The Downtown Bettendorf Organization (DBO) was founded in 2019 to provide a unified voice for the business owners and stakeholders of downtown Bettendorf. The DBO, is a division of the Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce. It collaborates with city leaders, elected officials and businesses to make downtown Bettendorf a place that showcases city pride and the many amenities that make this unique riverfront destination a desirable place for Quad Citizens to live, shop and play.
To administer and operate programs for the general improvement and redevelopment of Bettendorf’s Central Business District and to enhance its aesthetic appearance and economic future for the community and citizens of Bettendorf.
Self-Supported Municipal Improvement District Overview:
A Self-Supported Municipal Improvement District (SSMID) is a defined geographic area where commercial, multi-family residential (3+ units) and industrial property owners pay an additional property tax to fund improvements and enhanced services within district boundaries. DBO is responsible for oversight and implementation of the tax funds generated by the district. SSMIDs are more commonly known as a “Business Improvement District” or “BID” in many U.S. states. Iowa’s SSMID’s legal basis is rooted in Iowa Code Chapter 386.
In July 2019, the Bettendorf City Council unanimously approved the creation of a SSMID in downtown Bettendorf. 58% of all commercial, industrial and multi-residential property owners representing 70% of the assessed value within the district petitioned the City of Bettendorf to request the creation of the SSMID.
As administrators of the downtown SSMID, DBO provides leadership and advocacy for downtown placemaking, economic development, strategic planning, business retention & recruitment, project management, public art, marketing and communications, festival/event planning, infrastructure, public policy and clean-and-safe initiatives. This role in a community is defined within the industry as Place Management. DBO has defined its three key pillars of downtown Place Management as Business & Economic Growth, Infrastructure & Livability, and Advocacy & Promotion.
The boundaries are roughly: the eastern boundary is where State St. and Grant St. meet. The western boundary is where River Dr. and Grant St. meet. The northern boundary is Grant or Brown Streets. The southern boundary is the Mississippi River.
SSMID & DBO Funding:
Property owners within the SSMID boundaries pay a levy based on the assessed taxable value of their respective properties to help fund improvements in the district. Which can include revitalization and beautification projects, festivals, enhanced maintenance, marketing and promotion as well as research and planning projects. The SSMID started July 2019 and will continue for four years, with a rate not to exceed $2.75 per thousand dollars of taxable valuation. Funds started being levied in July 2019 and were first available to be spent in July 2020.