Jefferson Co. Commission approves Amazon incentives package

Jefferson Co. Commission approves Amazon incentives package
(Source: WBRC Video)

JEFFERSON COUNTY, AL (WBRC) - The Jefferson County Commission has voted 5-0 on an incentives package for a possible Amazon fulfillment center.

The company is considering building a 133-acre distribution center near Bessemer High School, adding three roads to the warehouse. Those approved incentives include $3 million for road improvements and reimbursements to Amazon.

The approval is expected to mean a $325 million investment in Bessemer, starting with 1,500 jobs possibly growing to 3,000. These will be full-time positions starting at $14.50 with full benefits.

"At $325 million project in the city of Bessemer it becomes the largest project in the history of the city of Bessemer." Kenneth Gulley, Bessemer Mayor said.

Another lure for Bessemer is educational opportunities for students. Bessemer High School is nearby with a 43 percent graduation rate. Jefferson County Commissioner David Carrington said the Amazon has a dramatic impact.

"Now Amazon can go across the street and say, 'Look, get your high school degree and after one year they are going to give you $3,000 to pursue your education,'" Carrington said.

The Bessemer City Council will vote on their incentive package Tuesday. It will rebate occupational taxes on a sliding scale depending on the jobs Amazon generates.

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