November 1, 2023

Your weekly round up of BizNews from throughout Greater Victoria!

The Chamber marked the end of Small Business Month in October with a Networking Breakfast presented by Grant Thornton LLP and supported by our media partners 98.5 The Ocean and 103.1 Jack FM. This breakfast at Vista 18, located on the 18th floor of Chateau Victoria Hotel & Suites gave members a chance to introduce themselves and their businesses through a series of 60-second elevator pitches. See photos here.

Belleville Terminal RFQ aims to shortlist project firms

A Request for Qualifications has gone out for the design and construction of a modern Belleville Terminal. The RFQ will lead to a shortlist for the Request for Proposals to carry out the upgrades to the terminal.

The project has a $303.9 million budgets and is expected to be completed ahead of the 2028 tourism season. The federal government has confirmed $41.6 million for the project.

After the upgrade, the terminal will be in compliance with the Canada-U.S. Land, Rail, Marine and Air Transport Preclearance Agreement, allowing passengers to complete the US customs and immigration process in Victoria, prior to disembarking in the United States.

The Songhees Nation and Esquimalt Nation will be able to showcase the cultural and geographical significance of the project’s location, and welcome visitors into Lekwungen territory.

Travellers spend approximately $174 million annually, generating $268 million in economic output and $155 million in provincial gross domestic product (GDP).

"As a gateway to Canada, to British Columbia and to our region, Belleville Terminal serves as a vital connection point for trade and tourism. The Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce has made the case for modernization for more than 20 years," Chamber CEO Bruce Williams said. "I'm encouraged to see progress being made now. There is an urgency to ensure Belleville can continue to serve as an important border crossing and point of entry, and the time is now for this project to happen."

Upcoming Events

2023 Chamber Auction - early bird bidding open

Membership 101

Emerge Connector @ Coastal Community Credit Union

November Business Mixer with BCLC

2024 Business Awards Nomination & Application Webinar

Wisdom for Family Enterprises - Dinner with David Bentall - 10 tickets left!

Chair's Holiday Reception

Check our Events Calendar for updates.

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Chamber joins effort to improve safe communities

The Chamber has joined the Save Our Streets coalition that is raising awareness about the impact public disorder is having on communities across the province.

The coalition wants all levels of government to do better at addressing issues of addiction, homelessness and criminal behaviour that have become increasingly visible in BC's downtowns.

Chamber CEO Bruce Williams spoke with CBC Radio this week about what he's hearing from members as well as chambers across Canada. Governments are working on changing the legal system to keep repeat offenders off the street, but the process takes time. There also needs to be a more collaborative approach between all levels of government.

"Business people are compassionate and care deeply about their communities, but there is growing frustration with seeing so many people in open distress," Williams said. "We all want to help and we need better solutions than those that aren't working."

Rebates help businesses with property crime surge

Applications for the new $10.5-million Securing Small Business Rebate Program open on Nov. 22.

Businesses can receive up to $2,000 for the cost of repairs due to vandalism, and up to $1,000 for prevention measures such as security cameras or gates.

Applications are retroactive to Jan. 1, 2023, to help businesses recoup costs incurred this year.

Small Business Rebate
Chamber Chats with CEO Bruce Williams

How to spot a cyber scam in today's business environment

Chamber Chats

How often do you see a questionable email or text message and wonder if it’s a scam? Cyber security is a growing concern and cyber crime is a growing business. In this Chamber Chat, CEO Bruce Williams gets good advice about on line engagement from Rachel Guinto of Island Savings.

Special thanks to our series sponsor: Island Savings

Meet with their local experts for solutions as unique as your business.

Job postings must now include details about pay

Starting today, all employers in BC will need to include salary or wage information on publicly posted jobs. BC's new Pay Transparency Act takes affect Nov. 1.

The goal is to try to ensure all people are offered the same pay for the same work, and prohibits employers from asking prospective employees about how much they earned in the past. As well, employees can't be punished for disclosing what they are being paid.

Large and medium-sized employers must also begin publicly posting reports about their gender-pay gap, based on a phased approach:

  • Nov. 1, 2023: BC Public Service Agency and Crown corporations and public agencies with more than 1,000 employees (ICBC, BC Hydro, WorkSafeBC, BC Housing, BC Lottery Corporation and BC Transit)
  • Nov. 1, 2024: all employers with 1,000 employees or more
  • Nov. 1, 2025: all employers with 300 employees or more
  • Nov. 1, 2026: all employers with 50 employees or more.

Stagnant GDP as economy going through doldrums

Statistics Canada's latest figures show the nation's August GDP was lower than expected. Real gross domestic product was flat throughout the summer as inflation, international conflicts and climate events continue to drag down many industries.

"The economy is clearly stagnating. With these numbers, you could make the argument that we’re in a technical recession, with the third and fourth quarters now expected to be essentially flat, and weaker than the Bank of Canada’s forecast released last week," Canadian Chamber of Commerce Senior Economist Andrew DiCapua said. "This economic weakness should put a lid on inflation pressures. But we’re dealing with a bit of a mirage, with GDP growth increasingly being fueled by a fast-growing population. That’s concealing a hard truth — that real GDP per person is falling, and poor productivity is expected going forward."

Greater Victoria Business Awards 2024

Nominate a deserving business today!

Each week, The Chamber will profile one of the 14 different award categories, encouraging members to nominate a deserving Chamber member.

The Community Builder of the Year Award honours a business, non-profit organization, or public sector agency that:

• Demonstrates commitment to the community beyond their usual business practices

• Has a long-term desire to build diverse, inclusive and balanced communities

• Makes a sustainable and tangible impact in the region

• Displays a clear commitment to social responsibility

Sponsored by:

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to reach out to Hanna at [email protected]

Nominate Today
Award Categories

Need some inspiration?

Check out the videos of the 2023 Community Builder of the Year finalists. Thanks to Coast Capital Savings who is sponsoring the award again this year.

Winner: Lifetime Networks

Finalist: Aryze

Upcoming Events

Chamber Auction runs Nov. 5-12

Registration is now open for the 2023 Chamber auction, taking place online from Nov. 5-12! Soon you’ll be able to bid on everything from one-of-a-kind getaways, to unique experiences, to discussions with community leaders, and everything in between! Early-bird opens on Oct. 29, so register now to be one of the first to make your bid!

Monk Office 

This Herman Miller Lino office chair from Monk Office has a contoured that seat works together with its high-performance Duo Suspension to give you total spinal support. The intuitive adjustments and dynamic materials support a range of bodies, making this flexible office chair the perfect seat to gift to coworkers, family or yourself.

Light Right Outdoor Lighting

Enhance your home with the exceptional outdoor lighting services of Light Right Outdoor Lighting! With this $500 gift certificate towards landscape or holiday lighting, Light Right will illuminate your outdoor spaces so that you can enjoy your yard all-year round.

Dumpling Drop

Win Dumpling Drop dumplings for a year! The successful bidder will receive one bag of dumplings every week for a full year. From Spicy Ginger Beef to Vegan Triple Mushroom, Dumpling Drop has something for everyone. 

Doublet Management Consulting

For busy entrepreneurs seeking high-impact support, a Flash Coaching membership from Doublet Management Consulting offers unparalleled value and professional guidance. This comprehensive package includes coaching videos and workbooks, actionable implementation steps, and interactive 1:1 coaching calls.

Want to see more of the great items featured in this year’s auction? Register today to get a sneak peak! Any questions? Please call 250 383-7191 or email [email protected]

Register Today!

Sponsored by:

Member News @VictoriaChamber

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Downtown Victoria Business Association:

Member since 2007

Greater Victoria School District SD61:

Member since 1976

Maritime Museum of BC:

Member since 1989

City of Victoria:

Member since 1863

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Chamber Job Board an exclusive member benefit

As an exclusive member benefit, use the code INTRO2023 at checkout to receive a free 30-day listing on The Chamber’s job board.

If you have any questions or need help uploading your job, email The Chamber at [email protected].

Chamber Job Board 

Project Coordinator – Urban Systems

HR Generalist – Reliable Controls

Business Analyst – Regroove Solutions

Cashier/Merchandiser – Shoppers Drug Mart, Royal Oak

Marketing & Communications Liasion – Esquimalt Chamber of Commerce

Director of HR Services – Engaged HR

Member to Member Discounts

UPLIFT Women's Business Summit - Save 35% on UPLIFT Summit

TELUS Business Solutions - Unlock amazing offers from TELUS Business

Resthouse Sleep - 10% off all regularly priced items at Resthouse

Moe's Home Victoria - 20% Off Regular Priced Items

Victoria Fitness - Private Personal Training - Get a 3-session Introductory Training Package for Half Price

View all Member to Member discounts

Members can post Coupons and Discounts free

Welcome to our Newest Members! 

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