Town grants $6,000 extension to BIA

Money will allow for three-months’ grace to partially fund an event liaison and facilitator contractors

A three-month extension has been granted to the Town of Sidney’s agreement with the Sidney Business Improvement Area Society (SBIAS) to partially fund an event liaison and facilitator contractors.

SBIAS board member Susan Simosko says the memorandum of understanding between the parties expires at the end of December. She said they want to ensure funding carried through the November municipal election and covers the upcoming Family Day weekend in  February.

“Given the new council’s term of office (starts after Nov. 15), we are seeking three months’ grace to extend the MoU from January 1 to March 30, 2015,” she said.

The Town’s share of the three-month extension is $6,000. The BIA will cover the remaining $6,000 out of their annual requisition of fees from downtown area businesses.

The events liaison position is currently held by Donna Petrie, the SBIAS’ executive director. Under the year-long MoU, both the Town and BIA contribute $20,000 for the position and various contract workers. Simosko said they will hire a contractor to facilitate Family Day events. She added Tom Watson was hired under a short-term contract through December to facilitate their Christmas in Sidney program of events and promotions.

Councillor Mervyn Lougher-Goodey said he supports the BIA in this.

“This is one of the most successful projects I’ve seen, as a team effort between the Town and the BIA,” he said.

Coun. Marilyn Loveless added she has witnessed the successful work done by Petrie and said she didn’t want to be the one to put a stop to all the momentum created by the BIA thus far.

Council approved the extension unanimously. Simosko pointed out both parties plan to renegotiate a new memorandum of understanding in March of next year.