The BC provincial election is May 9. Find out where you can vote on election day and in the advance polls using Elections BC's Where to Vote Map
How Well Did They Listen?

The City of Victoria, Downtown Victoria Business Association, The Chamber, Greater Victoria Harbour Authority, and Tourism Victoria identified 6 shared areas of concern requiring provincial attention and action, presenting them to provincial candidates at a "Candidate Listening Session."

Six Priority Areas:
  • Increase affordable housing
  • Improve mental health and addictions services
  • Complete sewage treatment
  • Create a regional transportation commission
  • Complete Belleville Terminal improvements
  • Develop Ogden Point and establish Home Port Victoria
Tomorrow, May 4 from 5 to 7 pm, at the Victoria Conference Centre (Lecture Hall) we have invited the provincial candidates back to hear their responses to our requests. Please join us for this "Candidate Response Session."
Chamber News
Social Media Series
YYJ Eats
Summer Social Series
Business Mixers
Prodigy Group Mingles
Event Photos

May  Business  Matters is Online!

The May Business Matters is in the mail and headed y ou r way. 
Our latest edition features:
  • Planning Ahead Will Keep Tourism Sustainable : In recent years, the tourism industry has been held up in Canada as the poster child for a strengthening economy. See how Tourism Victoria has a clear focus on the future.
  • Special Insert: 2017 Business Awards: Learn about Mel Cooper, the 2017 recipient of the Governors' Lifetime Achievement Award and the rest of the finalist and winners.
  • Member Snapshots: Get to know Mark Mawhinney, Regan McGrath, Loren Hagerty and Natasha Richardson.
These stories and more in the print and online edition!

Thinking about advertising for 2017? Contact us today! 
Pandora Two-Way Bike Lane Opens  
On Monday Victoria's first protected bike lane on Pandora Ave between Wharf St and Cook St opened. Along the route the traffic pattern for cars and cyclists has changed so the City of Victoria is continuing road user education on the corridor each morning, lunch and evening. Click here to read the new rules and here to watch a video on how to use the lanes.  

The City is hosting a drop-in feedback
Watch the video on how to use the lane  
session and breakfast Mon, May 8 from 8-10 am in the Songhees Nation Room at Victoria City Hall. It is for Pandora Ave businesses to discuss lessons learned during the bike lane construction.

Up next: Fort St Two-Way Bike Lane

Many Fort St businesses - including The Chamber - have met with City of Victoria planners to discuss the proposed two-way separated bike lane on the north side of Fort St
between Wharf and Cook . Taking the feedback provided into consideration, city planners have come up with a revised Fort St plan which they will be taking to city council this Spring to get approval.

However, there is still time to have your input considered so please email if you have questions, concerns or suggestions. 

Second Round of 2016 Census Data
Statistics Canada released a second round of data  from the 2016 Census today. It provides lots of useful information for business planning purposes about our region such as the size, age and household make-up of our population. 

For example, the CRD has grown from 359,991 in 2011 to 383,360 in 2016. Victoria has grown from 80,017 in 2011 to 82,792 in 2016. Almost half of all households in the City of Victoria are one person households.
Also, for the first time in Canada's census history the share of seniors aged 65 and over exceeds the share of children under 15 years. 

Cenus data tools
Census Profile
Profiles present information for various population characteristics at different levels of geography.
This tool is an interactive map application that facilitates the discovery of basic demographic data at various levels of geography.
Focus on Geography Series
This series provides a simple way to find census data on your municipality. It provides data highlights on your selected geographic area through text, tables and figures. A map image of the geographic area is also included.

Hear Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps talk about what's ahead for the City of Victoria and how this could impact your business.

In addition, the Board of Directors has recommended the membership approve a few minor bylaw changes. It is the board's opinion that these changes are administrative rather than substantive and the board will seek the member's approval of these changes at the Annual General Meeting.

Wed, May 17 | 11:30 am-1:30 pm
Victoria Marriott Inner Harbour, 728 Humboldt St. 

Members Around Town

For the tenth year in a row, a Camosun College student
Gavin Poole
has been named the ACE BC (Association of Co-operative Education for BC and the Yukon) College Co-op Education Student of the Year. An electronics & computer engineering program student, Gavin Poole completed his co-op work term with the Canadian Coast Guard as a Communications Technician. Gavin was given the task of trouble-shooting, fixing and modernizing electronics devices on the aging Coast Guard fleet.
Camosun College: member since 1981
Twenty family passes to the Maritime Museum of British Columbia will be available to borrow at the Greater Victoria Public Library. The pass provides free general admission to the museum for two adults and up to three youth (ages 12-18), and children under 12 are free.

Maritime Museum of BC: member since 1989  
AXYS Technologies has appointed Guillaume Gautier to the position of Director of Field Services based in Nantes, France. This appointment represents the first time that AXYS has made such a senior operations appointment outside of their main office in Victoria . AXYS has 11 FLiDAR WindSentinels contracted around the world and a growing demand in Europe.    
AXYS Technologies: member since 2015 

Bus Lanes Needed Now
The Times Colonist reported today that the Langtoria Greenline will stop service at the end of June.
John Wilson, CEO of Wilson's Group of Companies that operates the service with some funding from Langford said, "I think somewhere along the line we'll see these public-private partnerships for commuter issues be the way of the future."
In the latest edition of Capital Magazine, Chamber CEO Catherine Holt made a case for dedicated bus lanes to ensure that private and public buses are an attractive alternative to the car.
"A dedicated bus lane all the way from downtown to Langford would have transformed the Langtoria Greenline from another vehicle in traffic to a fast and comfortable alternative to being stuck in a car," said Catherine. "But there is no one with the mandate to build that lane."
 See the full piece on the need for regional transportation planning and delivery here
Federal Drywall Support Program
Drywall costs were higher in Western and Northern Canada between September 6, 2016 and February 24, 2017 due to anti-dumping duties imposed on drywall imported from the United States.

Western Economic Diversification Canada is administering a short-term Drywall Support Program for Western Canada. An estimated $11 million will be distributed among qualifying drywall contractors and builders on a pro-rated basis. The maximum amount payable under this program is $1 million per organization with payments not exceeding the total loss claimed. The funding will be pro-rated based on total losses for all approved claims to the program.

Take The Chamber's Membership Survey!
In less than five minutes, you can share your thoughts on your Chamber membership by taking our Membership Matters Survey.

Your Chamber membership provides you with discounts on our benefit programs, opportunities to connect with the business community and supports your business through its advocacy efforts. Are you getting your full membership value? 

Help us help you! Enter to win round-trip flights to Vancouver for two from Helijet
or two tickets to YYJ Eats by completing the survey
Welcome to Our Newest Members! 

Iain Wallace - Mortgage Consultant
Chamber Name Tags
Need to get one of the snazzy new Chamber Name tags? Email Reception to order yours today.

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