Frequently Asked Questions

What is the DCBA?

Recognizing the need to plan for the future of downtown and ensure its economic vitality, the Downtown Chico Business Association (DCBA) was formed in 1975 by a group of downtown business owners. Encompassing 40 square blocks, the DCBA boundaries include an average of 450 diverse businesses.

Formed as a Downtown Parking and Business Improvement Area (DPBIA), the City of Chico assesses an additional fee on business licenses granted within the district boundaries (per Chico Municipal Code 3.34.010 – 3.34.140). Those funds are distributed to the DCBA, a nonprofit organization that has contracted with the City of Chico and is mandated to use the funds for one or more of the following purposes (CDC 3.34.090):

  1. The acquisition, construction or maintenance of parking facilities for the benefit of the area;
  2. Decoration of any public place in the area;
  3. Promotion of public events which are to take place on or in public places in the area;
  4. Furnishing of music in any public place in the area;
  5. The general promotion of retail trade activities in the area.

The DCBA has evolved over the last 3 decades into a strong marketing and advocacy organization that continues to help maintain an environment where businesses can flourish and prosper.

What are the DCBA boundaries?

The DCBA boundaries house approximately 450 diverse businesses in the Downtown district which encompasses 40 square blocks, from Big Chico Creek on the north to Little Chico Creek on the south and from the East side of Flume Street to the West side of Normal Street.

What does DCBA do?

  • Provides advocacy and representation for downtown regarding issues that include parking, enforcement, maintenance, and city ordinances;
  • Provides membership communication, support and education.
  • Organizes and implements annual promotional events — Friday Night Concerts, Slice of Chico, Harvest Sidewalk Sale, Treat Street, Christmas Preview and Community Tree Lighting;
  • Plans, implements and manages 2 large-scale annual fundraising events – Taste of Chico and the 26-week Thursday Night Market;
  • Manages the downtown planter program, as contracted with the City of Chico;
  • Represents the interests of the organization on various community task forces and committees;
  • Acts as a resource for property owners and potential tenants.
  • Creates and publishes a monthly membership newsletter, What’s Up Downtown?;
  • Partners with local publisher to produce 12,000 copies of the Downtown Chico Business Directory;
  • Funds and maintains a downtown-dedicated website,, that receives over 30,000 unique visits per month.
  • Develops and organizes several collaborative advertising campaigns that promote and market Downtown Chico;

Who makes all of this happen?

  • An elected 21-member Board of Directors consisting of dedicated downtown business owners and employees, downtown property owners, and community members.
  • A dedicated staff who manage office operations, project development, advocacy, fundraising, public relations, event planning, downtown clean up, etc.
  • Several volunteer committees that address specific challenges or developments.

How is the DCBA funded?

The organization is funded annually by: Membership Assessments, Transient Occupancy Tax (T.O.T.), Special Events, and Contracted Services with the City of Chico.

Membership Assessments

Businesses within the DPBIA are automatically DCBA members and pay an additional business license tax annually based on the type of business, location of business within downtown, and number of employees.

Economic Development Funding

The DCBA applies for Economic Development Funding from the City of Chico, which grants monies to approved organizations to strengthen the local economy.  Economic Development funds are used to subsidize holiday events and Friday Night Concerts, as well as for membership communications and the Downtown Clean-up Program.

Special Events & Fundraising

Events are a key factor in promoting Downtown Chico as the cultural and retail center of the community, and are also the primary source of revenue for the organization.  Thursday Night Market (TNM) and Taste of Chico are the DCBA’s main fundraising events, generating income through ticket sales and booth rental fees and sponsorships. All events generate income through sponsorships, which range from $250 – $5,000.


City Contracts

The City of Chico currently contracts with the DCBA to maintain the city planters.

The DCBA has effectively bolstered the planter budget with the “Adopt-a-Planter” program.  For a small annual sponsorship fee businesses can contribute to the beautification effort in Downtown.