NY officials to Amazon: Please don't go

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has reportedly had multiple phone conversations with Amazon executives offering them guarantees of support for a New York City campus

'We are a dynamic new center of the country's most inclusive tech economy...' Hakeem Jeffries and Carolyn Maloney.

In a statement responding to Cuomo's efforts to lure Amazon back to Long Island City, Deborah Axt-co-executive director of the community advocacy group Make the Road New York-said the governor needs to stop trying to flatter the world's richest man and "start listening to our communities, who overwhelmingly reject this deal". An Amazon spokeswoman declined to comment. These are issues that other cities which house giant tech companies - like Seattle and San Francisco - are still fighting, but critics say that NY didn't do enough to ensure that the city wouldn't face the same problems when HQ2 moved into Long Island City. Amazon also said it will not reopen the search for its second headquarters, which have come to be known as "HQ2", at this time.

Since the deal fell through, Cuomo has been arguing in public and in private that support for the project was and remains far more widespread than it may have seemed. Michael Gianaris, an Amazon opponent, was nominated for a seat on a little-known board that could have killed the deal. That was small vocal minority. and we don't operate that away. "It's the same people saying they support it who supported it before, and the same people saying they have concerns". One of those members, Erik Gutshall, signaled support for the incentive deal at a public meeting on February 23, saying that Amazon has met "quietly" with community groups.

At the time Cuomo blasted Congress freshman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and her peers for derailing the plans. Three months later, with no end in sight for the sustained political pressure and negative attention, executives made a decision to pull the plug. The company pulled the plug on the project, dubbed HQ2, following vocal and persistent opposition to the plan after it was announced three months ago.

In an open letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos published as an advertisement in the New York Times, prominent New York City figures including the CEOs of financial firms such as Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, and Goldman Sachs, CEOs of technology firms including SAP and Infor, former U.S. Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin, and U.S. Reps.

"At this point they are irrelevant, because there are other ways that the state can get it done", Cuomo said, "and I told Amazon that, that the state approval process I will personally guarantee and I will manage that".

"We think we could have gotten NY done, but you have to say, 'At what cost?,'" Sullivan said at the event, referring to local opposition. "Equally, it is a message to the broader industry".

Gothamist has filed a Freedom of Information Law request with the governor's office, asking for all records and logs of communication between Jeff Bezos and other agents and surrogates of Amazon.

But those who signed the open letter wrote: "A clear majority of New Yorkers support this project and were disappointed by your decision not to proceed".

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