The Santa Ana City Council unanimously voted past week to dissolve its Downtown Business Improvement District, to which section merchants person been required to wage yearly fees—on apical of concern taxes—after an outcry from immoderate of the area’s merchants.
The area’s betterment district, known arsenic a BID, was started successful 1984 to money promotions and for landscaping and maintenance, according to metropolis officials.
But merchants assertion a absorption radical that has tally the BID since 2013 has overlooked the area’s smaller businesses successful favour of promoting nightlife specified arsenic clubs and costly restaurants.
Some person said specified is particularly damaging to their businesses connected the heels of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing OC Streetcar construction, which has deterred customers from coming to the area.
“Last year, operation and fiscal hardship brought america each together,” said 1 concern proprietor during nationalist remark astatine the metropolis council’s Jan. 17 committee meeting. “That was our eye-opening clip to recognize not lone the concern betterment territory has not worked for us, but each those years we were paying to beryllium neglected, ignored, abused, and cheated.”
During the meeting, different concern proprietor called for the instauration of a caller strategy that partnered with merchants.
“I’m truly excited that the metropolis listened to the merchants,” the concern proprietor said during nationalist comment. “This is simply a aureate accidental to make thing amended together.”
The BID has received astir $100,000 per twelvemonth successful assessments from businesses, according to metropolis officials.
Now, immoderate leftover gross volition beryllium refunded to concern owners, metropolis officials said.
A last ballot connected the substance is scheduled for Feb. 7.
A spokesperson for the absorption institution that has tally the BID, Downtown Inc., did not respond to requests for remark by property deadline.