BID smoke and mirrors

To The Editor:
Re “‘Just say no’ to BID isn’t a workable alternative”(talking point, by Brian Steinwurtzel, Nov. 10):

The Broadway Soho Business Improvement District definitely does not pass the “smell test” — it reeks of cronyism and bad governance. The BID proponents have shown that less than one-third of local property owners support this proposal, a self-serving plan put forth by retail real estate interests looking to take control of Soho.

Don’t let the claim of “72 percent of respondents” fool you: Mr. Steinwurtzel continually fails to report that the actual number of respondents was one-third of local property owners; so, 72 percent actually equals a mere 25 percent. That small number hardly counts as “substantial support,” and thereby does not meet the requirement to allow this B.S. BID to be enacted.

The questionable claim by BID proponents that the “rules” of the Department of Small Business Services were followed shows that the mayoral agency that promotes BIDs is failing to fulfill the mandate under both New York State and New York City BID law.

The bureaucrats at S.B.S. have no such written “rules” for quantifying support for a BID plan, but simply appear to make things up as they go along. Over the past year the representatives at S.B.S. have treated locals with disdain. They’ve shown that their goal is to push forward this bad BID plan, the local community be damned.
This BID is not a grassroots effort. Locals do not want this BID. Who supports it? The legislation for this BID plan was submitted by Councilmember Recchia of Brooklyn and Councilmember Cabrera of the Bronx, at the apparent request of Mayor Bloomberg. None of those elected officials lives or works in Soho.

This lack of actual local support has been evident to our city councilmember, Margaret Chin, for more than one year, and it’s past time for her to support her voting constituents in Soho.

We say no to the B.S. There is only one right move: Reject the Soho BID.
Pete Davies

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