Amazon announces plans to bring another 10,000 jobs to Bellevue
With leases on a pair of office buildings in Bellevue now finalized, Amazon announced Friday that it plans to add another 10,000 jobs on the Eastside in the coming years.
This would be in addition to plans the company announced in February to bring 15,000 jobs to Bellevue. Amazon now either owns or leases 4.8 million square feet of office space in the city, having now added space at the 42-story 555 Tower and the three 16 to 17-story towers in the West Main block. Both new spaces are currently under construction.
Amazon also announced that it will be distributing a $1 million grant to Bellevue’s Human Services Fund “helping local families in need.”
“Amazon’s continued investment in Bellevue, including today’s announcement of adding 10,000 well-paying jobs as well as a $1 million grant to the Humans Services Fund, is a major win for our community and region,” Bellevue Mayor Lynne Robinson said in a news release posted to Amazon’s Day One blog.
It’s unclear whether the 10,000 jobs Amazon plans to add will be taken from Seattle, or if they will be new positions. Friday’s announcement comes in the wake a landmark big business tax Seattle councilmembers passed earlier this summer.
Around the time the tax was passed, Windermere Chief Economist Matthew Gardner warned that the direct fallout could arrive in the form of more Eastside Amazon jobs.
“I think there’s no doubt that we’re going to hear several announcements over the next couple of weeks of some massive expansion by Amazon into Bellevue,” Gardner predicted in July. “Really, it’s going to become one of those really bad-kept secrets.”
The tax, dubbed “JumpStart Seattle” and sponsored by Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda, was first unveiled in mid-June. It will raise over $200 million a year by levying a tax on corporations with payrolls over $7 million. Qualifying businesses will be taxed 0.7% for every employee making over $150,000, and 1.4% for employees making over $500,000.
An earlier version this year was dubbed the “Amazon Tax” by Councilmember Kshama Sawant, similar to the head tax passed and then repealed by the council two years ago. In 2018, Amazon had warned city leaders that an increased tax burden could motivate the company to begin moving its operations out of Seattle.