While that made a nice photo op and press release for the governor, we get the truth of the story today from the Charlotte Business Journal.
It turns out, Hewitt was coming to Charlotte anyway as it just signed a new contract to provide human-resource services to Bank of America, headquartered in Charlotte. So where else were they going to go? They had no choice but to come to Charlotte.
Not only that, but this deal has been in the works for at least a year. Fidelity, the former HR service provider, announced last year that it was dropping BofA as a client. Do you think it was just a coincidence that Gov. Perdue announces the package last week and then the President shows up a day or two later talking about jobs? And then, just so happens on Monday following all that, BofA announces that it has signed Hewitt to do its HR servicing.
We are often told by incentive proponents that incentives are the “deciding factor” in whether a company comes to North Carolina or not. They cannot make that claim here. Hewitt was coming regardless of the incentive because it had just signed up a major client in the state. So Hewitt pockets $4 million for doing what it was going to do anyway. That’s not an incentive, that’s a corporate handout. (And a little good press for the Governor never hurts either right?)