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First Nations Combine Science And Tradition For Sustainable Fishery Shellfish License Approved For Coastal Shellfish BY VALORIE LENNOX
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RINCE RUPERT - Coastal Shellfish is nourished by millennia of knowledge. The company is 87 per cent First Nations owned, which is reflected in the company mandate to develop and grow a sustainable industry that involves First Nations in harvesting, but not depleting, the natural resources of the Great Bear Rainforest region. Under the brand name Great Bear Scallops, the company has developed a process to cultivate world-class scallops in the chilly waters near Prince Rupert. The success of this unique aquaculture industry is measured not by profit but by success in developing a viable and sustainable industry. Established in 2011, this innovative venture has achieved the following: • O f ten elu s ive biolog ic a l proofs of concept, in order to
establish a viable hatchery for scallops; • Reliable and successful production of seed and adult scallops; • Four years of highly rated sa les of sma l l batches of farmed scallops; and • Ocean Wise sustainability certification. Key to the company’s success is merging traditional First Nations knowledge with 21st century science. The initiative began with traditional knowledge of the water, supplemented by research trials starting in 2003 to identify the best species for sustainable aquaculture. Scallops – a delectable, popular, and high-value shellfish – were identified as most suitable for the ecosystem. The Metalakatla First Nations’ Development Corporation was the majority shareholder in creating Coastal Shellfish. Hereditary SEE COASTAL SHELLFISH | PAGE 13
Metalakatla First Nations Chief Harold Leighton
People’s Choice Toy Store Earned Community Love Realm Of Toys Finalist In BC Small Business Awards BY VALORIE LENNOX
ILLIAMS LAKE - If you are a small business in a small town, how do you know your community loves you? You may first realize it when c u s to m e rs p itc h i n to h e lp cover $3,000 in deductibles
after thieves smash your store windows. You see it again when an artisan drives three hours to your store to install beautiful, custom-crafted grillwork on your windows, all at cost. It is conclusively proven in 2019 when community votes make you one of five finalists in the BC
Small Business Premier People’s Choice award. That last proof amazed Jazmyn Douillard, who co-owns Realm of Toys with her parents Richard and Joan Douillard. “We were so busy we forgot to encourage our community to vote – and we still made it into the top five,” she said.
Flexible Financing That Grows With You Whether you’re a growing, new, turnaround or seasonal business, we have a creative financing solution for you. To learn more, contact Stephen Ison or Rebekah Hutchsion at 778.265.7990 or visit www.lcwestcoastfinancing.com.
Established in 2013, Realm of Toys is a family-owned initiative that specializes in unique toys, all things nerd, and community spirit. Motivated and innovative, the store is both a retail outlet and a community centre in Williams Lake. SEE REALM OF TOYST | PAGE 9
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City a n nou nces new access to the YMCA of Northern BC The City of Prince George unveiled the concept designs for Fire Hall #1 today at an event on the site of its future location just off Massey Drive. Mayor Lyn Hall and members of Council also revealed plans for a new access to the YMCA of Northern BC and announced that IDL Projects Ltd. will be the construction manager for the new Fire Hall. The replacement of Fire Hall #1 follows a referendum in October 2017, during which residents voted nearly 83 per cent in favour of re-building Fire Hall #1, which is more than 60 years old. The new fire hall will be approximately 50 per cent larger than the current facility and have the capacity to house a functional and well-designed Emergency Operations Centre and Fire Operations Communications Centre. The new location is much more central and will increase by 50 per cent the area firefighters will be able to reach within an 8-minute response time. “Compared to the current fire hall which is cramped and inefficient, the new building will feature five, large truck bays and wood in key areas,” says Stuart Rothnie, architect with HCMA Architects and Planning. “Together with the Fire Department and staff from the City and Regional District, we’ve developed a facility that will be cost-effective but still prominent and a source of pride for the community.” Construction will also result in a new access for the YMCA of Northern BC, which will be off Massey across from Masich Place Stadium and via Del Laverdure Way. In 2018, the City appointed HCMA Architects and Planning of Vancouver and an engineering design team led by L&M Engineering of Prince George to design the replacement Fire Hall #1 at the new location in Carrie Jane Gray Park. Construction of the new fire hall is expected to cost $15 million.
PRINCE GEORGE YXS Passenger Numbers Hit The Half-Million Mark The Prince George Airport (YXS) had a record-setting year in 2018, with 506,486 passengers traveling through the facility. This is the first time the airport has exceeded 500,000 passengers in its 77 years of operation at the current site. “Prince George Airport’s passenger growth is an indication of the economic strength and importance of our area,” said President and CEO of the Prince George Airport Authority, John Gibson. “We have been growing steadily and are continuing to rehabilitate and improve the airport to best serve the higher volume of passengers.” Four airlines offer scheduled services between 12 destinations including Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Victoria and (seasonally) Puerto Vallarta from the Prince George Airport. In excess of 28 businesses with over 200 employees work from the airport, including charter and helicopter companies, aircraft maintenance providers, and government agencies. Since the airport was
transferred from the federal government to the Prince George Airport Authority in 2003, major infrastructure projects have been completed, including expanding the departure lounge and baggage handling area, adding the international arrivals wing and services, and runway extension and rehabilitation. In that time, passenger numbers increased from 339,858 to 506,486. The airport authority is an independent not for profit organization, governed by a board of directors appointed from the community, and operating on the traditional territory of the Lheidli T’enneh. Recent passenger volumes (includes arrivals, departures, connections): 2018 - 506,486 2017 - 499,125 2016 - 462,007 2015 - 470,849 (Canada Winter Games)
BC ICBA Wins North American Trade Association Of The Year The Independent Contractors and Businesses Association (ICBA) has won six prestigious Reed Awards, including being named the 2019 North American Trade Association of the Year, at a ceremony last week in Austin, Texas. “This is a tremendous honour and reflects the caliber of work being undertaken by the ICBA team in workforce development, public policy advocacy and communications and marketing,” said Chris Gardner, ICBA President. “It also highlights ICBA’s willingness to fearlessly speak out on policy issues consistently. Winning North American Trade Association of the Year is external recognition of the team we have built at ICBA and all of the hard work they do every day on behalf of our members.” ICBA also won Overall Best Web Video – Public Affairs for its Big Gas ad, which has been watched more than 400,000 times on social media. Said Shane Greer, co-publisher of Campaigns & Elections and host of the Reed Awards dinner, “Oh Canada: the Overall Best Web Video – Public Affairs went to the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association for their ‘Get Canada’s Big Gas Moving’ ad… We’ve seen it many times now and still laugh every time.” ICBA’s Big Gas campaign also won: Best International Web Video, Best Canadian Web Video, Best International Outdoor Advertising and Best Canadian Outdoor Advertising. “Our Big Gas campaign caught lightning in a bottle and we’re very proud to see it recognized with these awards,” said Jordan Bateman, ICBA VP-Communications. “Our communications and advocacy work stands with the best in North America and we will continue to strongly, articulately, creatively and passionately make the case for a strong economy and our members’ issues.” The Reed Awards, named after Campaigns & Elections founder and marketing pioneer Stanley Foster Reed, embody excellence in campaigning, political consulting, and public policy advocacy. Reed Award winners represent the very best the political campaign/policy advocacy industry has to offer. ICBA’s work was competing against the best in the business among American trade associations and all of the creative material put out by the Democratic and Republican parties. SEE NEWS UPDATE | PAGE 3
NEWS UPDATE CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2
In 2018, ICBA won three Reed Awards for its Site C pink slip campaign, which successfully pushed the NDP Government to continue a construction project they campaigned against.
FORT ST. JOHN City Of Fort St. John Wins BC Economic Development Award The City of Fort St. John received the BC Economic Development Association (BCEDA) Economic Development Marketing Innovation Award for the Move Up Here com mu nity recr u itment prog ra m. Created in partnership with loca l busi nesses a nd orga ni zat ions, t he Move Up Here recruitment program (w w w. moveuphere.ca) assists in recruiting skilled professionals and their families to Fort St. John. The visually appealing materials and resources focused on the lifestyle of the north, the opportunities in the region, and the benefits of the a rea, a re available for local businesses and organizations to use free of charge to assist in their recruiting efforts. “ To b e re c o g n i z e d b y t h e
BCEDA for our Move Up Here recruitment program is a tremendous honour and speaks to the quality and effectiveness of the materials created,” stated Acting Mayor Lilia Hansen.
BC Revenue Sharing Agreement With First Nations In BC As part of Budget 2019, First Nations in British Columbia will have a stable, long-term source of funding to invest in their communities’ priorities, th rough a h istoric revenuesha ri ng ag reement between t h e P rov i n c e a n d t h e F i rs t Nations Leadership Council. Starting April 2019, approximately $3 billion over 25 years will be shared with BC First Nations, meaning every First Nation com mu n ity in BC w i l l be el ig ible for between $250,000 and $2 million annually through the agreement. First Nations communities will determine their own priorities for the funding, which can be used for a wide range of benefits, including: health and wellness, housing, infrastructure, training, environmental protection, economic development, governance capacity and other uses. The agreement to share provi nc i a l g a m i n g revenu e wa s reached after decades of work
and advocacy by the First Nations Leadersh ip Cou nci l, represented by the First Nat ion s Ga m i ng Com m i ssion, as d i rected th roug h resolutions by Chiefs at assemblies of the British Colu mbia Assembly of First Nations, the First Nations Summit and the Un io n of B r it i s h C olu m b i a Indian Chiefs. The Commission is establishing a new BC First Nations limited partnership to manage the funding, overseen by a First Nationsappointed board of directors. Sharing revenue with First Nations communities is an important step that puts reconciliation into action. This agreement is part of BC’s com m itment to create a new fiscal relationship with First Nations, recognizing self-government and self-determination.
NORTHERN BC Altagas Completes Sale Of Its Remaining Interest In Northwest BC Hydro Electric Facilities A ltaGas Ltd. h a s s uccessfully completed the sale of its remaining indirect equity interest of approximately 55 per cent in its Northwest British Columbia Hydro Electric Facilities for net proceeds of approximately $1.37 billion. The purchase price of $1.39 billion
prior to adjustments is largely consistent with the valuation received for AltaGas’ June 2018 sale of 35 per cent of its indirect equity interest in the Facilities. “The sale of our remaining interest in the Facilities marks another financial milestone which has seen us successfully monetize $3.8 billion in non-core assets since completing the acquisition of WGL in July 2018,” said Randy Crawford, President and Chief Executive Officer with AltaGas. “In addition to unlocking substantial value within our portfolio and enhancing our financial strength, the sale of these assets further sharpens our focus on our Midstream and U.S. Utilities businesses, where we see numerous opportunities to drive strong, organic growth.” In addition to the $3.8 billion in asset sales executed to date, in December 2018 AltaGas announced plans to monetize an additional $1.5 - $2.0 billion in targeted non-core assets in 2019. Proceeds can be used to further de-lever and efficiently fund capital growth. The sale of AltaGas’ remaining interest in the Facilities is to joint-venture entities controlled by Axium Infrastructure Inc., as manager of Axium Infrastructure Canada II Limited Partnership, and Manulife Financial Corporation – each affiliates of the joint-venture company that acquired AltaGas’ 35 per
3 cent interest in the Facilities in June 2018. The Facilities are located in Ta h lta n Fi rst Nat ion ter r itory and are comprised of the 2 1 4-megawat t Forrest Kerr Hydroelectric Facility and the 17-megawatt Volcano Creek Hydroelectric Facility, each of wh ich ach ieved com mercial operation in 2014, and the 72-megawatt McLymont Creek Hydroelectric Facility, which achieved commercial operation in 2015.
SMITHERS Active Transportation Plan In The Making In 2019, the Town of Smithers is working to develop its first Active Transportation Plan in an effort to better support active or human powered mobility options in Smithers. Active transportation typically refers to any method of human-powered transportation that you take to get yourself, or others, from one place to another, such as destinations for a specific purpose or for recreation and leisure. The plan will set the foundation for developing wellconnected, attractive transportation networks that are safe, convenient and accessible for people of all ages and abilities. SEE NEWS UPDATE | PAGE 4
NEWS UPDATE CONTINUED FROM PAGE 3
On a broader scale, the pl a n w i l l a l s o f u r t h e r the Town’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by replaci ng ca rbon d ioxid e (CO 2) generat i n g transportation with active transportation options a nd decreasi ng dependency on fossil fuels vehicles. “Sm ithers is k now n as being an active community and being able to get around by bike or on foot is an important aspect of many residents’ quality of life,” said Taylor Bachrach. “Cou nci l and I hope the upcoming planning process will help guide future infrastruct u re u p g ra d e s s o t h a t Smithers families can lead even healthier, more active lives.” C o m m u n i t y p a r t i c ipation is a critical part of developing a plan that reflects the unique neighbourhoods, people, cl i mate a nd geog raphy of Smithers. April 15th, 2019 marked the public l a u n c h of t h e p roje c t, with a public survey and citizen photo mappi ng exercise t hat w i l l encou rage Sm ithers
residents to captu re photo s of t he ba r r iers and opportunities for active transportation in the community. The public is also invited to stop by the Ideas Fair on Wednesday, May 1st, 2019 between 3 to 6 pm on Second Avenue at M a i n St reet to learn about the project, help build a vision and to provide feedback on existing barriers and future opportunities.
WILLIAMS LAKE Tsilhqot’in National Government Building Largest First Nations Solar Farm The Tsilhqot’in National Government (TNG) is mov ing a head w ith the redevelopment of an industrial site into a solar fa rm, supported by a $300,000 equity investment from the Province. Fu nd i ng is prov ided through BC’s First Nations Clean Energy Busi ness Fu nd (F NCEBF), which supports Ind igenous com mu n ities in their efforts to pursue clea n-energ y projects.
T he F NCE BF suppor ts CleanBC, the Province’s pla n to bu i ld a clea ner future that creates opportunities for all British Colu mbi a n s, wh i le p ro te c t i n g B C’s c l e a n a i r, l a n d a n d w a t e r. T NG is developing a 1.25-megawatt-peaksolar photovoltaic project on a former sawmill site. W hen complete, it w i l l b e t he f i rst a nd largest solar farm fully built, owned and operated by a First Nation in BC. Constr uction sta r ted i n October 2018 a nd i s e x p e c te d to b e c o mplete by su m mer 2019. Quotes: Ch ief Joe A lphonse, Ts i l h q o t’i n Na t io na l G ove r n m e nt T r i b a l Chairman, says, “Since h av i ng ou r A bor ig i n a l title recognized, we have been looking for diverse opportunities within our territory. T he development and operation of this solar farm is not only useful for the area, but also brings employment and training to our Nation. As a Nation, we have always said that to do business with us, you need to come through our doors and sit at the table in a meaningful way. The solar farm is a great example of that.”
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Brink Forest Products CEO To Receive Honorary Doctorate Prince George Business Leader and Philanthropist Recognized as Forest Industry Pioneer and Philanthropist
R I NCE GEORGE Brink Forest Products CEO John Brink will be recognized with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree during the 2019 convocation at the University of Northern British Columbia’s (UNBC) Prince George campus on May 31. Brink will be joined by one other recipient, Dr. Jo-ann Archibald, an Indigenous educator, researcher and scholar from the Stó:lō and St’at’imc First Nations. A forest industry pioneer and philanthropist, Brink established Brink Forest P ro du c t s i n 1975. T he company was founded a decade after immigrating to P r i nce G eorge f rom Holland with a dream to build his own sawmill. Brink started his business with a lumber re-ma nu factu ri ng a nd f i n ger-joi nt i n g pl a nt; both of which he built from scratch. Finger-jointing had never been done in Canada prior to this, allowing Brink to establ ish h i msel f as an industry pioneer. His original vision continues to g u id e t he c ompa ny today and the business plan of 1975 accounts for t he agg ressive g row t h strateg y that he has currently embarked on over the past 44 years. Today, the company is the largest secondary wood manufacturing company in Canada and the 13th largest forest company in BC. As an industry leader, Brink is the longest-serving director of the Council of Forest Industries, which represents the BC forest i ndu s t r y. B r i n k i s t he founding chair of the Wood Works initiative, helping promote the use of wood structures across British Colu mbia a nd North America. I n add ition, he is the founding president of the BC Council of Value-Added Wood Processors, which had eig ht associations across BC a nd boasted 80 0 m em b ers. He h a s been involved in all five of Canada’s softwood lumber agreements with the U.S., representing the secondary re-manufacturing industry. “It is a true honour to a c c e p t t h i s H o n o ra r y Doctorate of Law Degree
John Brink, CEO of Brink Forest Products, will be recognized with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from UNBC
“It is a true honour to accept this Honorary Doctorate of Law Degree from the University of Northern British Columbia. Receiving such recognition from an exceptional institution such as UNBC is a dream come true. I would like to thank the entire University community for this special honour, as well as the leadership it has exemplified over the past 29 years in making UNBC one of our country’s top small universities.” JOHN BRINK CEO OF BRINK FOREST PRODUCTS
from the Un iversity of Northern British Colu mbi a,” says Bri n k i n a recent press release. “Receiving such
recog n ition from a n exceptional institution such as UNBC is a dream come true. I would like to thank the entire University com mu n ity for th is special honour, as well as the leadership it has exemplified over the past 29 years in making UNBC one of our country’s top small universities. “A r r iv i n g i n Ca n a d a in 1965 at the age of 24, I had a dream of building a sawmill. I had one suitcase, the clothing on my back and $25.47 in my pocket. Most importantly, I had a dream I would never give up on. With a positive attitude, relentless passion and undying work ethic, I pushed hard towards my d rea m a nd succeeded. Tod ay, nea rly 55 yea rs later, I see these exact sa me cha racteristics driving UNBC’s vision of becoming Canada’s leading destination University. “I’m proud of everything UNBC has accomplished since its inception, helping strengthen our c o m m u n i t y, r e g i o n , prov i nce a nd n at ion. U N B C ’s u n p a r a l l e l e d ach ievements over the years symbolizes my own motto of ‘never giving up’ and fighting against all odds.” I n 20 02 , t h a n k s to a partnersh ip between Brink and the College of New Caledonia to train tradespeople in northern B C, t he Joh n A . B r i n k Trades and Technology Centre officially opened at CNC. The building houses the college’s automotive shop, elect r ica l a nd woodworking programs, a nd it faci l itated a n expansion of the millwright, machinist and welding programs. In addition to a successful business acumen, Brink is also a philanthropist, supporting hundreds of charities and non-profit organizations i n P r i n c e G e o r ge a n d a ro u n d t h e wo rl d . H e i s a l s o we l l-k n ow n for advocat i ng a n i m a l welfare, supporting the SPCA a nd t he Prince George Humane Society. Brink w ill receive his honorary degree at the Col lege of Science a nd Management ceremony on May 31 at 2:30 p.m.
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Skeena Sawmills And Pacific BioEnergy Enter New Long-Term Agreement Pacific BioEnergy to Purchase All Pellets Produced by Skeena Sawmills New Pellet Plant
ERR ACE - Skeena Sawmills Ltd. and Pacific BioEnergy Corporation (PacBio) have entered into a long term off-ta ke ag reement for wood pellets. Under the terms of the agreement, PacBio will purchase all of the pellets produced at Skeena Sawmills’ new, state-of-the-a rt pel let plant, in support of PacBio’s long ter m supply agreements with power producers in Japan. Skeena’s pellet plant is built adjacent to its sawmill in Terrace, and will commence production in Q1 2019. “Skeena’s pellet plant provides a critical outlet for residual fibre from the sawmill and builds on our commitment to maximizing value from the forest resource and generating local jobs from local logs i n Nor t hwester n Br itish Columbia,” said Rick Harris, Vice President of
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Sales and Marketing for Skeena Sawmills. “Our $20 million investment to bu i ld a pel let pla nt, combined with this longterm strategic partnership with PacBio to serve international markets for bioenergy, supports the sustainability of both our business model and the regional forest economy.” Commenting on the agreement, John Stirling, President, of PacBio said, “T h i s a g re ement w it h Skeen a Saw m i l l s contributes to our growing presence serving Japan’s d em a nd for bio energ y products a nd adva nces ou r v i sion of br i ng i ng greater value to BC’s forest i ndustr y. I wa nt to thank Paul Kalil, PacBio’s VP of Corporate Development, and Rick for leading the development of this Agreement. We look forward to further developing our relationship with Skeena.”
Headquartered in Vancouver, Skeena Sawmills Ltd. has sawmill and forest operations in Terrace. Its sawmill has a capacity of approximately 120 million board feet of lumber production annually and is located 135 kilometers from the Port of Prince R u p e r t . S k e e n a S a wmills is one of the largest Paci fic Coast Hem lock sawmilling facilities in British Columbia, producing a wide variety of quality Hem-Fir products for domestic and international markets. www.skeenasawmills. com
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• Donated Labour for our Log Tourist Info Centre Winter 1985/86 • Donated Numerous Log Picnic Tables/Benches/Fire wood 1987-2002 • Donated all the Log Work for the Lobby in our New Ar ena Winter 2002-2003 • Log Work for our Library Below Cost Summer/Fall 20 09 • Supplied logs for Cariboo Mall upgrade 2018
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EMPLOYEE WELLNESS – GOOD FOR PEOPLE, GOOD FOR BUSINESS
CHEMISTRY CONSULTING MARCIA HAMMONDS
he start of a new year is a good time to focus on the health of your business and your employees. Find out how a wellness program can give you a kick start. In spite of an increased focus on the overall health and wellness of employees, many efforts in this area remain concentrated on traditional health concerns (i.e., employee dental and drug plans) or safety and security issues. As the personal and professional lives of our employees continue
to intertwine, and thus provide increased pressures and demands from all areas, it becomes more important (both from a practical and cultural perspective) for employers to be aware of the ways they can support not only the physical side of employee good health, but also the emotional and social aspects. With some innovative thinking and a minimal amount of time and cost, a focus on “wellness” can significantly and positively impact culture, employee engagement and attendance. The specifics in terms of how your organization’s Wellness Program is developed, implemented and promoted should be unique and reflective of your culture and values – and also dependent on your current and medium to long-term needs. “Rome was not built in a day” and neither is an effective Wellness Program. Instead, laying out a road-map that includes short and long-term initiatives, ongoing activities and incentives, and formal supports (i.e., Employee Assistance Program) that will build momentum and integrate a feeling of wellness into the cultural fabric of your organization is the
Housing Market Adjusts to Mortgage Stress Test
key to sustainability and success. The input and commitment of employees is vital to building and maintaining a robust wellness program that can address the needs, priorities and interests of those who will participate, as well as their dependents. To that end, the development of a Wellness Committee is a necessary component of any wellness program. Surveying team members to understand what they would like to have included in a wellness program is time well-served. Furthermore, employees should remain involved in the process to keep things on-track, supporting initiatives and addressing ongoing and/or changing wellness needs and concerns. Although requiring the support and buy-in SANDMAN HOTEL & SUITES PRINCE GEORGE
of senior leadership, this Committee is best-served as an employee-driven group with a significant amount of autonomy to make decisions and drive outcomes. Awareness and improvements in overall health and wellness will only serve to benefit employees – and in turn the organization. Why not start working on putting together something that works for you and your employees? You will not be disappointed in the results – and neither will your team. Marci Hammonds is an HR Consultant with Chemistry Consulting Group. She offers more than 20 years experience in the area of human resources and recruitment. SANDMAN SIGNATURE PRINCE GEORGE HOTEL
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BCREA 2019 First Quarter Housing Forecast Update
he British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) released its 2019 First Quarter Housing Forecast Update recently. Multiple Listing Service (MLS) residential sales in the province are forecast to increase 2 per cent to 80,000 units this year, after recording 78,345 residential sales in 2018. MLS residential sales are forecast to increase a further 6.9 per cent to 85,500 units in 2020. The 10-year average for MLS residential sales in the province is 85,800 units. “The negative shock to affordability and purchasing power created by the B20 stress test on mortgage borrowers is expected to continue constraining housing demand in the province this year,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “Favourable demographics along with continuing strong performance of the BC economy is expected to underpin housing demand over the next two years.” The policy-induced demand shock has contributed to an increase of the inventory
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of homes for sale in most regions of the province. As a result, market conditions are expected to provide little upward pressure on home prices this year, with the average annual residential price forecast to remain essentially unchanged, albeit up 0.5 per cent to $716,100. Modest improvement in consumer demand is expected to unfold over the next two years as households further adjust to the mortgage stress test.
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Why does this matter? 1) Organic links on the first page of Google receive 90% of web traffic for a specific search. 2) The first organic link receives 33% of all traffic for a speci fic set of keywords. 3) The top 3 organic links receive 61% of all online clicks for the search a user has typed in.
Businessexaminer.ca Breaking Business News Previous Business Examiner Issues Brand & Link your Business
Because SEO is a longterm strategy, businesses often get impatient when results don’t come in after the first few weeks. But the reality is that good SEO can’t be done overnight, it takes time. Most businesses start to see results in 3-4 months. In fact, over 80% of our small business clients can reach the 1st page of Google after 6 months if the right conditions are met. Sea rch eng i nes l i ke Google look at two things wh e n e v a lu at i n g yo u r website a nd decid i ng where to ra n k it - Relevance and Trust. Relevance is the content of a website and the code behind the scenes. I f your code is optimized and the content on your site is relevant to a search, Google will move you up in the rankings. Trust refers to how many other sites on the internet are linking back to your site. I f a l a rge nu mber of high-quality sites are pointing to you, Google w i l l sta r t to t r u st you and move you up in the rankings. The good news for your business is that as long as you offer a viable product or service at a reasonable price, then SEO can move you r website h ig her i n search rankings and drive more sales. To learn more about the steps your company can take to improve your search rankings, you can download our free SEO Roadmap at bedigitalmarketing.com/ seo or email BEDigital@ businessexaminer.ca to have it sent to you.
OFF THE COVER
Realm Of Toys Finalist In BC Small Business Awards Lightweight GeotexƟle ApplicaƟon Washers
• Cost Eﬀective & Safer Handling than Tin Plates
Hallowe’en is one of the favourite holidays at Realm of Toys, marked by the store’s annual Hallowe’en Haunted Taters event
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• Meets & Exceeds BC MoTI Specications.
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1
• Made from 100% Recycled Materials
Each family member adds a different strength to the team. Richard contributes the woodwork that transforms the store’s interior into a magical experience; Joan finds the best educational/imaginative toys; and graphic designer Jazmyn cultivates the “Nerd Corner.” Jazmyn’s fiancé, Terry Lyons, added cabinetry skills, working with Jazmyn to build the store’s front desk. Six gallons of custom tinted resin added additional whimsy. The family bought the store in November 2013. It was originally a book store. At the time, the community’s only toy store was closing. So by February 2014, they had switched the bookstore to Realm of Toys, which offered toys, books, collectibles, and a space for birthday parties and events. They felt the community needed more familyfriendly events so used the store as a base to initiate some. “We had the means to do this so we did.” T hey work w ith the downtown business association to support the Art Walk, Winter Lights, and Spring into Downtown. With the heritage property, Potato House, they host the Hallowe’en Haunted Taters. In Dec e m b e r, t h e y p r e s e n t “Selfies with Santa” and in August they hold the Nerdy Garage Sale of collectables and comic books. In addition, there are constant contests and smaller
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There is always something creative happening at Realm of Toys in Williams Lake
We were so busy we forgot to encourage our community to vote – and we still made it into the top five
events, a l l suppor t i ng community. Coming up is their third annual Easter Festival, to be held on April 21 from noon to 3 p.m. Activities include photos with the Easter Bunny, an Easter Egg Hunt at the Potato House, and a street fair. All
activities are by voluntary donation, ensuring everyone can participate. Last August they added an additional 1,000 square feet by moving to their new home at 190A Oliver Street. Online they have a Facebook page and a website at realmoftoys.ca.
Ridley Terminal Expected To Begin Operations
pri ng has a rrived at the Ridley Island Propane Export Terminal (RIPET) as it prepares operations to export Propane. In AltaGas’ fourth quarter results it proposes the first ca rgo to leave the term i na l i n the second quarter of 2019. AltaGas will be using 50-60 rail cars per day via CN Rail to ship propane to Ridley Island which offers shorter shipping time to markets in Asia. The usual 25 days will be reduced to a 10-day shipping time. In total, the terminal is expected to ship 1.2 million tonnes of propane per annum. Randy Crawford, President and CEO of AltaGas announced in the Februa ry 28th press release, ‘With our RIPET project com i ng on l i ne i n ea rly spring, as the first prop a n e e x p o r t te r m i n a l in Western Canada, we are poised to execute on
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BC Paper Excellence Canada welcomes Catalyst Paper Paper Excellence Canada (PEC) has finalized the acquisition of Catalyst Paper Corporation. This includes its three facilities located in Crofton, Port Alberni and Powell River, its Su rrey d istribution centre and headquarters in Richmond. “T his acquisition is a continued step towards Paper Excel lence Ca nada’s long-term growth p l a n w i t h i n Ca n a d a’s pulp and paper industry and clearly demonstrates its com m itment to the province of British Columbia,” said Brian Baarda, Paper Excellence Canada Chief Executive Officer. “Together these combined operations will improve efficiency and sustainability in the forest industry in British Columbia
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and Canada.” With th is acqu isition now complete, Paper Excellence Canada’s product range expands to include printing papers, specialty and packaging papers and increased pulp production to service our customers worldwide. Paper Excellence manufactures NBSK Pulp for the paper and tissue industry, and BCTMP for printing, board and packaging, for export to the Asian market. “T h i s t ra n sact ion i s good news for ou r now 3,5 0 0 e m p l o y e e s , o u r customers, our operating communities, and British Columbia’s pulp and paper and forest products industries,” states Baarda. Barclays acted as exclusive financial advisor to Paper Excellence on the transaction. Catalyst manufactures 1.3 million tonnes of pulp and paper products which include NBSK pulp, industrial packaging, food service, coated groundwood, newsprint and directory papers. Paper E xcel lence h a s quickly grown to be one of the largest pulp producers in North America, producing 2.7-million tonnes of pulp and paper products over the past decade.
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THREE REASONS TO SET AND FOLLOW A BEHAVIORAL PLAN
SALES JOHN GLENNON
If we don't measure the activities that generate income for us, the leading indicators of success, we can't effectively manage them
hat is the ideal mix of daily and weekly activities – the mix that best supports our income goals? We should know. If we have a personalized daily “recipe” for daily and weekly progress toward key activity benchmarks, also known as cookbook or a behavioral plan, we can identify exactly how many dials we need to make, how many conversations we need to have, how many referrals we need to ask for, and so on… every single working day. Here are three reasons w hy it’s i m p o r t a n t to closely analyze our own performance history, set up such a behavioral plan, follow it, and track its results over time. 1. A behavioral plan gives us a victory to celebrate every day. If we only keep score when we sell something, the next could be months down the road, depending on our sales cycle. That’s a long time to wait for a win. Sometimes we will compensate for this by celebrating a presentation
that “went well” – but all too often that turns out to be a false positive. On the other hand, if we complete our behavioral plan for the day, that’s a victory, regardless of whether a deal happened to close that day or not. We are mathematically closer to bringing about the outcome we want. That’s a win! 2. A behavioral plan keeps us on track. We’re m a k i ng steady, i ncremental progress each day. We’re not stressing ourselves out and reducing our effectiveness by bunching all the business development activities into the last few days of the month. 3. A behavioral plan gives us a tool we can use to course-correct if we need to. If our behaviors are not producing the outcomes that we want, we’re going to pick up on that when we track our own numbers. We can then make adjustments in a very specific way. We can decide for
ourselves, based on our own data, what specific daily and weekly activities will need to change, and by how much, to deliver the results we want. That’s a lot more meaningful than simply telling ourselves “I need to close more deals.” You may have heard the old say i ng, “You ca n’t manage what you can’t measure.” It’s widely attributed to Peter Drucker, but it appears to go back to well before his time. Whoever came up with it, the idea worth considering closely. If we don’t measure the activities that generate income for us, the leading indicators of success, we can’t effectively manage them. Too many salespeople make the mistake of measuring only the outcome of their behaviors, the lagging indicator: the closed sale. As a result, they miss out on the opportunity to measure, and manage, all the steps that take place before that sale closes. The personalized behavioral plan, or cookbook, is the answer to that problem. Copyright 2018 Sandler Training and Insight Sales Consulting Inc. All rights reserved. John Glennon is the owner of Insight Sales Consulting Inc, the authorized Sandler Training Licensee for the Interior of British Columbia. He can be reached at jglennon@sandler. com, toll free at 1-866-6452047 or visit www.glennon. sandler.com
North Peace Savings And Credit Union Expands Service To North Coast Region NPSCU Announces New Terrace Office
fter expanding to serve the Northern Rockies, North Peace, and South Peace regions, Northern Peace Savings & Credit Union (NPSCU) has announced plans to expand its financial services to the North Coast region. Fo l l o w i n g u p o n i t s recently announced growth into the Dawson Creek market, members f rom Ter race, K it i m at a nd Prince Rupert w i l l have access to NPSCU’s f u l l ra n ge of B u si ne ss a nd Person a l ba n k i n g services using Smart Technology and a local
Business Account Manager. The North Coast’s demographic aligns itself with NPSCU’s vision to be the preferred financia l i nstitution a mong small and medium sized enterprises and residents in every community that they serve. Now in the hea rt of pipeline activity, NPSCU is building a support network to meet the needs of growing business infrast r uctu res i n a l l communities that they serve. In a recent press release C E O M itc h e l C h i lc o t t s t a te d , “o u r b u s i n e s s solut ion s te a m pa i re d
with our B.Smart business accou nt w i l l provide additional value to businesses on the North Coast, meeting the unmet financial needs of small and medium sized enterprises in that region.” NPSCU has built a reputation of taking the time to understand the opportunities and challenges small to medium business operators face, knowing its members goa ls a nd making decisions locally and quickly, based on expert knowledge of local, economic conditions and a drive to improve life for all in the region.
BC Construction Month Launches With Latest Industry Statistics And Results Of Province-Wide Industry Survey
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- The BC Construction Association (BCCA) and industry partners launched BC Construction Month with the release of key construction sector statistics and the results of a province-wide survey that highlight the value of the sector to the provincial economy and the key issues facing employers and workers. BC’s construction industry continues to be the No. 1 employer in BC’s goods sector, w ith more than 242,000 people relying directly on construction for a paycheque: that’s up 21 per cent since 2014, and at 10 per cent of the workforce, is more than any other sector, including forestry, mining, agriculture and fishing combined. The value of the construction industry’s economic contribution is evident in the latest statistics, available in the BCCA’s Spring 2019 Stat Pack. Highlights: • B C ’ s c o n s t r u c t i o n
industry accounts for 8.7 per cent of the province’s GDP; • Value of proposed constr uction projects i n British Columbia: $261 billion; • Estimated value of current major construction projects underway in BC: $74 billion in addition to the $40 billion LNG Canada project in the North. (5-year trend: Up 46 per cent); • N umber of construction jobs in BC that will be unﬁlled due to labour shortages by 2028: 7,900. A survey of more than 700 union and open-shop employers and employees in BC’s construction sector in late 2018 also reveals interesting perspectives about the industry in BC. Findings: • N early 70 per cent of all respondents said the availability of skilled labour was their biggest issue. The issue was No. 1 regardless of the respondent’s age, labour a f f i l i at ion, bu si ness
ty pe, or role i n t he industry. • According to the survey, the top five issues facing BC’s construction industry are: skilled workforce s h o r t a ge ; c o m m u nity benefits agreement; permits and red tape; productivity and management; and the quality of public procurement. • T he industry is 95 per cent male but ready for diversity. 64 per cent of respondents said their workplace has a diversity policy in place, and 88 per cent said they support more diversity. “Construction Month is the perfect opportunity to celebrate all the hardworking men and women of this industry who are creating a world-class built environment for British Columbians” says BCCA P resident Chris Atchison, “It’s also a chance to think about how we can work even better together across the private and public sector.” www.bccassn.com
OFF THE COVER
Shellfish License Approved For Coastal Shellfish COASTAL SHELLFISH CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1
Chief Harold Leighton says the project goal is to restore an oceanbased economy to the region, which offers ongoing sustainability, good jobs, and an exceptional, clean food product to consumers. Unlike many other fisheries, Coastal Shellfish is built on sustainability and not just harvesting. This is a dramatic shift in thinking but a shift that is essential for the industry to thrive over generations. As a model, the company can look back to the generations of Coast Tsimshian people, who lived and harvested in this area for millennia. Chief Leighton notes their legacy is incorporated into Coastal Shellfish. “Something more than an occasional homage must be paid to the collective knowledge and experiences of those who came before us…. It may be impossible to reconcile or restore anything without a significant and respectful knowledge of the past.” With the future residents of the region included as acknowledged – if not yet present – shareholders of the compa ny, Coasta l Shellfish could not take shortcuts when developing its seeding and harvesting process. Nothing could harm the environment: everything had to be sustainable. Doing it right was time-consuming, expensive, and difficult but the company had no other option. “I am responsible to maintain a continuum of care and concern for a land and a people,” Chief Leighton observed. “Decisions I make today must honour the past and provide for the future.” The mandate to honour the past and provide for the future extends beyond the environment. The structure of Coastal Shellfish includes plans to train workers for careers in aquaculture. Potential jobs will exist for entry-level young people to senior management in hatchery science, site management, food processing, marketing, sales, and general management.
The evocative image of a scallop shell against the ocean captures the beauty and promise of the region and the hopes for the new industry
“Decisions I make today must honour the past and provide for the future.” HAROLD LEIGHTON CHIEF
Preparing to ‘seed’ the scallops, which are cultivated in the ocean off the Great Bear Rainforest The industry is able to offer year-round employment, unlike the short-term, hit and miss employment of the extraction-only fisheries industry. Traditional fisheries face dwindling fish stocks and a bleak, limited future. By contrast, Coastal Shellfish presents a zero-food-input, non-extractive source of seafood that is endlessly sustainable. Planning for the future, the company has secured additional
m a r i ne a re a s w it h i n Coa s t Tsimshian territory for growout operations and additional sites. The company plans to restore the North Coast as a seafood-based economy drawing on the wealth of the ocean without depleting it. Developing and proving the science has been a long process but the rewards will be profitability, wealth creation, sustainability, economic development,
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a nd a new, env i ron menta l ly friend ly food ex port for the province. It is a multi-faceted win for First Nations, for the company, and for the future. “There is a luxury in thinking about the future,” Chief Leighton says. “There is a burden being responsible for it. Creating it must be an obsession.” After more than a decade of effort, the obsession is being rewarded.
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The BC Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions announced the opening of a new unit to help with mental health and addictions services. The new mobile service unit will be staffed by the Terrace Intensive Case Management team, and will begin its rounds in April, in an ambulance outfitted for their services. The City of Terrace is one of 30 communities in BC that has registered for the Provincial Nominee Program’s (BC PNP) Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot program. The program aims to attract entrepreneurial immigrants to communities with populations less than 75,000, as well as creating jobs in priority sectors. The city’s identified priority sectors include:
contract stems from a desire to increase and improve public safety in Terrace’s downtown core. Christine Creyke, the lands director for the Tahltan Central Government, was named as a member of the national gun advisory committee.
Christine Creyke, lands director for the Tahltan Central Government agriculture, forestry, mining, oil and gas extraction, as well as manufacturing for a variety of products. The Northern Valley Rangers, an Indigenous-run security company, has been contracted by the Terrace Downtown Improvement Area (TDIA) to patrol the area during the day. The
May 7th will mark the seventh annual ThriveNorth Business Challenge ceremony, hosted in Terrace by Futurpreneur Canada. The competition, taking place at the REM Lee Theatre, is an opportunity for entrepreneurs aged 18-39 from northern BC to share their business ideas in hopes of winning up to $10,000. The City of Terrace has decided to i n sta l l two SEE MOVERS & SHAKERS | PAGE 15
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electronic vehicle charging stations as a participant in the Charge North Electronic Vehicle (EV) network plan. The project costs $10,000 and works in partnership with the goal of the Community Energy Association (CEA) to install an electronic highway network. CEA’s goal is to establish 120 Level 2 charging stations from Kamloops area to Haida Gwaii.
PRINCE RUPERT The District of Port Edward is on the hunt for a new Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), as Bob Payette submitted his resignation. Payette has worked with the district since 2014, and will be moving to Alberta with his family. Johnny’s Machine Shop is now under new ownership as Dale Horne purchased the company from Rob Basso, son of the company’s founder, Johnny Basso. Horne worked with the company for the past 25 years, and this year, the shop will celebrate its 50th anniversary in business. This spring the Ridley Island Propane Export Terminal (RIPET), run by AltaGas, is on schedule for completion. AltaGas revealed that the terminal’s first cargo load is scheduled to depart during the second quarter of this year. This midstream operation plant will, via CN Rail, transport propane to Asia using liquified propane gas (LPG) tankers. The Crow’s Nest Lodge supportive modular housing project is now open for residents to move in. The lodge features 36 units and is built on municipal land near the North Coast Transition Society. T he Neptune Inn, located at 1051 Chamberlin Avenue, is in the process of being purchased by new prospective owners, James and Corinne Warburton. The Warburtons intend to restore the location back to its original features of traveler accommodations and restaurant services. Their building plans are anticipated to be confirmed by the middle of next month. Coastal Shellfish, a farmed scallop operation run by CEO Michael Uehara, has received its license for operation. This year they plan to
have 15 million scallops in the ocean. Coastal is a sustainable operation that is Indigenous-owned and run. Ridley Terminals Inc. has donated $1 million to local communities on BC’s north coast. This year it celebrated its 35th anniversary by donating to four community projects that promote trades, culture and heritage, and/or diversity. Among the projects they contributed to, the Women’s Leadership Network was awarded $100,000 to put on a women’s leadership conference in Prince Rupert. Clarity Cannabis is opening their first store in BC in the former Carter Jewelers’ location at 528 Third Avenue West. They have opened three shops in Alberta and nine set to open soon. Pharmacist Michael Forbes is the founder and President.
WILLIAMS LAKE MNP has welcomed the merger of Kane Fraser, CPA, CA and his business, FBB Chartered Professional Accountants LLP, in Williams Lake. FBB serves clients from Williams Lake and the Cariboo Chilcotin region. The newly amalgamated MNP team now consists of: Kane Fraser, Mindy Johns, Lori Edinger, Will Hill, Annie Murray, Megan Tenning, Tanya Holte, Rachel Meldrum, Linda Geier, and Ron Rasmussen. March 9 marked the g ra nd op en i n g of new business, JAK’s Beer, Wine and Spirits. The business is located at 1205 Prosperity Way, near the Wal-Mart, and is a BC-based familyrun operation for the past four generations. Originally based in Vancouver, JAK’s has over 15 stores throughout the prov i nce. John Kettlewell is the company’s CEO. th
Poppy Home is a new business, located at #2 – 11 Second Avenue, that held its grand opening on March 15th. The business offers luxury home products, textiles, d ishes, a nd decorative elements. Local restaurant, Joey’s Grill, located at 177 Yorston Street, has sold. Owner Joe started his business in 2001 and will head into retirement as of April 30th. Plans for a new microbrewery have been approved by Williams Lake city council on March 12th. The application, filed by
Dave Reedman, is planned for the former Greyhound Station location on Donald Road. The Williams Lake Indian Band opened a new cannabis store operation on March 22 nd , in a location they own on Mackenzie Avenue South, near Scout Island. Chief Willie Sellars announced that 11 positions have been filled for both full and part-time work for the operation. Indigenous Bloom has locations in Chilliwack and in the Okanagan and plans to expand to other locations in the province.
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D ow n tow n W i l l i a m s Lake has put out a free, new user-friendly app that features a map and guides to the attractions, events and businesses located in the downtown core. The app was developed with a contract with GoLocalApps, based in California, and was headed up by the organization’s former marketing director, Vanessa Moberg.
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Prince George | Vanderhoof | Terrace | Fort St. John
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The City of Williams Lake celebrated its 90th birthday this year, with events taking place on March 15th. The Williams Lake and District Credit Union has invested in solar panels on two sides of its location, in order to reduce their carbon footprint and expenses. The panels were installed by Pro Circuit Electrical Ltd. Mt. Timothy Ski Area, now under a new private ownership group, has released information that they will be open for the ski season by next winter—possibly even by the summer for recreational purposes. Included in the ownership group is: KevLar Development Group, Kevin McCray of Prince George, and Larry Henderson of Lac La Hache. Nancy Gale, executive director with the Cariboo Chilcotin Child Development Centre (CDC), has retired from her position after 18 years of service. Vanessa Riplinger, operations manager for the CDC, will be replacing Gale as the new executive director.
PRINCE GEORGE The City of Prince George was chosen as the hosts of the upcoming 2020 World Women’s Curling Championship. The event will be hosted at the CN Centre, from March 14-22nd. This is the first year that the City has put on a World Curling Federation event. SEE MOVERS & SHAKERS | PAGE 16
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Faction Projects Inc. has submitted an application for River City Ventures Inc., and a numbered company, to build a student housing complex near the Courtyard by Marriott. Prince George City Council has put the proposal to a public hearing to discuss rezoning the site to a specified designation—Patricia Residential, named for the project. CN rail has announced plans to double 2.5 miles of track, located west of Prince George. The project will be done as part of the corporation’s $345 million investment in projects in the province this year. After a decade of service, John Gibson, President and CEO of the Prince George Airport Authority, will be leaving his position. The Port Authority is currently searching for Gibson’s replacement. Prince George artisan, Teresa DeReis, has released a new line of handcrafted soap products called Signature Artisan Soap Collection. The soaps are crafted
with ingredients both foraged and grown in Prince George, and they are available for purchase at the Two Rivers Gallery. The Prince George Airport is welcoming some improvements to its facility this year, facilitated by the Prince George Airport Authority (PGAA). The first of the developments will begin with the departure lounge by way of a new food and beverage service. The service facility is scheduled to open in the second quarter of this year. Innovate BC’s New Ventures BC Competition, the longest-running and largest-attended technology competition, is now open for applications. The competition invites technology ventures from across BC to apply, with applications due by April 10th. The program will take 150 new provincial tech startups through a ‘startup bootcamp’ lasting six months, make available the change to be one of the province’s most innovative startups—in addition to winning part of $250,000 in both cash and prizes. Local citizen, Marissa McTavish, an electrical apprentice with Primus Electric,
Marissa McTavish, electrical apprentice, Primus Electric was named as the 1,000th participant in the Trades Training Fund by LNG Canada. Primus Electric is also the 500th business that has sponsored an employee using that fund. All North is one of 75 companies to be recommended as an Employee Recommended Workplace for 2019 for the second year in a row. The award is based entirely on feedback from employees and recognizes excellence in achieving a healthy, engaged and productive workforce.
DAWSON CREEK SEE MOVERS & SHAKERS | PAGE 17
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This year marks the 75th anniversary of the Dawson Creek Cha mb er of Commerce. In Tumbler Ridge, John Schadan has joined Conuma Coal Resources Limited (Conuma), as their new President. Former president, Mark Bartkoski, will vacate his position as of March 31 st. Conuma currently operates three metallurgical coal mines in North Eastern BC, near Tumbler Ridge and Chetwynd. Versa Frame Inc. now offers re-roofing and new installs for metal roofing & siding services. They feature 11 different profiles with more than 26 colours, servicing both agricultural and industrial projects. A Junior Dragons Den Northeast BC Regional Competition will be held on April 11th in Dawson Creek. The event is catered to young students from grades six to twelve, and postsecondary students to a maximum age of 25, who have business concept plans they would like to pitch. There will be five applicants selected for the competition who will be assigned mentors to help them prepare for the event, which will be pitched before a live audience. TransCanada has a nnounced plans to expand by 24 km a pipeline that will loop the western portion of Groundbirch Mainline. This expansion would expand its capacity on the NOVA Gas Transmission (NGTL) system. The proposed project would end close to the Dawson Creek receipt meter station and begin close to the Groundbirch East station. TransCanada aims to file an application under Section 58 to the National Energy Board this month. Subject to approval, construction is tentatively scheduled to begin in the spring of 2020. Dawson Creek City Council has stamped their approval on a new property zoning bylaw, RM-1A. The zone currently pertains to 1552 Loran Drive and has allowance for a second suite in a triplex. The Dawson Creek Regional Airport has reported an increase in passenger numbers for January and February, using medevac services both incoming and outgoing. For those two months 63 medevacs were reported, whereas compared to last
year there were only 35. The airport also reported more than 800 charter passengers passing through for the month of January, increased from an average of 300 passengers per month. January’s increase in numbers is credited to jobs in the oil and gas sector.
FORT ST. JOHN The Fort St. John Chamber of Commerce welcomed a number of new members this season, including: Coco Olive Hut (Olive Tree), located at 10120 100 Street, which offers Greek food; Saulteau Safety & Security; Silverback Energy Inc.; Mighty Peace Brewing Co.; Northern ResourceExpo; Guillevin Safety & Industrial; and ACL Construction Ltd. The Kids Arena/Fieldhouse Lighting upgrade has been awarded to Sharp Instruments Ltd for the tendered price of $88,3411. The staff at Fort St. John Hospital have been honoured with three outstanding achievement awards from the B.C. Provincial Blood Coordinating Office. The awards recognize the hospital’s expert use of IV immune globulin (IVIG), donor red cells, and blood products. The awards were for: Outstanding Achievement in 0% Red Cell Outdate Rate; Outstanding 0% Expiry Rate of all Factor products; and Outstanding 0% IVIG Discard and Outdate Rate. The Site C Project run by BC Hydro has teamed up with Northern Lights College to put on a carpentry skills and essential skills program. The program will involve two weeks of handson experience that will prepare students for work opportunities with Site C and BC Hydro contractors. To qualify for the program, applicants must be 18 years old and be interested in carpentry. The program will run from April 2-14th at the Site C Dam project site. The Fort St. John Women’s Resource Society, in partnership with Shell Canada and MNP, has volunteered a free income tax filing service, taking place on Saturday, April 13th from 10am-3pm. The service will take place at the Fort St. John Women’s Resource Society, at 10051 – 100th Avenue. To qualify, participants must be $36,000 or less per family, must not be self-employed, or filing
investment or business returns. Fort St. John’s Burger King location hosted Brooks Whopper Wednesday on March 6th, a fundraiser to support local resident and officer, Constable Brooks, as he is undergoing chemotherapy. The event raised $1,591 for the cause, using a portion of funds from every whopper burger sold that day.
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Fort St. John will be hosting the 30th Winter Games in 2020. The games will be held February 20-23, 2020 and estimated to bring in approximately $1.6 million to the community.
QUESNEL Quesnel has joined the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot program this year. The program, put forward by the provincial Ministry of Jobs, Trade and Technology, seeks to support and promote entrepreneurial immigrants in moving to rural communities. Immigrant candidates must have a net worth of $300,000 and have the ability to make a $100,000 investment for their new business, which must create a minimum of one fulltime job in Quesnel in order to be eligible. Additionally, the candidate’s business must fall under one of the community’s three priority economic sectors: food manufacturing, food services and drinking places, or professional, scientific and technical services. The program, which opened on March 14th, will last for two years. Barkerville Brewing Co. hosted their second Pink Boots Collaboration Brew Day on March 15 th . This year 21 people participated in the brewing process, developing a new Pink Boots brew: Hibiscus Dry Hopped Lager. The event originally stemmed from members of the Pink Boots Society’s desire to participate in International Women’s Day by highlighting women’s roles in the brewing industry. A part of the proceeds from these brews are allocated towa rds prog ra ms a nd scholarships. The City of Quesnel’s new Forestry Innovation Centre is under construction near City Hall, soon to be housing their newly launched Forestry Initiatives Program. The program, which began in January, is operated by Forestry Initiatives SEE MOVERS & SHAKERS | PAGE 19
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MEDICAL TOURISM WOULD HELP PATIENTS, THE ECONOMY, AND YES, CANADIAN HEALTH CARE
wo friends recently chose to obtain medical services in the United States and Mexico that gave both of them a renewed lease on life. Clean facilities? Check. Trustworthy pre and post-operative consultation? Check. Successful surgery? Check. Pain and medical problems solved? Check. Resumption of normal activities? Check. All for writing a cheque. One paid just over $5,000 for internal su rgery in T ijuana, Mexico, received first class service and is delighted with the results. With their permission, doctors also fixed a hernia during the operation. Two-for-one service, if you will. They flew to San Diego, were picked up by concierge service, escorted through the U.S./Mexico border and stayed in first class accommodation while being prepared for surgery. The medical facility was pristine
clean, matching reviews they devoured prior to the trip. A ny and all questions were answered throughout the process, which began with extensive consultation. The Mexican physicians were in constant contact with the patient’s Canad ia n doctor, who was fu l ly awa re of t he procedu re a nd process. With that, the patient had all normal concerns alleviated, and was greeted with postoperation care and monitoring once they returned to Canada a few short days later. A not her endu re d ye a rs of chronic knee pain, which they we re b a re ly a bl e to e n d u re thanks to a crutch, as they waited for “their turn” for elective knee replacement surgery. Finally, after consultations w ith fam ily members, and a peek at their bank account that confirmed they were comfortably able to cover the $16,000 price tag through an Arizona medical facility, they went for it. It was a similar experience. First class travel, accommodation and care. In and out, comfortably back home within a matter of days. The result? They are walking crutch-less and painless, for the first time in many years. With a big smile on their face as they were able to resume normal dayto-day activities they hadn’t been able to enjoy for years.
Couldn’t they have continued to wait their turn in Canada’s “one-tier” health care system? Sure. But why continue to put up with the pain and discomfort while options were available? They faced a decision: Spend the money now and “get their lives back”. Or line up in the lengthening queue that Canadian health care has become. And wait. And wait. And wait. They invested, and are now reaping the rewards of re-invigorated health. Some aspects of Ca nad ia n health care are excellent, most notably if it’s urgent or an emergency, as those patients a re looked after immediately and without question. But clearly, the “care” aspect is deteriorating. Is that actually becoming a misnomer? With the lack of “care” for those who need the system but can’t obtain it because they can “live with the pain” and sent to the back of the line, perhaps it should be more correctly referred to as the “health industry”. Oh yes, and Canadian health care is certainly not “free”, as defenders cry every time any p o ss i ble a dju s t ment to t he status quo is suggested. T he average Ca nad ia n fa m i ly of four pays just under $12,000 per year, hidden in their income tax bill, for health care. It is far from free.
Our aging population and everrising costs make the long-term sustainability of this country’s public health system untenable. While many recognize it, the hue and cry against any and all attempts to change and refine the status quo quickly chase those who could make necessary changes running for cover. It appears that only a complete collapse of the public system would convince Canadians that time for an overhaul of the system is nigh. Medical Tourism, on the other ha nd, ca n accompl ish th ree things. First, people who can afford to do so, could and would pay for medical services here, alleviating pain and reducing surgical wait lists in private clinics. Se cond , it wou ld help t he economy by keeping those dollars in Canada, as well as providing new employment – and i nvestment – opportu n ities here. And third, it would help improve the public system. How? By introducing a competitor into the monopolistic marketplace. There is no better way to get a company to pull up its collective socks and improve service than to have a competitor open their doors and offer to meet their needs quicker and more cost efficiently. The existing system would be forced to compete and
improve from within. This is where First Nations, in particular, can help those needing health care and themselves. Private clinics consistently battle – and mostly fail – to survive the assaults of Canada Health Act defenders. First Nations technically could under the banner of helping improving health, and their own financial outlook. Former Westbank First Nation Chief Robert Louie unveiled an ambitious plan to create a major health care facility on their Okanagan land years ago. It hasn’t happened yet. . .there, or elsewhere. Who would be willing to resist any First Nation facility that would drastically reduce surgical wait lists while accelerating their own economic self-sustainability and create well paying jobs in the process? This may offer the best opportunity to fix Canada’s health care crisis. But if we’re willing to admit it, we already have two-tiered health care. It’s just that the second tier – that is helping people get their lives and health back – is in other countries. T ho s e s e r v ic e s c o u ld a n d should be made available, here at home.
THIS BUDGET SEASON, CANADA MUST LOWER TAXES ON ENTREPRENEURS
THE FRASER INSTITUTE MILAGROS PALACIOS AND JAKE FUSS
ver the last few years, the federal government a n d m a n y p ro v i n c i a l counterparts have weakened incentives for entrepreneurs by raising personal income taxes. This budget season provides an opportunity to reverse this trend and introduce tax policies to attract, encourage and retain entrepreneurs.
The process should start with the federal government, which introduces its 2019 budget later this month. In 2015, the federal government introduced a 33 per cent tax bracket for entrepreneurs, professionals and successful business owners. Similar changes in Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia and several other provinces compounded this higher federal tax rate. The personal income tax rate imposed on these Canadians now exceeds 50 per cent in seven provinces, with the remaining provinces within a hair of 50 per cent. In addition to higher personal taxes, new and expanded federal and provincial regulations have made Canada a much less hospitable place to start a business, expand a business or invest new capital. A recent study analyzed provincial data from 1984 to 2015 and found that higher top inc o m e t a x ra te s d i s c o u ra ge
entrepreneurship and decrease the rate of small business startups, which is a commonly used measure of entrepreneurship. A one percentage point increase in the top rate can prevent up to almost 700 new businesses from being started. And some provinces have had increases of more than eight percentage points in their top tax rate when the federal increases are included. The decision about where to locate a new business is influenced by differences in income tax rates between jurisdictions. Take the example of an engineer who’s considering starting her new firm in Canada or the United States. Among several factors, the differences in personal income tax rates between the countries stand out. Despite taking on considerable personal risk, she would face a combined top rate between 47.5 and 54.0 per cent in Canada compared to a low of 37.0 per cent in the U.S. Her time and effort in starting
the new business provides a much lower reward in Canada. She will likely decide to live and work in the lower tax jurisdiction. T he U. S. i s Ca n a d a’s l a rgest and most direct competitor in attracting and retaining entrepreneurs. A recent study demonstrated that Canada’s personal income tax rates are markedly less attractive for entrepreneurs than rates south of the border. The list of 10 jurisdictions with the highest combined rates at $150,000 of income among the U.S. states and Canadian provinces are exclusively Canadian. No state including high-tax jurisdictions such as New York, California and New Jersey - have higher personal income tax rates at this level of income. Canadian tax increases come at a time when the U.S. govern ment has i mplemented sweeping reforms to push rates down for business owners and entrepreneurs.
Canada’s top combined personal income tax rates are among the highest in the industrialized world. Out of 34 Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, Canada had the seventh highest combined top rate in 2017. This should be eye-opening for policy-makers. Canada is at a huge disadvantage for attracting and retaining entrepreneurs who we rely on for innovation, employment growth and general economic prosperity. High personal income tax rates have made Canada a less desirable place for entrepreneurship. During this year’s budget season, the federal and provincial governments must reduce personal income tax rates to create an environment conducive to entrepreneurship, risk-taking and growth. Jake Fuss and Milagros Palacios are analysts at the Fraser Institute.
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Manager Erin Robinson and Taddea Kunkel, Forestry Initiatives Coordinator. It exists to address issues such as protecting land and communities from wildfire, land rehabilitation after wildfires, and searching for innovations in the forest products manufacturing sector. In preparation for their 50th anniversary, the College of New Ca ledon ia (CNC) has launched a new b ra n d . T i m L ofst rom , CNC’s new regional principal for Quesnel, helped to launch the brand, which aims to stream line the college’s visual identity through a new logo, brand and website. Q ue snel a nd D i st r ict Chamber of Commerce has elected a new board by acclamation. President - Julia Dillabough, First v ice-president - Tracy Bond, second vice-president -Wendy Heppner and treasurer - Ryan Broughton. Directors who have one yea r rema i n i ng on their two-year terms and are returning this year are Richard Branson, Jillian Stockburger, Barb Dodge, Greg Andrews and Lori
Carifelle. Elected to serve two-year terms expiring Dec. 31, 2020, are Paddy Storey, Rick Wittner, Tawni Fehr, Debbie Roch and Josh Kempf.
SMITHERS A new project that aims to build 11 multi-family strata buildings in Smithers has received approval for purchase of the property from the Christian Reformed Church. West Fraser Concrete will be building the project, and city council has passed the necessary rezoning and official community plan amendment for it to move ahead. Still awaiting approval is the form and development permit. Construction is scheduled to begin this summer. Kopar Administration, based in Prince George, has taken over a contract from the provincial government to ha nd le employ ment services. As a result, their new WorkBC office will be opening in Smithers as of April 1st. The new office will be located at 3851 First Avenue, and services will continue as normal. The Smithers Chamber of Commerce held a 2019 New Business Reception,
welcoming new businesses to their membership. The Town of Smithers has allocated 558 sq. meters of land at the Smithers Regional Airport to Shell Canada Products for their new refueling location. The rental contract is valued at $5,406.25 annually and will run from April 1, 2019 – March 31, 2024. An Air Canada airlines operation office will soon open up in the Smithers Regional Airport Terminal Building. The Town of Smithers has approved a five-year lease for the airline, with rent beginning at $2,723.73 for the first year, and gradually increasing to $2,843.70 in the final year of the contract. T h e Sm it h ers Storefront Spruce Up Program has launched this year as a pa rtnersh ip between Northern Development Initiative Trust and the Town of Smithers. Businesses located in the downtown core can apply for grants covering up to 50 per cent of costs to a maximum of $5,000, for renovations, restoration or redesign for their storefronts. The deadline for grant applications is June 17, 2019.
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Business Examiner Peace Cariboo Skeena includes business news from Fort St. John and Dawson Creek to Prince Rupert and Kitimat, and from 100...
Published on Apr 4, 2019
Business Examiner Peace Cariboo Skeena includes business news from Fort St. John and Dawson Creek to Prince Rupert and Kitimat, and from 100...