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February 05, 2007

Success Gets to Google's Head

posted by MR WAVETHEORY at 2/05/2007 02:08:00 AM
Charlotte Observer writes an article about how Google strong-armed government officials while negotiating to locate its server farm in Caldwell County. Basically, Google dictated the terms of its real estate deal to the county. Hmmm...

Google tried to silence lawmakers and pushed, at times with a heavy hand, to influence legislation designed to bring the company to Caldwell County.

The company demanded that legislators never speak its name, and had them scolded when word of its interest in North Carolina leaked out, according to records made public this week.

As work proceeded on the bill to remove much of its tax burden, Google threatened to end negotiations because legislative staff didn't write exactly what it wanted. State Commerce Secretary Jim Fain was asked to "prevail upon" the bill writer.

Indeed, the first set of state documents released from the 13-month negotiations reveal a company obsessed with secrecy and not above bullying, tactics that helped get it tax breaks that could top $100 million over three decades.

"I sort of had to work in the dark," said Sen. Jim Jacumin, a Republican who represents Caldwell County. "That bothered me. They need to respect the laws of the land, even if they're business."

Success gets to people's heads sometimes!

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