ST. CLOUD (WJON News) -- The idea of creating a Business Improvement District is once again being considered for downtown St. Cloud.

The Downtown Task Force and the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation are hosting an informational meeting on the topic on Tuesday, January 16th.

Task Force Chair Greg Winfeldt says a Business Improvement District adds amenities and services beyond regular city services with a focus on things like cleanliness, decor, and safety.

So you might have ambassadors walking the streets, making sure things are clean and tidy, that there's a presence.  You'll have cleaning crews out once or twice a day making sure that any trash is picked up and everything is looking good.

Winfeldt says downtown Fargo has a Business Improvement District in place for several years now.

Some of the things that they did that we saw, they have people running around every day picking up trash, being ambassadors walking the streets and helping people.  This happens even in the winter.

Winfeldt says it can be set up in tiers with the first tier being the main core area of downtown St. Cloud and the second tier being the east side of the river and more outlying areas of the downtown, although that has not been established yet.

A Business Improvement District is a nonprofit with money coming from an additional tax on the property owners just in the district as well as some additional fundraising.

Winfeldt says it would not replace the work already being done by the Downtown Alliance, but this would enhance it.

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There is a long process to create a Business Improvement District starting with a survey and then a vote by the property owners impacted, if a majority votes in favor of it then it goes to the city council and eventually the state.

The informational meeting starts at 2:00 p.m. January 16th via Zoom.

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