February 18, 2019
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Amazon announces it will not build HQ2 in New York, but the jobs won't come to Seattle

One of the companies that put Seattle on the map, Amazon, announced last Thursday it would stop expanding in the city after 2 million square feet of office buildings are completed in the coming years. The company also took the opportunity to announce it had canceled plans to build one-half of its second headquarters (HQ2) in New York amid opposition from “certain state legislators,” Fortune reports.

In a blog post, Amazon said: “For Amazon, the commitment to build a new headquarters requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials who will be supportive over the long-term. While polls show that 70 percent of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many others envisioned.”

The 25,000 jobs intended for New York will still be created, however they will be spread across other tech-hub cities outside Seattle, the company said. The other half of the company’s HQ2 will be built in Virginia, which, to date, is still moving forward.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio took to Twitter with an angry response to the announcement, writing, “You have to be tough to make it in New York City. We gave Amazon the opportunity to be a good neighbor and do business in the greatest city in the world. Instead of working with the community, Amazon threw away that opportunity.”

Amazon said it does not plan to open a search to replace the HQ2 scuttled in The Empire State.

Amazon has a little over 45,000 employees in Seattle, by far the largest employer, and currently has 9,300 unfilled positions and 44 offices in the city, The Seattle Times reports.

POLITICO and CNN also covered the story.

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Career-Connected Learning Works

How do you get there from here? Career Connect Washington

By Avista CEO Scott Morris and IBEW Local 77 Assistant Business Manager Mike Brown

It's sometimes hard to remember how hard the "What do you want to be when you grow up?" question is. The follow-up question is even harder: "How are you going to get there?"

We know that young people don't always have the answers, but they are curious and eager to explore their options. They want to learn about different careers and what mix of experience and classroom learning is needed to do those jobs. They are excited about their next steps, but also cautious about challenges like educational debt...

"Career-connected learning" is a broad term for programs that help students explore, prepare and start their careers. It helps kids get out of the classroom and try on different jobs and different industries, so when it's time to make big life decisions, they are better prepared to step up...

Career Connect Washington is a coalition of employers, unions, educators, state agencies and others who are trying to ensure that all students in the state have the chance to do career-connected learning.

Read the full guest column in The Spokesman-Review
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