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Decision details

Cambridge BID Second Term Ballot

Decision Maker: Executive Councillor for Strategy and Transformation

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No

Purpose:

Whether the City Council votes in favour of a second term.

Decision:

Matter for Decision

The Committee received a report from the Development Manager, City Centre Management Markets and Street Trading on the Cambridge Business Improvement District (BID) Second Term Ballot. The BID Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for Visit Cambridge and Beyond also attended.

 

Cambridge BID intended to seek a second five year term, by way of a ballot of businesses within the geographical area it proposed to cover, in the autumn of 2017. The second term would run from 1st April, 2018, to 31st March, 2023.The City Council was a nondomestic ratepayer in respect of a number of properties within the BID area and, as such, would be entitled to a number of votes in relation to these properties.

 

Decision of Executive Councillor for Strategy and Transformation

 

  i.  Agreed to exercise the City Council’s voting entitlement in the forthcoming Cambridge BID second term ballot.

  ii.  Supported, in principle, Cambridge BID in the second term ballot, in view of their performance in the successful delivery of services against the term one proposal; and the value for money Cambridge BID provided the City Council, balancing their levy contribution against expenditure the Council might otherwise be expected to commit to.

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.

 

Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.

 

Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Development Manager, City Centre Management Markets and Street Trading on the Cambridge Business Improvement District (BID). The BID Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for Visit Cambridge and Beyond also attended.

 

The Committee made the following comments in response to the report:

  i.  Councillor Bick sought clarification regarding whether the purpose of this item was to give authorisation for a ballot to be held or whether it was the last opportunity for the committee to decide how they would eventually vote.

  ii.  Queried whether authority needed to be in the form of a committee report and whether another debate before casting the vote was required. Suggested that the Leader could assume authority if the Committee agreed. Alternatively, the business plan could go to the Chair and Spokes in early October before the Leader made the casting vote.

  iii.  Asked where Mill Road fits in to the debate after the issues that had arisen during the initial ballot five years ago.

  iv.  Commented that feedback had been received from residents regarding the BID’s Ambassadors. Asked how they evaluated the role and contribution that the Ambassadors made.

  v.  Requested more detail on the unified visitor experience.

  vi.  Praised the BID’s progress and outward vision. Agreed it had been a good investment for the city.

 

The Development Manager, City Centre Management Markets and Street Trading, BID Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for Visit Cambridge and Beyond said the following in response to Members’ questions:

  i.  Confirmed that the purpose of this item was to ensure the City Council as a key stakeholder would support to the BID to hold a ballot and delegate authority to the Leader to cast the City Council’s vote.

  ii.  Confirmed that the BID had tried to support Mill Road, however, as the area had such a variety of shops and businesses it had been difficult to get them to contribute voluntarily, which would be required.

  iii.  The Ambassadors made a crucial contribution to the overall project. They played a key customer facing role whilst reporting a variety of information back in real time. Evaluation figures could be found in the annual report.

  iv.  The unified visitor experience would be developed during the second term by working collaboratively with Visit Cambridge. It aimed to give visitors a more interactive experience with access to information via apps and online material such as guides, maps and a visit cam, helping to navigate the city better.

  v.  Confirmed that the business plan for the second term ballot would be published on 20 September.

 

The Committee unanimously resolved to endorse the recommendations.

 

The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.

 

Publication date: 26/07/2017

Date of decision: 03/07/2017