Frequently Asked Questions

What is a BID?


A BID, or Business Improvement District, is a specific geographic area established in accordance with New York State and City law which enables local commercial property owners and business owners to finance supplemental services and improvements beyond those provided by the City. Note: Residential property owners traditionally are assigned a symbolic $1.00 per year and and are full participants in a BID.




How is the BID assessent determined?


First, the total amount of the BID budget is determined. Second, a BID assessment formula is selected in order to ensure that each commercial property pays its fair share. The formula can be based on a property's linear front footage, or total assessed valuation, or square footage. Fully residential are assigned a symbolic $1.00 per year, and tax-exempt properties are excluded from the payment.




How is a BID formed?


Phase I: A voluntary BID Planning Committee is formed and is comprised of property owners, commercial tenants, and residents within the BID area, as well as other community leaders, and organizations, and government representatives. The BID Planning Committee develops a preliminary District Plan for the BID area that includes BID boundaries, BID program of services and improvements, and BID assessment formulas. Phase II: The BID Planning Committee presents the BID Plan at several public meetings for review and comment, and builds a consensus of support for the District Plan. Phase III: The final BID District Plan is submitted to the NYC Department of Small Business Services, which guides it through the formal public review and legislative process involving local Community Board(s), City Planning Commision, City Council, and state Comptroller's office. At City Council, the BID becomes effective if fewer than "51% of property owners" do not file objections. The approved BID is then signed into law by the Mayor. Phase IV: A not-for-profit BID organization is formed and start-up tasks are undertaken with full operations within the year.




How is a BID funded?


A BID is funded by commercial property owners in the BID area who pay an additional assessment each year. The amount of the BID assessment is determined by the BID area members. In total, the BID assesments equal the yearly BID budget which is used to fund the program of BID services and improvements. The city collects the BID payments and returns the monies in its entirety to the BID.




How will I get the most out of a BID?


Get involved! Work with others who are committed to the viability of Coney Island and seek a unifying vision that reflects the diverse interests of Coney Island and a prosperous future for all those who live, work, and visit Coney Island.




What services and improvements can a BID provide?


The district members of the BID determine its budget and services. For example, BIDs have undertaken supplemental public safety and sanitation programs, public relations, snow and graffiti removal, streetscape beautification, storefront improvements, and technical assistance to BID members. These services and improvements are in addition to, and NOT a replacement of current City services.




Who controls the BID?


Once approved, the BID is led by elected, volunteer Board of Directors representing a majority of property owners (commercial and residential), and business owners as well as resident tenants within the BID area. Additionally, there is public sector (Mayor, City Council, Comptroller, Borough President, Community Board) representation on the Board. The day-to-day operations of the BID are performed by an Executive Director who is hired by the board.




Who pays the BID assessment?


The BID assessment is paid by the commercial property owners in the BID area. However, most commercial leases provide for a "pass through" of the BID assessments to the commercial tenant.





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