Seattle and Chicago are now targets for Arizona officials seeking to lure businesses

Seattle and Chicago are now targets for AZ officials seeking to lure businesses

Published: 05/23/2018
Updated: 05/17/2022

Written by , The Republic | | May 23, 2018

Arizona economic-development officials are seeking to lure employers from high-tax cities and states, and a controversial employment tax that was approved May 14 in Seattle could make their job easier.

The tax has led to boisterous town meetings, protests by construction workers and a halt in the building of an Amazon tower in downtown Seattle.

The tax aims to ease homelessness by generating revenue from several hundred larger businesses with significant Seattle operations. Affected companies would pay 14 cents for every hour each of their Seattle employees worked. The city’s homeless population has swelled in recent years along with rising housing prices. The tax could generate up to $47 million a year.

The Greater Phoenix Economic Council now identifies Seattle, along with the San Francisco Bay Area and Chicago, as its three prime targets for company relocation or expansion plans, said Chris Camacho, the group’s president and CEO, in an interview.

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