Scarborough Council to debate motion to ditch Yorkshire Coast Destination BID

Scarborough Council will debate the motion at a meeting of Full Council on 1 March.
Scarborough Council will debate the motion at a meeting of Full Council on 1 March.

Scarborough Council is to debate a motion to end its involvement in the controversial Yorkshire Coast Destination Business Improvement District (DBID).

The council announced last week it was “pausing” its involvement in the scheme until the Secretary of State for Local Government, James Brokenshire MP, had ruled on the legality of the ballot of businesses.

A group of Labour and Independent councillors called on the Mayor to hold an Extraordinary Meeting of the council to debate a motion to suspend the authority’s involvement in any BID for five years.

In a compromise, the motion will now be debated at the next meeting of the Full Council on Friday March 1.

Cllr Tony Randerson (Lab) one of the councillors who signed the motion said he was happy that councillors would get their say.

He said: “I am comfortable for it to be on the council agenda, let’s hope for an open, honest and transparent debate on this issue.”

The DBID aims to raise more than £5 million over five years to put back into the communities by way of creating new events, festivals, markets and general improvements and infrastructure.

But a number of businesses expressed concerns about how the money will be raised via a mandatory levy on every retail, leisure, accommodation and food and drink organisation with a rateable value of £12,000 and above.

These businesses, from Staithes in the north to Spurn Point in the south, would have to pay into the levy, which would be calculated at 1.5% of that value.

The ballot of businesses was passed by a margin of 217 voted for to 175 against. However, it has since come to light that 71 of the yes votes came from the councils involved in the process.