Fresno, Bakersfield Place Bids For Amazon HQ2

Oct 19, 2017

Cities across the country are vying for the chance to be the site of Amazon’s second headquarters. Fresno officials sent in their pitch today.

Most cities flirting with Amazon are highlighting tax incentives and existing amenities like international airports. But mayor Lee Brand says Fresno’s offer may seem counterintuitive.

“Fresno is not offering any tax incentives to Amazon,” Brand says.

Instead Fresno is proposing a 100-year agreement that will place 85 percent of every tax dollar the second headquarters generate into a fund for things like workforce housing and transportation improvements.

“We can’t compete with New York and all these other cities,” says Brand. “If we just made the next round of the top 100 it would speak volumes for how we’ve progressed as a city.”

Brand says he’d love to see Amazon’s project come to Fresno and bring an estimated 50,000 jobs and $5 billion in economic impact to the city. He admits Fresno is an unlikely destination for the project, but that the region's growing tech sector and high-speed rail set the city apart.

Bakersfield area leaders have also submitted a similar proposal to lure the retail giant to Kern County.