Janet Williams: Wary about BID

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I would like to compliment our city and county on their snow removal of our streets and alleys. After seeing other cities with their snow removal problems, we should be proud.

Now I would like to voice my opinion on the Main Street Business Improvement District. We have lived in Steamboat Springs since 1969. We raised two children in this community. We have had a business in Steamboat Springs and have kept between 10 and 30 employees for all of those years.

We also own two parcels on Oak Street. We rent them to businesses. That makes them commercial, so we pay dearly for the property tax - at least double than if they were rented as residential.

I believe that our taxes are high enough. Why would it be our responsibility to take care of our neighbors' businesses? We have never once asked the community for help.

I strongly believe that it is up to the property owners to keep their own buildings up, take care of the snow removal and advertise, if needed. I can remember when the owner of the Riverbend restaurant paid for fliers about his restaurant and delivered them to the stores at the mountain. He even ran his own shuttle to take customers to and from his restaurant at no expense to the community.

Does this Business Improve-

ment District give an individual an incentive to make it on his own, or are we making a society that wants everything done for them? Do we need or want more government control?

Janet Williams

Steamboat Springs

Comments

another_local 7 years, 9 months ago

Since the homes you rent out are commercial, I imagine that you pass through taxes to your tennant as most commercial leases do... in which case, it is not you that pays the tax despite the fact that you write the check, it is your tennant. Why don't you ask them what they think of the BID. You might be surprised. Do you collect more rent or less from having a commercial tennant as opposed to a residential one?

Well-run combined efforts to improve things could well be more effective and less expensive than each going in his own direction. The majority of your neighbors are in favor if this.

You never ask the community for help? Didn't you start your letter by complimenting the snow plowing? (It was paid for by sales taxes collected from a healthy business community) How about the street signs, landscaping and lighting that makes downtown (yes, including Oak street) desirable so that you have a tennant? Does a thriving business community where businesses do well raise the rents? Would you collect as much in Walden?

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JAN2131 7 years, 9 months ago

In answer to your rebutal: Yes my tenants would have to pay for this increase and no they do not want too. When our tenants are to the point that they can no longer afford the rent and they move, then I am stuck with paying your tax. We do charge more for commercial rentals because (I repeat from my first letter) the property taxes are more than double. I did praise the city for snow removal on our streets and yes they are being paid from taxes but the city does not remove snow from my property I do and at no expenses to you or the community! As far as landscaping etc, businesses are required to put in burms, flowers, trees, etc at there expense. There goes the parking!!!! Denver tenants are moving out of Denver and going to surrounding areas because of the high taxes there. If you keep trying to raise my taxes my tenants just might move to Waldon (As your example) so they can survive.

One more question since you wrote anonymous are you a business owner who can't afford to take care of your place or are you on the payroll end of this deal?

Janet Williams P.S. I am not afraid to sign my name.

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another_local 7 years, 9 months ago

Niether "on the payroll" or a "business owner who can't afford to take care..."

Just someone who believe that collective effort works. You do realize that this money does not go to the city general fund and that the owners and business tennants of the district, not the city decides how it is spent? This is one of the very few examples of an instance where the people who will be taxed get to spend the money themselves.

Speaking of Denver, the areas that have invested in commercial community activity are thriving. Districts like LoDo are highly succesfull BECAUSE they collaborate. Commercial districts that have left everything in the hands of chance are the ones that are loosing to surrounding areas.

Landlords do not charge more for commercial because of taxes, they charge more for commercial if/because they can. It is precisely efforts like this that will ensure that your investment continues to be a good one.

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