Xerox

Zack Seward / WXXI

Xerox is bringing a new call center to its Webster, N.Y. manufacturing campus.

But not without a hefty aid package from the state.

"We've got call centers in more than a dozen states," says Xerox spokesman Carl Langsenkamp. "We could have put the call center anywhere."

Xerox is spending $4.3 million on the new customer care center and planning to create up to 500 jobs by the end of 2013, according to Langsenkamp.

To land the project, the state's economic development arm is dishing out up to $6 million in incentives and Monroe County is chipping in with $271,000 in tax relief.

One observer says the cost far outweighs the benefit.

"For the 300 to 500 families who will get a job at the call center, this is great news," Reuters columnist David Cay Johnston tells the Innovation Trail. "For everybody else, this is awful.

"It is the latest example of corporate socialism."

Zack Seward / WXXI

Monroe County's industrial development agency (COMIDA) approved a $271,000 sales tax exemption for Xerox Tuesday.

The goal: land a call center in Webster that could create 350 new jobs over the next three years.

But cementing the tax deal doesn't guarantee that Xerox will go ahead with the project.

"This is significant. It will play a role in our decision process," said Xerox spokesman Bill McKee. "However, we are still exploring where we will place that call center."

McKee says locations in Maine, Kentucky and other states are in also in the running. He says Xerox will build the call center "where it makes the most economic sense."

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