The word is starting to spread and that is good news! More and more people are asking questions and learning about the benefits of the proposed Property Based Improvement District (PBID). We invite you to join the conversation by contacting us, attending an Open House or arranging a meeting with Chamber board members.
The Chamber is excited to join with commercial property owners and business leaders in the effort to form this District for tangible improvements in and around St. Helena. Similar districts have been successful in 1,500 other cities across the country, including Truckee, Palm Springs, Gilroy, Benicia and Napa.
Our Improvement District will generate consistent funding to do many of the programs in which property, business owners and residents have long waited. While the plan is to include physical improvements to the commercial corridor like more tree grates and a better streetscape, we will also continue marketing businesses and St. Helena to visitors as we have done for the last few years. We will also continue to market St. Helena to attract workforce and their families, like doctors, teachers, architects, and engineers who make up the soul of our community. The plan calls for a portion to fund programs that attract and keep businesses in the area and, working in conjunction with the City, ease the process of opening a business in St. Helena.
St. Helena’s economy, good or bad, affects your property or business, whether it is within city limits or not, whether it is commercial or not. We must be open to ideas that strengthen our economy, especially in times of financial crisis, and an Improvement District can be a tool in the road to sustainability.
While only commercial properties will be assessed for this district, it’s imperative that all residents support our business community in this effort. Business is the vehicle that generates most of our revenue. Business is the source that provides our sales and hotel tax and business pays a good portion of the property tax in St. Helena and the surrounding county. When business is strong, we can have the resources to support our infrastructure, provide the community with the programs they love and adequately fund our public safety departments. In other words, when business thrives, St. Helena thrives.
The PBID boundaries are drawn to incorporate properties which will benefit from the services, including county properties surrounding our city. There are businesses that have long felt part of a greater St. Helena area and are impacted by its current state and its future. This district will give them a voice in the process and provide them with services they cannot get elsewhere.
The intent is to generate enough money for the district to be productive while ensuring assessment amounts are not too high. The formulas are based on square footage of property along Main Street and the lot size. The requirements of the assessments follow California Property Improvement District law and are equally and fairly applied. We encourage all commercial property owners whose property lies within the PBID to reach out to us to learn your annual assessment.
We invite property owners, business owners and the community to join us for one of our upcoming Open House events next week to learn more about the PBID including the process, our timeframe, the assessments, boundaries and services. We hope to see you there!
PBID Open Houses
3-5 p.m., Monday, March 6, Southbridge Napa Valley Conference Room
8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday, March 7, all day drop in at St. Helena Welcome Center
10 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, March 8, Napa Valley College, St. Helena campus, room 4
2-4 p.m., Thursday, March 9, second floor conference room, 899 Adams St.
10 a.m. to noon, Friday, March 10, Hall Wines St. Helena