailers including Wal-Mart, said that waiting till 2014 for Amazon to start collecting sales tax is too long. He asked “If Amazon can agree to start collecting the sales tax in one year in California, why should we have to wait one day longer in Tennessee?”

Alexia Poe, spokeswoman for Haslam, said the number of part-time seasonal jobs might increase as a result of the deal.