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.