Sunday November 23, 2014

Council approves new look YBID Bylaw

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The Yorkton Business Improvement District will operate slightly differently with the passage of a new Bylaw passed at the regular meeting of Yorkton Council Monday.

The changes in the Bylaw were made at the request of the YBID.

In making a presentation to Council Monday, YBID representative Ken Chyz said the organization represents “almost 400 property owners and business owners in the district.”

In order to have more input from members Chyz said the YBID moved to establish a regular annual general meeting starting “in the fall of 2012.”

Through the AGM the YBID will also create a public election process to establish their Board of Directors.

A maximum of 10 persons shall be elected by the membership and their appointment to the Board shall be ratified by Council resolution.

“It will be a more public election of board members than has been done in the past,” said Chyz.

Chyz said YBID also requested an amendment to the bylaw so that they are not restricted to the $100,000 cap on the businesses that are assessed their levy. They did not request a change to the $100,000 grant provided by the City.

Council shall authorize an annual levy in addition to any property tax to be paid by owners of business properties in the District, of a uniform rate of $200 per property. In addition to the uniform base charge per property, Council shall authorize a maximum annual levy of .50 mills.

Councillor Chris Wyatt said he had “some concerns” with the potentially higher membership costs for YBID businesses. He suggested a survey “to see what the members say.

“I think a lot of people think they pay enough.”

Coun. Les Arnelien said a survey would not prove a lot since anyone asked if they wanted to pay higher taxes or fees would vote against it. He said the YBID is facing increased costs, and a larger area, so generating more dollars through membership fees is reasonable.

Coun. Ross Fisher said since the establishment of the YBID in 2004 a dollar does not go as far as 2012. He too said there was “growing demand on their (YBID) resources.

The final major change in the new Bylaw was to realign the map of the YBID to include properties on Dracup Avenue on the premise that the downtown lightening project will include this area. The Broadway Corridor has been extended to include lands currently owned by the City adjacent to the Gallagher Centre.

The Bylaw passed with Wyatt the lone dissenting voice.

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