business improvement district (BID) is a defined area within which businesses are required to pay an additional tax in order to fund projects within the district’s boundaries.

Every Businesses in Felixstowe BID levy zone should now have received an update from the Felixstowe BID Task Group.

‘We must regroup and adjust to the ‘new normal’, when released from
lockdown. It is with this in mind that I thought it would be good to
update you on what is happening with the BID and its work, which
has clearly been impacted.’ The newsletter stated.

However some business owners in Felixstowe are not happy with the proposed plans.

They have been campaigning ever since the BID was proposed. They question why it is the business owners who are footing the bill when their profits are already declining due to the lack of footfall, especially now, with the Corona Virus pandemic.

Business owners are only just adjusting to the new normal. One business owner who has been on the high street for decades said;

“I wish they (Felixstowe Bid Task Group) would give us all time to get our businesses up and running as we see fit”

and another said;

“Maybe they’re thinking we’ll all be too busy getting our feet back on the ground and worrying about our business that they can slip it through and we won’t notice?”

There are businesses on the High Street that do think the BID is a good idea and believe it will benefit the recovery of the town centre but the plans have no doubt spilt opinions within the Business Community and the tension is heated.

Helen Greengrass from Felixstowe Business Improvement District has said;

‘We want to be absolutely clear that we will not be asking people for
money in these extremely difficult times
but having taken soundings
from many businesses – large and small – we felt that it is important
to have a plan
in place as we move slowly into the rebuilding and
recovery phase.

The timeline for the project is below;

June 2020
Develop key documents
(Baseline Statements,
Operating Agreement,
Governance & Management)

July 2020
Develop draft
business plan
Online business
(one-to-one and
video workshops)

August 2020
Develop full business plan

September 2020
BID campaign

October 2020
BID ballot

What do you think about the proposed Business Improvement District? Should struggling business owners be footing the bill?

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