D-day is looming for Inverurie as to whether the town will become one of the new Business Improvement Districts in the north-east.
Inverurie Bid chairman Ian Sinclair feels the tide is turning towards a Yes vote after speaking to some people who have changed their opinion.
The businesses in the process are all based within the main streets of the town centre and have until June 22 to submit their ballot papers.
Mr Sinclair has been campaigning for the last six months, answering questions and canvassing opinions.
He said: “A few people were initially unsure, especially with the timing – this being alongside a rates increase and an oil and gas downturn.
“But the BID levy would just be one payment. A lot of people are already paying towards the Christmas lights and flower baskets in the summer, as well as a business association membership, whereas this would just mean a one-off payment.
“Being a BID will give us a collective voice and more bargaining power for the likes of getting cheaper electricity or gas.
“There is already a feeling the town is becoming friendlier – business people are talking more and recognise one another on the street.”
Inverurie is the latest place in Scotland to sign up to develop a Bid programme and it has been proposed that all eligible businesses and organisations in the Inverurie area contribute a financial levy to the scheme.
This would bring in an estimated £100,000 per year towards community projects.
Barry Sangster, from Inspire Flooring, said he was initially unsure, but has now decided it is a positive development.
He added: “It’s a no-brainer for me and everyone else to get involved in this.
“The amount of funding which can be raised from a small levy payment from each business is incredible and will give us a huge amount of investment for advertising, marketing and promotion of the town.”
Cheryl and Geoff Rowland at Donside Frames have also changed their minds after comprehending the benefits which the BID can bring to the town centre.
Mrs Rowland said: “We were angry at first that businesses were being asked for more money on top of an increasing turbulent time for retailers.
“We then started to understand what the BID is all about and what it’s going to achieve for Inverurie.”