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LIC BID Expansion Gets Community Board 2 Approval

Elizabeth Lusskin

Elizabeth Lusskin, president of LIC Partnership (file photo)

June 3, 2016 By Christian Murray

The Long Island City Partnership’s quest to expand its Business Improvement District into the Hunters Point area took a significant step forward last night.

Community Board 2 approved its plan that would create a new Hunters Point sub-district, stretching along Jackson Avenue, Vernon Boulevard and 44th Drive.

The LIC BID currently serves businesses in the Queens Plaza/Court Square region along Jackson Avenue and Queens Plaza.

The concept of creating a BID for Hunters Point has been two years in the works, with a steering committee set up in the second quarter of 2014.

Services that will be provided to the BID sub-district properties will include maintenance/sanitation, marketing/promotion and beautification. These services will be on top of what New York City is required to provide.

Elizabeth Lusskin, the president of the Partnership and BID executive director, said at CB 2’s meeting last night that the BID services would help businesses generate more revenue.

The Hunters Point sub-district would be working with a budget of $350,000. This is a smaller and separate budget from the existing BID zone, which will be $450,000 in the expanded BID’s first year.

Lusskin was subject to several questions about the sub district and how the majority of the board of directors—like with all BIDs—are mandated to be property owners. Questions were raised by two Board members who asked whether the commercial tenants would be adequately represented.

There will be commercial tenants on the board. However, they will be in the minority along with elected officials and a community board representative.

Lusskin, however, said that many commercial tenants were very eager for the BID to arrive in Hunters Point, hoping that it would help them generate new business.

Furthermore, Lusskin said, when there were two hearings in July 2015 on the proposal—both advertised—there were no objections.

As with all BIDs, each property owner within the Hunters Point sub-district would be required to pay an assessment. Most landlords pass this fee onto their tenants.

The Partnership stated that in all, 60 percent of the sub-district’s properties would be charged less than $660 annually.

Queens Borough President Melinda Katz will also weigh in on the plan as part of the process. The City Planning Commission will also render an opinion.

Ultimately, the BID expansion will need to be approved by the City Council.

Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, who represents the area and will therefore be a key voice on the issue, said he is a “big supporter” of the BID expansion.

LIC Partnership

LIC Partnership

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6 Comments

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MRLIC

To RusAshAnn. Most of the bowling alley posts are from a FAKE MRLIC who has hijacked my handle (MRLIC). If you read Patricia Dorfman’s post from the Sunnyside Chamber Of Commerce she tells you how and why small businesses disappear from these Business Improvement Districts. Not just Van Bramer but other Politicians know what will happen and just let it happen. Some may even be getting promises and or money under the table for this. We have seen many corrupt politicians exposed in NYC & State in the past few years.

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patricia dorfman

swimming against the tide here…but gotta say it (as director of sunnyside chamber of commerce and western queens biz owner and resident)

nyc recent history:

•first comes the rezoning

•then the business improvement development districts

•then the speculation, displacement and high-rises

small business owners are told bids will benefit them, but unfortunately, in the long run, they are a turning over of the city to big real estate. the cost for the bids is paid by assessment on each small business to their landlord. so small biz pays for their eventual displacement (don’t accept anything other than a 10-year lease extension).

bids are are needed in blighted areas like the times square to save an area from crime and decay. in the new era, they are a vehicle for the big real estate interests to gentrify and area without concomitant infrastructure improvements which eventually taxpayers will pay for. our bid director is a talented and good person but the goal of bids is not the same as the goal of local residents and mom and pops.

at first, it is nice to have the better sanitation, security, promotion and holiday lights, and does help small biz short term, but it is at the expense of the following:

1. bids do not and have no mission reason to speak up for individual small businesses when their rents are tripled
2. bids do not speak up for even small landlords when their property tax shoots up
3. bids do not speak up for small pharmacies getting their ability to take insurance from insurance companies now owned by big pharmacies, such as cvs
4. bids do not speak up for eye care facilities who can’t accept insurance from eyemed now owned by luxotica, who owns pearl vision and so on
5. bids are a legal extension of the city so cannot protest freely the way chambers of commerce can as advocacy groups for small business
6. as speculation occurs, such as rapid closing of mom and pops as rent rise, bids do not and do have a mission to speak up for the small firms that make our quality of life what it is. our 15+ small biz losses here with many more to come, and vacant storefronts preceed the bulldozers. dime bank, dr. kubikkian, pj horgans, city cinema are gone. the new owner bought for 7+ million and is selling for 19.2 million. we predict more flips before it is developed. we now see film shoots there, benefitting the owner, taking up parking, and no buying of local food. but we lost five small firms.

with city hall no longer doing anything for small biz except token measures, and passing of rezoning citywide march 22, is nyc now in the hands of big real estate?

pretty much.

however, there are three remedies which would be of immediate help:

to slow down the paving over and displacement, ask city council to pass

1. Small Business Jobs Survival Act, a kind of commercia rent control to save mom and pops and slow
2. change citywide of bid boards have term limits (now board members can serve for life)
3. change make up of bid board to more democratic and to have more small biz representatives

to help for FREE your mom and pops, “like”

https://www.facebook.com/Sunnyside-Chamber-of-Commerce-109052429188669/

we have been around since 1947 and recently have strongly advocated the passage of SMJSA, joining groups from all over nyc like savenyc, takebacknyc, artists studio affordability project, queens civic congress, humanscale.nyc

a public forum will be held by the chamber in early summer with representatives from bids invited as well as sbjsa and its foes (real estate interests). thank you for reading this all the way through!

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MRLIC

Of Course Jimmy Van Bramer (NO Brainer I should say) is for this.He is not for business or the people.

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RuAshAnn

Jimmy Van Bramer is an honorable person that is going out of his way to bring good things. Maybe you should take a hard look at yourself MRLIC and recognize that it’s easy to complain but it’s very hard to put the work in. Maybe if you would stop thinking about your bowling for a moment and recognize good in people.

Reply
Oar

There are a lot of apartment buildings on 44th drive, does that mean those landlords are part of the bid and pass that on to their tenants? That seems really unfair.

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Anonymous

No, That’s not how it works. If a building has a commercial component then it would be based on that portion of the building and passed onto commercial tenants. If a building had a store and apartments above. The increase would be based on the store and charged to the store if the lease allows. Never to any apartments.

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