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Bayside Village BID looks back on busy year

Photo by Phil Corso
By Phil Corso

Virtually all 30 members of the Bayside Village Business Improvement District chose to return to the board after a booming and progressive year, its leaders said.

Executive Director Lyle Sclair and Chairman Dominick Bruccoleri emceed the group’s fifth annual meeting and board elections Monday night to highlight the year’s accomplishments and to hint at better things to come. All of its members were reinstated, with one new name — Martin Pollack, who owns the building that houses American Vision on Bell Boulevard.

“All the new members took an active role on the board last year,” Sclair said. “Everyone wanted to stay, which says a lot about how far we have come.”

Sclair said the board will be meeting in about two weeks to pick officers for the positions of chairman, two vice chairmen, treasurer and secretary.

It has been a productive year for the business district, its executives said. Sclair cited different events and partnerships established throughout the year after it brought on several new members in 2012.

Sclair touted different events, including the new Roll Up the Gates walks, where potential tenants get exclusive looks at property, and Thursday Nights Out, where businesses hold special sales once a week over the summer.

The executive director also gave members an exclusive preview of a new mobile-ready BID website in the works with hopes of making it easier to access what Bell Boulevard has to offer.

Bruccoleri, who runs Papazzio Italian Restaurant, at 39-38 Bell Blvd., said he was impressed with the BID’s work after his first year as chairman.

The chairman put the spotlight on Sclair, who came on as the BID’s executive director early last year.

“Lyle has done an incredible job for us throughout the year,” Bruccoleri said. “Most people don’t see what he does behind the scenes and it is a tremendous amount.”

The group also approved its $165,750 budget, up more than $30,000 when compared to last year.

U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-Flushing) was the keynote speaker and outlined how her office could help Bayside businesses thrive on the federal level.

State Assemblyman Ed Braunstein (D-Bayside) also spoke of the importance of small businesses and how drastically the BID has improved since its inception five years ago.

Looking ahead, Sclair said the BID will be launching a weekend walk for the last weekend in September, when part of Bell Boulevard will be closed so vendors can showcase their business on the streets. An open meeting was scheduled to plan the event July 8 at 5 p.m. at the new BID office, at 213-33 39th Ave., Suite 310.

Sclair also said the BID would be partnering with the city to hold regular graffiti removals throughout the business district, with the first major cleaning scheduled for this summer.

The tone of the meeting was much lighter and smoother than last year, when miscommunication over election protocol led to a dispute involving former Executive Director Gregg Sullivan, who accused the group of intentionally blocking him from the board. The business group fired Sullivan last year.

Reach reporter Phil Corso by e-mail at pcorso@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.

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