TN merchants rally behind BID: heads for CB10 approval

Many of the businesses on East Tremont Avenue have held their locations for many years.
Community News Group/Sarah Valenzuela

The effort to establish the Throggs Neck Business Improvement District is ready to clear its next hurdle, a vote of support from Community Board 10.

On Wednesday, June 27, the NYC Small Business Services will present the Throggs Neck BID application before a CB 10 public hearing at 3077 Cross Bronx Expressway at 7 p.m.

Ten of the 75 BIDs in the city operate in the borough, with Morris Park receiving the most recent designation at the start of 2018.

At first the Throggs Neck Merchants Association had trouble lining up support for the BID because of a lack of understanding of what the BID would mean for merchants and property owners, according to the TNMA.

The TNMA spoke with merchants and property owners individually, going door to door to explain the benefits of a BID and to gather support for it, according to Bobby Jaen the president of the TNMA.

As of Monday, June 11, Jaen reported the TNMA had 139 merchants and property owners on their list of yay’s.

“We have way more commercial business owners and merchants who have pledged their support than we we’re required to have,” said Jaen.

In Throggs Neck, the main boundaries of the BID would run from East Tremont Avenue and Bruckner Boulevard, south to Miles and Tremont avenues, plus a handful of businesses north of Bruckner Boulevard as well.

BIDs are funded and maintained by its local stakeholders, the merchants and property owners within the defined boundary.

“How could you say ‘no’ if the money is from and for the neighborhood,” continued Jaen.

The funds to operate a BID are acquired through special dedicated property tax assessments.

Commercial property owners within the geographical BID would have their properties assessed an additional $38 per linear front footage, with corner properties assessed slightly higher, according to the TNMA.

Within the proposed Throggs Neck BID zone, there are 13 private homes, which will also be assessed an additional $1 a year.

These numbers remain constant every year, unless there is a unanimous agreement to change those assessment rates, according to Jaen.

The future Throggs Neck BID committee would use these funds for the advancement of the neighborhood to attract more consumers and other businesses to the area.

“If you look up and down Tremont Avenue, there are a lot of empty store fronts,” said Gerri Colon, another member of the TNMA.

“The BID could change that and try to turn it around for the better,” continued Colon.

Some of these improvements could include additional street cleaning and garbage pickup, the installation of security cameras, and creation of spaces of beautification like adding more greenery and sidewalk lights.

As the TNMA amasses more yay’s as newer merchants join the effort, Jaen believes the BID will likely receive the necessary amount of support at the CB10 hearing to move forward with its ratification.

If CB 10 vote okays the BID, the process requires five more approvals before it’s enacted.

Reach Reporter Sarah Valenzuela at (718) 260-4584. E-mail her at svalenzuela@cnglocal.com.

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