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Today in HQ2

Tuesday, August 21, 2018 by Chad Swiatecki

Another month, another survey weighing in on the governmental bidding war to land Amazon’s vaunted HQ2 facility. And this time Austin is in the driver’s seat. Financial news channel CNBC published new grades for the 20 finalist cities based on population, stability, talent and location, which gave Austin and Dallas the top overall grades of A-. Touting the Texas metros, the site writes: “No state has a better infrastructure, and the state’s business climate is the picture of stability, thanks to the nation’s best all-around state economy. Austin offers not only those attributes but also a legendary tech scene fed by the state’s flagship university and a vibe that tech talent can love.” It then hedges that Austin’s high property taxes could be a drawback, and it makes no mention of the area’s transit deficiencies. What this all means as far as actually landing the project and the estimated 50,000 high-paying jobs it would bring is anyone’s guess – these rankings remain a fun, if fruitless, bit of clickbait parlor games. The e-commerce giant has shown none of its cards with respect to when it will announce its decision. Speaking of cards, has anyone at City Hall consulted with a tarot card reader on this matter of vital economic development importance? Someone get the 311 folks on the phone.

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