A consultant working to organize the Santa Monica Boulevard Business Improvement District thinks the group will soon have enough support to form. Organizers need more than half of the businessowners on Santa Monica between La Cienega and Doheny to back the BID, which, like other business improvement districts around the city, would assess an annual fee on businessowners that would be reinvested in the area (for cleanup, marketing efforts, etc.). In the case of the Santa Monica Boulevard BID, the money would go towards promotion and branding of the area, according to WEHOville. But while supporters are optimistic,they've only managed to get 41 percent of businesses on board after nearly two years of collecting signatures.
Reasons for resisting the BID range from concerns over its mission and how its money will be spent to a belief that West Hollywood already does plenty to market itself. A clothing store owner thinks something else may be at work, saying that businesses west of Robertson "are reluctant to sign the petition because they consider themselves separate from the Boystown area, which is generally considered to run from La Cienega to Robertson." If the BID goes ahead WeHo would still foot the bill for annual events like the gay pride festival, but the group would look into organizing new ones like a Route 66 Classic Car Show. Then maybe they can help brand the party buses due to run along the street this summer.
· Santa Monica Boulevard BID Supporters Face Obstacles in Final Petition Push [WeHoville]