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Business Improvement Districts Act (Northern Ireland) 2013

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

Procedure

BID proposals

5.—(1) BID arrangements are not to come into force unless proposals for the arrangements (“BID proposals”) are approved by a ballot.

(2) The Department may by regulations make provision—

(a)as to the persons who may draw up BID proposals,

(b)as to consultation on BID proposals,

(c)as to other procedures to be followed in connection with the drawing up of BID proposals,

(d)as to the matters to be included in BID proposals,

(e)as to the date which may be provided under BID proposals for the coming into force of BID arrangements which give effect to the proposals,

(f)as to—

(i)the disclosure for the purposes of BID proposals of information held by the Department of Finance and Personnel in connection with its functions relating to rating of hereditaments,

(ii)the use to which such information may be put, and

(iii)the creation of offences and penalties in connection with any unauthorised disclosure of such information.

Entitlement to vote in ballot

6.—(1) Entitlement to vote in a ballot held for the purposes of section 5(1) is to be determined in accordance with this section.

(2) When submitting BID proposals to the district council, those who have drawn up the proposals are also to submit a statement as to which eligible ratepayers are to be entitled to vote in the ballot.

(3) In this Act “eligible ratepayer” means a person who on the prescribed date occupies or is entitled to possession of relevant property, whether or not rates are payable by that person in respect of it.

(4) In this section and in section 12 “relevant property” means a hereditament which is—

(a)within the business improvement district; and

(b)included in the NAV list.

(5) In this section and in section 7 “NAV list” has the same meaning as in the Rates Order.

Approval in ballot

7.—(1) BID proposals are not to be regarded as approved by a ballot held for the purposes of section 5(1) unless four conditions are satisfied.

(2) Except where section 8 applies, the four conditions are those set out in subsections (3), (4), (5) and (6).

(3) The first condition is that the number of votes cast in favour of the BID proposals exceeds the number of votes cast against those proposals.

(4) The second condition is that A exceeds B.

(5) The third condition is that at least 25% of the eligible ratepayers entitled to vote in the ballot have done so.

(6) The fourth condition is that the total of A plus B is equal to at least 25% of the aggregate of the net annual values of all hereditaments in respect of which an eligible ratepayer is entitled to vote in the ballot.

(7) “A” is the aggregate of the net annual values of the hereditaments in respect of which an eligible ratepayer voting in the ballot has voted in favour of the BID proposals.

(8) “B” is the aggregate of the net annual values of the hereditaments in respect of which an eligible ratepayer voting in the ballot has voted against the BID proposals.

(9) For the purposes of subsections (6), (7) and (8), the net annual value of a hereditament is that shown in the NAV list on the day of the ballot.

(10) In this section “net annual value” has the same meaning as in the Rates Order.

Approval in ballot - alternative conditions

8.—(1) This section applies where the persons who have drawn up the BID proposals so specify when submitting those proposals to the district council in advance of a ballot being held for the purposes of section 5(1).

(2) Section 7(1) has effect in respect of that ballot subject to either or both of the following—

(a)the substitution of the condition set out in subsection (3) for that set out in subsection (3) of section 7,

(b)the substitution of the condition set out in subsection (4) for that set out in subsection (4) of section 7.

(3) The condition is that the number of votes cast in favour of the BID proposals must exceed the number of votes cast against those proposals by such number or percentage as may be specified by the persons who have drawn up the BID proposals.

(4) The condition is that A must exceed B by such amount or percentage as may be specified by the persons who have drawn up the BID proposals.

(5) In subsection (4), “A” and “B” have the same meanings as in subsections (7) and (8) of section 7.

Power of veto

9.—(1) This section applies where a ballot is to be held for the purposes of section 5(1).

(2) By such date prior to the date of the ballot as may be prescribed, the district council to which the BID proposals relate is to give to—

(a)the persons who have drawn up the proposals, and

(b)the Department,

notice that the council is or is not vetoing the proposals.

(3) The council may veto proposals only in prescribed circumstances and is not entitled to do so after the date prescribed for the purposes of subsection (2).

(4) Where the district council has vetoed the BID proposals, no ballot may be held.

(5) In deciding whether to exercise the veto, the district council is to have regard to such matters as may be prescribed.

(6) A notice under subsection (2) vetoing the BID proposals must—

(a)set out the reasons for the exercise of the veto, and

(b)give details of the right of appeal under section 10.

(7) Any other notice under subsection (2) must set out the reasons for not exercising the veto.

Appeal against veto

10.—(1) Where a district council vetoes BID proposals, any eligible ratepayer who was entitled to vote in the ballot may appeal to the Department.

(2) The Department may by regulations make provision in relation to appeals under this section, including provision—

(a)as to the time by which an appeal is to be made,

(b)as to the manner in which an appeal is to be made,

(c)as to the procedure to be followed in connection with an appeal, and

(d)as to the matters to be taken into account in deciding whether to allow an appeal.

Commencement of BID arrangements

11.—(1) This section applies where BID proposals are approved by a ballot held for the purposes of section 5(1).

(2) The district council concerned must ensure that BID arrangements which give effect to the proposals are made by the time the arrangements are to come into force in accordance with this section.

(3) The BID arrangements are to come into force on such day as may be provided under the BID proposals.

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