Councillors and committees

Issue - meetings

Kingston BID 4 - Ballot

Meeting: 26/03/2019 - Community and Engagement Committee (Item 36)

36 Kingston BID 4 - Ballot pdf icon PDF 186 KB

To approve the commencement of the ballot process for Kingston First (Business Improvement District 4).

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED that –

 

1. The Kingston First (BID 4) ballot process commence and the Returning Officer appoint the Electoral Reform Services to make ballot arrangements; and

2. The Director of Growth, in consultation with the Leader and relevant opposition spokesperson, be given delegated authority to vote ‘yes’ in the Kingston First (BID 4) ballot process subject to the ballot offer being satisfactory.

Minutes:

The Committee gave consideration to approval of the ballot process for the establishment of the latest Kingston Business Improvement District (BID). In so doing it also heard from Kirsten Henly, the Chief Executive of Kingston First, the operator of the BID.

 

The purpose of BIDs was to enable the funding of beneficial projects and activities through a levy imposed on the non-domestic ratepayers within the BID area. The current BID, the third, was due to run to 31st December 2019 and Kingston First had now formally notified the Council of their wish to start the process for the establishment of a fourth BID, to commence on 1st January 2020. It was proposed that the statutory ballot of ratepayers required to approve the arrangements would be held in May and June 2019.

 

Members noted that Kingston First was a key partner in the development and delivery of the economic and growth priorities for the town centre. It delivered a range of town centre focused services under contract to the Council and provided a strategic partnership framework which enabled the Council to engage effectively with a wide range of commercial interests. Recent achievements of the BID included free skills workshops and training, the ‘Keep it Kingston’ Card, development of the Christmas market and other events and employment of a team of town rangers to maintain the streetscape and respond to support local businesses and visitors.

 

In recent months the BID had been working with the Council on re-imagining the town centre and emerging visioning work as well as supporting a number of initiatives around digital connectivity, including free public WiFi, small cells and the Internet of Things (IoT). It was expected that the BID would play an important role in facilitating businesses’ engagement in the development of strategic sites within the town centre. Four key themes formed the pillars of Kingston First’s new business plan, namely

 

·         Quality Streets and Spaces/Enhancing Experiences

·         Attracting and promoting

·         Supporting and Informing

·         Representing and Influencing

 

The Committee noted that the cessation of the BID would cause the loss of the additional day to day services provided to residents, visitors and businesses in the BID area and also see the end of the strategic voice and single point of contact representing the interests of the businesses in the town centre. It was therefore agreed that the Council, as a full BID member and rate payer itself should vote in favour of the establishment of the fourth BID in the ballot subject to the detail in the final offer from Kingston First being satisfactory.

 

RESOLVED that –

 

1.    The Kingston First (BID 4) ballot process commence and the Returning Officer appoint the Electoral Reform Services to make ballot arrangements; and

 

2.    The Director of Growth, in consultation with the Leader and relevant opposition spokesperson, be given delegated authority to vote ‘yes’ in the Kingston First (BID 4) ballot process subject to the ballot offer being satisfactory.

 

Voting – Unanimous (Councillor Tolley did not  ...  view the full minutes text for item 36