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County amends incentives deal with Charles Schwab

Wednesday, December 16, 2015 by Caleb Pritchard

Travis County Commissioners Court on Tuesday amended an incentives package with investment giant Charles Schwab, accounting for a delay in the firm’s construction of a new regional headquarters in Austin. Katie Gipson, a strategic planning analyst with the Planning and Budget Office, told the Court that the firm met with permitting troubles with the city of Austin and was asking the county to adjust the time tables of the incentives agreement to reflect a year-long delay. The amendments also include Charles Schwab’s agreement to increase the total amount of its local investment by nearly half a million dollars, bringing the sum to more than $197 million. The company will also now pay its construction workers a minimum of $13 per hour, up $2 from the original agreement the court approved in 2014. The basic terms of the deal – $3.6 million in tax rebates in exchange for creating 823 jobs over 10 years – remain the same. County Judge Sarah Eckhardt noted that she very likely would not have voted for the plan in the first place had she been on the dais back then. However, she said most of the amendments improved the agreement and were worthy of her support. The item passed unanimously.

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