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BID issues eight more summonse

Another new date has been set for a fresh round of court hearings over Dartmouth Business Improvement District bills which have still not been paid.
This time only eight business people are being summoned before a magistrates court as South Hams Council asks magistrates to issue liability orders in each case at Plymouth on April 10.
This week it was uncertain whether more bills are still outstanding and yet more court cases could follow.
South Hams Council revealed that the eight summonses involve a total of £1,840 which includes the summons fees as well as the BID business rates owed by the Dartmouth business people.
Details of the latest court hearing were unveiled just hours ahead of yesterday’s BID annual meeting which was threatening to turn into stormy confrontation amid concerns over who was entitled to attend and vote and threats of a vote of no confidence.
And it came a week after former BID chairman Paul Reach called for a new BID ballot if the controversial process – aimed at pumping hundreds of thousands of pounds into regenerating Dartmouth’s economy – is to survive.
The row over the BID in Dartmouth has been reaching ever-greater heights since it was voted on a little over a year ago – forcing business ratepayers to shell out extra cash to fund a five-year business regeneration plan.
At the beginning of this month South Hams Council, which is responsible for collecting the BID business rates cash, was threatening to take more than 100 members of the business community to court over the non-payment of their bills.
In the end summonses involving a total of 25 members of the Dartmouth business community were brought before Plymouth Magistrates court and liability orders were issued involving more than £7,000 worth of unpaid BID business rates.
The defendants were then faced with a visit by the bailiffs, or even jail if they do not pay up.

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