OPINION: Look forward to a new La Jolla BID

By Rick Wildman

President, La Jolla Town Council

It is now time for the Village business owners to look forward to establishing a new entity to run our business improvement district. On Sept. 9, the Coastal Law Group removed Promote La Jolla as a named party in the lawsuit to stop the La Jolla fireworks. PLJ is grateful to the law firm of Latham & Watkins who generously accomplished this feat at no cost to PLJ.

The city of San Diego’s $112,000 claim against PLJ stemming from the Consumer Fraud Hotline Investigation through 2008 is still unresolved. As a result, PLJ has pre-2009 claims that are likely more than $150,000. The result of these unresolved claims is that PLJ, which has been insolvent for years, remains insolvent. As a result, on Sept. 9 the PLJ board voted 4-1 to file for bankruptcy if the city’s claims are not resolved by Oct. 1.

The interim San Diego/La Jolla Business Improvement District, managed by city staff in consultation of the La Jolla BID Advisory Committee, needs to be supplanted by a new, permanent La Jolla Business Improvement District.

On April 12, I incorporated the La Jolla Business Improvement District (LJBID) as part of a backup plan in the event that PLJ’s difficulties could not been resolved.

Because of state budgetary constraints, the Secretary of State could not confirm this incorporation until June 12.

Although I have the power to appoint the directors for the new BID, I will not do so because I believe that no one individual should act for our business community. The next step in this process will be to contact the members of the BID by e-mail and letter.

We will have town hall meeting of the business owners in the BID. The business owners will then choose the directors whom I will appoint as directors of the new La Jolla Business Improvement District. This will be an open and public process.

The directors of the LJBID can then formulate bylaws and provide for the election of officers. After that is accomplished, the LJBID will be able to apply to the city of San Diego to become the BID administrator, which is the position previously held by PLJ and now held by city staff. I am hopeful that this can all be accomplished this year.