Google Responds To Allegations That It’s Trying To Skimp On Taxes

( Google has been offered tax breaks as part of the construction of the new office building it is building in Hudson Square in New York.

However, the company said this week that it would forfeit any of the tax breaks available to them.

Media outlet The City reported that Google will end up following through on the purchase of the St. John’s Terminal facility, for $2.1 billion, to construct a massive office building.

The developer of the project, Oxford Properties, started to apply for the city’s Industrial and Commercial Abatement Program (ICAP) to use for the project. However, Google won’t be accepting any of those funds apparently.

The three buildings Google is constructing will be part of a campus that totals 1.7 million square feet. It will be located at 345 and 315 Hudson streets, as well as the St. John’s Terminal, located at 550 Washington Street in Manhattan.

Before this acquisition, Google had already been leasing space at the terminal. Earlier this year, though, the company announced it planned to invest even more money into the building.

The terminal will be used as Google’s anchor site. It’s currently scheduled to open sometime in the middle of 2023.

Along with the new buildings, Google has plans to hire an addition 2,000 workers to staff the location, which would increase its total workforce in New York City to 14,000 people.

When Amazon was planning to located its East Coast headquarters in Long Island City, it was planning to take advantage of the ICAP tax break. Officials for Google, though, said they wouldn’t seek out the ICAP nor any other tax breaks that were offered by the city or state.

On Tuesday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the deal for the Google property is the largest sale of office space in the United States since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

As he said at a daily press briefing earlier this week:

“It’s a really, really big deal for New York City, and this is one of the shots in the arm we need as part of our comeback.”

At the same time de Blasio praised one big tech firm, he blasted another. He took direct aim at Amazon for canceling plans to located headquarters in New York City, saying it isn’t fair for Amazon to compare their plans to Google’s. The mayor said:

“We worked to get a fair deal from Amazon. We thought we had a fair deal with Amazon. They said yes, and then they walked away.”

Google, meanwhile, has said they continue to root themselves in New York City because of the “energy, creativity and world-class talent” there, the company’s CFO, Ruth Porat, said.

Passing on the available tax credits is no small thing, either. Google could be eligible for up to $3,000 in tax credits for each job it creates every year.