Downtown Milton Business Improvement Area
Board Meeting Minutes (April 11, 2018)
Location: Milton Chamber of Commerce Boardroom
In attendance: Sara Bergsma, Colin Best, Valerie Nicholson, John Silva, Troy Newton, David O’Connell, Rachel Shuttleworth
Regrets: Jennifer Beaver, Margaret Lara, Mike Boughton, Eric Chabot
Call to order: 6:46 p.m.
Declaration of Pecuniary or Conflict of Interest
MOTION to approve amended December meeting minutes by Colin, seconded by Troy
- Financial activity is as expected for first three months – one anomaly in March
- Monitoring hourly part-time costs – currently at 20% utilization
- Unexpected charitable rebate appeared in March for over $5,500 – John will contest with the Town (some of the supporting calculations the Town provided don’t appear to be correct)
- Colin to support as needed in discussions with the Town about the rebate
- Tenants/owners can apply every three years for the rebate
MOTION to accept Treasurer’s Report by Colin, seconded by Sara
- Regional Council agreed to defer the Finance department’s recommendations regarding commercial vacant properties taxation until 2019 pending discussions with concerned groups such as Chamber of Commerce’s and BIA’s in Halton.
- Regional council also voted down a request by the Habitat for Humanity to locate the Milton Restore store at 151 Steeles Avenue due to employment planning concerns by a vote of 12-9. Milton and Halton Hills councillors voted against that motion.
- Town staff are working on proposals for the Provincial Downtown Revitalization Initiative funding which could mean $127,000 for Downtown Milton pending Council approval expected in May. Councilor Best will be asking staff for BIA input into the application.
- The Catherton Foundation who own the rental apartment building at 80 Ontario St. N. have announced that they are applying to the Town for the approval of a 4 floor 83 unit addition on the west side of the building pending an application for a minor variance to the Committee of Adjustment. Construction expected to start later in 2018 with occupancy later in 2019.
- Provincial Election expected for Thursday June 7th and candidates are already opening campaign offices. More details at the next BIA meeting. The Milton Chamber of Commerce has announced an all candidates meeting for the provincial election regarding business topics.
- Milton Council agreed to defer a report regarding road dedications from the Engineering Department pending discussions with concerned land owners who found out after they applied for permits that the Town would require between 3-4 metres off the front of their property for future road allowance widening in character areas which might include Downtown Milton.
MOTION to accept Council Report by Valerie, seconded by John
- Ongoing work to secure sponsorship for 2018 events and beautification initiatives
- Vacancy rate for March – Estimated 5.5% (OBBIA vacancy average is 9.7%)
- Member updates – King of Fine Glass Cigars & More now open (former Rascals & Rhinestones), Olivia Rose moving out and a photography studio will be moving in, DTG Clothing & Printing coming in to former Ice Cream Lab location, Ice Cream Lab should be opening soon in new location, Southside Community Church construction underway, Muse Studios & Market seeking a new downtown location (will be leaving current location soon), Caseo/CF Landscaping moving out at the end of this month, Barn Door Studio moving in to former Sixteen Mile Gallery location, Ill Cosmos moving to Main St (by Mo-Bay), ReStore not approved to move to new location on Steeles
- Establishing a date with representative from C.F. Crozier & Associates to discuss downtown floodplain issue
Marketing & Promotions
- Good exposure for Downtown Milton Easter Egg Hunt (MyFM, Champion front page, Snap’d social media & June print edition)
- Evaluating current advertising channels, looking to increase digital advertising and make some reductions in print advertising for 2018 and beyond
Main Street Revitalization Funding
- Criteria released outlining eligible uses of funding
- $127,000 available for Milton
- In discussions with Town representatives on proposed projects and specifically, wi-fi
- Outreach underway to other BIAs to get information about their wi-fi projects, continuing to work with Town’s IT Director to put together proposal for project
- Received a quote and information from Solution Inc. for wi-fi in Downtown Milton
- Other project ideas Town is looking at for funding:
- Signage, wayfinding – signs for parking, to Main, walkways, non-cross-walks
- Refurbishing – tactile plates, benches, garbage receptacles, etc.
- Restore demolition – possibility, but likely deferred since ReStore staying in place
- Transit – bus shelters with passenger display screens, etc.
- Rachel discussing project proposals with other directors at the Town
- Discussion with board on what signage is needed in Downtown: to Main Street, Municipal lots, walkways, cross-walks and non-cross-walks, important locations like Town Hall, Fairgrounds, etc.
MOTION to send a letter to the Mayor and senior Town staff to indicate BIA’s priorities for Main Street Revitalization Initiative funding by Colin, seconded by Sara (BIA’s priorities are wi-fi, garbage receptacles & signage)
MOTION to accept ED report by Colin, seconded by Valerie
Downtown Milton Easter Egg Hunt
- (Event summary presented)
- Successful event, over 3,000 people in attendance
- 37 BIA members participated – members participate to support downtown, ‘give back’ and increase awareness of their businesses (less likely to think event will generate business for them)
- Six sponsors (financial & in-kind)
- Good engagement on social media
- General recommendations – More activities at the event, get more volunteers, develop a guideline around non-Main Street members having a booth on the street
Downtown Milton Street Festival
- Entertainers confirmed
- Currently finalizing vendors
- Road closure area will be expanded to include Brown Street and part of Mary Street to better incorporate the MCRC event at Victoria Park into the Street Festival – provides more space for vendors and attractions in the Restore parking lot, etc.
- Rachel to ensure J. Scott Early, McKersie and churches are notified of the additional road closures at Brown & Mary Streets
- Ask Town to have road closures indicate that the streets will be closed for the Street Festival (instead of just providing the time for the closure)
Milton Farmer’s Market
- Outreach to members underway to fill bump-out schedule for 2018 season
Holiday Street Market in Downtown Milton
- Vaulted Inc. confirmed they will provide BIA member fees payment by May 1st
- Ongoing discussions and planning for 2018 event
- April 13 – Community Awards Gala (Chamber) – waitlist
- May 19 – Milton Farmer’s Market begins
- May 29 – The Incredible Race
- June 1 – Tentative date for Provincial Election All Candidates Meeting
- June 2 – Downtown Milton Street Festival
- June 8-10 – Mac & Cheese Festival Milton (Vaulted Inc.) at Fairgrounds
- July 20 – Downtown Milton Classic Car Show
- Contract awarded to lowest qualified bidder – The Ground Guys of Milton
- Met with owner to discuss 2018 gardens and next steps
- E-vote results (attached)
- Important to ensure flowers are high quality, well-maintained and reflect a positive image for Downtown Milton
MOTION to ratify e-vote awarding beautification contract to the lowest qualified bidder from the tender process, by Colin, seconded by Troy
Board strategic planning
ACTION: All board members to complete Steps 1 and 2 of the Strategic Planning process and send to Eric or Rachel no later than April 18, 2018.
MOTION to adjourn meeting at 8:22pm by Troy, seconded by Val