Wight BID FAQ’s

What is the BID for? 

BID stands for Business Improvement District (BID). It does not replace the statutory activities or services carried out by the council, police or other public agencies. It is an arrangement under which local businesses improve their own trading environment and agree via a BID operating company how the levy should be spent on a range of projects to boost the Island’s tourism economy and increase footfall. Find out about the projects the BID will deliver at www.visitwightpro.com  

Who runs the BID? 

The Wight BID is operated by Visit Isle of Wight Limited, a wholly independent, not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. It has a board of voluntary directors elected from different business sectors within the Island’s tourism economy.  

Are all business properties included in the BID levy? 

All non-domestic rateable businesses within the categories chosen from the Council NNDR (National Non-Domestic Rate) database in the Wight BID area (https://visitwightpro.com/wightbidproposal2021/ page 14), with a rateable value of £3000 and above will receive a Wight BID bill.  

The Wight BID levy is set at a rate of 1.75% of your rateable value for a business with rateable value of £3000 or more with a minimum payment £150. If you own two or more properties in the BID area, you will receive separate Wight BID bills for each property. 

Your annual BID bill will show the rate at which your Wight BID levy is calculated. 

Why is the Isle of Wight Council collecting the Wight BID levy? 

BID legislation requires local authorities to be the billing body. In addition, the council already has systems and procedures in place to collect income such as the Wight BID levy. 

What happens to the Wight BID levy when it is collected by the council? 

Money collected by the council is paid directly to the BID operating company (Visit Isle of Wight Ltd) to deliver projects and initiatives in the Wight BID area. 

What happens if I don’t agree with the BID Levy? 

Following consultation, a ballot was carried out in October 2021 and all businesses within the NNDR (National Non-Domestic Rate) categories listed in the Wight BID proposal were given the opportunity to vote for or against the Wight BID levy. The result of the ballot was a ‘yes’ vote; therefore all businesses liable for the Wight BID levy are required to pay. 

What happens if I refuse to pay? 

It is hoped that all businesses will see the benefits of contributing to the Wight BID. In the event of non-payment, on behalf of the BID operating company (Visit Isle of Wight Ltd), the council will recover any sums due in line with normal recovery processes. This means that defaulters will receive a reminder notice and then a summons will be issued.  However, any business that feels it has a legitimate appeal over its inclusion within the scope of the BID may appeal, using the form available online at www.visitwightpro.com/ (once Bills have been issued) within 45 days from the date on the Wight BID Levy Bill – click on the Wight BID menu tab for more information. 

Why is the levy not collected with rates? 

Business Rates and the Wight BID levy are completely separate. The council must collect business rates in line with statutory provisions which are different from the legal provisions surrounding a BID levy. 

What do I pay my business rates for?  

Business rates, along with Council tax, help to fund the services that the Council provides. These include roads and transport infrastructure, the police, domestic refuse collection, and fire brigade.  The rates are the way the users of non-domestic property contribute towards the cost of providing these essential services. The Wight BID levy is a separate payment to fund agreed business benefits for your business.  

Can I pay by instalments? 

You will receive an annual bill for your Wight BID account payable in one instalment.  This bill will be issued in January for the 1st year and then November each year thereafter and should be paid in full within 21 days.  

When will I start to see the benefits of the Wight BID levy? 

The BID Company developed a Wight BID Business Plan as part of the ballot process. This is what businesses voted in favour of when they took part in the BID ballot. This is now being driven forward by the Visit Isle of Wight Board – read the Wight BID proposal to see what projects and initiatives the BID are delivering which can be found online at https://visitwightpro.com/wightbidproposal2021/ 

How long does the BID last? 

The Wight BID term operates for five years. It started on 1 November 2021 and will end on 31 October 2026 

Will I pay the same amount every year? 

The Wight BID levy is based on the rateable value of the property at 1st November each year. The Wight BID levy will change only if the rateable value of the property changes. 

For Wight BID enquiries please email bid@visitwight.org or call 01983 554954