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Wal-Mart announces two Polk County e-commerce sites, 625 jobs

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An incentives deal with mega-retailer Wal-Mart will bring 625 jobs and a pair of new warehouses to Polk County, Gov. Rick Scott announced Thursday.

“I’m proud to announce that Wal-Mart will be creating 625 new jobs at their new e-commerce facilities in Polk County,” Scott said. “Because of our work to create a business-friendly environment, more businesses like Wal-Mart are choosing Florida as the best place to grow and create new jobs.”

The first facility, measuring around 1 million square feet, will employ 500 workers and serve as an online order fulfillment center for smaller items like clothes and consumer electronics. The other 125 jobs will go to the second facility, which will be slightly larger and handle oversized items such as furniture.

Details of the new incentives package aren’t known, though Wal-Mart has netted heaps of Florida economic development money in the past, including about $450,000 for a different deal in Polk County that required the retailer to add 237 jobs and make $2 million in capital investments.

That deal was paid out through brownfield redevelopment bonuses, which rewards companies with tax refunds for setting up shop in abandoned and underused industrial zones.

The new deal adds to a list of efforts to bring warehouse jobs to the area, including a pair of Polk County deals with online-only retailer Amazon. Amazon’s package in the county would give the company about $1 million in incentives for 348 jobs.

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for SaintPetersBlog and While at the University of Florida, Wilson was an editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and after graduation, he moved to Los Angeles to cover business deals for The Hollywood Reporter. Before joining Extensive Enterprises, Wilson covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools.

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