SBPA slams Edinburgh BID scheme

By Ewan Turney

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Proposal Proposals

SBPA slams Edinburgh BID scheme
Edinburgh BID scheme has little tangible benefit for licensed trade, says trade body

The Scottish Beer and Pub Association (SBPA) has slammed the setting up of a Business Improvement District (BID) in Edinburgh.

Under the BID companies will pay an extra 1% on top of their business rates to help promote the city, improve facilities, reduce crime and help provide better transport links.

BIDs have often been proposed as a better alternative to Alcohol Disorder Zones because they are run by a committee of local businesses.

Of the 573 balloted businesses, 148 voted in favour, 106 against while 319 declined to vote.

The SBPA opposes BIDs unless they provide any tangible benefit to the licensed trade.

"The results of the ballot of the Edinburgh BID are hardly a ringing endorsement of the proposal with three out of four businesses that could have voted for the proposal either not voting or actually voting against it,"​ said SBPA chief executive Patrick Browne (pictured​).

"We support BIDs where they can deliver tangible benefits for the licensed trade within the areas affected but the Edinburgh proposal seemed to be very light in the vision it outlined for supporting Edinburgh's trade given the very large tourism factor which drives the city.

"Licensees within the areas of other BIDs need to take more of an active interest in these proposals and make their own judgement about whether they should be supporting them.

"But given the financial pressures on licensees arising from licensing reform, the industry needs to pay more attention to them as they are delivered on the ground."

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