A BID is managed and operated by a BID Company – a non-profit company run by and for its members. Most BIDs are governed by a board made up of BID levy payers representing the BID area. Any levy-paying business owner can nominate themselves to become a Director of the BID Company, or can sit on a Committee that oversees certain BID projects. Some BID’s choose to employ a Town Centre Manager to act as a representative of the area and to oversee the BID Plan. The BID Company can also choose to appoint contractors to undertake certain duties, such as a caretaker, security guard, or a PR & Marketing agency.
There is no limit on what projects or services can be provided through a Business Improvement District. The only requirement is that it should be something that is in addition to services provided by local authorities. Improvements may include, but are not limited to: extra safety/security, cleansing, events and marketing, environmental measures, and B2B networking.
Usually Business Improvement Districts charge a levy rate of between 1% and 4% of rateable value. The money raised may be used to leverage other funding and investment, such as grants and matched funding.
In a nutshell… Businesses, usually with the help of consultants or local authority officers, identify the area and the issues. A BID Proposal is drawn up that includes delivery guarantees, performance indicators and management structure. The proposed programme of services is additional to those provided by the local authority and can not be used to replace existing public sector services. Non-domestic ratepayers (who will be paying the BID levy), vote on the BID Proposal in a postal ballot conducted by the local authority. Following a successful ballot the levy becomes mandatory on all defined ratepayers. Any necessary enforcement of payment is undertaken in the same way as it is for business rates.
We have put together a provisionary BID boundary map to get things started. You can view that here.
Why do BIDs work?
BIDs work hard to create a real buzz and a positive image for their district. They strategise new ways to generate more visitors which will, in turn, support the area’s economy.
What can a BID bring to the area?
Projects can include anything from transport to safety & security to cleaning. These projects help increase footfall into a town – transport makes the area more accessible, and a safe and clean environment is one that people want to return to.