A shift in the City's budget priorities this fiscal year means that the Storefront Improvement Program, which reimburses business owners for facade improvements to their shops and offices, will stay alive. As a result of efforts spearheaded by Council Member Bobby Henon, the fiscal year 2016 budget that took effect July 1st allocates more than a half a million dollars to the SIP in order to keep it running.
SIP is a program that since 2009 has reimbursed business owners for facade improvements to their shops and offices. Via Next City: "recipients can get grants to cover 50 percent of the cost of the improvements, up to a total of $12,000."
Since its inception, the program has given financial assistance to almost 400 business owners throughout the City. Council Member Bobby Henon's Director of Communications, Eric Horvath, explains that the program works so well because improvements on one facade tends to spur improvements throughout a neighborhood.
"Philosophically, it's an extension of the idea that by encouraging smart growth and development along commercial corridors, communities will see that effort spread to the surrounding streets in the neighborhood. If someone sees how a business takes steps to beautify the exterior of their shop, it encourages residents to do the same."