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San Francisco lawmakers approve Twitter tax break

April 6, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
Officials in San Francisco have approved a tax break to keep Twitter Inc. from fleeing their city.

The measure passed by the Board of Supervisors exempts the company from paying payroll tax on new hires if it moves to the city's neglected Mid-Market area.

The exemption applies to any business in that neighborhood.

Analysts say Twitter is already outgrowing its current San Francisco headquarters, and the company is poised to expand from a few hundred to a few thousand workers.

Critics, including the city's largest employees union, have called the plan an ill-conceived corporate giveaway that will lead other companies to issue ultimatums demanding similar treatment.

The debate comes at a time when the city's high tech startup scene teems with energy not seen since before the first Internet bubble burst in 2000.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.