Well, it might not any more. As I said in another post, I did this a decade ago. The laws may have changed since then. But back then, intrastate shipments and being too close to the distribution center in terms of ownership or management could bust Nexus protections in a hurry.
In this case, Amazon ran this warehouse through a subsidiary. This is not a case of a separate company doing distribution, it's a separate division of the same company. That's not arm's-length, that's married with kids.
I suggest looking up the difference between "division" and "subsidiary". Subsidiary is by definition a separate company, so yes, it is a case of a separate company. Having tangled with Amazon's lawyers (not a very pleasant experience), I know for sure those guys do not leave anything to chance - so I am sure they crossed the T's and dotted the I's when it came to this sort of thing.
Meanwhile Texas already screwed its people out of thousands of jobs and millions in taxes that the distribution center WAS paying.
The Distrbution Center has an unknown number of employees, but Amazon claiming that they are avoiding hiring "up to 1,000" new employees when they canceled plans to open multiple DCs. So I doubt this one DC had "thousands of jobs". Still sucks to be Texas on this one, but they'll probably make more in this sales tax revenue suit than the jobs will ever make them in income tax.
Most DCs don't employ thousands of people - by the time you reach the point where that many people are necessary you'll have put in significant automation systems because there won't be enough room for all of them. Amazon's an efficient company, and they know distribution. If that DC had 250 employees I'd be surprised.
PS: Just looked it up. http://www.statesman.com/business/119-to-lose-jobs-when-amazon-closes-texas-1248784.html 119 jobs lost.
Well, they CLAIMED to be creating up to a thousand new jobs in planned expansions, though you are probably right, the real number would have been smaller (thus "up to" claim). Still, thats 119 REAL jobs slashed, still sucks for 119 families that have to either loose jobs or move out of state.
Really, Texas should get off their ass and just tax every internet purchase, like NY did. It'll save a lot of headaches to everyone involved instead of trying to trying to do weaselly and shady back-billing that even their own Governor disapproves of (as per the article you linked).