HB2, News

Company sacrificed millions to skip NC, protest HB2

This week real estate research firm CoStar announced it chose Virginia over North Carolina because of its opposition to North Carolina House Bill 2.

The loss of the major new facility in Charlotte cost the state more than 730 high-paying jobs.

Now a piece in the Charlotte Observer looks at just what the company sacrificed to make that decision – basically, leaving millions in incentives on the table.

From the piece:

North Carolina offered more than double the state incentives that real estate research firm CoStar Group ultimately accepted from the state of Virginia to open a major new facility in Richmond, according to documents obtained by the Observer Thursday.

CoStar had zeroed in on a location in Charlotte, but its board decided against the move because of opposition to the state’s controversial House Bill 2, which limits protections for LGBT individuals, sources have told the Observer. The project would have brought 732 high-paying jobs here over next three years.

A Sept. 12 proposal for the project – code named “Project Tiger” – shows CoStar had considered a $13 million investment in Charlotte for a new facility, which it was considering owning or leasing. The proposal shows that the state would have offered about $8.3 million in tax incentives paid out over 12 years for the project, plus about $1.1 million for customized job training.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe approved a $4 million grant for the project, among other incentives, according to a news release this week. Those other incentives included customized job training, without a dollar amount specified.

The average annual salary of the jobs brought to Charlotte would have topped $56,000, according to a state form CoStar submitted. All of the jobs would have been new hires, with no relocations from other facilities, CoStar said.

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