Tesla CEO Elon Musk simply struck an astronomical deal for $2.6 billion (sure, with a “b”) in pay. Good for him — however it’s price noting that New York taxpayers have helped fund a hefty chunk of this biggest-ever corporate-compensation package deal.
We’re pondering of the $750 million in public funds that Gov. Cuomo has shelled out as a part of his Buffalo Billion (now Billion-and-a-Half) program to construct a manufacturing unit and infrastructure for solar-panel maker SolarCity — which was headed to chapter till Tesla acquired it.
You paid for Tesla’s manufacturing unit — saving the electric-car firm the price. And now Tesla can use these financial savings to assist cowl Musk’s deal.
It’s a stomach-turning thought: New York taxpayers are being fleeced to assist pay billions to a person already price an estimated $20 billion. It ought to ship shivers up the backbone of each single one of many state’s 19.9 million residents.
Worse, Cuomo’s promised “return on funding” on that $750 million — hundreds of jobs for economically ailing Buffalo — has but to materialize.
The plant, which started working final yr, now employs just some hundred staff, and its future stays unsure. Certainly, the Buffalo space really misplaced almost 5,000 jobs between December 2016 and December 2017.
In the meantime, Cuomo’s Buffalo Billion did generate an entire mountain of corruption: His former high aide, Joe Percoco, was convicted simply this month. One other key participant, SUNY Polytechnic honcho Alain Kaloyeros faces trial in June.
True, Musk will solely acquire his full $2.6 billion (within the type of inventory choices) if Tesla hits progress targets, and a few are fairly formidable. However beneath the phrases of the deal, he may really earn as a lot as $55 billion (about 1 million occasions as a lot as a beginning instructor’s annual wage) if the agency meets all of the objectives.
And if Tesla does properly sufficient to pay him that a lot, why wouldn’t it want a $750 million handout from New York taxpayers?
Alas, that is Cuomo’s sorry strategy to financial improvement in New York: Bathe favored industries in taxpayer money however ban a terrific supply of recent upstate jobs, fracking (whilst the remainder of the nation thrives from it). Push via sky-high-minimum-wage legal guidelines that make it too costly to rent new staff and preserve taxes within the stratosphere, discouraging rich job-creators. (He’s now shifting to hike taxes once more this yr).
No marvel the upstate area has seen little progress — and even job losses. No marvel its share of the state’s inhabitants continues to plummet, as a brand new Metropolis Planning evaluation of census information exhibits.
What a tragic backside line: New York suffers whereas the billionaires develop richer.