In July 1970, the Clearwater Downtown Development Board Act(PDF, 2MB) was established by the State of Florida, allowing the city of Clearwater to revitalize and preserve downtown property values, prevent deterioration in its central business district; providing downtown property owners the power to solve problems on the local level. The Act outlined the geographic location of the downtown area, the powers created, the composition of the board and the bylaws that govern.
In January 1971 the city adopted Ordinance No. 1304(PDF, 832KB) providing for a special referendum election for the purpose of permitting downtown property owners to tax themselves, establishing a Special Taxing District.
In December 1993, the city adopted Ordinance No. 5510-93 amending the code, establishing that the Community Redevelopment Agency of the city shall have primary responsibility for planning downtown and redefining the powers and function of the board, created by this division, as an aid to the CRA.
Ordinance No. 5510-93(PDF, 808KB) deleted the board’s responsibility to recommend to the city actions deemed suitable for any downtown redevelopment plans; the board shall not participate in the implementation or execution of such plans; the board shall have no power or control over any city property unless assigned by City Council. The ordinance removed the authorization from the receipt of revenues from property and facilities and the issuance of revenue certificates.
The 1993 ordinance encouraged the formation of public-private partnerships between the CRA, the DDB, the Chamber of Commerce and others, to promote business relocation and assistance, provide loans, hire the unemployed, recruit business, seek energy credits and discounts and develop incentives.
The board shall recommend policies and procedures, which would lead to tax revenue growth including zoning issues, variances, beautification and building standards and assistance in obtaining state and federal funding.
The board shall identify needs for parking, signage, traffic flow, public safety, office space and other aspects of business enterprise.
The board shall promote activities, sponsor community events, distribute public information, cooperate with the Regional Chamber of Commerce to promote tourism, provide for art in the downtown district, market and provide assistance to downtown businesses and support the CRA.
Downtown Development Board Bylaws(PDF, 139KB)