A Safe and Clean Downtown

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from MID websiteA safe and clean downtown is something we all want for our city. Taking a big step toward that end, the City Council voted unanimously yesterday to renew the Metropolitan Improvement District (MID) for 10 years and expand it to Belltown.

The MID is one of the city’s nonprofit Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) where landowners pay special assessments to contract with private firms that provide additional trash pick-up, alley cleaning and other services that make the neighborhood cleaner and safer. The Council considered this renewal and expansion after it was presented to the Council in a petition signed by a significant majority of the would-be MID ratepayers. Because state law limits City government’s ability to raise revenues, BIAs have become an important tool for business districts throughout Seattle to raise their own revenue to make their sidewalks, buildings and streets more inviting to residents and customers.  

Consistent with our focus on results, the Council amended the proposal to require a performance audit of the MID to ensure that these beneficial services continue to be provided in an effective manner.