Memorandum by British Property Federation
This is an issue which members of ours feel
particularly passionate about, because of its exclusion of property
owners in voting on and funding BIDs. This is contrary to the
experiences of many quasi-BID schemes that already exist in the
UK, town centre management projects for example, which have predominantly
been initiated and co-ordinated by property owners. It is also
at odds with the experience in the United States, where property
owners play a lead role in BIDs. One of the implications is that
the legislation as it stands is excluding a potential source of
funding for BIDs, which will either mean less resource overall
for projects, or more of the funding required being asked from
small businesses and other occupiers.
We have a draft briefing prepared, but given
the short timeframe for this inquiry it has been impossible for
us to satisfy our own internal procedures for the approval of
documents to be submitted to the Committee, and we would only
be able to provide a final written briefing by 4 July.
I know from giving evidence to the Committee
on Local Government Finance in the 1998-99 session, however, that
many members were genuinely interested in this issue and if that
remains the case we would be delighted to put forward a leading
figure from the property industry to give oral evidence. From
discussions I have had with colleagues at the British Retail Consortium
they too would be keen to contribute to a joint evidence session,
which would give the Committee the unique opportunity to hear
the perspective of property owners and occupiers at the same time.
I am sorry that we have been unable to meet
your deadline, but hope that the Committee agree this is an issue
they should be exploring. If you would like further information
please do not hesitate to contact me, tel: 020 7802 0112.