Proposed Tesla Plant in Austin, Texas, Moves a Step Closer With Hearing

The Travis County Commissioners will hear comments on the site of Tesla's proposed gigafactory.
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A board of local officials in Texas began discussions Tuesday to hear public comment on Tesla's  (TSLA) - Get Report proposed manufacturing plant in suburban Austin.

Shares of Tesla were up nearly 1% to $1,002.30.

The Travis County Commissioners, which will not vote during a scheduled videoconference, will focus on public comment on the proposed site of the electric vehicle maker's proposed gigafactory.

The land is part of the Del Valle Independent School District. Tesla is looking for approval from the Del Valle school board to forgive up to $68 million on its property tax bill over 10 years.

The 4 million-to-5 million-square-foot plant would employ 5,000 workers and become Tesla’s fourth for vehicle assembly. 

The company said in a filing with the Texas Comptroller's office that it was "evaluating the possible development, design, and construction of an electric vehicle manufacturing plant in Travis County within the Austin Green property."

If the school board approves the agreement and Tesla moves forward with the factory on the site, construction could start in the third quarter of this year.

Some of Tesla’s proposed community benefits include partnerships with Workforce Solutions Capital Area and Austin Community College to create a workforce pipeline for people who live in Travis County. 

Tesla CEO Elon Musk had been threatening to leave California due to his objections over the state's coronavirus pandemic shutdown. He had threatened in a tweet to "immediately" relocate Tesla's headquarters to Nevada or Texas. 

The company had filed a lawsuit against Alameda County over a shelter-in-place order that temporarily hampered operations at the carmaker's main factory in Fremont, Calif. It later dropped the action.

Tesla rolled out the Cybertruck in November to much hype and fanfare.