Collingwood Council listened to a deputation from the Collingwood Downtown Business Improvement Association at its May 14th regular meeting.
BIA Budget Presentation, Penny Skelton, Chair and Sue Nicholson, General Manager
THAT Council receive the BIA Budget Presentation and direct the Treasurer to prepare a By-law for the levy and collection of sums required by the Collingwood Downtown Business Improvement Area for the year 2018, to be considered at the next meeting of Council.
BIA Board Chair Penny Skelton told council that since its inception in 1977 the BIA has invested millions of dollars in the downtown.
“I always say it’s a surtax … it’s a self-tax the businesses put on themselves which is above and beyond the commercial tax paid to the Town and that is the budget that we’re discussing. We spend our own money is basically what I’m here to say.”
The levy is one hundred percent funded by the Downtown BIA members. Skelton said the BIA is currently comprised of over 600 members, consisting of both business and property owners.
“We are a very successful example of Private-Public Partnerships”
— Penny Skelton, Chair, Collingwood Downtown BIA
Each member within the Downtown Business Improvement Area boundaries pays an additional tax based on a percentage of the BIA Annual Budget.
In presenting the budget to Council, Skelton stated that she was proud to say it was exactly the same as it was for 2017.
Tax Levy – $450,000.00
Other Revenues – $122, 900.00 ( including sponsorship grants)
Total Expenditures: $572,900.00
New Initiatives for 2018
New initiatives for 2018 include the Collingwood Downtown/Harbour Tourism Destination Plan to be undertaken in collaboration with thte Town of Collingwood with anticipated funding from the Ministry of Tourism.
Also, 2018 marks the 100th Anniversary of the end of the First World War. The BIA is planning to decorate the downtown with banners featuring Canadian Veterans to compliment the program of Poppy Banners already in place.
Collingwood’s Downtown has always been a gathering place for celebrations of all kinds. 2018 marks the 100th Anniversary of the end of the First World War and the BIA is planning to decorate the downtown with banners to honour this historic milestone.
“What we want to do is expand our banner program. We have had very basic, beginning talks with the Legion of doing some commemorative banners featuring Veterans. We still don’t have the details worked out but you do know we dress the downtown with the poppies, so what we’re thinking of doing is dressing the main street with some of our Veterans. It will be a very interesting project and may even be a bit of a fundraiser for the Legion.”
Look for photos of World War One family members – This was taken January 27th, 1917, in London England
Skelton says the Town of Bradford and several other municipalities have done something similar where they actually take potentially an air force or navy photo of the service person and put it on the banner and put their name up and their years of service.
The BIA operates many special events throughout the year including Art on the Street, the Muskoka Chairs, Local Live Lunch, Moonlight Market, Collingwood Festival for Canada, Downtown Farmers’ Market, Black Harvest, the Christmas Santa Claus Parade and Frozen in Time Festival.
Black Harvest is a popular downtown Collingwood special family event
The long running Art Chair Program has been a huge success, lining the streets of Downtown Collingwood every summer.
Live Local Lunch returns for another great season in downtown Collingwood!
The Collingwood Downtown Farmers’ Market runs from Victoria Day Weekend to Thanksgiving on Saturday mornings at Pine and Second Streets.
And of course the Christmas Season is filled with Downtown Collingwood festive activities for the whole family to enjoy!
Mayor Sandra Cooper and members of Collingwood council competed for bragging rights (actually they were just trying to survive!) on the VIP Ice Slide
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