Chicago Southland Black Chamber Joins Other Area Business Organizations to Successfully Push BIDS Legislation

Chicago Southland Black Chamber Joins Other Area Business Organizations to Successfully Push BIDS Legislation
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Chicago Southland Black Chamber Joins Other Area Business Organizations to Successfully Push BIDS Legislation (Springfield, IL) — The Chicago Southland Black Chamber worked with a coalition of business organizations last week in Springfield to advocate for SB3679, referred to as BIDs (Business Improvement Districts). The Chicago Southland Black Chamber of Commerce worked with the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, the Magnificent Mile Association, the Illinois Retail Merchants Association, the Chicago Loop Alliance, and the Illinois Chamber of Commerce.

The Bill was advanced through the executive committee of the Illinois Senate with unanimous support.

Dr. Cornel Darden Jr., Chairman of the Chicago Southland Black Chamber of Commerce was thrilled with the outcome

“We were really pleased with the outcome of the committee. The Chicago Southland Black Chamber was registered to give oral testimony but the overall support for the bill was so strong that it did not warrant testimonies. The Senate Committee just decided to push it through,” stated Dr. Cornel Darden Jr.

This legislation allows for the creation of Business Improvement Districts. Business Improvement Districts are geographical areas where local business owners can implement a self-imposed assessment to fund supplementary maintenance, development, and promotional services in their district.

BIDs are very common in 45 other states in the U.S. and abroad. These are self-initiated assessments by business owners themselves and thus are not taxes. Properties within the district are assessed at a customized level by the business community.

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All of the revenues must be spent within the district boundaries according to a budget approved by an elected board for its intended purposes. BIDs are held accountable through an elected board of their peers within the BID, with clear terms for termination or dissolution, if warranted.

According to the Magnificent Mile Association, first, local stakeholders must self-organize a petition to form a BID, and then elect a board of directors to represent them) for a specific neighborhood or district. The municipality must then pass an enabling ordinance or policy.

“This legislation will allow for more much needed input from the business community which will breed efficiency and the ability to raise many more resources than a forced assessment,” stated Dr. Darden.

“We’re excited and the next step is to introduce legislation for the rest of Illinois. The current legislation is only for the City of Chicago,” explained Darden.

Chicago Southland Black Chamber Joins Other Area Business Organizations to Successfully Push BIDS Legislation

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