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VENTURA : Business District ‘Exorcised’ by Foes

About a dozen opponents of a downtown assessment district in Ventura protested outside the restaurant where a convention of downtown association leaders from around the state were gathered Friday night.

The group carried American flags, banged cymbals and performed a Chinese lion dance outside a California Avenue restaurant in a symbolic “exorcism” of the Business Improvement District, organizers said.

A colorful fabric lion’s head and trailer were draped over two protesters, who danced to the beat of drums and cymbals. A sign in the lion’s mouth said, “You Don’t Get It. No BID.”

Their intended targets, leaders of the business district, watched from the windows and doorway, and many applauded.

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A lawsuit was filed last week over the district, which requires the 330 merchants in its boundaries to pay fees that fund programs intended to improve downtown.


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