Jobs for Whitehall? Call Amazon

A proposal for an Amazon Fulfillment Center coming to Whitehall to generate jobs was made at the November Village Board meeting by Roark Merrill, who has purchased the Whitehall Armory.

“I’m in communication with some people you know by the name of Amazon, and we are requesting that they look at Whitehall as an option for a fulfillment center,” Merrill said.

According to its website, Amazon has provided jobs for more than a million employees globally. Back on August 18, 2020, the company released that they would be expanding their Tech Hubs which would introduce communities to new jobs; specifically, more than 3,500 in the United States.

“Today, we’re excited to announce that we’ve unveiled plans to continue investing and to create 3,500 new tech and corporate jobs across six cities in the United States by expanding our Tech Hubs in Dallas, Detroit, Denver, New York (Manhattan), Phoenix, and San Diego. These expansions represent an investment of more than $1.4 billion and will host teams supporting businesses across Amazon,” the press statement read.

Merrill said he believes Whitehall has potential to offer more jobs to the community and he hopes to work with the village in providing that opportunity. One thing he highlighted was the closest fulfillment center being located in Albany.

“There’s a certain number of people that collect Amazon packages in this area and right now everything is being delivered from Albany,” he said. “I offered to buy a building and create a center where the Amazon trucks would come in at 2 or 3 a.m.”

Something else Merrill sees as a benefit is being able to bring in people from outside the community for the center. It would give Whitehall a chance to get more traffic through town and visitors to the area.

“We could create between 40 to 100 jobs,” he said. “So, with a minimum of 40 and a maximum of 100, to send packages out to neighboring communities. It would also act as a return center for Whitehall and the other communities.”

Amazon says it offers many different benefits for employees and even offers networking support for those who need an extra helping hand. Some of the benefits offered are healthcare for medical, dental, vision, prescription drugs, Health Savings Account with employer contributions and financial support.

“The perks of being an Amazon employee don’t stop at collaborating with great people on delivering smiles to our customers every day. We offer a full range of benefits to regular, full-time US employees eligible family members – including domestic partners and their children,” Amazon’s site says.

On Nov. 18 the sale of the Whitehall Armory was finalized and purchased by Merrill. He is hoping to turn the space into something the community wants and needs.

The plan seemed to be liked by the board and there was no formal vote made regarding the matter.