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State's $800M Panasonic Deal Doesn't Require New Jobs

The deal has some troubling details.

Kansas recently announced that it had brokered a deal where Panasonic would build a new battery plant in the town of De Soto.

The company plans to invest $4 billion in the factory and employ 4,000 workers.

In exchange for the project, the state has approved taxpayer-funded incentives of $829 million.

But recent reports have uncovered some troubling details about the deal.

According to the Kansas City Star, the state’s economic development package doesn’t require Panasonic to actually create jobs or offer a certain wage in order to receive the funding.

There is, however, a stipulation that Panasonic spend at least $1 billion in building its factory in order to receive the incentives, and it must stay for 15 years.

Despite this, the lack of job requirements was so unorthodox that some experts are scratching their heads.

Nathan Jensen, a government professor at the University of Texas-Austin who studies these types of incentives said wage and labor standards were “economic development 101.”

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