Tesla Cybertruck Gigafactory Incentives Heavily Discussed By Commissioners Court In Texas

by Ma. Claribelle Deveza July 08, 2020

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Featured Image Credit: Tesla

Travis County Commissioners Court heavily discussed the incentives it could give Tesla for its Cybertruck Gigafactory if it wins the bid. Commissioners called a recess after a 3-hour executive session. They will reconvene on July 8 to discuss Tesla’s potential incentives further.

Tesla’s incentives deal in Travis County includes a property tax rebate estimated to be worth about US14.65 million over ten years and tax abatements from Del Valle Independent School District, which could save the EV manufacturer almost US$50 million over a decade.

Texas seems acutely aware of the economic opportunities Tesla could bring into the state and the community that will surround its Cybertruck and Model Y factory. “Tesla opening a factory in Southeast Austin will be transformative for Central Texas by adding another layer of diversification and resilience to our economy,” said Ed Latson, an executive director of the Austin Regional Manufacturers Association, to the Austin Business Journal.

“It will create high-paying jobs that provide opportunity to all educational backgrounds, from PhDs to GEDs. And it should be a magnet for an entire ecosystem of businesses and suppliers that support automotive plants and their employees,” Latson elaborated.

Tesla had stated that its' Cybertruck and Model Y Gigafactory could bring 5,000 “middle-skill” jobs to Travis County. The company also said that Giga Texas employees could receive an average annual salary north of US$47,000.

While some people in Texas share Latson’s view of Tesla’s Cybertruck Gigafactory, others—such as labor organizations—are a bit more cautious about welcoming the EV automaker into the state.

“If Tesla comes to build their factory in Travis County, our community [should] receive good, safe jobs for all workers on this project,” said Jessica Wolff, deputy policy director for Workers Defense Project, during a discussion about Tesla’s next factory on June 7. “We need specifics—what types of jobs, how many will be temporary versus permanent [and] what are the starting wages and benefits each will receive?” Wolff said.

Wolff’s questions and other queries people have voiced since Tesla formally proposed its Cybertruck and Model Y factory in Travis County might weigh heavily in the minds of commissioners. It may be the reason Travis County’s commissioners court is taking so long to make a final decision.

Commissioner Jeff Travillion said that they called a recess to “empower development staff to take the discussion that we had during executive session and bring back the results so that we can evaluate them tomorrow.” Based on Travillion’s quote, the commissioners want to be well-informed and researched before making any final decisions about Tesla’s incentives deal and inviting the company to build its Cybertruck and Model Y Gigafactory in Texas.




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