Business Partnership Approves Annual Special Improvement District Budget

Carteret, NJ – Mayor Dan Reiman recently joined with the Carteret Business Partnership Board of Directors in announcing that the 2008 SID budget has been approved. This year’s budget will allocate funds toward micro business loans and emergency service department grants.

The SID (Special Improvement District) is a private-sector non-profit organization established through a municipal ordinance, providing legislative powers to a District Management Corporation (DMC) comprised of local business leaders and investors, who levy a special property tax on commercial property, which in turn funds improvements to Carteret’s business districts.

The first SID (or BID, Business Improvement District) was created in Toronto, Canada, in 1980, establishing a coalition of local businesses sharing the same vision and strategies for local business improvements. Since then several have emerged in the United States, the first in New York in 1984, which boasts present-day Times Square among its many achievements. Today there are over 60 SIDs in New Jersey.

Carteret’s DMC, the “Carteret Business Partnership,” was established in 2003. Since then its Board of Directors, comprised of volunteers, has initiated a variety of streetscape improvements and emergency service equipment upgrades. Since its inception the SID has allocated $5 million towards commercial streetscape enhancements. This includes Washington Avenue, where the SID allocates an annual $80,000 in loans to new businesses. This program includes start-up loans marketing grants, façade improvement grants, signage grants, and awning grants for individual businesses.

The SID has also allowed for an annual $200,000 in capital equipment upgrades for local emergency services, and increased police patrols.

For 2008, $160,000 has been earmarked by the Business Partnership specifically for small business micro-loans and marketing strategies. An additional $75,000 will be spent on capital improvements, while SID II’s budget will provide its annual $200,000 towards the Borough’s Fire, Police, and EMS, through a competitive grant process.

“We are fortunate to have such a strong business community,” Mayor Reiman stated, “that has shared ideas and strategies for improving our commercial corridors. Much of the foundation for our commercial stature has been established by these leaders, and I am sure many of the enhancements we will see this year will be owed in no small part to the Carteret Business Partnership. This is one of the best examples of progress achieved through the teamwork of the public and private sectors.”

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