Property homeowners who have not paid annual Enterprise Enchancment District charges will not owe curiosity or penalties by way of June, although the charges had been due in October and have become delinquent in March.
The district charges did not seem on metropolis tax payments on-line, and lots of property homeowners had been unaware they owed them, mentioned Steve Hunt, the chairman of the board for the district throughout a board assembly Wednesday.
“Many property homeowners did not know,” he mentioned. “There’s been a concerted effort to achieve out.”
By way of April 9, the Enterprise Enchancment District had collected $686,000 in charges, and was owed one other $226,000. The board is ready for extra present assortment knowledge from town, Hunt mentioned Wednesday.
Within the meantime, the director of the district, Steve Brookes, has labored to get in contact with homeowners of the 63 properties which have excellent charges due, and town is sending notices by mail to property homeowners in regards to the unpaid charges.
Brookes has additionally been speaking one-on-one with representatives of four nonprofit organizations which have requested exemption from Enterprise Enchancment District charges, Hunt mentioned. Whole annual charges from these 4 entities would come to $34,000.
A deliberate assembly of the board’s finance committee to debate these exemption requests was postponed due to the coronavirus disaster, and it has not been rescheduled.
“We agreed it will be good to exit and pay attention particularly to what their issues are, so I do know Steve [Brookes] has been engaged on that,” Hunt mentioned.
The board is making closing adjustments to a $625,000 contract with Block by Block, the seller that can present companies and oversee the district’s 14-member ambassador program. They need to be prepared in July to launch packages within the downtown district, Brookes mentioned.
“They’re able to get down right here and get issues found out,” he mentioned. “It is a few five-week course of, however we’re getting some issues completed upfront so perhaps we are able to shorten that point.”
How BID charges are calculated
To fund the district’s companies, industrial and nonprofit landowners within the district can pay an annual evaluation of 9 cents per sq. foot, of both the lot or constructing dimension, whichever is bigger, plus $4.95 per linear foot of lot frontage. Residential property homeowners with townhouses or condominiums would pay a flat annual charge of $150 per unit.
The board reviewed the outcomes of a survey on enhancements wanted within the district that mirrored a want for extra cleansing, landscaping and signage within the central downtown space. Brookes has met with Chattanooga Public Works officers to start understanding the place accountability for these enhancements will lie, he mentioned.
Of their assembly Wednesday, the board additionally agreed to rebrand the Enterprise Enchancment District because the Downtown Chattanooga Alliance, and set a $5,000 restrict on purchases Brookes could make in his function with out board approval.
The Enterprise Enchancment District was established by metropolis ordinance in July 2019. The contentious course of prompted lawsuits and objections by enterprise homeowners included within the district.
Properties inside the district zone pay particular evaluation charges of about $1 million a 12 months collectively to fund improvements to the central metropolis to make the realm cleaner and safer, in addition to to fund enhanced beautification and different particular initiatives.
Contact Mary Fortune at email@example.com or 423-757-6653. Observe her on Twitter at @maryfortune.