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City, merchants need to step up

By Joe LaCava

Bird Rock resident

I want to thank the city for starting work on the draft business improvement district budget for Fiscal Year 2011 (July 1 through June 30, 2011). With no local business association in place, it seems likely that the city will have to manage the La Jolla Business Improvement District for at least another year and it will be to the benefit of all to have a timely approval of the annual budget. Unlike the confusion and delays experienced last year, it is critical that the BID be approved, funded and operational on July 1. I urge the city to be inclusive in the budget process by directly reaching out to each merchant in the district, mail them the draft budget and urge them to attend the next meeting of the La Jolla BID.

You need to hear from them so that the City Council knows that the draft budget reflects the merchant’s priorities. Only by having as many merchants participate as possible can we get to a more vibrant and engaging process that focuses on improving the business district instead of languishing on the issues of the past.

And to the merchants. I know times are challenging and you need to spend time in your shops rather than in meetings, but this is YOUR money. A few minutes to prepare and attend at least one two-hour meeting a year is not too much to ask. You need to identify and relay YOUR priorities to make the Village a better place and more inviting to shoppers, diners and tourists. You need to re-energize the Shop Locally campaign. While good people have stepped up, YOU need to do your part and step up as well. I hope for your sakes that you do.