Studying Potential For Business Improvement District, in Beatrice

BEATRICE – Other cities made use of them, and now the City of Beatrice and Main Street Beatrice are examining the potential for a Business Improvement District.

Local officials say Hastings is one of the prime examples, where a small tax assessed on business owners generates revenue to pay for improvements in the district.

The process starts with the city designating a Business Improvement District.  Executive Director of Main Street Beatrice, Michael Sothan says Kearney, Fremont and Grand Island are among communities that use the districts as a development tool.

:30                  “a B-I-D”

Sothan says Main Street’s Board has held preliminary discussions about a business improvement district and plans a retreat in July to discuss it in more detail.

:15                  “talking about”

Local officials say Hastings generates about $65,000 annually through a business improvement district that has been in place since 1986.

:28                  “looking at”

City Administrator Tobias Tempelmeyer says business improvement districts eventually sunset, and action is then required by a governing body to renew them.

:24                  “everything else”

A business improvement district is not the only answer.  In the case of Hastings, Sothan says a city-wide sales tax authorized through the Community Redevelopment Authority has allowed for purchase or improvement of properties and other investments in the downtown area.

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