April 12, 2023
Your weekly round up of BizNews from throughout Greater Victoria!
Photo courtesy of Greater Victoria Harbour Authority
After the Songhees Nation granted permission to the Sapphire Princess to dock, Lekwungen dancers welcomed the crew and passengers.
New RapidBus offers more trips with fewer stops
A new era for rapid transit in Greater Victoria began this week with the launch of BC Transit's Blink RapidBus Route 95. The first of the orange-topped buses hit the road Monday, taking passengers from Downtown Victoria to Langford. The new route replaces Route 50 and promises more convenient service with buses running every seven to eight minutes in peak times.

"Rapid transit takes time to implement, so while this modest step will increase our service levels, frequency and reliability for customers, more infrastructure is needed to make Blink RapidBus even faster," states BC Transit's website.
BC Transit: Member since 1999
Interest rate unchanged as inflation cooling
Ahead of The Chamber hosting a high-profile visit from the Bank of Canada's Deputy Governor on June 8, there are signs that high interest rates have done their job.

This morning, the Bank of Canada announced it was holding its overnight rate at 4.5%. It's the second month in a row the rate has stayed the same after rising eight times since March 2022. The move suggests the bank is seeing the impact of higher interest rates reflected in cooling inflation. The bank is now forecasting inflation to drop to 3% by mid-year and slowly fall to the target rate of 2% by the end of next year.

"Inflation in many countries is easing in the face of lower energy prices, normalizing global supply chains and tighter monetary policy," stated the bank's news release. "At the same time, labour markets remain tight and measures of core inflation in many advanced economies suggest persistent price pressures, especially for services."

The bank will make its next rate announcement on June 7, followed by the release of its latest Economic Progress Report on June 8 in Victoria at an event hosted by The Chamber. See below for more information on this special Business Leaders Luncheon, sponsored by Odlum Brown.
Name change for province's official opposition party
British Columbia has a "new" opposition party today. The BC United Party is the new name of the BC Liberal Party after 80% of party members opted to make the change.

The party is led by Kevin Falcon and is not affiliated with any federal party. The change is aimed at avoiding confusion for voters ahead of the next provincial election, which must be called on or before Oct. 19, 2024.
New measures to tackle violent repeat offenders
Victoria has been chosen as one of 12 hubs in BC for the Repeat Violent Offending Intervention Initiative, announced today by the provincial government.

The initiative will work to "identify cases for investigation and intervention, and provide documentation that will help prosecutors make informed decisions about charge assessments and prosecutions."

BC Attorney General Niki Sharma said the province is working with the federal government on legislative changes to the Criminal Code to toughen up laws around repeat violent offenders.

The initiative will be supported by the Special Investigation and Targeted Enforcement Program. The program will have a $16 million budget over three years to improve how police agencies share information around cases involving repeat violent offenders.

The province said it is consulting with Indigenous stakeholders to ensure the initiative is culturally appropriate.
Rental housing, late-night safety deserve support
The Chamber applauds the City of Victoria council for its willingness to listen and make decisions that contribute to a great community for all.

Victoria council has voted to approve the Harris Green redevelopment that will add 1,500 much-needed rental units. Council also agreed to restore funding for a late-night policing program that has shown proven results.

Chamber members are clear that safe communities and affordable housing, which helps employers find and keep workers, are among their top advocacy priorities.
City of Victoria: Member since 1863
Upcoming Business Leaders Series
The future of tourism in Canada
Join us as we speak virtually with the Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance, Hon. Randy Boissonnault, on the federal government’s work on Canadian innovation, economic development, the federal budget and tourism.
Fri., April 14 | 9 - 10 AM
Virtual Meeting via Zoom
Sponsored by:
What's next for economic development?
Elected in 2020, Minister Bailey brings experience as a leader in the private sector and tech industry to her mandate of attracting investment in BC's clean energy businesses. Learn how your business can build economic resiliency in this changing economy. This luncheon will feature networking opportunities, a presentation by the Minister, and a moderated Q&A session.
Mon., May 8 | 11:30 AM - 1PM
The Union Club of British Columbia
Sponsored by:
Venue Sponsor:
Economic Progress Report
Join us as we host Bank of Canada, Deputy Governor Paul Beaudry as he delivers the Economic Progress Report. This presentation will discuss recent developments in the Canadian economy and the implications for monetary policy.
Thurs., June 8, | 11:30 AM - 1 PM
Victoria Conference Centre - Carson Hall
Sponsored by:
BC Hydro's electrification plan

With a focus on climate change and the electrification of more devices, homes, vehicles and industries, find out how BC Hydro is helping their customers make the switch from fossil fuels to clean electricity.
Sponsored by:
May Member Networking Breakfast
Start your morning with a business development and community building check mark. Hosted by Revera at their Kensington Retirement Residence, known for the independent, active senior living lifestyle it provides, this breakfast is a must-attend event for Chamber members. It's a great way to learn about services offered by one another and how you can positively contribute to our local business community.
Sponsored by:
Highlight your upcoming event
Do you have an exciting event coming up that you think other Chamber members would be interested in attending? Post today for free on our Community Events calendar!

  1. First, log on to the member portal.
  2. Select the “Exposure Opportunities and Deals” button, and then click “Submit an Event to Calendar.”
  3. Fill in your details and submit.
  4. At this point, your event has been submitted and just needs to be approved by a Chamber staff member — typically within one business day. Once they have approved your event, it will be featured in our online community calendar available to the public here: Community Events.
Have any questions about having your events featured? Email [email protected] for assistance.
Chamber Chats with CEO Bruce Williams
The lasting impact of COVID-19 on insurance
The COVID 19 pandemic and the effects of climate change have made for major disruptions in the insurance sector.

In this Chamber Chat, CEO Bruce Williams speaks with Laura Bolster and Luke Mills of Megson Fitzpatrick Acera Insurance about how these changes could impact your life and your business.
Megson Fitzpatrick Acera Insurance: Member since 1981
Megson Fitzpatrick Acera Insurance: Chamber Champions since 2023
Special thanks to our series sponsor: Island Savings
Showcase your industry
Find the best talent in your industry with The Chamber’s job board.

When you post your next job, be sure to add your "industry type" to ensure your job can be found by the right candidates.

The list of industry types are constantly being updated, and can be modified to highlight any industry. 

Don’t see your industry listed? Send us anemail.

Also remember to add a specific category for the job in the position title. From Admin and HR to Marketing and Comms positions, you can see all 14 categories here.

If you have any questions or need assistance uploading your job posting, email [email protected]
Due to overwhelming demand, The Chamber is excited to share that our 2023 Business Awards Gala is now sold out! If you missed out on getting tickets, you can register for the waitlist here.
Thurs., May 4 | 6 - 10 PM
Fairmont Empress - Crystal Ballroom
721 Government St.
Member News

The University of Victoria has named two new housing and dining buildings with Lekwungen inspired names. The first building, named Čeqʷəŋín ʔéʔləŋ (Cheko’nien House) is named after the territory that is now Oak Bay. The second building, which will be completed this September, is named Sŋéqə ʔéʔləŋ (Sngequ House), after a village in what is now known as Cadboro Bay. The Songhees Nation and Esquimalt Nation gave permission to the University to use the names during a ceremony last week.

Songhees Nation: Member since 2017
University of Victoria: Member since 1976
University of Victoria: Chamber Champion since 2020
Protecting prairies

Habitat Acquisition Trust has launched a land stewardship project to raise awareness about the environmental significance of prairies. Through hands-on training and community-based outreach, HAT will be holding local workshops to teach landowners how to care for their backyards.

Habitat Acquisition Trust: Member since 2022
Solar panel pavement

The Malahat Nation has begun testing solar panels embedded in pavement in a step towards energy independence. The project is estimated to save 18,300 kilograms of carbon emissions over the next 25 years, and will allow the First Nation’s administration building to run almost completely off grid.

Malahat Nation: Member since 2019
Do you have a success story? We want to hear from you
Forbes names Victoria a top travel destination

The City of Victoria has been named as one of 2023’s top travel destinations by Forbes. Praised for its stunning natural landscapes, delicious food and commitment to environmental initiatives, a variety of Chamber members were acknowledged in being part of this travel destination, including the Songhees Nation, Songhees Tours, Inn at Laurel Point, Fairmont Empress, The Parkside Hotel & Spa, Big Wheel Burger, Orca Spirit Adventures, and Eagle Wing Whale & Wildlife Watching Tours.

Songhees Nation: Member since 2017

Songhees Tours: Member since 2022
The Parkside Hotel & Spa: Member since 2013
Orca Spirit Adventures: Member since 2011
Eagle Wing Whale & Wildlife Watching Tours: Member since 2013
Inn at Laurel Point: Member since 1991
City of Victoria: Member since 1863
Fairmont Empress: Member since 1913
Big Wheel Burger: Member since 2020
Big Wheel Burger: Chamber Champion since 2020
Francophone Games this July

This July, more than 500 French-speaking youths aged 14 to 18 will participate in sports, culinary arts, and other activities at the 2023 Francophone Games. Hosted by La Société francophone de Victoria, July 11 – 15, community events will be held around the region to celebrate French arts, culture and activities.
La Société francophone de Victoria: Member since 2010
Member to Member Discounts
Members can post Coupons and Discounts free of charge here.
Welcome to our Newest Members!
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