Amazon has responded to a letter Seattle politicians sent to the company in October, seeking to “hit the refresh button” on their relationship with the city’s top private employer. The Puget Sound Business Journal obtained the letter, which Amazon sent in response on Nov. 29. It suggests sitting down for a roundtable in January to chart a new path forward.
Special Coverage: Amazon to build second HQ in North America
Seattle officials sent the original mea culpa letter a few weeks after Amazon announced plans to establish a second headquarters in another North American city.
“You have heard mixed messages from our community, whether it stems from comments in our local newspapers or comments from elected officials who have differing views and positions that are less than collaborative,” the city’s original letter says. “This does not leave a good taste in anyone’s mouth.”
The letter was signed by five Seattle City Council members and representatives from Washington’s legislature, King County Council, Port of Seattle, and others.
Amazon’s response touts the benefits the company has brought to Seattle, including philanthropy and an estimated $38 billion in investment since 2010. Amazon proposes a meeting with the original letter’s signatories to discuss “the challenges and opportunities ahead for the city and how we can best work together,” according to the PSBJ report.
Amazon says 238 cities have responded to its request for proposals for HQ2, causing Seattle to do some soul searching about its relationship with the company, which has driven a population boom and the headaches that go with it.