Cllr Rhys Taylor calls to support Upper Bangor business community

2139025_bf726c82Councillors are calling for Upper Bangor to become a Business Improvement District following the implementation of the scheme on the High Street. 

A business improvement district (BID) is a defined area within which businesses pay an additional tax (or levy) in order to fund projects within the district’s boundaries. The BID is often funded primarily through the levy but can also draw on other public and private funding streams.

Bangor is one of nine areas (shared with Caernarfon) that will receive funding from the Welsh Government to make improvements within the designated area.

Business Improvement Districts (BID) have been formed across the UK with up to £1m a year raised in bigger towns and cities to drive economic development – with businesses in control of how the cash is spent.

Businesses vote on a BID Proposal or business plan, and BIDs must seek re-approval after a fixed term, of up to 5 years. The BID levy is typically set at approximately 1-2% of the ratable value. BIDs are business let and see businesses working in partnership to improve the business community in a geographical area.

“Unfortunately Bangor’s BID doesn’t extend as far as our business area in Upper Bangor, and I want to change that, drawing on experience from the High Street to support our area,” said Cllr Rhys Taylor.

“This would make Upper Bangor a welcoming place for visitors and residents, and would keep Upper Bangor as a thriving business community.”

Some of the things that have happened elsewhere are;

  1. Car parking & Transportation
  2. Safety & Security
  3. Marketing/PR & Events
  4. Cleansing
  5. Supporting & Attracting Business

Both Swansea and Merthyr Tydfil have succeeded following becoming Business Improvement Districts.

 

Arfon Lib Dem call for more support for local businesses through Bangor Pride project.

10x7cm300dpi_000Arfon Liberal Democrats were pleased to hear that in a report which scrutinised the Bangor Pride project, the project was praised for its successes.

The project which was set up by Gwynedd and Bangor Councils, the Police, Keep Wales Tidy, and the Environment Agency with the aim of improving the city for residents and visitors alike, received praise for its work in addressing environmental issues and in sharing best practice across the country.

Promoting civic pride amongst those living, studying or working in Bangor was described as “very commendable and challenging.”

However Arfon Liberal Democrats are calling for Bangor Pride to do more for local businesses in the area.

Cllr Rhys Taylor said, “It’s great to see that the Bangor Pride project is meeting its goals of creating a sense of civic pride and addressing environmental problems, but more needs to be done. Times are tough for businesses across Wales and the UK, and Gwynedd Council’s Business Rates have come under fire in recent months. The Bangor Pride project now needs to do more to give the local economy and our local businesses a boost, to ensure that Bangor is able to compete with shopping destinations across the region, attract new business developments, and draw people into the area to live, work, and study.”

The scrutiny report said that “there was no clear evidence of activity by the Business Group except for the successful scheme to celebrate the visit of the Olympic Torch during May 2012.”