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Either Facebook is building another huge barn in Iowa and does not want you to know … • The Register

A legal entity called Siculus Inc plans to build a data center of 1 million square meters (92,900 m)2) next to Facebook's 2.5 million square feet (232,257m)2) Infrastructure campus in Altoona, Iowa.

The company, codenamed Project Sequelant, has already been approved by the Altoona Planning and Zoning Commission.

Is the legal person working for Facebook? Altoona officials told the Des Moines Register that they could neither confirm nor deny – despite the fact that Facebook had already built Siculus data centers in the region in 2013.

Oh, and there is also this 2017 US Securities and Exchange Commission document listing Siculus Inc. as a subsidiary of Facebook, along with Greater Kudu LLC – another alias used by Facebook to secure data center real estate in New Mexico.

"We are very excited that another 1 million square foot data center is coming into the community," said Altoona City administrator Jeff Mark, without naming a name. "It provides a lot of good jobs in the community, both in the contractors and in the operation of the data center."

Large US data center operators often use shell companies to obscure their identity when negotiating with local authorities and businesses. For example, Google Sharka LLC used it when planning a campus in Midlothian, Texas, and Jasmine Development LLC of Henderson, Nevada. Facebook previously moved into Raven Northbrook, Nebraska.

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One of the reasons for smoke and mirrors is the fact that once locals find out that a big online business is coming to the city, the locals lose their shit. Residents actually demand real benefits for their community instead of demanding blank platitudes about the transformative power of the digital economy and jobs for engineers from outside the cities – which is at least partly responsible for the destruction of Amazon's HQ2 plans in New York ,

The relative anonymity of the Shell companies allows Hyperscalers to contact local authorities to change laws. Facebook did so in Iowa with its demand for tax credits for wind energy production, but most importantly, it allows Facebook-sized companies to negotiate their generous tax breaks in peace.

Facebook began working with Siculus in 2013 when it developed a $ 1 billion data center called Project Catapult, which was to choose between Iowa and Nebraska. The company hired the state governments to see what more tax refunds were.

Iowa won around $ 18 million in development incentives for taxpayers after Facebook's Palming. In return, the state got 30 full-time jobs. Today, this number is closer to 300 after several major extensions.

The same thing happened when Facebook operated through Greater Kudu on Project Discus in 2016. The deal was approaching both New Mexico and Utah, essentially piling the two states into a bidding war over who could throw more money into one of the richest companies in the world (number) to be exact).

Utah planned to offer up to $ 240 million, but had vetoed the decision at the last moment. Therefore, Los Lunas won in New Mexico (if you call this profit) after he had agreed to waive the property taxes for the next 30 years and to pay taxes breaks in the cost of computer equipment.

In 2016, the US think book Good Jobs First calculated that tax breaks and other incentives for hyperscale data centers meant that state and local governments were paying about $ 2 million for each new job.

Facebook's own study published in 2018 has claimed that the company's US data centers, including Altoona, have been contributing $ 5.8 billion to the country's GDP since 2010, with five jobs for each job in the data center Sectors of the economy were supported. ®

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