After scoring a record $706 million USD payout last week — the biggest payday for any U.S. executive in history — Elon Musk has now shared that Tesla will move its California headquarters to either Texas or Nevada. Revealing the move in a tweet over the weekend, the CEO noted that his desire to reopen Tesla’s factory in Fremont as soon as possible was put on hold after the Interim Health Officer of Alameda County stated that reopening was not possible given the current coronavirus lockdown measures, which will continue until the end of May.
“Tesla has been informed that they do not meet those criteria and must not reopen,” a spokeswoman for the Alameda County Public Health Department shared in a statement. Musk shared that he would be “filing a lawsuit against Alameda County immediately,” further noting that “the unelected & ignorant ‘Interim Health Officer’ of Alameda is acting contrary to the Governor, the President, our Constitutional freedoms & just plain common sense!”
Frankly, this is the final straw. Tesla will now move its HQ and future programs to Texas/Nevada immediately. If we even retain Fremont manufacturing activity at all, it will be dependen on how Tesla is treated in the future. Tesla is the last carmaker left in CA.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 9, 2020
Musk had previously told employees last Thursday that limited production would begin at the factory on Friday afternoon. The news came after Governor of California Gavin Newsom noted Thursday that manufacturers within the state would be allowed to restart operations. On Friday however, an Alameda county official said that it had been having extensive conversations with the company, recommending that Tesla wait another week to monitor the ongoing pandemic to ensure a safe reopening.
Musk has continued to criticize the extensive lockdown measures and shelter-in-place orders, referring to them as a “serious risk” to U.S. business. Musk’s company most recently scored a $565 million USD loan for its first non-U.S. car plant in Shanghai.
For more related news, Elon Musk recently returned to The Joe Rogan Experience for a two-hour interview.