Amazon Making Good on Boosting California Economy

Cheryl Getuiza
In-house reporter for California Forward, formerly KTLA general assignment desk reporter

First there was the City of San Bernardino. Then there was Patterson. Now, you can add the Tracy to the list of places where internet retailer Amazon is calling home.

The Northern California city will be the third site for a massive distribution center in the state. The warehouse will be situated in a very prime location, close to three major freeways: interstates 5, 205 and 580. It will also be less than 30 miles from the Patterson location.

We first brought you the Inland Empire and the Central Valley stories back in August. These facilities are about one million square feet and are located in areas that were hit hard during the recession. As you can imagine, having the internet retail giant in both of those cities doesn’t just create jobs inside the warehouses but will be a boost for the local economy.

San Bernardino’s warehouse just opened, in time for the holiday shopping season. During a recent press conference, the general manager said more than 700 full-time employees are getting paid 30 percent more than a retail store worker. He expects to hire hundreds of part-time employees in order to fill orders for the holidays.

As for the Patterson facility, it’s set to open in the spring.

Tracy’s unemployment rate, in October, was 8.5 percent, well below the state’s 10.1 percent. Still, the promise of about a thousand jobs is good news.

“We are pleased to see that the strategic planning, re-inventing of our processing capability and deliberate market positioning, undertaken in the past four years, is paying off with this Amazon project as well as those in process,” said Tracy Mayor Brent Ives.

The project is expected to be completed by early fall 2013. The retailer also agreed to a deal with Governor Jerry Brown to start collecting state and local taxes on all goods purchased by California shoppers.

The groundbreaking for these centers is the kind of feel good economic news we like to hear about, especially because thriving regions lead to a thriving state.

Crossposted on California Forward Reporting

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