Council authorized budget increases for BIDs in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens. On January 18, 2011, the City Council adopted a local law authorizing increases in the annual budgets of six business improvement districts in the City. The boards of directors of the Grand Central Partnership, the 24th Street Partnership and the 125th Street Partnership in Manhattan, the Fordham Road BID, and the Mosholu-Jerome-East Gun Hill Road BID in the Bronx, and the Bayside Village BID in Queens initiated the process by submitting proposed budgets reflecting increased property assessments to the City’s Department of Small Business Services. Pursuant to the administrative code, the boards of directors notified by mail all the members of the BIDs about the amount of, and justification for, the increase, and alerted them to the City Council’s public hearing on the proposal.
Under the approved proposal, the 34th Street Partnership’s budget increased by roughly $700,000 to $9,940,000, the Grand Central Partnership increased by more than $1.1 million to $12,709,372, and the 125th Street BID rose from $867,390 to $947,820. In the Bronx, the Fordham Road BID’s annual budget increased by 25 percent to $625,000, and the Mosholu-Jerome-East Gun Hill Road BID increased by $50,000 to $259,000. In Queens, the Bayside Village BID’s budget nearly doubled, rising from $81,368 to $155,000.
At a hearing before the Council’s Finance Committee, SBS’s Elizabeth De Leon said each BID had met the notice requirements and that the proposed increases would not exceed the maximum allowed by the administrative code. In response to a question from Council Member Daniel J. Halloran, SBS’s Eddy Eng explained that a BID’s total assessment is capped at 20 percent of the real property taxes for all the properties within the district. Halloran, whose district includes Bayside Village, asked if it would be possible to find out the cap number for the Bayside Village BID in order to determine “what percentage we’re actually using versus what percentage we should be using.” According to Eng, SBS had already requested that information from the Department of Finance. Chair Domenic M. Recchia Jr. noted that he also requested that information, and was still waiting for the data.
The full Council unanimously approved the proposal. The increases took effect immediately and were deemed to have been in effect as of July 1, 2011.
Council: BID Increases (Intro 0741- 2011) (Jan. 18, 2012).