June 29, 2022
Your weekly round up of BizNews from throughout Greater Victoria!
Guests networked on the Party Deck at last week's Mixer sponsored by the Victoria HarbourCats and The Wilson's Group. View pictures from the event here.
Understanding democracy is vital to our future
Democracy, as Winston Churchill famously said, is the worst form of government other than every other system ever attempted.

With civic elections set for this October, many people are considering running for election. To help give potential candidates the info they need to understand what's possible — and what isn't — if they're elected, The Chamber hosted a virtual seminar with municipal governance expert Allison Habkirk. She has more than 30-years experience in local government as an employee, an elected official and as an educator.

Municipal councils make decisions that literally affect the street we live on. They can play a huge role in the success of your neighbourhood’s businesses so investing in providing them the right info to make them successful needs to be a priority.
Tips to ease your BC Ferries trip this long weekend
BC Ferries is offering advice to help travellers navigate the unique challenges of a weekend book ended by national holidays in Canada and the US.

Expect heavy traffic, book early and be patient are a few of the suggestions. Other tips include planning to travel mid-weekend to avoid the heaviest traffic and planning ahead to beat the heat while waiting for your ship to arrive.
BC Ferries: Member since 1983
BC Ferries: Chamber Champion since 2022
PST on online marketplaces takes effect July 1
Starting Canada Day, the provincial government will require "marketplace facilitators" charge the PST for the purchase of certain online good and services.

  • operates, owns or controls (solely or jointly) an online marketplace,
  • through the online marketplace, facilitates a marketplace seller’s retail sales of goods, software or taxable services, and
  • collects payment in respect of the retail sales of goods, software or taxable services.

Businesses with annual sales of less than $10,000 are exempt.
Supply chain relief as cargo ship congestion easing
A surge in the supply of goods from overseas over the next few months could see retailers offering discounts if they suddenly need to balance inventory with demand.

North American ports have faced major disruptions over the past few years, with BC's main port in Vancouver ranked among the most inefficient in the world in 2021. The only ports that fared worse in the Container Port Performance Index were on the US West Coast.

The uncertainty caused by the pandemic and volatile trade conditions has made it more difficult to manage the arrival of goods from overseas. The situation is improving but it will take time for supply chain networks to return to previous efficiencies. This might be good news for consumers and help reduce inflationary pressure but will mean many businesses need to remain nimble and adjust their overseas purchases.

It's also a reminder of the importance of supporting local producers who are less affected by shipping disruptions. As well, the proposal to improve the deep sea port facility at Port Alberni represents a tremendous opportunity for the Island and the entire province.
Last chance to participate in Picnics & Patios
This is the final week of the #PicnicsPatiosVicBC Campaign!

Congratulations to @whetyourappetitevancity for winning last week’s prize: a $75 gift card to their favourite restaurant, Pagliacci's!

For the last week of the campaign, don’t miss your chance to win the Grand Prize.
Tag your favourite restaurant and two friends on this post for a chance to win a $200 gift card to your favorite restaurant plus a prize pack of great local goodies!⁣

Share a photo of your summertime snack and use the hashtag #PicnicsPatiosVicBC for five (5) additional entries!

Campaign Sponsor:
Community Partners & Sponsors:
The best of both worlds!
Backyard Bash
@ The Fort Common
We are excited to announce that the theme of July's Business Mixer and Prodigy Mingle will be the Brown Bros. Backyard Bash!

Join us at the gorgeous Fort Common for an evening of connections, food, drinks, and fun.

At the heart of the city you will find the Fort Common, a revitalized brick carriage courtyard and the backyard to many businesses in the area. This hidden gem is a seasonal, publicly accessible urban oasis open during the summer months for all to enjoy.

Let's celebrate summer together as we grow new business and community connections.
Hosted by:
Venue Provided by:
August Business Mixer
Join us for our August Business Mixer at Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse. With a beautiful new space to showcase you won't want to miss this event!
Our 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 a great summer evening full of fabulous food, delectable drinks, and outstanding business connections.
Sponsored by:
Thursday, August 11 | 5-7 PM
Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse
2487 Mt. St. Michael Rd.
Saanichton, BC
Business groups part of planning for new economy
British Columbia will be among the first provinces to engage in consultations with the federal government on planning for a new economy based on renewable energy.

The Regional Energy and Resource Tables will include representatives from municipalities, First Nations, universities, industry and business groups. The discussion will look at opportunities that come with investing in a net-zero economy.

“It's about actually doing the manufacturing of batteries and electric vehicles and a range of other products that utilize critical minerals in this country,” Minister of Natural Resources Jonathon Wilkinson told Glacier Media. “I see this as actually a generational opportunity for Canada.”
Red tape chills voice of business for small chambers
The Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce added our voice to calls from the Surrey Board of Trade, Alberni Valley Chamber of Commerce and Campbell River & District Chamber of Commerce to rethink new rules that are casting a chill on the traditional role of business as a trusted voice for decision makers. The new rules require communication with government officials to be logged monthly using a multi-step process.

“Chambers of commerce and boards of trade are embedded in the fabric of our communities," Chamber CEO Bruce Williams said. "Our mandate is to give voice to business. In healthy communities, the public sector and private sector co-exist in a balance that creates employment and healthy economies and enables sound policies. This isn’t new, but it is being threatened by onerous requirements that miss their target. We are putting historic relationships at risk with this paternalistic red tape that is effectively censuring important conversations.”

The organizations co-authored a letter to Attorney General David Eby requesting that chambers and boards of trade be exempt from the BC Lobbyists Transparency Act.

In 2020, significant changes to BC’s lobbyist registration regime came into effect creating confusion and concern for every business or organization whose role includes communicating with BC government officials.

Enjoy multicultural performances this Canada Day
Happy Canada Day from The Chamber! This Friday, check out great events around Greater Victoria and enjoy the long-awaited sunshine.

The City of Victoria is hosting a day full of activities beginning with an Indigenous traditional canoe protocol and welcoming ceremony featuring the Lekwungen Traditional Dancers. After a full day of performances, Reliance Properties will put on an extravagant fireworks display over the city.

In the District of Saanich, the Gorge Canada Day Picnic will offer food, music, markets and more for the entire family.

Out on the Westshore, the City of Langford will be hosting their first inaugural celebration at Starlight Stadium. Featuring a pancake breakfast, live music, a movie under the stars and much more, the event also coincides with Langford’s 30th anniversary.

Innovative partnerships and updated traditions will help people in Greater Victoria celebrate Canada Day, while reflecting on the values of our country and the work still needed to ensure it is inclusive for all. We hope this Canada day gives you and your family a time to reflect, and the opportunity to support the great local businesses that make up our communities and country.

The Chamber will be closed Friday, July 1.
Chamber Chats with CEO Bruce Williams
The Effects of COVID-19 on Persons with Disabilities
The COVID-19 pandemic has been particularly difficult on people who face the ongoing challenges of living with disabilities.

In this Chamber Chat, we hear more about that how we can help with two people representing organizations who support those living with disabilities.

Featuring Joanne Neubauer of the Action Committee for Persons with Disabilities, and Wendy Cox of the Victoria Disability Resource Centre.
Victoria Disability Resource Centre: Member since 2022
Special thanks to our series sponsor: Island Savings
Fill your summer jobs with The Chamber’s Job Board
The return of summer isn't the only thing to be excited about this July!

Find great local talent with The Chamber’s job board, being viewed by more and more candidates every week.

As an exclusive Chamber member benefit, you can post a free 30-day listing on the job board every calendar year. Use the code INTRO2022 at checkout to use this offer today.

Reach the right candidates with the help of The Chamber. If you have any questions or need help uploading your job posting, email
Member News
UVic ranked as top North American university for research collaborations

The University of Victoria has been ranked as the top North American University of International Research Collaborations. As part of the 2022 Leiden Rankings, UVic is celebrated for their world-changing research partnerships that have led to field-defining research. UVic is ranked as the top university in Canada for mathematics and computer science, and second nationally for research in physical sciences and engineering research.
University of Victoria: Member since 1976
University of Victoria: Chamber Champion since 2020
Seaspan Shipyards donates materials to Camosun

Seaspan Victoria Shipyards has donated equipment and supplies to Camosun College to assist in career development in BC’s ship-repair and shipbuilding sector. Students will be getting hands-on experience working with materials on the same scale and quality used at Seaspan Victoria Shipyards, leading to students with increased skills in in pipe trades, welding, sheet metal and sheet metal fabrication.
Seaspan Victoria Shipyards: Member since 2002
Seaspan Victoria Shipyards: Chamber Champion since 2020
Camosun College: Member since 1981
YYJ recognized for unique gin experience

The Victoria International Airport has been recognized with an Excellence in Airport Concessions Award. Through a partnership with Victoria Distillers, the airport offers a first of its kind concept by having implemented an on-site liquor manufacturing facility post-security. Travellers not only have the option to taste Empress 1908 Gin within the airport, but can also experience the gin being produced and bottled by hand.
Victoria Airport Authority: Member since 1981
Do you have a success story? We want to hear from you
BC Ferries recognized for sustainable innovation

For the fifth time, BC Ferries has won the Blue Circle Award from the Port Authority of Vancouver. Recognizing environmental stewardship and commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the Blue Circle Awards recognizes innovative approaches to protect the environment, such as the implementation of BC Ferries’ new electric hybrid fleet.
BC Ferries: Member since 1983
BC Ferries: Chamber Champion since 2022
Dragon Boat Festival Fast Track Program

Getting excited for the Vancouver Island Dragonboat Festival this August? Fairway Gorge Paddling Club Society is offering a unique opportunity to train for the races and get complimentary access into the festival! Beginner paddlers and corporate teams are invited to participate in the Festival Fast-Track program this July to learn more about Dragon Boats and the fun of paddling.

Fairway Gorge Paddling Club Society: Member since 2020
Lunchtime Concerts at the Fort Common

Looking for a music-filled way to enjoy your lunch break? Fort Properties Ltd. is hosting Lunchtime Concerts on Thursdays from noon to 1 pm at the Fort Common. From jazz to rock and everything in between, enjoy a different style of music every week.
Looking for another exciting event at the Fort Common? Don’t forget to register for the July Business Backyard Bash on July 20, proudly hosted by Brown Bros. Property Management and Fort Properties Ltd.
Fort Properties Ltd.: Member since 2005
Brown Bros. Property Management: Member since 1962
You won’t bee-lieve what’s up at the Bay Centre

The roof of the Bay Centre is now home to 10,000 new residents! Housed within two hives, the addition of thousands of honey bees marks an important milestone for the Bay Centre’s focus on environmental awareness. The bees will gather pollen across downtown, and have the potential to produce up to 30 pounds of honey each year.
Bay Centre: Member since 1990
Member to Member Discounts
Members can post Coupons and Discounts free of charge here.
Welcome to our newest members!
Need to get one of our snazzy Chamber name tags?