Frequently Asked Questions

This list of frequently asked questions was compiled to help inform and educate Rate Payers about MID procedures and policies. If you have a question that is not addressed here, please use the form below to submit an inquiry. You can also call (206) 623-0340 and speak with a MID representative.

If you need to have another bill mailed to you, need to update your address, or have a question about claims/late fees, please contact the City of Seattle at (206) 233-7172.

What is the City of Seattle’s role in relation to the billing for the MID?

The City of Seattle manages the billing and the collecting of all non-voluntary MID assessments. The City then reimburses the MID for allowable expenses incurred in their service to ratepayers.

What happens if I don’t pay my MID bill?

All non-governmental property owners located within the MID geographical boundaries are required to pay their MID assessment. Delinquent payments are subject to penalties and interest and will be pursued by either a third party collection agency or the City of Seattle Law Department.

Do ratepayers have any say in how the MID spends its money?

Yes. The MID is governed by the Ratepayer Advisory Board, a group of ratepayers who meet every other month to provide oversight to the MID’s operations. The Board governs the contract for the DSA’s management of the MID and also approves the annual budget. In addition to the Board, the MID also has three committees: Clean and Safe, Finance, and Marketing & Communication. If you are a ratepayer and are interested in attending any of these meetings, please contact Emily Bailor at emilyb@downtownseattle.org.

Do other cities have Business Improvement Areas?

There are over 1,000 BIAs in the United States. Most metropolitan areas have chosen the BIA as an effective strategy to attract businesses, retailers, visitors, and residents. Many cities have more that one BIA, with New York City at over 60 BIAs.

Does Seattle have any other Business Improvement Areas?

Yes, there are a total of 8 BIAs in Seattle. They are located in downtown Seattle, Pioneer Square, Chinatown/ID, West Seattle, Columbia City, University District, and Capitol Hill. The City also created a Tourism Improvement Area, or TIA, that is funded by hotels in the downtown area.

How does my condo Homeowners Association decide how my bill is determined?

There is no standard methodology that HOAs use to determine how condo owners are billed. Some have passed on the flat $125/unit that the City uses to assess the HOA, but others will also factor in criteria such as size, value, and views.

Are any buildings exempt from paying the MID assessments?

Buildings that are owned by tax-exempt entities – such as the City of Seattle, King County, or the Pike Place Market – are not subject to MID assessments. Many of these buildings, however, have chosen to contribute to the MID as voluntary ratepayers.

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To request a specific service, please call us during business hours of operation. After hours you can leave a detailed message and we'll follow up the next day.