BUSINESSES in Carmarthen have given a strong vote of confidence in their town.
They have backed a BID that will generate more than £165,000 per year to be used to improve Carmarthen.
The successful outcome on the yes vote in a ballot to support the establishment of a Business Improvement District (BID) in Carmarthen was revealed today.
The businesses’ decision to back the initiative ensures Carmarthen is one of a small number of towns in Wales to be awarded the status, which focuses on improvements to the town through a collective effort.
Carmarthenshire County Council has premises in and around the town centre, such as the library, Lyric Theatre and the Oriel Myrddin Gallery, all of which voted positively in the ballot.
Businesses would pay an annual levy of 1.5 per cent every year, generating more than £165,000 per year to be used to improve the town.
Over 130 business and organisations in the BID area took part in the vote.
Carmarthenshire County Council leader, Cllr Emlyn Dole said: I’m delighted that the BID has won the support of the town’s business community. This initiative has been very successful in Llanelli as well as other areas and I’m confident that it will make a real difference to Carmarthen. The money raised through this initiative will be in addition to any funding being provided by the county council or any other organisation and will go towards delivering the aspirations set out in the pledge agreement. I am confident that the Carmarthen BID team are committed to creating an even better Carmarthen town centre for the future and wish them every success with the next five years.”
The initiative has four pledges for action above and beyond those currently provided by the local authorities. It will be guaranteed by a baseline agreement between Carmarthen BID and Carmarthenshire County Council and Carmarthen Town Council. These include
Improve business profitability
Improve the profile of the town
Improve the parking experience
Improve the look of the town
John Nash, Steering Group Chair, said: “The high street is in very difficult times and many businesses could have sought to reduce costs. It is encouraging to see that Carmarthen Town Centre businesses have chosen not to do this, but rather to invest in the future of the town.
“Carmarthen BID will now work hard for the town centre and to demonstrate to those businesses that the right decision was made to take Carmarthen BID forward to 2025.”