A meeting was held Thursday by the organized resistance to the Business Improvement District proposed for the City of Asheville. Councilman Cecil Bothwell wants to kill the BID any way possible, and so do I. Unfortunately, the others on council are either very pro-BID or afraid to admit what Bothwell is saying.
By way of review, the BID will be like a box of Lucky Charms. When it is opened, hearts, moons, and clovers will fly out in rainbows making everything pretty and prosperous. In reality, it will collect a tax which is expected to grow much higher than the initial 7-cent rate, and give it to a select, unaccountable group so they can lay down the law for downtown aesthetics. The expected result will be the flight of mom-and-pop shops and an influx of chains that can afford the extra taxes and regulatory rigmarole. Streetscapes will be vibrant with French madames walking poodles and sipping cappucinos, and businessmen in stri-ped suits and gangsta hats smoking fat cigars.
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