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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Release # 321-04
November 29, 2004


MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG SIGNS LEGISLATION CREATING FOREST AVENUE BUSINESS IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT

Remarks by Mayor Bloomberg at a Public Hearing on Local Laws and statements by Small Business Services Commissioner Robert W. Walsh and Alfred C. Cerullo, III, President of the New York City Business Improvement District Managers Association

"The first bill before me today is Introductory Number 410, sponsored at the request of the Administration by Council Members Weprin and McMahon. This bill establishes the Forest Avenue Business Improvement District in the borough of Staten Island. "Business Improvement Districts - known as BIDs - are community organizations that are voluntarily formed to promote business development and improve the quality of life in neighborhoods across the City. Established by local law, BIDs are self-funded by local property owners and are overseen by the City's Department of Small Business Services. The services provided by BIDs are essential to ensuring small businesses, and the neighborhoods in which they operate, are given every opportunity to succeed. The Forest Avenue BID will provide maintenance and sanitation services, holiday lighting and decoration, marketing and promotion of the shopping strip, beautification of Forest Avenue, administration, and other such activities as are required for the promotion and enhancement of the district. "BIDs are a proven example of how public/private partnerships can promote economic development. This bill will further the fundamental role that BIDs have played in the economic development of our neighborhoods and in the renaissance of New York City. "I would like to thank Rob Walsh, the Commissioner of the Department of Small Business Services and his staff for their role in shepherding the City's 48th BID, the first on Staten Island, through the approval process. I also want to acknowledge the members of the Forest Avenue BID Steering Committee and Council member McMahon for their important contributions throughout this process. Additionally, I want to thank Council Member Weprin for his work on this bill." "It is official: Staten Island is on the map with this newest Forest Avenue Business Improvement District," said SBS Commissioner Walsh. "This BID's formation is a testament to the Mayor's effort to energize and invigorate the City's neighborhoods by making it easier for BIDs to form, function and grow. By working with the West Brighton Local Development Corporation and the BID steering committee, government and private enterprise has successfully brought merchants and property owner together to expand the local economy and continue to make Forest Avenue a vibrant and attractive neighborhood for working people and their families." "As President of the New York City BID Managers Association, it's my great privilege to welcome the Forest Ave Business Improvement District to the BID community," said Cerullo. "As a Staten Islander, I'm thrilled to welcome the borough's first BID and congratulate Susan Meeker and her team as they continue to improve the quality of life for all West Brighton workers, residents, and visitors. Susan's organization has already done much to effect positive change throughout her neighborhood, and I'm certain that, in this newest incarnation, Staten Islanders will continue to reap the benefits of her team's hard work. I would also like to extend my gratitude, on behalf of the now 48 BIDs in New York City, to Mayor Bloomberg and Commissioner Walsh for their incredible support of the BID community."

  Edward Skyler / Jordan Barowitz (212) 788-2958
Ethan Davidson / Ben Branham (SBS) (212) 513-6318