Carlisle firms reject Business Improvement District proposal
Last updated at 15:15, Friday, 28 September 2012
Firms in Carlisle city centre have not backed a proposal to set up a Business Improvement District.
Have your say
I'm surprised by two things. The first is that the turn out was so low. I would have thought that any local business worth its salt would jump at a opportunity to influence development for the better (or worse?).
Secondly I would have thought that some local businesses would have been trying to do this a long time ago.
Maybe this shows that the small business owners did their homework and looked at how small businesses similar to theirs faired when being part of a Business Improvement District in other parts of the country, such as the New West End BID.There have been glossy documents published to point out the advantages of a Business Improvement District, but I have yet to see any documents or anything in the press highlighting the concerns voiced about how the big chain stores head office influence local decision making and the blurring of public-private accountability, legitimacy and control.There has also been no coverage of what is basically the privatisation of public space and what this might mean in the future. Other city centre BIDs already use private security companies which have been given powers to move people on and to stop legitimate protest within BID areas.Local government representatives are accountable to the people, BIDs gives political empowerment to the private sector with little said about the influence and the vested interests of those involved.
I voted yes in the original ballot, this ballot was not administered properly and they had to do a 2nd vote, this dented my confidence in the whole process, so when pestered(lobbied) twice on the phone by a lady working for the bid proposal I moved to a no vote - did she annoy 2 other business people?