Town to biz improvement supporters: numbers, please

It’s show and tell time for the Friday Harbor Town Council.

When local business owners Ed Williams, Julie Shelton and Gail Shmee took their business improvement district idea to the Town Council May 3, the council said, “Show me.”

Councilman and the group’s unofficial adviser Steve Hushebeck said, “We’re ready to support this proposal. Now we need to see the momentum build and the business community needs to fulfill the legal requirements so we can get this district going.”

That’s just what Williams and his steering committee are doing. “We’re on top of this and we’re moving as fast as we can to get everything done in the next month or two,” said Williams.

The founding group is working on the Initiation Petition required by state law to be presented to the council before the council will take up an ordinance establishing the district. The petition must set out the proposed projects and activities of the non-profit improvement district, and the estimated amount of the special assessment on business licenses to fund those projects.  The petition must be signed by business owners who will pay at least 60 percent of the assessments.

Williams and the steering committee are scheduled to meet in the next two weeks to work on the petition and other necessary documents. They’re planning to get business owners to sign the petition, possibly at a general meeting of all prospective members.

After that, Williams and cohort will be back at the council for “Show and Tell Time.”

— Steve Wehrly