GOOGLE, NASA JOIN FOR R&D COLLABORATION... LOCAL OFFICIALS UPSET AT PLANNED FACILITIES
I think it's pretty cool that Google is working with NASA for R&D research:
NASA Ames Research Center issued a press release Wednesday shedding more light on the R&D collaboration between the space agency and search behemoth Google, which includes a vast new campus at Ames' Moffett Field in Mountain View, Calif. The two entities plan to cooperate on areas including large-scale data management and data-mining, massively distributed computing, bio-info-nano convergence and promoting the entrepreneurial space industry, according to NASA's statement.
"Imagine having a wide selection of images from the Apollo space mission at your fingertips whenever you want it. That's just one small example of how this collaboration could help broaden technology's role in making the world a better place," Eric Schmidt, Google chief executive officer, said in the statement. (full post)
It's also amusing that local officials are upset since Google is building their new R&D facility on federal property and avoiding local taxes. Was this is a factor in Google's decision? Probably. But did they just do it to avoid a few million in taxes? I don't think so, but it would be interesting to read the detailed proposal between NASA and Google. The San Francisco Chronicle has more:
Google under scrutiny Officials say it's dodging taxes by building on federal land
Dan Levy, Chronicle Staff Writer
Friday, September 30, 2005
Google's blockbuster partnership with NASA Ames Research Center is leaving local officials, environmentalists and Silicon Valley landlords feeling left out of the party.
Google and NASA announced a working agreement Wednesday that could result in the Internet giant building a complex of up to 1 million square feet on NASA-owned property adjacent to Moffett Field near Mountain View.
But in light of the deal, city and county officials say they are looking for ways to make Google contribute more to local government coffers.
"Any for-profit entity of (Google's) magnitude using land owned by the people should not escape paying their fair share," said Larry Stone, Santa Clara County's tax assessor. If Google were to build its campus on county land, he estimated, it could generate as much as $3 million in property tax revenue.
Greg Perry, a member of the Mountain View City Council, echoed that sentiment. "If public land is being used for private purposes, the tenants should be paying local property taxes," he said. "We have $30 million in unfunded retirement liabilities. We need the money." (full article)