Call to create Farmingdale BID gets mixed reviews

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There's a call to create a new business improvement district in Farmingdale, but not everyone is sold on the idea.

Farmingdale Village is growing rapidly with new housing and restaurants. The area has become a hot spot on the Island.

Now village trustees and some businesses are backing a plan to create a business improvement district along Main Street. The BID would tax businesses a small amount, with the money going to help pay for community events and marketing.

Harry Cohen, owner of the Chocolate Duck, is all for the idea.

“I advertise all the time,” says Cohen. “I think a BID type of thing would be a wonderful thing for this village.”

But there are owners who wonder why they should be taxed when the village has improved itself so far without a BID.

“That I wouldn't like too much because then we'll get an increase with the rent….and that we don't want,” says Al Albano, of Jaylor's.

Supporters of the BID say once established, it could apply for extra funding grants from the state and other agencies that the area couldn't do before.

“That will pay for things such as security cameras, streetscapes, landscaping and other types of signage and infrastructure improvements,” says Farmingdale Village Trustee Walter Priestley.

At the Brickwell Cycling Shop, Russell Gobetz says he believes in growth but wants to make sure BID will be run properly. He says he's for the idea of the BID but is a little skeptical.

The business improvement district plan is being reviewed by the state comptroller’s office.

If approved, supporters hope to have it up and running by the spring.


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