What is a BIA?

Business Improvement Association is a “made-in-Ontario” innovation that allows locaL people and commercial property owners and tenants to join together and, with municipal support, to organize, finance and carry out physical improvements and promote economic development in their district.  Traditionally a BIA is a body established by a municipality using the specific business improvement area provisions in the municipal act 2001.

It is governed by a board of management.

Business and property owners may request that a BIA may be designated by a municipal bylaw.  BIAs are local entities.  The legislations states that they are local boards.

People also refer to the geographic area designated by the municipality as the BIA area as the BIA.”

 *OBIAA Handbook

Who is a member of the BIA?

The following shall be eligible for membership in the BIA: property owners and tenants in the designated BIA area are members of the BIA.

Tenant means tenants of rateable property in the area that is in a prescribed business property class who, by the terms of their lease are responsible for the part of the taxes that the tenant is required to pay under the tenant’s lease. Membership is based on a one person one vote premise.

How do I join?

By becoming a property owner or tenant in the designated BIA area, that member is included in the BIA.  A levy based on your property assessment and the approved BIA limits will be automatically assessed and deducted by the municipality.

What are the rights of membership?

Every member in good standing is entitled:

  1. To attend an Annual or General Meeting of the BIAs;
  2. To  one (1) vote on each question arising at any Annual or General Meeting of the BIA and;
  3. To hold any office of the BIA.

What does the BIA do?

  1. Improve beautify, and maintain municipally owned lands, buildings and structures in its Area, beyond such improvement, beautification and maintenance provided directly by the Municipality;
  2. Promote the Area as a business, shopping and entertainment area;
  3. Do all things necessary and appropriate to achieve the foregoing in accordance with applicable legislation or authorities.

What are the dues and how are they paid?

Dues are based on your annual tax assessment and the floor and ceiling limits imposed by the BIA. These are subject to change at each annual meeting if the board desires.

When do they meet?

Currently the BIA meets every 2nd last Tuesday of the month at 7:30am in the Tilbury Municipal Service Centre board room at 17 Superior St., Tilbury, Ontario.

Any change of time and venue will be published as needed.

Can anyone attend?

Any BIA member is welcome to attend BIA monthly meetings.  All members are invited and encouraged to attend our annual meetings.

How do I get issues put on the agenda?

Issues or concerns can be placed on the agenda by contacting the Chair or the BIA office at 519.682.3040.

What projects are you currently working on?

The BIA has several projects at present including:  The updates to our Streetscape (in partnership with the Municipality of CK).

The BIA has also recently partnered with the municipality to acquire a vacant lot for additional parking and a green park space on Queen Street.

The BIA is also involved in promoting the businesses of Tilbury through marketing strategies and events held in Tilbury and the business area.

The BIA is also responsible for beautifying the business districts through banners, benches, flower pots, and seasonal decorating.

We are currently involved in a gateway project to replace the aging gateway signs at our entrances.  One entrance was addressed in 2013.  Others will be added as funding and sponsorship makes that possible.

The BIA currently supports the local Land Between The Lakes Cultural Action Team in its efforts and events to promote culture and economic development in the area.

How do I get on the mailing list for newsletters, minutes etc?

Contact Natalie Whittal, our Executive Director at the office 519.682.3040.

What is an associate member?

An associate member is a one outside the BIA area or one whose business is not covered under the municipal bylaws, but who is interested in promoting business and the community.

What are the fees for associate members?

The Associate Member fee is $100.

What rights do they have?

– Listing in the BIA Business Directory and Website

– Advertise in BIA publications

– Voice in local affairs

– Networking opportunities

How can I get involved in the BIA?

The BIA offers a number of opportunities for involvement.  Board members are elected every four years as per municipal direction.  There are also opportunities to volunteer at the standing and ad hoc committee level.  In addition there are opportunities to volunteer for our special events or to assist on a daily basis.