By Mario Conde
The Calexico City Council approved Tuesday annual assessment fees for the Calexico Business Improvement District for Calendar year 2010.
The Council held a public hearing Tuesday and adopted a resolution assessing the levy of the downtown parking and Business Improvement District for 2010. The assessments may only be used for promotion, marketing, and advertising of professional and retail businesses located in the BID. All businesses located in the BID are to be assessed $100 each for 2010. The collection will start January 1, 2009.
In a report made by the Calexico Redevelopment Agency on behalf of the BID Advisory Board says that the estimated expenditures for activities and improvements for next year to be $80,000. $53,000 is the estimated amount that will be carried over the present year, which includes amounts from other sources such as fees paid for booth rentals, promotional sponsorships, in-kind sponsorships, and Calexico Redevelopment Agency financial assistance.
The estimated amount to be collected in the assessments is estimated to be $27,500. The assessment calculated on 275 business licenses at $100 each. The amount estimated to be available for BID activities is $80,500 for 2010.
Maria Gonzalez who owns a business on Third and Imperial Ave. spoke opposing to this assessment saying that when there are events in downtown they block their street and affect negatively to their business. She said that Imperial Ave. does not have sufficient parking for customers and events made by the BID takes away customers from them. She questioned why to pay $100 when Imperial Avenue does not benefit from it.
BID Chairman Eduardo Lopez spoke in favor of this initiative and invited Maria Gonzalez to work with the Business Improvement District to work for a common cause and that is to have people shop in Calexico and support local businesses.
Mayor David Ouzan said that he will appoint someone to the BID that is a merchant in Imperial Ave. so they can give them a voice. He said that what benefits downtown should benefit Imperial Avenue as well. Mayor Pro Term John Moreno agreed that the City has forgotten about the “main drag” of Calexico and suggested to have more events on Imperial since there are lots commercial opportunities to support.
The Council approved the item with the condition that there is a plan to benefit Imperial Avenue as well.