Christie Seeks Tax Credit Overhaul to Attract Amazon

TRENTON (AP) -

New Jersey’s lawmaker are going all in on Gov. Chris Christie’s proposal to overhaul a state tax incentive program that has awarded billions of dollars to draw businesses in a drive to persuade Amazon to build its second home in the state.

The Democratic and Republican leaders of the state’s Legislature said in a letter Wednesday they’re behind Christie’s proposal and asked the governor to include their letter in the “unified” application to Amazon.

Christie is also seeking support from Republican and Democratic candidates running to replace him to support the changes, including allowing Grow NJ tax incentives to be used anywhere in the state, eliminating a rule that they be used to attract businesses to some of the state’s most economically depressed cities.

The legislators’ letter shows broad support for the notion that New Jersey should be home to Amazon’s second headquarters, as there is in many cities across the country hoping to win over the company.

Republican Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno “enthusiastically” backed Christie’s request for a commitment to continue what he says will be his administration’s effort to attract Seattle-based Amazon, according to her campaign.

Democrat Phil Murphy has called for New Jersey to pitch itself for Amazon’s new home, but also calls out corporate tax incentives in a new ad. Murphy’s campaign said Wednesday he’s expected to reply to Christie by Friday.

The prospect of attracting Amazon’s second headquarters has sent officials across the country scrambling to win the bid, with the prospect of $5 billion in investments and 50,000 jobs.