Updated 12/3/19: City Council has postponed this item until January 23, 2020.
The City of Austin is proposing a new policy for two types of Public Improvement Districts–Development Public Improvement Districts (PIDs) and Maintenance and Operations (M&O) PIDs–to be considered at the December 5 City Council meeting. A key element of this policy would be to remove the requirement to periodically reauthorize PIDs by petition of owners in the district. Though the Council is not posted to amend the Downtown PID authorization date this week, we want to ensure that assessed property owners within the Downtown PID are aware of this proposed policy and its potential impacts.
The Downtown PID is an M&O PID managed by the Downtown Austin Alliance through a contract with the City of Austin overseen by the Economic Development Department. As part of the new policy, the Economic Development Department has recommended the elimination of the PID reauthorization requirement. Reauthorization terms are not a requirement in the state statute governing PIDs, but we have gone back to the downtown property owners to reauthorize the Downtown PID every five or ten years since our original formation in 1993.
In 2012, when the Downtown PID was last reauthorized, property owners supported a petition to extend our contract for ten years. Our current contract expires on April 30, 2023, and future contracts could be affected by this new policy.
If adopted the new policy would eliminate the need for reauthorization for any new M&O PIDs formed; however, a separate council action would be needed to remove the expiration date of the current Downtown PID authorization. We are advocating that Council NOT consider this separate DPID action until March 2020 so that we have time to understand the needs and concerns of our property owner members.
We will continue to follow this and inform you of any changes to the policy. To arrange an in-person meeting or phone call to discuss this, please contact Bill Brice at firstname.lastname@example.org or (512)381-6269.