Join Prodigy Group and The Chamber for the combined April Mixer and Mingle this Thurs, April 13 from 5-7 pm at  Mayfair Optometric Clinic. This will be a special networking event to connect with members of both groups.
Writs Issued
The writs have been issued for British Columbia's 41st Provincial General Election. General Voting Day is Tue, May 9. Polling stations throughout the province will be open on General Voting Day from 8 am-8 pm (Pacific time) with advance voting available Apr 29 & 30 and May 3-6.

"Eligible voters can vote from now until the polls close on General Voting Day," said Keith Archer, Chief Electoral Officer. "BC has the most accessible voting system in Canada, and we encourage all eligible voters to cast a ballot."

The important thing is to vote and make sure your voice is heard. The Chamber, along with other key stakeholders in the region, have put together a list of issues of importance to the area and what's needed from the new government to find solutions.

The Chamber's role in this and any election is as a non-partisan advocate for the Greater Victoria business community. It is involved in politics to the extent that it advocates for public policy in the interests of its members.  

"We express support for government decisions consistent with our interests, and express criticism for decisions that are not," said Chamber Chair Al Hasham. "Especially now with the provincial election underway, we want to reassure our members that The Chamber will not endorse any candidate or political party. "

To access The Chamber's non-partisan policy, click here.
Chamber News
Social Media Series
2017 Greater Victoria Business Awards
YYJ Eats
Business Mixers
Prodigy Group Mingles
Event Photos

New Faces at The Chamber
The Chamber is excited to have two new team
members join the tribe this spring. Debbie Hartz is our new Account Representative and Emara Angus will take on the new role of Membership and Marketing Coordinator.

Debbie owned a database management and marketing company which helped businesses grow their revenue, improve their customer service and human resource management. Debbie is a world traveller, a classical pianist and violinist and lives each day to the fullest.

A recent graduate of the Bachelor of Business Administration and Marketing program at Camosun College, Emara started at The Chamber as a co-op student last May and stayed on part time during her final year of school. At Camosun, she was the President of DECA business club where she focused on mentoring and empowering her fellow students. When Emara's not working, she's exploring the beaches with her dog Luna or trying out a new recipe.

Both are looking forward to connecting with new and existing members - introduce yourself at the next Chamber event or give them a call to see how they can help you.
Hard Work for Housing
Much of our news has focused on housing recently - and no wonder. We have a rental vacancy rate that is historically low and a price tag on home ownership that is historically high. Recent reports have highlighted employed people who have to sleep in their car due to a lack of housing.

"Affordable housing has long been a priority for The Chamber," said Chamber Chair Al Hasham. "Simply put, the workforce of today and tomorrow needs to be able to live here."

But the good news is that there is lots of good work underway.

According to Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps in this recent Victoria News article, there are 1,000 units of housing under construction in Victoria, with more rental units being built than condos. And through the previously announced $60-million Regional Housing First Program, approx. 880 new rental units will be built throughout Greater Victoria over the next five years. 

Upgrades to Bustling Belleville Block!

The 400-block of Belleville Street is getting a $3-million overhaul, which will include improvements to the sidewalk, paving and crosswalk, the retaining walls on the Belleville Terminal property, and the redesign of the plaza/stairway at Belleville/Menzies.

The project has been under consideration for years as the Menzies/Belleville plaza is considered a key gateway to the Lower Causeway and Inner Harbour.

The Inner Harbour is the conduit for people travelling by boat and float plane between Victoria and mainland BC as well as the US. In 2015, approximately 900,000 people came to and left Greater Victoria via three operators:
Harbour Air, which flies between Victoria and various BC locations, Black Ball Ferry Line, operators of the Coho vehicle ferry, which sails between Victoria and Port Angeles, and Clipper Navigation Ltd., operator of a high-speed catamaran passenger-only service between Victoria and Seattle. The most recent addition is V2V Vacations which begins their service to downtown Vancouver this year.

The Inner Harbour helps to bring billions of dollars into the region, supporting the employment of tens of thousands of people. 

Harbour Air Seaplanes: member since 1993

Black Ball Ferry Line: member since 1961

Clipper Navigation Ltd.: member since 2014

V2V Vacations: member since 2016

Meet BC Ferries' new CEO!

On April 1st, Mark Collins took over as CEO of BC Ferries. Hear from Mark on his vision for BC Ferries as he takes the helm of one of the largest ferry operators in the world.

Wed, Apr 26 | 11:30 am-1 pm
Victoria Marriott Inner Harbour, 728 Humboldt St.


Find out more about UVic and Camosun's Co-operative Education Programs.
Douglas Magazine 10 to Watch Awards
Now in their eighth year, the 10 to Watch Awards recognize Vancouver Island's best new companies, which have been in business for three years or less. Chamber member winners include FreshWorks Studio and Angela Cote Consulting. Read more about them here.

Samarth Mod, CEO and founder of FreshWorks Studio, is also a Top 75 finalist (over 600 applications were received) in the RBC Top 25 Canadian Immigrant Awards. It's a people's choice award so you can vote for him today!
Freshworks Studio: member since 2017
Angela Cote Consulting: member since 2016

Your Chamber in the News  
Easter Events in YYJ
Not sure what to do for the Easter long weekend? Why not plan brunch with family or friends? There is still time to get a chocolate bunny and eggs for an Easter Egg hunt!

Image from The Chamber's Instagram
Don't want to plan anything yourself? Several Chamber members have fun events in store for children of all ages.
Please note The Chamber office will be closed from April 14-17. Hope the holiday brings you lots of cheer!

Victoria Public Market: member since 2015
Whole Foods Market: member since 2016

Top 20 Under 40
Five individuals that are Chamber members have been recognized as a leaders in their professions and community by winning a Top 20 Under 40 award this past weekend. See the full list here.
Welcome to Our Newest Members! 

World Financial Group - Shaun Parke

Chamber Name Tags
Need to get one of the snazzy new Chamber Name tags? Email Reception to order yours today.

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