“Throughout San Francisco, 14 neighborhoods have formed community benefit districts (CBDs), in which local property owners and businesspeople join forces to address a neighborhood’s safety, appearance and cleanliness. Now, the Middle Polk neighbors in Russian Hill have started the process to form one as well, citing excess refuse on the streets and empty storefronts as the impetus.
“Once established, CBDs are registered as a 501(c)(3) non-profit, run by an elected board of directors and funded by an assessment on property owners in the designated area of the neighborhood. The goal of a CBD is not to replace public services, but to supplement what’s already in place, based on the needs of the neighborhood. Those efforts can include extra trash pickup, beautifying streets, hiring additional security, and/or advertising and promotion.”