Auckland Council BID (Business Improvement District) Expansion – Beware!

Auckland Council BID (Business Improvement District) Expansion Ballot.

Introduction:   

In representing the best interests of the dangerously indebted Auckland Council, Alex Holley & Catherine Te Reo of the Auckland Council funded South Harbour Business Association’s, (SHBA) are promoting the Council’s plan to expand the SHBA BID area into Favona.

The BID expansion amounts to the Auckland Council funded SHBA promoting an Auckland Council plan that will install SHBA as a compulsory funded (targeted rate) “business association” in the Favona business area.

You likely won’t have been told that:

  • If the BID expansion goes ahead, ALL businesses in Favona MUST fund SHBA (targeted rate), whether the minimal / duplicated services offered by SHBA are used / required by local businesses or not.
  • SHBA are proven to promote the best interests of their principal funder, Auckland Council ahead of the best interests of the majority of local businesses (example: the Mahunga to Favona Coastal Cycleway, etc).
  • The minimal services offered by the Auckland Council funded SHBA are already available to local businesses either in-house (for larger companies) or from an abundant choice of private sector specialist providers who are independent of links to or conflicts of interest with, Auckland Council
  • This is particularly the case with monitored CCTV and security patrols, which local businesses and property owners should organize themselves independently of Auckland Council / SHBA third parties.
  • SHBA refuse to identify any key achievements they (A. Holley/ SHBA / Auckland Council) have made in the best interests of the majority of local businesses over the last 5 years. Are there any??
  • The Mahunga Drive business owners I’ve approached, who are currently compulsory funders of SHBA, can’t point to any key achievements the SHBA have made for the majority of local businesses in the last 5 years.
  • The multiple extravagant claims made by SHBA manager, A. Holley are unlikely and can’t be proven.
  • My latest attempt to discover ANY key achievements for the majority of local businesses in the last 5 years by SHBA was met with “Is this idiot for real” remark made by SHBA manager to the SHBA Chair, and to Auckland Council CCO BID manager, Claire Siddens. Insults, but still no reply.
  • The 96 page Auckland Council BID policy is so complex and long, that it needs careful interpretation by your lawyer to define all of the negative impacts for local businesses.
  • The benefits to local businesses under BID policy are vague and impractical at best, but irrespective of whether there is any service or benefit provided to any local business under the Auckland Council BID program, ALL local businesses / property owners MUST pay the targeted rate to fund SHBA.
  • The higher the property Capital Value, the higher the individual targeted rate will be every year.
  • The complex and lengthy BID policy can be changed behind closed doors at the discretion of the Auckland Council.
  • Property owners and business tenants can vote in the BID expansion ballot. Property owners will pay the targeted rate and pass that on as a rent increase to the tenant if the BID expansion is voted in.

Where you:

  • Haven’t independently verified the integrity and honesty of the claims, opinions and statements from the Auckland Council funded SHBA (A. Holley, C. Te Reo) about the SHBA and the Auckland Council BID programme “benefits” for the majority of local businesses.
  • Haven’t had your lawyer interpret the complex 96 page BID policy (thousands in legal fees to do that).
  • Haven’t looked into how much extra your business MUST pay Auckland Council each year (targeted rate), whether or not you receive any minimal / duplicated services or benefits at all from the SHBA.
  • Don’t want to pay the compulsory additional rates to Auckland Council every year to fund Auckland Council / SHBA for minimal or non-existant “services”.

… then you should vote “NO” in the BID expansion Ballot being mailed to you on 23-8-17

VERY IMPORTANT for property owners and tenants:

If you are renting your business property, PLEASE FORWARD THIS NOTICE URGENTLY TO YOUR PROPERTY OWNER as he / they will also be voting in the BID Expansion Ballot.

VOTING:

If you do not wish to be part of the Auckland Council BID / SHBA expansion for any or all of the reasons provided in this notice, it is VERY IMPORTANT to vote “NO” in the BID Ballot.

Please don’t throw your voting paper in the bin. That doesn’t count as a “NO” vote and the ballot will be decided on those few businesses & property owners that DO vote.

BALLOT POLICY:

Buried in the complex 96 page Auckland Council  BID policy is the BID Ballot Policy, which confirms:

  1. The BID Expansion ballot can be decided from only 25% of local property owners & businesses placing their votes.
  2. If 51% of that 25% of local property owners / businesses vote “YES” for the BID expansion, that tiny number of local property owners / businesses will bind ALL other local businesses in the area to the BID expansion.

Has this ballot section of the BID policy been designed by Auckland Council to assist Auckland Council / SHBA succeed with their BID expansion plan result??   It will ONLY backfire on them if the majority of local businesses & property owners vote “NO” in the BID expansion ballot!

IF THE BID EXPANSION GOES AHEAD:

This forces ALL local property owners / businesses to pay a targeted rate based on the Capital Value of your property, in order to fund SHBA each year!

This rates payment is compulsory every year and is irrespective of whether or not the property owners or their business tenants receive any service or benefit from SHBA.

In the case of renting your business premises, your property owner will look to pass on the targeted rate cost to you.

If the 51%  of 25% (plus) of local businesses vote “YES” for the BID expansion then irrespective of whether or not property owners or business tenants join SHBA, ALL local businesses / property owners MUST fund SHBA every year.

If businesses join SHBA, but don’t attend SHBA meetings, SHBA manager will vote on your behalf. Good idea??

The amount you will be forced to pay each year is currently quoted at .00048 X the Capital Value of your property, but the BID policy says SHBA / Auckland Council can change / increase that amount as they please.

SHBA will use the funding collected by Auckland Council from the 100% of local businesses / property owners to provide minimal, duplicated services to perhaps only a few local businesses (as per the Mahunga Drive example).

  1. Do you want the dangerously indebted Auckland Council and their BID association, SHBA involved in your business and to be paying higher rates for little or no minimal services in return (as per Mahunga Drive example)??
  2. Do you want to be a member of an Auckland Council funded business association that looks after the best interests Auckland Council / Mangere-Otahuhu Local Board before the wishes and best interests of the majority of local businesses and local residents (as per the Mahunga to Favona Coastal Cycleway example etc)??

If the answer is “NO”, then VOTE “NO” IN LARGE NUMBERS TO RETAIN LOCAL INDEPENDENCE AND CHOICE!