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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Okulick Says “Want Monies Returned” … BID Not Implemented


“I am requesting the Business Improvement District (BID) assessment monies be returned to the 463 property owners in accordance with State Law as no Business District benefits have been provided,” John Okulick said. “The city has ignored State Proposition 218, Article 13D and this assessment of properties is an unlawful use of taxation.”

John Okulick has been outspoken against the BID from the beginning but was out voted.

Assessments for the BID started last November to provide a “cleaner and safer boardwalk.” People talked of having information-security people, they talked of having cleaning system for the boardwalk. First year assessment was to be 1.8 million and with a five percent increase each year.

“My property tax bill has increased by 50 percent due to the Venice BID property assessment from this year,” Okulick said. “It has been 10 months since this assessment was paid and there has been no implementation of the BID services. 463 properties were assessed and moneys collected. $1.8 million dollars. The benefits of these assessments are not being provided and will most likely not be provided at any time in the future.

“Below are statements made in the Venice BID Management Plan, made by Tara Devine, lobbyist engaged by the city clerk’s office and Mike Bonin’s office, and approved by the city council last November.

“BID management plan …
“In accordance with State law, the District will have a five-year life from January 1, 2017 to December 31, 2021. The District is expected to begin services on or shortly after January 1, 2017. If the District is not renewed, services will sunset on December 31, 2021.

“Governance: The City shall contract with a non-profit Owners’ Association to manage the District and implement this plan. The Owners’ Association will review and approve the District budget, policies and operational plans. They shall hire and oversee all staff and/or contractors charged with the execution of services to the District. Annual and quarterly reports, newsletters and CPA-reviewed financial statements will be submitted to the City according to a calendar established by the Office of the City Clerk, Neighborhood and Business Improvement District Division. —

To assist the Owners’ Association in budgeting and the deployment of resources, an incident tracking software/database will be developed to track calls for clean and safe services for individually assessed parcels in the District. This data will help ensure that negative public safety trends are identified quickly and can be addressed efficiently and effectively so that crime, litter and blight do not deter pedestrian activity and commerce.. The database will be developed and expanded as funds are available to implement this goal.
“Method of Financing: A levy of special assessments shall be made upon real property that receives special benefits from the improvements and activities described within this plan.

“If the District expires with a surplus, funds may be rolled over into a renewed or reformed District if established, but shall only be expended on those parcels that were assessed in the original District; if none is established, the surplus shall be returned, on a pro rata basis, to each property owner in the District, in accordance with State law.”

Comments (2)

  1. Anonymous

    Let’s see -Money basically stolen from property owners in the Boardwalk area to counter a situation created by an arrogant city government that has filled this same area with an incredibly dirty and partially criminal element, that never materialized, added to some of the stupidest and ill thought out, traffic concepts, foisted upon us by a Councilperson who bends facts and does not respond to constituents or public opinion. Maybe this is just an experiment to see exactly how much adversity a single community can take. Can anyone come up with an example of anything similar anywhere? Does not make sense.

  2. Billy Z

    Good luck in fighting city hall.

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