Facebook Has To Pay Environmental Impact Penalty To Hire More Employees In California

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And we wonder why California is in the economic and financial shape it’s in (via Coyote Blog):

The city council in Menlo Park, Calif., is set to approve a deal that will let Facebook employ thousands more people at its headquarters there.

Mayor Kirsten Keith says officials are expected to green light the environmental impact report and the development agreement at a meeting Tuesday night. City staff has recommended the city approve the deal.

That means Facebook employees, currently numbering about 2,200 in Menlo Park, will soon be able to stretch out. If the deal is approved, Facebook will be able to employ about 6,600 workers in Menlo Park, up from its current limit of 3,600. That was the constraint on Sun Microsystems, which previously occupied the campus.

Facebook will pay Menlo Park an average of $850,000 a year over 10 years to compensate for the additional load on the city. It will also make a one-time payment of more than $1 million for capital improvements and set up community services such as high school internship and job training programs. Facebook is also creating a $500,000 local community fund that will dole out grants and charitable contributions to communities surrounding Facebook’s campus.

Facebook is making the payments because Menlo Park can’t collect sales taxes from Facebook.

In other words, in order for Facebook (a profitable and growing company, recent stock market adventures aside) to stimulate the local economy by employing more people the company had to kiss the ring of the local government and pay a big, fat bribe.

And this stuff about a fee in lieu of sales taxes is utterly bogus. Facebook no doubt pays property taxes on their facilities. The employees pay property taxes and sales taxes and all the other local fees and taxes. That isn’t enough? The company has to pay a bribe too?

In related news, California is losing businesses faster than any other state in the nation.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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  • Hannitized, Proofs obsession

    In other words, in order for Facebook (a profitable and growing company, recent stock market adventures aside) to stimulate the local economy by employing more people the company had to kiss the ring of the local government and pay a big, fat bribe.

    No, not at all. 

    The fact is you just don’t understand an effing thing.  If they aren’t paying taxes how does the city deal with all of the burden to the roads and highways those people are making when traveling to work, or on public school systems?

    There is a debt to society that the Founding Fathers created to cover for things like roads and other infrastructure.

    In other words; you’re a fucking idiot.

    • Ndlandman

      They are paying taxes, property taxes to start with. Secondly, the employees will also be making purchases in Menlo Park (gas, food…) which are all subject to sales tax.

      Your argument about debt to society… roads… school systems is bogus, most places around the country do not have systems like this set up and yet them cover all of those costs (refer back to property taxes, sales taxes!)

    • The Fighting Czech

      yes they are still paying taxes…. they pay property tax,  as well as income tax,  they pay sale tax,  they will employ maybe  6000 people who also pay income taxes,  sales taxes, property taxes,  and they in turn will be buying things they need from local people, who will be paying additional taxes, on income they may not have had before Facebook came on the scene….
      However,  The main theme of this story, should not be the graft Facebook paid to build in this city.  But should be the competence of their management group to set up shop in such an expensive area, when so many more appealing locations are available through out the country.  This maybe a decision they will regret sooner then later,  if the  declining stock prices continue to go down….
      As far as im concerned,  As long as Facebook doesnt become the object of a 2014 stimulus program,  They can do as they please…

      • ellinas1

        “….they pay sale tax…..”
        What does facebook sells that is taxable?

        • The Fighting Czech

          I understand they are selling apps.  I was assuming that those are taxable items… I could be wrong…

          • ellinas1

            You are wrong.

      • Hannitized, Proofs obsession

        The main theme of this story, should not be the graft Facebook paid to build in this city.  But should be the competence of their management group to set up shop in such an expensive area, when so many more appealing locations are available through out the country.

        The best minds aren’t in other appealing locations through the country, most are right where they are located.

        I know many conservatives choose to deny this, but some of the most innovative and skilled technology minds are in California.

  • mikemc1970

    Californian farmers are no longer allowed to grow food. Americas once abundant salad bowl is empty. They have one of the highest debt of any states in the union. And governor Moon Beam is begging for higher taxes. Then they put such burdens on businesses like this. Even the Chinese have stopped buying real estate there and switched to Arizona. But the real problem is that the idiots who made it such a terrible place to live and work are fleeing to other areas of the country and turning those places into terrible places to live and work.

  • mickey_moussaoui

    I’ve been to Menlo Park and it’s booming with tech companies. That whole area between San Mateo to San Jose is doing well. Facebook could of moved anywhere in that vacinity.

    • Jay

      Alternately Facebook could HAVE moved anywhere in the vicinity.

  • http://www.technispace.com/ Technispace

    I think facebook can afford this

    • larrybud

      Irrelevant. 

  • larrybud

    The perverse disincentive to hire American workers continues.

    Businesses need to start standing up for themselves, and move the hell out of whatever area wants to punish them for hiring workers.  Maybe only then will the electorate wake up and kick out the morons that enact such inane policies as this.

    • Hannitized, Proofs obsession

      How do you know that the employees are American born?  Have you ever been to The Bay Area?

  • Jay

    Is Facebook aprofitable and growing company, Rob? From what I see by wartching its stock daily, it’s cratering.

  • ellinas1

    When companies come to North Dakota and the local and/or State government gives them land,  tax and other breaks, Rob Port screams bloody murder/crony capitalism.
    Here is a company that is required to pay taxes and the impact it has on the infrastructure, and we have guess who screaming again: That’s right. Rob Port. This time he screams because this company did not get the North Dakota treatment.
    One cannot please this con(servative) or libertarian as he calls himself. 
    Unless Port has thought of it and or blessed it, it’s not good.

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