A group of Fresnaye residents have formed a steering committee and started the process of officially registering Fresnaye as a City Improvement District (CID).
Operations are expected to start in July next year.
The first public meeting of the proposed Fresnaye CID was held on Wednesday August 18, to educate the community about the process as well as introduce them to the business plan for the proposed CID.
“Considering the current socio-economic climate of South Africa, it is difficult to envisage a scenario in which additional public safety, cleaning, greening (upliftment of parks and open spaces) and social development services will be provided in Fresnaye by either national (SAPS) or municipal government,” said CID committee member Edward Brand.
“Given this reality, it has become common for residents to come together as a community to ensure that these relevant services are provided to the desired level. A CID is a heavily regulated, transparent and well tested mechanism which can be utilised by communities to achieve this objective.”
Cape Town has 47 established CIDs, which deliver additional services to the residents of these communities, but this service comes at a cost.
Among the CIDs on the Atlantic Seaboard are the Sea Point CID and the Green Point and Oranje-Kloof (GP/OK) CID.
“A CID is funded from the additional rates paid by the property owners who fall within the boundary of the CID area (with the exception of residents who meet the criteria for rates relief),” explained Mr Brand.
“One hundred percent of the additional revenue raised is invested back into Fresnaye, in order for the CID to provide the desired additional services in the area, as determined by residents.
“One of the key benefits of a CID is that everyone pays, so the ‘free-rider’ issue which often challenges the sustainability of neighbourhood initiatives is mitigated,” he added
The Fresnaye CID budget is informed by the urban survey of residents which was conducted earlier this year.
Two of the clear messages that came out of the survey were, one, that residents have limited appetite to pay much more in rates and two, residents would like to see the improved services provided by the CID.
The budget therefore seeks to strike a balance between delivering perceptible improvements to residents at the lowest reasonable increase. The cost to residents equates to about R12 a day or R375 a month per R10 million of property value.
The Fresnaye CID is aiming to partner with Project Hope and other NGOs to assist with homelessness and to create employment.
According to the City’s mayoral committee member for Uban Management, Grant Twigg, the City does not see its role as advocating or initiating the establishment of special rating areas, but rather facilitating the process and providing guidance and advice.
“The City supports CID initiatives which allow communities to actively participate in improving and upgrading their areas by providing supplemental municipal services,“ he said.
Mr Twigg added that there were currently 23 communities at various stages of pursuing CID establishment.
“A local property owner will approach the City’s City Improvement District Department and is then guided through the establishment process.
“The process includes setting up a steering committee of property owners representative of the area who conducts an urban management survey in the area and ultimately produces a business plan for the community to provide input prior to obtaining the required support for the initiative.
“Once the support is obtained, the application is lodged with the City and subject to verification, the community is still allowed to provide reasons for not wanting a CID. All the objections are included in a comprehensive report to Council for consideration.”
At the time of going to print there was no comment from the Sea Point, Fresnaye, Bantry Bay (SFB) Ratepayers’ and Residents’ Association.
For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.fresnayecid.co.za