Who does a City belong to?

Does it belong to the people who live, work and play there?
Or does it only belong to the people who own property?

We live in a representative democracy where citizens elect people to make choices on their behalf. You have the ability to access information, contact council, speak to council, view public meetings and even learn about campaign contributions to elected officials. If your council members do not act in your best interests and the community, they can be replaced by new council members.

If City Council approves this “Business Improvement” District, City Council will hand over some of the powers you have given them, and once taken it will be extremely difficult to get them back. RENTERS: If you do not own property within the boundary, even if you live there, you will not get to directly vote for or against a BID. PROPERTY OWNERS: Even if you do own a piece of property, the assessed value of your property can affect the weight (or lack there of) of your vote.

A BID Board, the group that would make decisions on additional taxes, and expenditures of public money would NOT be subject to Freedom of Information Law, or Open Meetings Law. They would make decisions behind closed doors. The Board itself would be made up of a codified majority of property owners with token representation of a single commercial renter and residential renter.

Seriously? What special interest lobbyist wrote this legislation?

There’s so much more, we’re just digging into the law right now. There is room for thoughtful development without displacement downtown, but this BID is not the way. If you’d like to stop this from turning our city into a kingdom, sign up for our action network and let’s dig in!

2 responses to “Who does a City belong to?”

  1. […] A resolution initiating the process must be introduced and passed by City Council. […]

  2. […] board is granted powers by City Council. These powers were entrusted to City Council by you, the voter. The Rochester Downtown Development Corporation (RDDC) has access to nearly $5,000,000 in public […]

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