published Monday, May 16th, 2011

Amazon ready to hire, says could open in fall

To apply:

Hourly jobs: apply at http://www.amazonapplyonline.com/tenn or call 866-885-6277 for more information.

Management jobs: apply at www.amazon.com/careers

Amazon is ready to start hiring the bulk of its workers for distribution centers in Hamilton and Bradley counties.

“We’re looking forward to opening our first two facilities in Tennessee this fall, creating 1,200 jobs,” said Dave Clark, vice president of North American operations for Amazon.

The nation’s biggest online retailer has continued construction on two massive facilities while trying to fend off legislation in Nashville that would force it to collect sales tax from Tennessee customers.

The company announced two websites that people can go to and submit applications, along with a telephone number.

J.Ed. Marston, the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce’s vice president of marketing, said the hiring announcement is a positive step.

“This is a situation that has some angles not typical,” he said. “We’re looking at every milestone as positive.”

Earlier this spring, the company began taking applications for mostly top management posts.

According to Amazon, full-time hourly openings include jobs in picking, packing and receiving and shipping.

Management slots include positions in operations, safety, human resources and technical support.

The Seattle-based company said jobs will come with benefits such as medical, dental, vision, life and disability insurance, vacation, annual stock grants and a 401(k) program.

Amazon also has announced it plans to hire up to 2,000 seasonal workers in Hamilton and Bradley.

Last week, Tennessee state senators grilled Amazon representatives about the company’s assertions the state can’t make it collect sales taxes from in-state customers.

Proposed legislation seeks to force Amazon to collect sales taxes, which can total 9.75 percent in state and local levies. Senate action on the bill was delayed until this week.

Meanwhile, Amazon said it is looking at building three more distribution centers in Nashville or Knoxville. It would invest $180 million more than the $139 million it’s plowing into Southeast Tennessee.

The company also said it could hire about 1,700 full-time workers and 2,000 part-time or seasonal employees for the three new facilities.

about Mike Pare...

Mike Pare, the deputy Business editor at the Chattanooga Times Free Press, has worked at the paper for 27 years. In addition to editing, Mike also writes Business stories and covers Volkswagen, economic development and manufacturing in Chattanooga and the surrounding area. In the past he also has covered higher education. Mike, a native of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., received a bachelor’s degree in communications from Florida Atlantic University. he worked at the Rome News-Tribune before ...

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timesfreepress said...

How much of a difference do you think this will make for the local economy?

May 16, 2011 at 2:32 a.m.
nucanuck said...

Amazon will definately boost the local economy initially, but on-line sales growth will harm retail employment nationwide in the long run. Maybe we don't need local retail, or at least not so much. All productivity increases impact someone's job. Walmart put many a small retailer out of business, now Amazon and their like may well force some Walmart stores to experience declines over time.

Additionally, on-line sales undermine the Tennessee economic sales tax base and will eventually force a new method of state taxation.

Amazon, in and of itself, is not the problem. The problem is how to move the State forward with more and more product being sold on-line without the taxes necessary to run the State.

The deal with Amazon to forgo state tax collection while having a physical presence in state will, no doubt, bring on a wave of lawsuits from existing disadvantaged retail wishing to cease tax collections.

Here come the lawyers.

May 16, 2011 at 3:10 a.m.
smadave said...

Perhaps Mike could include the websites and/or phone number that Amazon reportedly disclosed so that those of us who are interested, may inquire about employment

May 16, 2011 at 6:58 a.m.
rolando said...

Still pushing for your uncontrolled and uncontrollable income tax, I see nucanuck.

Taxpayers directly control the tax rate through the ballot box on each and every raise in the sales tax.

The Legislature directly controls the tax rate of the income tax, raising it when they run out of cash or have some new project to pay for. Taxpayers have no input in the matter.

Amazon will have no legally-defined "physical presence" in Tennessee. According to the US Supreme Court, fulfillment centers do NOT constitute such a "physical presence" for sales tax, any more than a truck carrying goods from Kentucky to Georgia is not considered such "physical presence" for sales tax purposes.

WalMart can stand a few declines...maybe they will sell something besides Chinese-made.

Besides, sales tax is just a small part of the larger reason people buy on-line...it is significantly cheaper and stretches the dollar.

May 18, 2011 at 6:05 p.m.
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