Jack London Improvement District Assessment Increase
At the July 2018 Board meeting, the Board approved a 5% increase in the annual assessment for the 2019-20 tax year as is outlined in the District Management Plan. This assessment is the primary source of revenue for our Business Improvement District and it has the unique benefit to its stakeholders that the dollars can be spent solely in our District. The District has experienced increased demand for services, and increased cost of delivering services.
Since initiation of operations, the District has incurred significant cost increases, such as the minimum wage increase due to Measure FF (Lift Up Oakland), office rent, and trash removal. The 5% assessment increase is projected to increase the District's budget by $41K. The District’s fixed costs which include a labor contract with our team of cleaning and safety Ambassadors, garbage collection, and rent, which represent 65% of the annual budget, is expected to increase 7% next year, by $42K. Other costs are expected to increase commensurate with the CPI. Therefore, even with the 5% increase in 2016/2017, maintaining the same level of service and delivering special improvement projects, continues to require increased efficiency.
The District’s services have also broadened since initiation. Since the increase in Waste Management service fees, there has been a notable increase in illegal dumping and overflow throughout the District, which has caused additional strain on cleaning services. As more businesses have come to the District and activity increases, the District has also taken on a broader range of economic development and hospitality services as has been demanded by stakeholders—for example, providing coverage 7 days a week whereas the District was formed envisioning just 5 days a week. The District also provides support for burgeoning businesses as they navigate the process of establishing in Jack London. The work has paid off; Sales tax revenue increased last year 4.1% over the previous year and vacancies are being filled. This is all good news in alignment with District mission, and requires the District to keep pace with the demands of growth.
The Board of Directors takes their responsibility of stewardship of resources of our constituents, local businesses and residents seriously. Therefore, we are seeking your input to make sure that resources are applied to achieve the best and highest impact. Please continue share your ideas, thoughts, and questions with Staff and the Board of Directors on this and other matters by email email@example.com, phone (510) 267-0858, or in-person at 333 Broadway (at 4th Street).
The Board of Directors meets monthly on each second Monday of the month at 5:00PM at 333 Broadway. Annual meeting of the Board of Directors is Second Monday in November. Information on meetings and District events is available at https://jacklondonoakland.org/meetings You are invited to our Annual event and National Night Out, August 7th from 6-8PM, celebrating Jack London’s vibrant businesses, organizations, and terrific neighbors.
Budget by Service Category 2018
Maintenance & Beautification $511,583
Marketing & Economic Development $125,147
Admin, Government, Community Relations $167,765
Contingency/ Collection Fees$65,384
Highlights of 2018 Progress
Cleaning and Safety Achievements—So far in 2018:
And much more:
Over 500 businesses are registered in Jack London. 72 are active participants in our outreach and business coffee forums, providing peer-to-peer support and collaboration potential.
The District produces numerous events annually—from panel talks and town hall meetings on issues relevant to Jack London to family-friendly block parties celebrating District Businesses, such as:
· St. Patrick’s Day Block Party
· National Night Out
And works with our partners to facilitate many more!
In addition, the District hosts multiple forums monthly that bring together interested stakeholders to focus on areas of concern, including
· Jack London Neighborhood Crime Prevention Council—tackling issues like auto break-ins and blight
· Business Coffee Hour
· Community presentations on proposed developments
Our government and community relations engages stakeholders and develops partnerships around important Jack London community issues such as:
· Coal transport
· Maximizing positive development impact (and minimizing negative impact)
· PG&E Construction Impact
· Encampment Crisis
· Underpass Improvement
The District is focused on Engaging, promoting and connecting Jack London.
Here are a few numbers:
- 1,200+ Receive Monthly Newsletters
- 1,390 Property owners and Tenants Receive Annual Report
- 1,014 Invited to Neighborhood Crime Prevention Meetings
- 84 Have attended NCPC Meetings
- 12,000+ Social Media Audience
- 72 Business Owners in Monthly Retailer Coffee Communication
- 22 Active Participants in Current Projects
- 550 Have Attended Panel Talks
- 3,000+ Have Attended Annual National Night Out Party
- 2017 Sales tax revenue up 4.1% over 2016
Specific Achievements by areas of Work
Cleaning and Safety
- Addressing longtime blight sites through Graffiti buffing and commissions of murals and building art at key sites
- Cleaned and consolidated record number of illegal dumping sites
- Tracking blight-contributing under-freeway parking lots.
- Design and installation of Jack London- Branded “Curb Theft” signage with NCPC funds
Marketing and Economic Development
- Bringing Art to District: Collaborated with arts organization to secure $200K grant funding to successfully put on “Museum of Capitalism”, an innovative temporary art space activation of unprecedented scale, involving 80 artists, gaining national press and bringing estimated 10K visitors to the District.
- Encouraging exploration of the District: Two wayfinding projects now underway, developed in coordination with businesses and residents- both formal signage and “Tactical Urbanism” trail systems promoting identity and themes of District: Wine, Beer, Coffee, Art based on retailer input.
- Improved visibility for Jack London: BART Station area improvements- all southbound exits labeled “Jack London” (Previously signed “Chinatown/Laney/Courthouse) and citywide marketing collateral
- Mitigation of construction impact including signage and parking enforcement to protect affected small businesses
- Improved Business support as core 2017 focus through participation in City’s Small Business Task Force and monthly Jack London coffee/network meetings initiated December 2016
- Co-Hosted Small Business Finance Breakfast with TMC Financing
- Participated in Citywide Small Business Week- (Everett & Jones and Mr. Espresso awarded legacy Business Award)
- National Night Out- over 20 Jack London businesses and community groups participated
- Initiated or partnered with the following marketing campaigns to increase visibility for Jack London businesses:
- Oakland Restaurant Week
- Valentines’ Day
- Amtrak Photo Competition with Jack London Rewards
- Park(ing) Day
- Pedalfest- Business Participation through event at Square
- Ride Report App (Rewards for cyclists entering area designated by geo-fence)
- Bay Day Merchant Collaboration
- Plaid Friday
Government and Community Relations
- Facilitated community meetings and successfully advocated for project entitlements before Planning Commission and Design Review Committee: CIM’s Broadway and Alice Street residential development sites and more
- Facilitated Jack London-specific Community meetings for the continuing Oakland Alameda Access Project
- Worked with City and other partner sponsors of the B Shuttle to create branded bus and updated marketing collateral, and to locate two Ford GoBike Stations within District
- Participant in City’s “Walk this Way” RFP addressing Broadway/Webster improvements, served on Selection Committee to select winning team of 18 applicants
- Joined with coalition of business partners to advocate on issues related to cleanliness and safety related to encampments in public right-of-way
- District featured in Berkeleyside, SF Business Times, promoting Jack London business and development activity
- Hosted public Panel Talks on District-pertinent issues including “A Ballpark for Everyone” with record attendance and coverage in SF Business Times
- Guest Speaker at HOA meetings providing presentations on District Activities
- More About the District
Thank you for all you have accomplished and for all good you provide to our neighborhood. You and your contributions are much appreciated.
Thank you very much for putting together such an informative panel [A Ballpark for Everyone] I…can only guess at the effort that went into making that happen so bravo for doing so! And thank you for including me!
-Helen S, Resident
This review is well overdue!! La Furia Chalaca on Broadway is beyond thankful for [the Ambassador’s] professionalism. A few weeks ago, we had a homeless living near our premises therefore we called for help with the situation. Allen went above and beyond to accommodate both the restaurant and the homeless with patience, kindness and professionalism… we wanted to take the time to let you know that Allen did an excellent job and we are glad that he is part of the Jack London Improvement District.
-La Furia Chalaca
Let me just say I love the Ambassadors. My very first day moving into the District, I was unloading furniture from the moving van and an Ambassador welcomed me to Jack London and offered help! That was the first welcome I got to the neighborhood.
-MR, Phoenix Lofts