(Mountain Xpress) The Interim BID Board has released its revised proposal for a Business Improvement District in downtown Asheville. The new proposal shortens the borders of the district, delays the controversial ambassador safety program, and changes the composition of the governing board, as well as opening the possibility of a lower tax to fund the district.
The original BID proposal — for an independent non-profit funded by a special tax district — came before Asheville City Council in June, the subject of a fierce debate. BID advocates portrayed it as necessary to ensure downtown’s prosperity and better services. BID opponents, comprising everyone from some business owners to local activists, asserted that it will impose an unnecessary burden while giving power to an unelected board and trampling on downtown’s culture.
Council delayed a decision on the BID, citing concerns over the governing board, finances, and its potential role.
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