New York officials and business executives are pleading with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to give New York City another chance after the retailer earlier this month backed out of aamid fierce community opposition.
In a full-page ad in The New York Times, dozens of politicians and corporate leaders such as Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon and Mastercard CEO Ajay Banga pleaded with Bezos to reconsider.
“New Yorkers do not want to give up on the 25,000 permanent jobs, 11,000 union construction and maintenance jobs, and $28 billion in new tax revenues that Amazon was preparing to bring to our state,” the letter said.
“We urge you to reconsider,” it added.
Amazon didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
The letter said New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo “will take personal responsibility for the project’s state approval and [New York City] Mayor [Bill] de Blasio will work together with the governor to manage the community development process.”
Amazon on Feb. 14to build a second headquarters in New York City, citing opposition from some state and local politicians. The decision came after Cuomo and de Blasio drew fire from local officials and community activists for sidestepping the usual public process for approving such projects and negotiating the deal behind closed doors.
Cuomo has had many phone discussions with Amazon executives during the last two weeks, including Bezos, in an attempt to reverse the company’s decision, reports The New York Times.
The open letter acknowledged Amazon’s HQ2 was given a “rough and not very welcoming” response by some New Yorkers.
“Opinions are strong in New York — sometimes strident,” the letter noted. “We consider it part of the New York charm!”