The ‘We are INverurie’ BID (Business Improvement District) Project has been given the green light by the Town’s businesses today after a huge 87.2% of the eligible business owners voted YES.
The full results of the vote are: Total votes cast 125 – votes in favour 109 (87.2%), votes against 16 (12.8%), spoiled papers 0 (0%). In favour (Yes) by rateable value of votes cast 61.93%. The postal ballot was carried out by the Electoral Reform Services of London.
Ian Sinclair, Chair of the We are INverurie Steering Committee said: “We are delighted with the result of the ballot. I know I speak for all members of the BID Steering Group in expressing our excitement about what the future looks like for Inverurie. This result now sets in motion a series of actions as outlined by BIDs Scotland which will result in the formation of the We are INverurie BID Company by 23 August 2017 and a Board being appointed. The work will then start on making the key actions outlined in the Business Plan a reality.”
Ashley Wilson, BID Co-ordinator said: “Our business community has really got behind the BID and the support has been strong across the board. This is just the start of a very exciting five years ahead as the projects and priorities outlined in the BID Business Plan start to take shape.”
She continued: “The first steps will now be put in motion. We will be writing to the owners and rate payers of each of the 196 properties who were eligible to vote in the BID Ballot and received a voting paper to ask for nominations to form the Board. The Board will be made up of 14 members; 12 from the BID area businesses and two from the voluntary contributors. If more than 14 nominations are received there will be a Ballot for all those who own or manage the 196 properties will vote to choose the 14 Board Members. The new Board will meet for the first time in July and appoint a Chair and other roles then.”
The current Steering Group will continue, along with the support of Ashley Wilson as BID Co-ordinator, until the new Board is formed and the first Board meeting held. The BID Company will be set up as outlined by BIDs Scotland and in line with all other Scottish BIDs and will be charged with delivering the £500,000 BID Business Plan between 2017-2022. A BID Manager will be recruited by the BID Company to lead the Projects, accountable to the BID Board.
The aim of the We are INverurie Business Plan is to deliver a series of projects and services that will improve the trading environment in Inverurie, to benefit businesses, their customers, clients and visitors. The first projects will include the Pride of INverurie Awards event, a group business rate appeal for adversely affected BID area and IBA member businesses and the initiation of a Town Centre WIFI project.
As part of the process, further discussions will be held with the key groups under the We are INverurie umbrella – the Inverurie Business Association (IBA), Inverurie Events, Inverurie Sport, Inverurie Retail, Food & Drink, Inverurie Community Council and the Inverurie Environmental Improvement Group – to discuss plans.
Ian Sinclair added: “The BID model is a proven path to bring together business and community to focus effort, leverage funding and make things happen. We would like to thank the local businesses who got behind the BID, Aberdeenshire Council, VisitAberdeenshire and the team at BID Scotland for their support over the past 18 months and I personally look forward to this continued partnership working.”
The seven key priorities of the We are INverurie BID are to:
- Promote Inverurie Town Centre as a place to visit and invest in.
- Attract more customers.
- Increase the number and scale of promotional events.
- Provide a safer place to visit both day and night.
- Help businesses make cost savings.
- Represent the voice of Town Centre businesses and organisations.
- Help deliver a cleaner, more attractive Town.
Further details and the Business Plan are available at www.weareinverurie.co.uk.