09/14/2016 09:01 EDT | Updated 09/15/2017 01:12 EDT

Facebook chooses New Mexico for new data centre over Utah

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich says Facebook is choosing New Mexico for a new data centre over Utah after questions arose about a tax-break deal worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

Wednesday's announcement that the social media giant will build in Los Lunas, south of Albuquerque comes after a roller-coaster contest between the two states to attract the facility.

While the project has enjoyed broad political support in New Mexico, local leaders in Utah pushed back against a tax-incentive plan they saw as too generous.

Utah supporters of the deal said it would bring a high-tech cachet that could draw other companies, but critics said the $240 million cost was too high.

In New Mexico, Los Lunas agreed to give up all property taxes for 30 years in exchange for annual payments starting at $50,000 and topping out at under $500,000.