Coast Village Association Secures CBID

By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   June 14, 2022

In a unanimous vote on Tuesday, the Santa Barbara City Council voted to establish and form the Coast Village Community Benefit Improvement District (CBID), an idea that has been in the works since November 2020, brought forth by the Coast Village Association (CVA). The resolution came after a tallying of votes cast by Coast Village Road property owners, of which the majority voted in support of the CBID, which will allow local control of the street’s aesthetics, safety, and marketing ventures, filling the gaps in service from the City of Santa Barbara, which governs Coast Village Road. The CBID will be funded by property owners as an additional tax assessment.

Properties on the street were weighted according to parcel size, frontage length, and building size. During the petition phase of the process, the CBID received 49.8% positive votes from property owners; 30% or more of the weighted votes were required to move to the “ballot stage” of the process, which concluded earlier this week. At the ballot stage, 50%+1 of the weighted ballots returned were required to establish the district. City Planner Jason Harris read the results during the City Council hearing: ballots representing $43,628 in proportional financial obligation were submitted in opposition, with ballots representing $165,397 in proportional financial obligation were submitted in support of the assessment, which is 78% in favor of the assessment. 

“It is the most profound public/private partnership that, I believe, Santa Barbara has ever embraced,” said CVA Board President Bob Ludwick. “The local government has trusted this business community to shape and sustain its own future, and I could not be more thrilled.” The project has been a labor of love for Ludwick and a committee including CVA Vice President Rob Miller and Board Members Trey Pinner, Rick Lemmo, Francois DeJohn, Thorn Robertson, and property owner Jeff Harding, along with consultant New City America, which has helped groups like the CVA form CBIDs across the country, including San Diego’s Little Italy and Los Angeles’ Chinatown. 

The expected assessments to the property owners on Coast Village Road range from a few hundred dollars per year to $19,000 per year, with the average falling around $1,800. The funds, which total about $300K the first year, will be used for private security to help with the unhoused population and panhandlers in the area; much needed beautification of the road; branding and promotion of the road; events such as Taste of Coast Village; social media and marketing; parking attendants; traffic management; and more. Next steps include forming a 501(c)3 and creating a newly constituted Board of Directors, which could be as many as 15 people, 2/3 of which will be required to be property owners. Ludwick will not be part of that Board, as he has announced his retirement from the Coast Village Association. 

“This is really exciting. I’m really excited about this as a model for other business districts and a way to invest in your own community,” said District 4 City Councilmember Kristen Sneddon, who represents Coast Village Road. “I have so much appreciation for your efforts.”

For more information about the CVA and the proposed CBID, visit


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