April 6, 2022
Your weekly round up of BizNews from throughout Greater Victoria
For an up-to-date schedule of cruise ship arrivals at Ogden Point, go to

“The start of cruise ship season is another sign that Greater Victoria is reconnecting with the world,” Williams said. “International visitors provide a significant boost to our region’s economic ecosystem, which truly flourishes when all sectors are able to achieve their potential. It’s exhilarating to once again show off our spectacular corner of the world to travellers. On behalf of all Chamber members, I’m thrilled to welcome the first passengers back to Greater Victoria.”
Greater Victoria Harbour Authority: Member since 2003
VicPD protects us regardless of where we call home
A convoy of honking trucks and anti-government protestors that planned to entrench themselves in James Bay fizzled out before it could gain a foothold.

"Safe, peaceful and lawful protest are protected under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Occupation is not," states a VicPD media release. "Dangerous and/or unlawful activity will continue to be met with de-escalation and enforcement.

By being proactive, the Victoria Police Department were able to avoid a prolonged disruption to businesses and residents. VicPD consulted with Ottawa police about lessons learned by that city when it permitted a protest that then turned into an encampment.

VicPD Police Chief Del Manak shared his insights as a guest speaker at The Chamber's Public Policy and Advocacy committee meeting this week. Chief Manak was also asked about efforts to create a regional police department that could draw resources from more than one municipality. VicPD works with their neighbouring police forces as much as possible, but there's no question the department faces critical constraints. The job of police is to protect people in their community, regardless of where they're from. In Greater Victoria, that means VicPD protect everyone who visits downtown for work in the day or for all of its entertainment options in the evening.

The Chamber has long called for a regional police force, and we will be looking for indications government is listening when the provincial Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act is released April 28.
Victoria Police Department: Member since 2008
SD61 budget cuts could impact student employment
The Chamber has lent its support to the long-standing career centre program at the Greater Victoria School District. The SD61 school board is expected to announce funding cuts as part of finalizing its budget tomorrow.

"We understand that this year’s budget process requires difficult decisions, and we do appreciate that every trustee is doing their best to make the right decision. That said, we urge the school board to continue adequately funding career centre staff positions," Chamber CEO Bruce Williams stated in a letter to trustees. "Education is about helping students grow and learn to be successful adults who contribute to making our world a better place. Students receive positive direction to fulfill their academic potential, and they deserve to also have positive direction to prepare them for working life."

Career centre staff are able to help students learn to build connections and professional relationships. Without that assistance, there might be fewer students available to take on traditional student positions. With Greater Victoria experiencing a workforce crisis, hiring students helps employers and gives young people a chance to earn money to pursue their own dreams.
Greater Victoria School District 61: Member since 1976
Ban on foreign buyers reportedly in federal budget
The federal budget will be unveiled tomorrow at 1 pm and is expected to include plans for long-term economic growth. However, high inflation and uncertainty over the war in the Ukraine could see the government focus on new spending priorities, states an analysis by RBC Dominion Securities.

Housing affordability will be the cornerstone of the budget, according to media reports that suggest new rules will prohibit foreign buyers of real estate for the next two years. CTV also says the budget will include:
  •  $4 billion for municipalities to update zoning and permit systems to speed up housing construction
  •  $1 billion affordable housing construction
  •  and $1.5 billion in loans and funding for co-op housing.

The budget is also expected to include a surtax on banks and insurance companies, and billions of dollars in new spending for the military.

The RBC analysis notes that Canada's economic recovery has been stronger than expected, allowing the feds to announce new spending and lower deficit projections. The analysis also points out that private capital will be required to grow the economy over the long term and to begin addressing chronic labour shortages facing all sectors.
RBC Dominion Securities: Member since 1962
PHO confirms vax pass restrictions expire Friday
Starting Friday, businesses and event organizers will no longer be required by the province to check vaccination status. As well, businesses will only need a communicable disease plan to reduce the spread of all infectious diseases rather than a specific COVID-19 safety plan.

"We expect a few businesses will continue to require proof of immunization, much as many continue to ask that masks are worn in common areas," Chamber CEO Bruce Williams said. "We welcome the end of formal regulations and support businesses that know their customers and their staff, and who make decisions that work for their organization."
Announcing our newest Champion
The Chamber is happy to announce that we've added a new Chamber Champion to help amplify our advocacy efforts as the voice of business in Greater Victoria.

The Chamber Champions initiative was created in 2020 to add a powerful resource for leadership and guidance to our organization and members. Learn more about how these organizations are championing the work of the Chamber.
BC Transit receives relief as ridership improves
Transportation services such as commuter buses were hit hard by pandemic restrictions.

BC Transit is reporting ridership levels have recovered to about 70% of pre-pandemic levels. To ensure the service can carry on until it's fully recovered, the federal and provincial governments announced $28 million in relief. The governments are also providing $176 million to Translink on the Lower Mainland.
BC Transit: Member since 1999
Spring into Chamber Events
Protocols for all in-person Chamber events
To continue to safeguard the health of our community we require all in-person event attendees to be fully vaccinated. Mask wearing is to each individuals' discretion. You can review our COVID-19 safety protocols here.
Please be aware that the requirements for our events may change on short notice and we will follow the current PHO directives applicable on the event day.
The Chamber Annual General Meeting
There's still time to join us at our Annual General Meeting. Reserve now to hear from special guest speaker, the Hon. Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, about Budget 2022 and Transportation on the South Island. 
The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure plans and improves transportation networks, builds new infrastructure, provides transportation services, and implements transportation policies, to allow for the safe and efficient movement of people and goods. Join us to learn about how the Ministry’s priorities will impact your business.

The AGM is also your chance to catch up on chamber business, including recent advocacy wins, a report from our chair and audited financial statements.
Sponsored by:
Tues., April 12 | 11:30 AM - 1 PM
Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort
100 Harbour Rd, Victoria
Prodigy Group April Mingle
@ Friends of Dorothy Lounge
Kick-off the April long-weekend with signature cocktails, upscale dishes and fabulous décor in a place that offers both a classy VIP experience and be-yourself atmosphere. Friends of Dorothy Lounge is the perfect place to foster great connections and future collaborations as one of Greater Victoria’s emerging professionals.
Come network, create new social connections, and build new business relationships at this fabulous Prodigy Group Mingle.
Co-Sponsored by:
Thurs., April 14 | 5 - 7:00 PM
Friends of Dorothy Lounge
537 Johnson St., Victoria, BC
Location announced for April Business Mixer!

This vibrant, after hours business social event provides an excellent opportunity for members and prospective members to meet face-to-face, establishing or renewing valuable business relationships. Join us for this modified-format mixer and to connect with the Greater Victoria business community.
Chamber Business Mixers are a member benefit. Non-members are welcome to attend one mixer as our guest while you consider joining The Chamber. Please note this is a 19+ event.
Sponsored by:
Thurs., April 28 | 5 - 7 PM
Location Max Furniture
Business Leaders Luncheon: Mark Collins, CEO of BC Ferries
Hear from BC Ferries on their plans to evolve our coastal ferry system. One of the world's largest marine passenger systems, BC Ferries is an economic driver for our province. For 60 years, BC Ferries has been dedicated to providing safe and efficient travel to their customers. Their role as a ferry transportation provider goes beyond getting passengers from point A to B. With 25 routes on the west coast of BC, they serve as advocates for the coastal environment and the communities where they operate. 
Mark Collins, CEO of BC Ferries, will take you through how the company is preparing for the future and contributing to a sustainable environment.
Sponsored by:
Thurs., May 12 | 11:30 - 1 PM
Coast Victoria Hotel & Marina by APA, 146 Kingston St, Victoria 
Chamber Chats with CEO Bruce Williams
Learning Lessons with your Local Library
If you haven’t been to your local library lately, either in person or online, you may not be aware of all the resources available to you. it’s an A-Z information universe including everything from Ancestry to Zoology.

In this Chamber Chat, we speak with Greater Victoria Public Library CEO Maureen Sawa about all we can access through the library.
Special thanks to our series sponsor:
Greater Victoria Public Library: Member since 2008
2022 Greater Victoria Business Awards
The Chamber is excited to announce that the 2022 Greater Victoria Business Awards taking place in-person are now sold out. 
If you would like to be added to the waitlist for this event, please email
This gala event recognizes businesses in Greater Victoria that have achieved a standard of excellence in the community through their own abilities, efforts and initiatives. Click here to see the 2022 finalists!
Saturday, May 7 | 6-10 pm
The Fairmont Empress, 721 Government St.
Spring Savings with The Chamber 
As a member of The Chamber, you and your organization are eligible for discounts and savings. Take advantage of these corporate discounts this spring through the Chamber Benefits Program.

Need to improve your home office? Lenovo, Monk Office, and Grand & Toy offer a variety of discounts for hardware, furniture and more.

Ship your packages with ease and get 50% off domestic and international shipping with UPS. Shipments can be easily tracked through UPS My Choice® for Business. Learn more about shipping rates and tracking here.

Our Chamber Benefits Program has many valuable offers to utilize, from fuel discounts to certificates of origin. Chamber members can also find and post on the Member to Member Offers page, a constantly updated resource to showcase your product/service to fellow Chamber members.

For more information on how to take advantage of these savings, or to post a Member to Member offer, contact
Exploring diversity with Chamber IDEA Committee
Chamber CEO Bruce Williams would like to invite you to visit the new Chinese Canadian Museum exhibit in Fan Tan Alley, created in partnership with the Royal BC Museum.

Williams joined the Inclusion, Diversity and Equity Advancement (IDEA) Committee to tour the exhibit with the guidance of Charlayne Thornton-Joe, City of Victoria councilor, and Alan Lowe, board member of the Victoria Chinatown Museum Society. The exhibit showcases the positive impact of Chinese Canadians and cultural significance of Canada’s oldest Chinatown.

The IDEA Committee offers advice and guidance to The Chamber to create a more inclusive and welcoming business community that truly represents the diversity of the Greater Victoria business community we aspire to have.
City of Victoria: Member since 1962
Work with a
Chamber Champion

When you’re searching for your next employer, look no further than a Chamber Champion!

Featured on The Chamber’s job board, Chamber Champions are offering great career opportunities for talented individuals across Greater Victoria.
From a Financial Services Representative at CIBC to a Digital Home Technician at TELUS Business, Chamber Champions are ready to offer you your next great career move.
Visit The Chamber’s job board and find new opportunities today.

If you have any questions about posting your positions on The Chamber's job board, please contact
Grow your business with successful exporting
Looking for a potential 18% increase in export revenue? The Chamber invites you to bounce forward out of the pandemic by taking advantage of the upcoming local Trade Accelerator Program (TAP)!

TAP is designed to help SMEs TAP into their full export potential. It has a proven track record helping participants get results. With new trade agreements, competitive Canadian dollar, and new business opportunities, now is the ideal time to extend your company's reach through international expansion of goods and services. Since 2017, World Trade Centre Vancouver has successfully delivered 24 TAP cohorts in B.C.

Qualifying Chamber Members pay only $500 (a $4,500 savings).
Apply Now

Enter Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce in the Who Referred you section.
Learn more about the program and apply today at

Have questions? Call TAP B.C. Team on 604-640-5491 or email
Workshop Days
9:00a.m. – 4:30p.m.
June 1, 2, and 3

Mentorship Days 
8:30a.m. – 12:30p.m.
July 12 and 13

Application Deadline:
May 17, 2022
Member News
190 years at Scotiabank

Scotiabank is celebrating their 190th birthday this year! To mark the occasion, the bank has published an article looking back at previous logos and seals they have used, including a commemorative logo for their 190th. Scotiabank has also created a skill-testing video to test your knowledge on banking machines used in the past.
Scotiabank: Member since 1962 
Scotiabank: Member since 2021
10 to Watch Awards

At the Douglas Magazine 10 to Watch Awards, two Chamber members were named as winners. DealBuilder received recognition for their ability to assist small business owners in selling their businesses as quickly as possible for maximum value, and Origen Air received praise for their high-impact, small footprint, plant-powered commercial quality air purification unit.

Origen Air is also a finalist for the Sustainability Award at the 2022 Greater Victoria Business Awards.
Douglas Magazine: Member since 2004
Origen Air Systems Ltd: Member since 2020
DealBuilder: Member since 2021
Jail, Bail or Bribe

Is Trevor Botkin of HeroWork Program Society a great guy? You can help decide with the organization's Spring Challenge Fundraiser. Trevor has been “charged” with impersonating Santa Claus, taking candy from a baby, and other reckless crimes. Donors now have the opportunity to bail Trevor out of jail or bribe to keep Trevor in jail. On May 6, Gordy Dodd of Dodd’s Furniture and Mattress, will judge how long Trevor stays in “jail” at Uptown — all based on what option donors selected.
HeroWork Program Society: Member since 2019
Dodd's Furniture & Mattress: Member since 2002
Shape Property Management – Uptown: Member since 1983
Victoria Day Parade returns

Mark your calendars! The Greater Victoria Festival Society will be hosting their famous Victoria Day Parade again this year. The Thrifty Foods 122nd Victoria Day Parade presented by CHEK News will be celebrated on Monday, May 23. Registration for US and Canadian bands, as well as individual/non-profit/corporate floats are open now.

Greater Victoria Festival Society: Member since 2016
CHEK News: Member since: 1971
CHEK News: Chamber Champion since 2020
Thrifty Foods: Member since 1981
Kidovate Market

The University of Victoria will be hosting a youth entrepreneurship market at the Bay Centre this Saturday. Kidovate aims to teach entrepreneurial skills to young students, and the market will feature more than 70 middle/high school students selling a diverse array of jewelry, art, soaps, handicrafts, plants, services and more.
University of Victoria: Member since 1976
University of Victoria: Chamber Champion since 2020
Bay Centre: Member since 1990
Paws-itilvey perfect stress reliever

Students at Camosun College were able to relax with some furry friends thanks to St. Johns Ambulance. Therapy dogs and their handlers visited students at the Interurban and Landsdowne libraries, giving students a much-needed break as they study for exams.
Camosun College: Member since 1981
St. John Ambulance: Member since 2012

The Township of Esquimalt has launched a new online platform to help residents and business owners simplify their municipal accounts. Businesses can apply, renew and pay for their business licenses online. And, later this spring, residents will be able to receive property tax notices electronically.
Township of Esquimalt: Member since 2020
Do you have a success story? We want to hear from you
Member to Member discounts
Members can post Coupons and Discounts free of charge here.
Welcome to our newest member!