Policy Updates from the Lethbridge Chamber
AB launches farm and ranch safety grant
The Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce had advocated the Provincial Government of Alberta to engage farmers and ranchers by helping them implement the new OHS codes. The Chamber is proud to say our advocacy work has paid off.

The Government of Alberta has launched a new farm and ranch safety grant to help eligible agriculture employers comply with new occupational health and safety requirements.

Quick Facts.
  • Up to $6M is available through the program during the next three years.
  • On Dec. 1, the Occupational Health and Safety Code (OHS Code) will apply to farms and ranches that employ waged, non-family workers.
  • This means Alberta farm and ranch workers will have similar health and safety protections as workers in other industries and other parts of Canada.
  • The grant covers up to 50% of eligible safety expenses to a maximum of $5k per year or $10k over the life of the program per eligible applicant.
  • Expenses going back to Jan. 1, 2018 are eligible under the program.
  • Eligible expenses (with receipts) include things like: First aid kits, fire extinguishers, and warning signage; Respirators, eye, and hearing protection; Health and safety programs, courses, education and training; and Seatbelt installation, warning lights and auger guards to improve equipment safety.
  • This program will run until March 2021.
New AB tax credit to support entrepreneurs
The Government of Alberta has launched the Community Economic Development Corporation (CEDC) tax credit program to make it easier for entrepreneurs to attract local investment to start or expand their small businesses.

Quick Facts.
  • The CEDC tax credit program will offer a 30% tax credit to Albertans who invest in registered CEDCs.
  • In turn, the corporations will provide capital to Alberta small businesses and co-operatives that focus on social improvement or rural economic development.
  • Examples include: a value-added agriculture business or tourism operator developing new products in a rural community; a business owner offering mentorship and training to employees to help them overcome employment barriers; a new owner carrying on the legacy of a community-based business when its original owners retire; and a business offering affordable food products to lower-income families. 
  • The program budget is $9M over three years.
  • Application intake for the program is now open. 
Tariff Rate Quota (TRQ) For Certain Steel Goods
On October 25, the federal government will enact provisional safeguard measures on the importation of a number of steel products, including heavy plates, concrete reinforcing bars, energy tubular products, hot-rolled sheets, pre-painted steel, stainless steel wires and wire rods. These will be administered in the form of a tariff-rate quota.
For more information, please see the below notice from the federal government. The Chamber is in regular contact with the federal government, so please do not hesitate to let us know if you have questions.
"This message pertains to imports of certain steel goods as set out in the Order Imposing a Surtax on the Importation of Certain Steel Goods. The purpose of this message is to inform Canadian businesses that the Government of Canada is imposing provisional safeguards in the form of tariff rate quotas (TRQs) on seven classes of steel goods. The provisional safeguards will take effect on October 25, 2018. We encourage you to disseminate this information to your members to ensure that Canadian businesses are aware that they need to obtain an import permit if imported goods are to avoid the over-access surtax. Imports that exceed the quota will be subject to a 25 per cent surtax. The TRQs will be administered by Global Affairs Canada by way of shipment-specific imports permits on a first come, first served basis. In order for goods to be considered within the quota, they must be covered by a valid import permit at time of accounting. Please refer to the Notice to Importers, Serial No. 911 , and the Frequently Asked Questions for detailed information on which products and countries are covered by the TRQs, how the TRQs will be administered and how to apply for a shipment-specific permit."
Cannabis Consumption: What You Need to Know
The smoking of Cannabis in public areas is restricted by both the provincial Tobacco Smoking Reduction Act and the Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis Act. Under  provincial regulations , Albertans are allowed to consume cannabis in their homes and yards as well as in some public spaces where smoking tobacco is allowed, but use is prohibited in vehicles (except parked RVs). 

Where is cannabis consumption allowed?

Outdoors in public places except where prohibited under provincial regulations (see below). Consuming cannabis in a private single-family residence or yard is not restricted, as it is not considered a public place.
Are you a business looking to make a difference in our community? The Lethbridge Chambe r of Commerce Santa's Wishlist program allows businesses to connect with local non-profit organ izations to help make their wishes a reality!

To submit a wish, or view our current list of wishes, visit us online at: www.lethbridgechamber.com/santa
Membership Minute
Happy Anniversary to Renewing Members
Share your expertise with Chamber members!
Please join us for this comprehensive two-day workshop that will cover concepts from business management and blockchain to cryptocurrencies and smart contracts with a focus on energy, agriculture and manufacturing. 

Disruptive trends such as artificial intelligence, cloud-computing and the internet of things will provide clarity for business leaders with a future focus. More information can be found at http://bit.ly/2ItTddG

Please register by emailing steve.craig@uleth.ca or calling 403 332 0670. Feel free to pass this on to those you feel would be interested.
Upcoming workshops from the Lethbridge Chamber
HR in a Box is a series of hands on workshops, with an emphasis on group discussion and case studies . Each session provides opportunities to share ideas, work together on strategies, develop practical solutions to real issues, and take away tips and tools to implement at your workplace. Some sessions may involve pre-reading.
 
Join us as the ATB Entrepreneur Centre and the Lethbridge Chamber partner up to bring you the "Entrepren-Hour". These complimentary lunch time sessions will offer a wide variety of topics designed to help you grow and enhace your business.
 

 
While all are welcome, this session is uniquely suited to owners of small to mid-sized businesses and their leadership teams.
Top 40 Under Forty: Chelsa Larson
Chelsa Larson is the owner and senior floral designer at Funky Petals Floral Studio, a flower shop in Lethbridge.

Chelsa opened Funky Petals in 2015 with a dream to bring big city design to our home on the prairies; re-invigorating the local floral community. Her mission has grown along with the studio to reminding the general public why flowers are so important, and how they have ‘lost their way’ due to over-commercialization by big box stores and online order gatherers. Gifting flowers is a very personal experience, so it was important for her clients know that when they visit Funky Petals, that intimacy and significance is acknowledged.

With consistent community support, Chelsa has taken the opportunity to direct Funky Petals’ online reach towards raising awareness and education of local non-profit organizations. In addition, she does her best to support and donate florals and/or time to countless annual fundraisers.

Being a florist means that Chelsa has an eye geared towards beauty, but she knows that the gift of flowers goes beyond pure aesthetics. It is the gesture behind the gift that showcases the flowers beauty. For that reason, the belief in “Flower Power” is integral at Funky Petals – with every new direction she takes her studio, it is to ensure that the compassion BEHIND the flowers go beyond the walls of the studio, impacting our community in a positive, lasting way.

Chelsa graduated from the Lethbridge College as a Marketing Major with Honors back in 2010, but before that had pursued the Fine Arts in her hometown of Fort McMurray. College provided her with theory and personal growth and gave roots to her teenage dream of someday opening my own studio.

Her passion for flowers began at a young age and she has had a love affair with them ever since. Beginning her official floral career in 2005, Chelsa observed and learned as much as possible from prior jobs.

The experience of owning a business has been eye opening and impactful. Losses and gains have turned into powerful life lessons, and she has gained many valuable friendships with other local business owners who inspire her daily.

For her entrepreneurial spirit and hard work to reimagine the floral industry in Lethbridge, the Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce and BDO are proud to recognize Chelsa Larson as one of Lethbridge’s Top 40 Under Forty !
Upcoming Events
What are your obligations as an employer?(November 6)
Leave the Planning to Us!
(December 20)
Resources and Articles
Useful Resources
Thank you to our media partners for their continued support
Thank you to our Community Investors for their continued support