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APRIL 2017

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PRINCE GEORGE UNBC Named One of BC’s Top 10

Tax Strategies for Business



QUESNEL Big Country Printers Preparing for its


INDEX News Update


Customer Service


Corporate Tax 6

Movies and Shakers 14 Opinion




100 Mile House


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Large Scale Valemount Ski Resort Given Green Light Valemount Glacier Destination Resort Potentially A $500 Million Project


Golden Anniversary


Fort St. John | Prince George | Terrace | Vanderhoof

ALEMOUNT – Under the guidance of near legendary resort designer Oberto Oberti (the designer of the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort) the BC government has given the green light to a large resort development to be situated near the Village of Valemount, east of Prince George. “It’s a very exciting project in that there’s nothing quite like it in North America. Specifically there’s no high elevation glacier sightseeing that’s readily accessible, there’s year round skiing, a huge vertical drop – it’s just a spectacular spot for this resort,” explained Tommaso Oberti, son of the project president. With an investment of $100 million, rising to approximately $500 million of total development once construction is complete, the Valemount Glacier Destination Resort will encompass 5,000 hectares and would include the summits of Mount Pierre Elliot Trudeau, Mount Arthur Meighen, Twilight Glacier


When fully developed the Valemount Glacier Destination Resort will includes its own base village


Williams Lake Program To Help Energize The Entrepreneurial Spirit Seeding Start-Ups Program To Support Youth & Seniors With Business Funding Canadian Publications Mail Acct.: 40069240



ILLIAMS LAKE – To help fuel the entrepreneurial spirit of its youngest and oldest citizens, the City of Williams Lake has launched a program designed to provide seed money specifically for youth and seniors interested in starting a business

in the community. “T he program began as the Brainchild of a group of comm u n it y p a r t n e rs w h o w e re looking at ways to create opportunity and economic growth in the area,” ex plained Beth Veenkamp, the Seeding StartUps Program Coordinator. T he City of Wi l l ia ms La ke agreed to administer the pilot

prog ra m, (now Veen ka mp’s employer) and the other partners i n t he vent u re i nclude C o m m u n it y F u t u r e s o f t h e Cariboo Chilcotin, t he Williams Lake and District Chamber of Commerce, the Williams Lake Business Improvement A ssociat ion a nd T hompson Rivers University. T h e p ro g ra m , w h i c h w i l l

see approved participants receiv i ng between $1,000 a nd $1,500, is aimed at growth in two demographics, youth and seniors. Qualifying participants must be business startup ideas originating from youth aged 19 to 29, and the 50+ age group. Money for the program SEE WILLIAMS LAKE | PAGE 5


1 (877) 847-3596 -

2 CANADA Residential Construction Down, Non-Residential Up in 2017: Report Following a relatively weak 2016, residential construction activity in Canada is poised to see a modest decrease in 2017 as the number of housing starts is expected to decline to this year, according to The Conference Board of Canada’s latest outlook for the industry. On the other hand, non-residential construction is expected to retu rn to g row th i n 2017, thanks to government infrastructure spending. Residential Construction: This year will be a tough year for Canada’s residential construction industry. A slowdown in multi-unit construction, particularly in the apartment and row house segment, is expected to drag down industry output by 0.2 per cent in 2017. Signs of this downturn have already shown up in recent housing starts data, with multi-unit housi ng sta rts dow n 2.3 per cent in 2016. Multi-unit housing starts will take another step back in 2017, and will struggle through 2021. Affordability worries in Toronto and Vancouver have led to policy makers implementing several measures to cool housing markets, and considering additional options. Given that in 2016 these two markets accounted for more than 30 per cent of housing starts in Canada, these measures will be a major contributor to a general slowdown in residential construction activity across Canada. O vera l l, hou si ng sta r ts i n Quebec and British Columbia will struggle throughout the foreca st, wh i le ot her provinces, particularly Alberta and Saskatchewan, will experience stronger growth. With only limited gains in revenues expected, the industry’s finances are expected to remain relatively unchanged through the forecast. However, costs are expected to be a risk factor going forward, as a construction boom in the United States could push up material costs and hurt the bottom line. Overall, industry margins are expected to remain slim, averaging 3 per cent over the next five year, and industry pre-tax profits are forecast to reach $4.2 billion this year. Non-Residential Construction: Following a decline of 2.0 per cent in 2016, non-residential construction output is expected to rebound this year, expanding by 3.7 per cent. The institutional segment was the only area of growth for the industry in 2016, and government stimulus spending will help the institutional segment grow by 6.8 per cent this year. Beyond 2017, however, the institutional segment will provide a smaller

NEWS UPDATE boost to the industry, as government stimulus spending is projected to unwind. Providing support to the industry’s commercial segment is the rise of online shopping, which is beginning to see a faster rate of adoption in Canada. This will help support a U.S.-style buildup in warehouses across the country, although Southwestern Ontario will be a key beneficiary. Ontario has seen an average annual rise in investment in transportation and warehousing of around 11 per cent in 2015 and 2016, and investment intentions point to another strong year in 2017, with growth of 20 per cent expected. Industry profitability is expected to improve slightly over the next five years. Pre-tax profits are expected to reach $2.2 billion this year and grow by an average of more than 4 per cent between 2018 and 2021.

NORTHERN BC Municipalities Launch Mobile Business License A new agreement involving six local governments in the northeast allows small businesses to operate in multiple jurisdictions — cutting red tape and freeing up time and money. T h e M o b i l e B u s i n e s s L icence program is a partnership between municipalities, facilitated by the Province, which allows businesses to purchase a licence add-on, giving them the ability to operate in any of the participating communities. The program saves business owners from having to apply and purchase separate licences for each community, making it simpler and cheaper to do business in BC The Mobile Business Licence add-on in the northeast costs $130. Previously, a small business wanting to operate in the participating municipalities would need to purchase multiple licences—possibly with different costs and renewal times. With a Mobile Business Licence agreement in place, the business owner only needs to visit their local municipality to register for a single business licence and Mobile Business Licence add-on. The northeast agreement enables businesses to apply for one licence that can be used in City of Dawson Creek, City of Fort St. John, District of Chetwynd, District of Hudson’s Hope, Tumbler Ridge and Pouce Coupe. The District of Taylor will be added into the agreement at a later date. Plu mbi ng serv ices or construction-related businesses are among the many types of businesses taking advantage of the program throughout the province. Earlier this year, the Mobile Business Licence program expanded to the Kootenays with eight new communities in three agreements. In 2016, the first

Aboriginal community, Shíshálh Nation on the Sunshine Coast, joined the program. Agreements were also made permanent in 2016 for Metro West (Bu r n aby, Delta, New Westminster, Richmond, Surrey and Vancouver) and Fraser Valley (Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Delta, Hope, Kent, La ngley, M aple R id ge, M i ssion, P it t Meadows a nd Su rrey). Kent and Delta were new additions to the Fraser Valley agreement last year. With the northeast agreement, there are now 88 communities in BC participating in the Mobile Business Licence program. The Province is working with local governments to expand the program further.

BC Tourism Sector Sees 9% Year-over-Year Visitor Increase I n the fi rst month of 2017, i nter n at ion a l v isitor a r r ival numbers continue to show positive signs of growth for the booming tourism sector in British Columbia. The latest numbers from Statistics Canada from January 2017 indicate a 9.2% increase over the same month in 2016, resulting in 23,427 more visitors arriving in B.C. Other notable increases for January (over January 2016) include: China +55.8%, Australia +36.7%, Mexico +37.4%, United Kingdom +21.5%, South Korea +19.1%, India +17%. Direct flights can have a significant impact on international visitor arrivals. Both China and Australia saw increases in air capacity to British Columbia of 35.4% and 87.8% respectively. These new flights are due in part to the Province eliminating the international jet fuel tax which has reduced costs for airlines. Each new daily international flight to BC creates between 150 and 200 new jobs at Vancouver International Airport (YVR). An additional 300 to 400 jobs are created indirectly in the province at businesses such as hotels, restaurants, travel agents and tour operators. In addition, the Province’s lead marketing organization, Destination BC (DBC), has been instrumental in promoting strong tourism sector growth. DBC was established by the Province in April 2013 to lead the marketing of British Columbia as a tourist destination, and to promote the development and growth of the tourism industry throughout BC.

BC Fitch Affirms BC’s AAA Credit Rating

APRIL 2017

Fitch has confirmed British Colu mbia’s A A A cred it rating with a stable outlook, due to the Province’s steady economic growth, commitment to fiscal balance and manageable debt burden. The report states that, “British Columbia’s ‘A A A’ rating primarily reflects conservative financial management practices resulting in stable fiscal performance and a well-managed liability profile. P rovincial economic performance has been generally positive since the recession, and is likely to exceed national performance in the near to medium term.” It adds, “British Columbia’s diverse economy continues its pace of steady economic growth, ahead of the Canadian average. Employment growth accelerated in 2016 and the provincial government is forecasting modest GDP growth, albeit below prerecession growth rates. “Prudently, the government’s budget includes expense contingencies and forecast allowances around cautious economic forecasts to ensure the provincial budget remains balanced.” The rating agency continues: “The province’s debt burden remains manageable with continued pay-down of operating debt. The province anticipates slightly accelerating its pace of debt issued for capital projects, but retains sufficient capacity at the current rating level. The government projects the taxpayer-supported debt-to-GDP ratio declined in fiscal 2017, but will essentially stabilize through the three-year fiscal plan.” British Colu mbia has been rated AAA with Fitch since December 2007. Si nce November 2004, the Province has received seven credit rating upgrades and is now the only province rated triple-A by each of the international rating agencies: Moody’s, Standard & Poor’s, and Fitch. Moody’s recently affirmed BC’s Aaa credit rating and stable outlook in January 2017. The Dominion Bond Rating Service affirmed BC’s AA (high) credit rating in March 2017, and Standard and Poor’s affirmed the Province’s AAA rating in March as well.

PRINCE RUPERT Port Gains New Logistics Tenant The Port of Prince Rupert has recently announced an expansion project for containerized cargo on Ridley Island that will help crops from the Canadian ag r icu ltu ra l i ndust r y reach international markets while expanding intermodal logistics capacities. Ray-Mont Logistics is developing an integrated logistics and container loading operation at

the south end of the Ridley Island Industrial Site on the recently-constructed Road, Rail and Utility Corridor. T he operation w i l l i nvolve pu l ses a nd cerea l s (such a s lentils, peas, beans, soybeans, flax, and wheat) as well as other specia lty ag ricu ltu ra l crops transported in hopper cars by rail from Western and Central Canada and the US Midwest. The cargo will be transferred to ocean containers for export via the Fairview Container Terminal, which is currently undergoing expansion. Operation of the completed facility will employ an estimated 40 people. The ten-acre facility will include a rail loop corridor in excess of 100 railcars, a grain dumper pit, and a state-of-theart conveyance system. T he Ray-Mont facility will utilize rail tracks on the Ridley Island Corridor to take delivery of agricultural commodities and meet market demand for port-loaded export containers on the West Coast. Cargo will be sent to Prince Rupert by agricultural shippers in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and further inland, to be unloaded at the facility via a conveyor unloading system. IDL Projects, on behalf of Coast Tsimshian Northern Contractor Alliance, will begin clearing the site this week and the new transloading facility will be operational in time for the 2017/18 crop year this fall.

SMITHERS Airport Expansion Receives Funding Injection The Smithers Airport Terminal Modernization Project has received another boost in funding thanks to the commitment of $125,000 from Northern Development Initiative Trust. Northern Development’s board of directors approved the funding for the $8 million project through the Trust’s Economic Diversification Infrastructure prog ra m. T he prog ra m specifically targets projects that significantly strengthen the local economy, that drive revenue and job creation through a major capital investment and provide a long-term asset for the community. The modernization project will addresses ongoing deficiencies and resolve safety issues to more effectively accommodate current users and support future growth. Some of the recommendations that will be implemented as part of the project include: The addition of approximately 6,000 square feet of building space; Increasing passenger holding room seats from 54 to 125; Increasing the size and efficiency of the check in and baggage handling areas; Upgrading the fire suppression, fire alarm SEE NEWS UPDATE | PAGE 3


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and electrical systems; Updating the boiler and HVAC systems to include energy efficient geothermal options; and Installing a heating and cooling air supply system for the terminal. The upgrades will ensure that the Smithers Airport is a lasting capital asset for the community and surrounding region. There are no plans to include property taxes or raise Airport Improvement Fees to help pay for the project. Other funding sources for the project include: $4,000,000 from the Federal Gas Tax Grant; $3,000,000 from the Airport’s Capital Infrastructure Reserve; $400,000 from the Regional District of BulkeyNechako; and $645,000 from other grants and the town’s Airport Infrastructure Reserve.

WILLIAMS LAKE Additional $200M Announced for Cariboo Connector The Province of British Columbia has announced an additional $200 million of funding to increase capacity and improve efficiency of the Cariboo Connector. The Ministry of Transportation

and Infrastructure w ill be moving ahead with the first project of this phase; a four-laning project south of Williams Lake, near Knife Creek Road. The ministry will commit a further $1 million to conduct engineering and development work on the first four projects of Phase 3. The engineering and design work will begin immediately. T hrough the Cariboo Connector Program, $240 million was invested for 18 projects in Phase 1, all of which have been completed. Phase 2 of the program began in April 2012 with a provincial commitment of $200 million for nine projects. Six are now complete, two are in construction and the last project was recently tendered. The final project of Phase 2 – fourlaning of Highway 97 from Carson Road to Toop Road – will be completed by fall of 2018. With the completion of Phase 2, almost 50% of the 440-kilometre corridor will be either three or four lanes.

will soon see improvements and expansions. Northern Development’s board of directors recently approved funding for six community facilities through the Community Halls and Recreation Facilities prog ra m. T he prog ra m provides a maximum of $30,000 in funding (up to 70 percent of a project’s budget) for local governments, First Nations and registered non-profits to improve, expand or develop facilities throughout the region. The six projects below offer a wide range of rental opportunities, events, and recreationa l prog ra m m i ng for the entire community: $30,000 for the Elder Citizens Recreation Centre, $30,000 for the Kinsmen Hall, $30,000 for CN Centre, $30,000 for Pineview Hall, $30,000 for A iMHi, $30,000 for the Lheidli T’enneh Memorial Park Pavilion.


Site C Construction Takes Big Step Forward

Northern Development Funds Prince George Community Facilities Thanks in part to $180,000 in funding from Northern Development, several community assets

FORT ST. JOHN BC Hydro’s Site C project recently reached a milestone as the turbines and generators contractor mobilized to the construction site. Voith Hydro Canada, which was awarded the $470-million contract in March 2016, will design, supply and install six

vertical axis, Francis-style turbines, six generators and associated equipment for Site C. Turbines and generators convert the power of falling water into electricity, which is then transformed and fed into the provincial electricity grid. The performance of a turbine and generator is critical to the success of Site C. These turbines and generators will be custom designed and built to suit the site-specific conditions of the project. Voith Hydro has a strong track record with similar complex projects. Voith has provided equipment for a number of BC Hydro projects, including: Revelstoke Unit 5 Project, Ruskin Dam and Powerhouse Upgrade, and the Gordon M. Shrum Turbine Replacement Project. About 150 workers will be on site during the peak of installation for the turbines and generators in 2022, which will occur in the powerhouse. The majority of this work will be performed by millwrights, electricians, pipefitters and boilermakers, with opportunities for apprentices in each of those trades. Voith Hydro Canada, through the Construction Labour Relations Association, negotiated a labour agreement with the Bargaining Council of British Columbia Building Trades Unions, which represents construction craft unions in BC. The labour agreement includes

3 participation from 10 BC Building Trades Unions for the installation of the turbines and generators for Site C. After mobilizing to the site, Voith Hydro Canada will start work on a temporary on-site manufacturing facility. Excavation and foundation preparation for the manufacturing facility will start this month and construction of the facility building is expected to be completed in August.

PRINCE RUPERT Cruise Ship Visits Set to Increase The Port of Prince Rupert recently released its 2017 cruise schedule, celebrating a more than 100% increase in the number of ships and passengers visiting the coastal community this summer. A total of 25 vessels carrying approximately 17,000 passengers will dock at Prince Rupert’s Northland Cruise Terminal in 2017, representing the city’s biggest cruise season since 2011. The coming season also marks the second consecutive year that the number of cruise ship passengers visiting Prince Rupert has doubled, up from 7,264 in SEE NEWS UPDATE | PAGE 17




ver servicing customers can be as damaging to sales and profits as under servicing them. There is a huge difference between striving for a flawless level of customer care and the right level of customer care. And not just because striving for perfection can be infinitely expensive. One B2B company I know spent years fine-tuning and improving its level of customer support. They were extremely proud of the resulting 24/7 emergency response team, providing sales and technical support around the clock. However, when the largest customers were surveyed, they all said that even though they themselves worked on week-ends, they did not expect their suppliers to do so. The company had

indulged in “mind reading” of customer expectations. When suppliers offer us that level of unsolicited support, we start to think there must be a catch. Are we being over charged? Are they desperate for business? The popular “Customer Lifetime Value” equation is often used as an excuse to write a blank check to improve the customer experience. Because, after all, isn’t it cheaper to keep an existing customer than it is to find a new one? Only if the customer relationship is a profitable one. The key to avoiding disappointed customers and unnecessary customer care expense, is to ask tough questions of customers to get good at uncovering and setting mutual expectations for the customer experience. Some good baseline questions are: ■ What do we have to DO to make sure we never lose your business? ■ What do we have to make sure we DON’T do? ■ If we mess up once, is it over? These questions are often not asked because we fear the answer. But good customers typically have reasonable responses like “No. No one is

perfect. This is what I expect to happen when you do mess up, so we can maintain our relationship. . .” It’s those disarmingly honest, tough questions that help us uncover the real level of customer support, and whether they are achievable. Pick your customers carefully. If someone tells us they expect perfection, and will not forgive anything less? Well, that’s a near impossible service level to maintain. It’s up to us to decide whether we put our systems and customer service under that amount of pressure. Or instead, put the time and resources into finding another customer that fits our expectation profile. Of course this should not be used as an excuse not to offer quality customer support. However, it illustrates that sometimes it is more profitable to “fire” an unreasonable customer and replace them with one that won’t give our customer service, systems and people a hard time. Lucy Glennon specializes in customer service training and recruitment and hiring. She can be reached at 866-6452047 or

A Chambers Plan can help you keep and attract the best employees Today, employees expect group insurance benefits. options, unbeatable guarantees, and value-added benefits, you can attract and keep the best employees. Join 30,000 Canadian companies enjoying the Plan’s financial strength, stable rates, and personal attention. Linda Rempel, Certified Financial Planner® Sun Life Financial & The Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan 886 Vancouver Street Prince George, BC V2L 2P5 Email: Phone: 250.614.0585


APRIL 2017

Government approval has been given to begin work on the ski resort project located near the Village of Valemount


and Glacier Ridge, creating the largest vertical drop in North America and the third largest in the world. In its fully developed stage the development would include a base village featuring a combination of residential, hotel and commercial space. The agreement to proceed with the project (which could see the very early stages of construction beginning next year) involved the BC Government, the Village of Valemount, the Simpcw First Nation and the Fraser-Fort George Regional District. “The project is being designed as much for sightseeing as it is for

“It’s a very exciting project in that there’s nothing quite like it in North America.” TOMMASO OBERTI

Encompassing 5,000 hectares the Valemount Glacier Destination Resort will include the summits of several mountains


skiing. One of the main draws we hope to attract would be visitors to Jasper National Park, which is about an hour away. This project is designed to draw a small percentage of those visitors as we would be providing an attraction that’s not available in the National Park,” Oberti, who works for Oberti Resort Design stated. The Genesis of the project was in 2011 when the then Mayor of

Valemount, on behalf of a group of local citizens, telephoned Oberto Oberti to ask that he and his company build a resort at the site to help attract more visitors to the region. As resort development consultants (but not builders) the Oberti Resort Design group was able to connect an investor with the Valemount group about a year later which got the project rolling. “In 2012 the application for this

project was put in, so it has been a five year process to receive the government approval to begin work, which is actually very fast. It’s rare to see so many groups on side so quickly for a project of this type,” he said. Shirley Bond, the provincial Minister of Jobs, Tourism, and Skills Training, signed the 60 year Master Plan Development Agreement for the project on March 28, which effectively

clears the way for the initial construction phase to begin. “The goal is to have some initial work completed by the end of next year but we’re still very much in the early days of this project – it will be a significant undertaking and will require years of work to see it brought through to its final stage,” he said. To learn more please visit the company’s website at:


APRIL 2017

“The Brainchild of a group of community partners who were looking at ways to create opportunity and economic growth.” BETH VEENKAMP PROGRAM COORDINATOR, SEEDING START-UPS PROGRAM

The Seeding Start-Ups Program has been created to aid youth and seniors wanting to start their own business.


The funds made available through the Program are intended to help in the launching of new businesses

is coming from the provincial Rural Dividend Fund which had been created to help empower economic growth in the province’s outlying areas. “The local partners created a Steering Committee that in

essence sa id ‘let’s create a n opportunity to support entrepreneurship in the community’ and that’s where the concept came from. With Community Futures of the Cariboo Chilcotin as one of the partners, we are using their ex pertise and are encouraging people to take advantage of the Business Plan workshops that they have

available through their C-Best Program,” she said. “Right now I’m going out into the community, finding interested people who I will f low through the Community Futures program because they are already experts at this. I then work with them once they come out of that to help them launch their business idea.” Once participants have received a n u ndersta nd i ng of Business Plan basics she will help them hone their sales pitch to the program’s Review Panel in a Dragon’s Den style presentation, in an attempt to secure their desired funding. “It’s Dragon’s Den like, but a much kinder group,” Veenkamp joked. Veenkamp stresses that the S e e d i n g S t a r t-Up p ro g ra m would not exist was it not for the Rural Dividend Fund, which served as the catalyst for the venture. “One member of the Steering Committee said that if in a year we can see that we have helped to create a culture of entrepreneurship in Williams Lake then this program will have been a success,” she said. Within a month of the program launching, inquires have been brisk, and two participants have already successfully presented to the Review Panel. To learn more please visit the city’s website at: w w w.w i

UNBC Named One of BC’s Top 100 Employers The Prince George based university was recognized for its “outstanding contributions in work-life balance, ongoing educational opportunities and parental leave benefits”


RINCE GEORGE— For the fourth time in six years, the University of Northern British Columbia has been named one of BC’s Top 100 employers. Evaluators cited the Prince George based university’s culture of work-life balance, parental leave benefits, and ongoing educational opportunities as the deciding factor. If that award-winning culture could be summed up in one simple statement, Associate Vice President, People, Organizational Design and Risk Barb Daigle has one on hand: “We value those who work here and want them to succeed.” T he success of U N BC staff members is fuelled by a number of benefits and perks. On the work-life balance front, they can opt for alternative arrangements like a compressed work week, a 35-hou r work week, or a n ea rned days off programme. On the education front, they have access to tuition subsidies, professional accreditation subsidies, and in-house training initiatives. And new SEE UNBC | PAGE 13

UNBC’s staff enjoys time together at the Canada Winter Games


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a ny f a c to r s c a n i nf lu ence t he s ucce ss of you r busi ness — not least of which is the legal structure of the business itself. Un for t u n ately, t here’s no “one-size-fits-all” solution, say local tax experts. The ideal structure to use depends on the unique aspects of your situation: your family, your business and your goals. “Generally speaking, there is no single ‘right’ structure for a business, but there is a ‘best’ structure for every situation,” advises Mindy Wight. Wight is a taxation specialist w ith M N P LLP i n P ri nce George and is a member of the firm’s regional specialty tax group. The team of eight has more tha n 65 yea rs of combined ex perience advising business owners on taxation matters such as income splitting strategies, corporate reorganizations, structuring the purchase and sale of businesses, and estate and succession planning. “We work w ith busi nesses and organizations of all sizes and at every stage of their life cycle – from start up to succession and all stages in between,” she explains. Wight cautions that using the wrong structure for your situation can have far-reaching tax consequences, so it becomes increasingly important to update your structure as your enterprise g rows a nd becomes more successful. I n other words, don’t wa it until you’re a big company to consult a tax specialist. It pays to put the right structure in place from the start. “We see a lot of situations where the corporate structure of a family business or group of companies has become extremely messy and it puts the business owner at a distinct disadvantage,” Wight notes. “T h is is especia l ly com mon for businesses that are in the growth or maturity phase.” Very often the business has come th roug h a period of

“Generally speaking, there is no single ‘right’ structure for a business, but there is a ‘best’ structure for every situation.”

“Tax is a critical component to almost any business decision, but it’s not the only consideration.” MICHAEL JOHNSON CPA, CA – BUSINESS ADVISOR, MNP TERRACE


rapid change and growth and has started to generate excess funds, accumulate significant b u si ness a ssets or add new business lines. While these are all good things on the surface, they can actually start to cause problems if the business is not structured correctly. “You r cor porate str uctu re not only impacts the amount of funds that can be extracted from the eventual sale of your business through the Lifetime

Everything Counts CORPORATE TAX


Can Make a Big Difference

Capital Gains Exemption, but it can impact asset protection, income splitting opportunities and estate planning concerns,” Wight explains. “In addition, we commonly see businesses w it h on ly one sh a rehold er, which results in lost tax planning opportunities.” Fortunately, it is possible to reorganize your corporation to fix some of these common problems and put proper tax planning strategies in place.

But it’s important to consider the big pictu re a nd not look at your corporate structure in isolation. “Ta x is a critica l component to a l mos t a ny b u si ne ss decision, but it’s not the only consideration,” adv ises M ichael Johnson, a business advisor in MNP’s Terrace office. “A ny th i ng we do from a ta x perspective needs to help the client move closer to their objectives – whether business or

You structure your business to produce the best results. Your tax strategy should be no different. At MNP we look at every detail. We know the requirements and will customize a strategy that effectively minimizes your tax obligations with solutions that are practical for your specific business - putting more revenue to your bottom line. Fort St. John Julie Ziebart, CPA, CA T: 250.794.5104

Prince George & Vanderhoof Mindy Wight, CPA, CA T: 250.596.4900

Terrace Michael Johnson, CPA, CA T: 250.635.4925

personal. It comes back to what you want to achieve.” That’s why the taxation specialists at M NP work closely with the firm’s other business advisors and professionals to help clients look at their situation from all angles. Johnson uses a medical analogy to explain how this plays out in practice. “If you are not feeling well, you go to your family doctor who will diagnose the problem and either recommend an appropriate treatment or refer you to a specialist for further assessment,” he explains. “Our business advisors play a similar role in that we help you assess the overall health of your business, clarify your goals, identify specific challenges and opportunities, and then work with you to develop solutions and bring in the appropriate specialists as needed.” I n some cases, that mea ns pulling in a corporate restructuring specialist like Wight. But it could just as easily lead to a conversation with a different type of tax specialist. “For example, if we are working with a business owner who is expanding into the United States, we’ll involve our crossborder tax specialists,” Johnson notes. “Other clients may be having issues with PST or GST, so we’ll involve an indirect tax specialist. It’s whatever the client needs.” Other speciality ta x services offered by M N P i nclude p erson a l a nd cor p orate ta x compliance, transfer pricing, Scientific and Experimental Development tax credits, and helping clients dealing with tax disputes federal or provincial tax authorities. “At the end of the day, our goal is to be our clients’ partner in business,” Johnson concludes. “Whether we are working with a small owner-managed business, a h ig h net wor t h professional or a large corporate group, our goal is to tailor a strategy that makes sense for their business and their goals.”


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FORESTRY & MINING Primary Resource Industries Vibrant Part Of Economic Mix Forestry & Mining: The Engine That Drives The Economy Of Northern BC

Owned by Canfor, the Northwood Pulp Mill near Prince George is a key component of the region’s forest industry


ritish Columbia was built on the wealth of its extensive natural resources, and on the vision and planning of the industry pioneers who first helped to open up the province. Northern British Columbia in particular continues to be the main storehouse of the province’s natural resources treasures. Forestry, mining and the oil and gas sectors continue to be the fuel that powers the engine of the BC economy in general and the north in particular. “A huge part of what we do is talk to the public about the forest sector. It’s a very important industry in the province of British Columbia, but sometimes people can view it as a ‘sunset industry’ and that’s simply not the case,” ex pla i ned Susan Yurkovich, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the BC Council of Forest Industries (COFI). “The forest industry generated $12 billion in GDP (Gross Domestic Product), it’s a vast amount of the exports that go out of the province, the industry employs 65,000 or so workers directly and

another 145,000 jobs are forestdependent and is the main industry supporting something like 140 communities in the province. So it continues to be a vital industry for the province.” COFI has been created to effectively be the voice of the BC interior forest industry – which covers Northern British Columbia but not coastal BC operations. COFI’s members are involved in all aspects of the industry and produce lumber, pulp and paper, panels and engineered wood products at more than 60 facilities across the interior. A renewable resource, the forest industry is actively involved in reforestation and site enhancement. Provincial government statistics show that more than 7.5 billion trees have been planted in the province since 1930, with about 210 million seedlings planted in the province every year. “What we work with is a green and renewable product. Forests are a huge part of the climate SEE FORESTRY & MINING | PAGE 8

LOMAK BULK CARRIERS CORP. 6555 Pacific Street, Prince George, B.C. 250.561.1000

Lomak Bulk Carriers Corp specializes in hauling bulk forest products including chips, sawdust, shavings and hog fuel for the forest industry and mining products including ore concentrates, coal, petroleum products, and grinding media for the mining industry as well as other general freight. We take great pride in our excellent safety record, the premium service we consistently provide to our customers and our family of dedicated employees.

Head office is based out of Prince George Operations in Tumbler Ridge, Mackenzie, Campbell River B.C. and Grande Prairie Alberta.



APRIL 2017


change solution and it’s an industry that will be here for a long time,” Yurkovich said. Approximately 95 percent of BC’s forests are publicly owned allowing the Province to help determine where, when and how forest resources can be used for the best long-term benefit for its citizens. In addition about 14 percent of BC’s forestlands have been set aside as parks and protected areas, with additional areas under special management for values such as old-growth, water, species and ecosystems at risk, wildlife habitat, scenic values, cultural features and others. Another key pillar of the Northern BC economy is the mining sector. While not on the same scale as the forest industry, and a sector that has experienced some ups and downs in recent decades, the provincial mining industry is currently experiencing resurgence. The BC mining sector focuses on a number of different materials with coal, copper, gold and molybdenum being among the most sought after commodities. In 2016 mining activity, primarily from the north, extracted commodities with a value in excess of $6.3 billion. The provincial mining sector SEE FORESTRY & MINING | PAGE 9

DELTA, BC - HEAD OFFICE 9076 River Road Toll Free: (800)891-8858 Tel: (604) 940-0210

The Red Chris copper and gold mine located near Dease Lake is owned and operated by Imperial Metals

CALGARY, AB 7288 - 84th Street SE Toll Free: (877) 720-7171 Tel: (403) 720-7100

WINNIPEG, MB 415 Lucas Avenue Toll Free: (866) 397-5524 Tel: (204) 940-7364

EDMONTON, AB 15205 131 Ave NW Toll Free: (800) 610-1019 Tel: (780) 447-7373

NANAIMO, BC 1801 Flagstone Road Tel: (250) 616-5979


APRIL 2017

The Ridley Terminals Inc. coal port near Prince Rupert is a major conduit for coal being shipped to Asia


is also a major employer in the province. Government statistics indicate that BC mining companies in 2015 employed more than 13,000 direct mining and exploration employees, with nearly 17,500 additional

workers involved with the refining and processing of mined materials. “Mining represents a significant part of the provincial economy. BC was essentially built on the resource sectors, forestry and mining primarily. Today British Columbia is in a very good position as far SEE FORESTRY & MINING | PAGE 10


Contact: | 604-882-7084 Quality Service Driven by Excellence and Integrity




APRIL 2017

The mining and sale of coal to Asian markets, used primarily in steel manufacture, is another major provincial export


as the diversity of the economy is concerned,” explained Karina Briño, President and CEO of the Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC). Established through an Act of the BC Legislature in 1901 to represent the interests of BC’s mining industry, MABC is one of the oldest industry associations in the province. Representing the collective needs and interests of operating coal, metal and industrial mineral mining companies in the province, the Association is in essence the predominant voice

of mining in British Columbia. “The primary resource industries provide literally thousands of jobs in the province – jobs that many rural communities, particularly in the north are depending on. A lot of what we do is to ensure that both the government and the general public are aware of the importance of the resource sectors. The thing to remember about industries such as forestry and mining is that it’s not just about the direct jobs they create, but the many indirect jobs dependent on supporting the industries. Mining is SEE FORESTRY & MINING | PAGE 11


BC mining operations provide stable employment for its workers, sometimes for generations of workers











APRIL 2017


The BC forest industry adds more than $12 billion to the Province of British Columbia’s Gross Domestic Product


often the main employer in many smaller communities, providing opportunities for the local

people.” For the future one of the main focuses of both primary industries is in the recruiting and training the next generation of resource sector employees. As

with most areas of commerce in the province, the aging of the population is presenting some excellent opportunities for those just entering the workforce, or those still in University.

“A large part of the work COFI does is to attract and retain people to our sector because as with many other resource sectors in the province we have an aging demographic. As those people

age and head into retirement we need to replace those people,” Yurkovich explained. “The forest industry today is SEE FORESTRY & MINING | PAGE 12

NORTHERN DEVELOPMENT OPENS DOORS FOR FOREST INNOVATION Local and regional economies impacted by the Pine Beetle can access up to $50,000


RINCE GEORGE – For the 2017 fiscal year, Northern Development Initiative Trust (NDIT) has budgeted $500,000 for investing in small and mediumsized businesses related to the forestry industry through their newest grant program, the Forest Innovation Fund. The goal of the program is not only to create new jobs and increase revenue in Central and Northern British Columbia, but to focus on local and regional economies impacted by the Pine Beetle and the anticipated fibre supply reduction in coming years. “This is an opportunity to leverage and complement existing internal and external funding programs,” said Renata King, director of business development. “We’re looking for projects that could create more efficiencies for the industry and for the development of new products,” King added. A recent recipient is creating a more efficient and safer method of harvesting wood from steep slope areas and another is researching value-added products extracted

from wood waste. “Utilizing every bit of fibre from a decreasing fibre supply means looking at everything from harvesting methods to wood waste,” said Sara Hipson, manager, business development. “One company is looking at ways of extracting byproducts from wood fibre for use in the agriculture and the pharmaceutical industries.” With the Pine Beetle affecting so much of the forested areas in the region, there is an increased need for harvesting wood from more remote and challenging areas. “Technology that can shorten the distance or cut harvesting costs, positively impacts the overall economy,” Hipson said adding that, the fund is also supporting a company developing software that will help logging contractors monitor their productivity by tracking and analyzing key measurables within their operation.” “This is a two-year program,” King said. “In 2016, 97 per cent of the $500,000 budget was approved in support of 12 projects. Businesses can reach out with their ideas for a free consultation and the opportunity to help support local economies with innovative new ideas.” Northern Development Initiative Trust is at 1268 5th Avenue in Prince George

FOREST INNOVATION FUND Supporting the research and development of innovative technologies and new or improved products that help optimize the fibre supply in Mountain Pine Beetle affected areas with grant funding up to $50,000



APRIL 2017

“BC was essentially built on the resource sectors, forestry and mining primarily.” KARINA BRIÑO PRESIDENT & CEO, MINING ASSOCIATION OF BRITISH COLUMBIA


not your father’s forest industry. It has become a high tech sector as there is a lot of technology employed in our facilities – from GPS (Global Positioning System) and drones and LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) – systems requiring highly skilled people. It’s definitely an excellent career path for anyone just entering the workforce.” Briño echoed the need to bring

Lumber produced in Northern British Columbia’s forests is sought after by customers from around the world a new generation of workers and leaders into the BC mining industry. “Mining has a very mature workforce so recruiting for

the next generation is certainly something we’ve been working on for a number of years now. Going forward, as people retire,

we’re going to be needing new people, and mining is a good paying choice for many,” she said. To learn more please visit the

Council of Forest Industries website at and the Mining Association of BC website at:

Dual Powered Road Trains An Industry Game-Changer K-Line Trailer’s Massive Dual Powered Ore Trucks Have A Global Potential


ANGLEY – Already an industry leader in the design and development of custom products to enhance and benefit the trucking and transportation industries, K-Line Trailers Ltd’s latest project could be a mining industry game changer on a global scale. “We were approached by Western Star a few years ago and they told us they had a customer that wanted to do something different with long-distance rock and ore mining,” explained Kelly Knight, K-Line’s Marketing Manager and daughter of company Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Les Knight. “The company’s mine was in a very rugged location (in Northern BC) and it needed to move ore several kilometers from Point A to Point B. Working with the customer and Western Star we developed our unique Dual Powered Road Trains.” The Dual Powered Road Train is a massive side-dumping six unit carrier that sees the first car in the train equipped with its own power supply, to supplement the motive power provided by the tractor unit. Working in concert much like paired locomotives, the two power units share the burden, reducing wear and stress on the truck and allow for the

“The system has a global potential but was designed in Canada for a Canadian customer located on the frontier.” KELLY KNIGHT MARKETING MANAGER, K-LINE TRAILERS

The huge ore haulers have the potential to carry as much as 216,000 kilograms of ore at one time movement of truly massive payloads of up to 216,000 kg! The Road Train also requires significantly less road allowance than traditional hauler, so there is less environmental impact and infrastructure cost savings for the customer. K-Line has just delivered its

fifth Road Train, four are now part of a fleet operating in the Nor t hwest Ter r itor ies, a nd sees a tremendous potential for this sort of transport technology to be employed at a variety of mines across North America and beyond. “To me this is a real Canadian

success story. The system has a global potential but was designed in Canada for a Canadian customer located on the frontier. It doesn’t get more Canadian than that,” Knight said. To learn more please visit the company’s website at:


APRIL 2017

“We take pride in providing an atmosphere where our employees can thrive, balancing their personal and working lives.”



Barb Daigle, UNBC’s Associate Vice President of People, Organizational Design and Risk, takes pride in her university’s work culture


parents on staff have generous parental leave top-up payments: 52 weeks for moms and 35 weeks for fathers and adoptive parents. A l l of th is mea ns U N BC is positioned to grow in the right ways. UNBC President Dr. Daniel Weeks describes the future like this: “Through teaching and research, UNBC is inspiring the next generation of leaders for our province and our country. “As one of British Columbia’s top employers, UNBC will be able to continue to attract and retain the outstanding faculty and staff who facilitate so many leadership opportunities for our


students.” Daigle echoes the importance of UNBC’s pro-employee culture for its continued growth. Formal honours such as being named one of BC’s Top 100 Employers are all part of building a u n iversity of u npa ra l leled quality. “ U N B C fa c u lt y a nd s t a f f are continually working hard to build a welcoming and engaging workplace community focused on collaboration,” she says. “Awards, including being named one of British Columbia’s top 100 employers, are tools UNBC can use to recruit and retain outstanding faculty and staff.”


ha nge is happen i ng every where, it is continuous, constant, and affects our workplaces. From implementing new processes, to moving offices, to changes i n tea m st r uctu re - how we deal with the change and how we support our teams through those changes is critical. These days, it seems that everything needs to be done faster, better, cheaper and in many cases our workplaces are impacted by external events beyond our control. Our clients have higher expectations, demanding more and more of us. Add the speed of change in technology and employees can become overwhelmed and stressed. Most people tend to have a natural resistance to change, and prefer to hang on to what

they know. Even though the rea son for ch a nge m ay be positive, employees may feel threatened by the process. In the workplace, a common reason for the resistance to change is the perception that it will increase demand on employees. It is therefore up to you to ensure that you r employees u nderstand that the expectation is not that they must work harder or longer, but differently, to ensure greater efficiency. Neither is the expectation that they do more with less, but again, that they learn to do it differently. Another key to success when i ntroduci ng a workplace change is effective communic a t i o n . W i t h o u t e a rl y a n d regular communications, employees can become confused and anxious. Develop a communications plan and ensure that it includes not only the what, but also the why and the how. Providing the context for change will increase both trust and confidence in the process. A nd , b e hone s t a b out wh at you don’t know. Furthermore, communication is a two-way process and should also include i nput from you r employees, allowing them to be an active part of the change. By being included they will find it easier to adapt to the new ways.

C h a n ge i n t h e w o r k p l a c e t a k e s p l a n n i n g i n o rd e r to achieve the outcome that you want. Keep the following steps in mind: ■ Communicate – why the change is needed, what will be the process and how will it affect indiv idua ls as wel l as the overall organization; ■ Provide opportunity for i nput a nd feedback – ensu re t hat employees are engaged all the way through the process and seek their ideas when possible; ■ Identi fy a nd recru it those that are more comfortable with change and have them suppor t the others; ■ Communicate the results to ensure minimum resi sta nce to a ny f ut u re change; W hen it comes to ch a nges in the workplace, plan, communicate and then communicate again. Keep in mind that no m atter t he reason or t he effectiveness of the process, change comes with emotions. Christine is with Chemistry Consulting and can be reached at



APRIL 2017

Terrace Nass Valley village, Gitwinksihlkw, has unveiled their plans to attract tourists in the area and promote outdoor activities. Preliminary plans include a welcome house, gift shop and care, outdoor gym stations, interpretive signage, a river walk, and repairing a suspension bridge build in the mid-1960s. Community leaders have presented their plan entitled: the ‘Nisga’a Village of Gitwinksihlkw Main Street Experience’ project before Terrace City Council and are in the process of applying for grants. Northwest Community College (NWCC) has narrowed their list of possibilities for a name change to: Sitka College, Skeena College, North Coast College, or Coast Mountain College. Changing the name of the institution is a component of a rebranding campaign, and the result of a desire to do away with the word ‘community’ in the institution’s title due to perceived limitations. Once a name is chosen, the name change must be approved by the BC Government before official changes are made.

connecting export-ready SMEs with helpful contacts, programs and services. The program is run by Community Futures in Prince Rupert in partnership with the Ministry of International Trade and Responsible for Asia Pacific Strategy and Multiculturalism. The team at Realty Executives Prince Rupert extend congratulations to Thai Pham on being named as the recipient for the BCNREB MLS Award for 2016. Thai Pham is among the top two selling realtors in the city.

Peter Demedeiros has joined the Terrace Sales Team at MacCarthy GM, on 5004 Highway 16 West.

Prince Rupert The Argosy, a business that showcases local west coast art, vintage and antique furniture, and unique collectible items, took home top honors as Best Marketer at the 14th annual Small Business BC Awards. Nominations for next year’s awards will open on October 1, 2017. Gitga’at First Nation of Hartley Bay has signed an LNG benefits agreement with the province on March 29th. According to the agreement, the Band will collaborate with the province to develop the liquefied natural gas industry, and will receive $1.5 million in base funding. More support and funding will be made available in the event that an LNG project presents a final investment decision by March 31, 2019. The provincial government has allotted $250,000 to a pilot program called ‘Export Navigator’ for small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) in northern BC. The funding originates from the BC Government’s Rural Economic Development Strategy, and will go towards

After serving the Prince Rupert area for 94 years as MacKenzie Furniture, the furniture store has changed its name to Ashley Homestore. The new store held their grand opening on March 25th.

Prince George

The BC Northern Real Estate Board (BCNREB) recognized three Terrace members for their exceptional sales achievements on March 17th at the MLS Awards for 2016. Terrace recipients were: Rick McDaniel, Dave Materi, and Darren Beaulieu.

After 28 years working in the Safeway Deli, long-time employee Emmy Schlenker worked her last shift at the deli on February 21st. Schlenker has chosen to retire from the workforce.

the property this fall. Ray-Mont Logistics has command of the facility, which is designed to help Canadian agricultural crops connect with international markets and broaden the Port of Prince Rupert’s intermodal freight transportation system. The clearing of the facility’s site began recently, with the goal of having the facility operational by this coming fall.

Above: Thai Pham of Realty Executives Prince Rupert has named Prince Rupert as one of the country’s top twentyfive small town tourist destinations for a Canada Day visit this coming summer. The North Pacific Cannery National Historic Site and the Museum of Northern BC were named as two significant destinations to visit for Canada’s sesquicentennial this year. With the Port of Prince Rupert now ready to accommodate at least double the amount of passengers from the year before, the cruise industry has dramatically increased. The Port has released their cruise schedule for the summer, which includes 25 ships with passengers totaling approximately 17,000 docking in the Prince Rupert harbor. A partnership between Tourism Prince Rupert, the Prince Rupert Port Authority and local businesses has also been credited with helping along the growth and success of the industry. An estimated 40 new jobs openings have been added to Ridley Island to operate a containerized cargo facility that is being added to

Prince George tech company, Innovation Central Society, and the Bulkley Valley Economic Development Association in Smithers are both partners in a BC Innovation Council entrepreneurial program to help develop ideas into successful business ventures. Since its formation five years ago, the Venture Acceleration Program is announced to have generated 1,640 jobs, over $81.6 million in revenue throughout BC, and attracted $196 million in investment. The program helps innovators and tech developers bring their ideas more quickly to the market, helping them hone business skills and make connections within the sector. The Prince George Chamber of Commerce has selected its new board at their Annual General Meeting, held on April 4th. The board has undergone a number of changes, namely the stepping down of Chamber CEO, Christie Ray, after four years in the position. The new executive for 2017 consists of: Corey Naphtali of KPMG – President, Cindi Pohl with Waste Management – Past President, Lorna Wendling of Deloitte – VicePresident of Finance, Bill Quinn of NuStride Executive Coaching – Vice-President, and Frankie Albano of TBJ LLP – Vice-President. The director team includes: Paul Mercer of RBC, Daniel Weeks of UNBC, Derek Dougherty of Canadian Western Bank, Laurie Dillman of Go Team Business & People Development, Ray Noonan of Northern BC Scotiabank, Roberta Stewart of Heather Sadler Jenkins LLP, Kara Biles of Canfor, Kyle Sampson of Pacific Western Brewing Company, Kiel Giddens of Trans Canada Pipelines, and Kallie Smith of the Prince George Aboriginal Business and Community Development Centre.

Canfor Corporation, one of their locations being Prince George, was named as one of BC’s Top Employers for 2017. The company provides formal mentoring options, subsidizes professional accreditation, provides, in-house and online training, and gives tuition subsidies for courses at other institutions. The corporation also provides retirement planning services, with a defined benefit pension plan, and allows head office employees free access to a shared recreational facility. Construction has officially begun for the College of New Caledonia’s (CNC) new $15 million Heavy Mechanical Trades Training facility at the Prince George campus. The trades facility is approximately 2,326 squaremetres and will accommodate the 251 existing full-time equivalent (FTE) spaces, in addition to up to 48 new student FTEs for the heavy-duty equipment technician, and truck and transport mechanics program. The BC Government has announced that the Prince George Airport will receive $1,931,458 in funding from the BC Air Access Program this year. The funding will be used for two projects – an elevator for barrier free terminal access, and apron cement replacement. Prince George is the recipient of $500,000 in funding from BikeBC for a new multi-use trail parallel to Highway 16 Frontage Road. The BC Northern Real Estate Board (BCNREB) has appointed their new Board of Directors for 2017-18, as of March 17th, featuring members: John Evans of Re/Max Coast Mountains Prince Rupert as President, Court Smith of Sutton Cariboo Realty as Vice-President, and William Lacy of Re/Max Quesnel Realty as Past President. The directors include: Shawna Kinsley, Bob Quinlan, and Leah Mayer, serving the Fraser Fort George Region; Mike Austin, a Non-REALTOR® Director serving the Cariboo Region; Wynnette Lowes, serving the Peace River / For Nelson-Laird Region; and Sandra Hinchcliffe, serving the Bulkley Nechako Region.

Fort St. John The Fort. St. John Chamber of Commerce has named their new board of directors for 2017, which features: Nelson Stowe, Ideal Office Solutions – President; Tony Zabinsky, Scotia Bank – Past

President; Christopher Flury, SMi Faciliop – 1st Vice President; Julie Rogers, City of Fort St. John – 2nd Vice President; Julie Ziebart, MNP – Treasurer; Directors – Ramona McDonald of Complete Safety Services, Kathy Miller of Re-Max, Mindy Bing of Driving Force, Nadya Mclean of Home2 Suites by Hilton, Jesse Braun of Sun Life Financial, Jason Morris of Chances Casino; Miranda Polgar, NPSCU – Chair of the Synergy Committee; Lilia Hansen – Executive Director; Megan Hansen – Executive Director; Moira Green, City of Fort St. John – BC Chamber of Commerce; and Brent Taillefer District of Taylor Representative. Steelhead LNG has secured a partnership with Huu-ay-aht First Nation for their proposed project in building an export terminal on Vancouver Island. In a referendum, the Band saw 70 per cent approval from the nation’s 750 members. Steelhead LNG is working through the process of approvals for their proposed project and a decision on the final investment is not anticipated until 2019, with export projected for 2024.

Quesnel A local couple, Paul and Terry Nichols, were presented with a Medal of Good Citizenship by BC’s Minister of Labour, Shirley Bond, on behalf of Premier Christy Clark. The award recognizes exceptional service, and community volunteer contributions. The Nichols have spent many hours bringing awareness to the challenges that Canadian soldiers encounter when transitioning back into civilian life. Highway 97, south of Quesnel, will receive improvements as part of the third phase of BC’s Cariboo Connector Strategy. The $200-million improvements will include expansion to four lanes in a key section of the highway, in addition to intersection and safety upgrades. Engineering and design work will begin immediately on the project.

Smithers The provincial government has announced that Highway 16 will be undergoing construction to create two passing lanes. The project is in response to increasing commercial traffic for the Port of Prince Rupert, and construction will begin in June with an estimated completion for the fall. The Smithers Cohousing Association is considering construction of a cohousing project in town, consisting of individual, individually-owned units with shared common areas such as a kitchen, garden or exercise space. The project will take a few years to realize, including the process of drafting official plans, finding land, and gaining approval, but introductory sessions are currently being held in the community on the subject.


APRIL 2017

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The First Nations Major Projects Coalition has developed a new strategy for impending projects. The coalition is designed to help its 31 northern BC First Nations members when dealing with projects such as pipelines and other major projects. Assistance is provided in the means of giving guidance on financial term sheets, the development of environmental standards, project assessments, and models to access capital. The Smithers Airport has become the proposed location for a new BV Search and Rescue facility. The Search and Rescue organization is looking to consolidate their equipment into

one location, and would use their new proposed location to help further develop the airport. Terms of the land use agreement are under negotiation and approval from council is currently being sought by BV Search and Rescue. The federal government has approved an underground gold and copper mining project, Kemess Underground Project, which is located about 250 kilometres north of Smithers. The government deemed the project unlikely to cause significant negative environmental effects, however, the project proposed by AuRico Metals Inc., will still need to abide by 87 conditions that are legally binding. Their goal is

still to eliminate the impacts of the mining project on the surrounding environment.


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APRIL 2017

PUBLISHER | Lise MacDonald, EDITOR | John MacDonald SALES | Dan Stelck, WRITERS | Beth Hendry-Yim, David Holmes, Kristin van Vloten




ritish Columbia has the strongest economy in Canada, leading all provinces for the past two years. There is one thing that could dera i l t h at, a s ea rly a s t h i s spring: An NDP government. B.C. suffered greatly during the NDP’s Lost Decade from 19912001 that created a made-in-B.C. recession during their last reign of error. Those who were in business then remember it clearly, and shudder at the possible consequences of déjà vu happening all over again May 9. While some may not hold personal memories of the fiscal pain inflicted the last time the NDP was in power here, they can cast their eyes eastward to Alberta, where the NDP’s (Rachel) Notley Crew is driving that once robust province into deep, deep generational debt. They’re only halfway

through their term, and working Albertans are in panic mode, which will surely help galvanize the non-NDP vote into one option for their next provincial election. Why is it like this whenever the NDP gains power? It’s because of the fiscal ideology that the NDP rank-and-file clings to. Philosophically, typical NDPers are wealth re-distributing socialists, who view business owners as greedy cash-grabbers whose profits only come from the backs of workers, and give it away where they choose. Any ascent to power is their chance for payback. They fail to realize that in order to spur investment, there must be an environment that allows people to benefit from their injection of capital: Profits. They view profits as excess and largesse, when really, profits are the result of success, the fuel that drives business, and thus the economy. Profitable businesses pay more taxes, and hire more workers, who also pay taxes – and those taxes pay for the social programs we all believe in. But in order to help those less fortunate, there must be something to give. NDP-style Robin Hood Economics, where they take from the so-called rich to give to the poor, punishes entrepreneurs

and investors and causes them to retreat. Thus there’s a whole lot less to help those in need in the end. The NDP says they support small business, but can they really say they don’t like business? (An oft-told 1990’s joke: “How do you open a small business in B.C. under the NDP? Open a large business. And wait.”) The NDP proves through their actions that business is their enemy, through punitive taxation, increased regulation and ultra-labour friendly legislation. B.C.’s healthy economy currently tops the country, and without a doubt, credit for this has to include the BC Liberal government under Premier Christy Clark. Clark’s stunning slap-down of the Adrian Dix-led NDP four years ago was borderline miraculous. T he disheveled Dix managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of v ictory when he unilaterally announced midcampaign that his government wouldn’t approve the twinning of the Kinder Morgan pipeline, instantly putting him at odds with middle class trades workers who earned their living from resources. Business braced for what the polls indicated was an inevitable NDP government by preparing

for the expected slowdown by ca ncel i ng projects, mov i ng assets, and ceasing to hire new workers. The election was preceded by an economic swoon, and it took months to regain the momentum that was lost, due to even the threat of another NDP government. The BC Liberals had given the province solid government for 12 years, but the party was clearly in need of a freshen-up. Along came the hard hat wearing Clark, whose relentless campaigning was unmatched. She looked fresh and sharp, relentlessly pounding a positive, jobs-first message that resonated with voters. W h i c h b r i n g s m e to t h i s: There’s nothing scarier than a Socialist in a suit. They look sharp and project well. They say things that people want to hear, albeit leaving out the most important of details, like: How do we pay for their shopping sprees? T he sca riest poi nt of a l l is that they look electable. They don’t appear at all like the radical revenue redistributors they are. They look like nice people. Harmless, even. Mike Harcourt is a case in point. As the former mayor of Vancouver, Harcourt’s resume undoubtedly helped him defeat Rita Johnston and the remnants of Bill Vander Zalm’s

Social Credit in 1991, ushering in what turned out to be 10 dark years. While other provinces prospered, B.C. suffered, and that was magnified by Harcourt successor Glen Clark and another NDP term, after a typical NDP “beware-the-Ides-of-March” action to oust their leader. Business was bad in B.C. under the NDP. Very bad, and the provincial deficit skyrocketed. Workers left the province in droves, looking for well paying jobs. Current NDP leader, the dapper John Horgan, floats plenty of mixed messages, but apparently doesn’t have the full-throated backing of his MLA colleagues. Nevertheless, the NDP machine is a very real threat, and can never be taken lightly. They have a solid base of around 30 per cent that never wavers in their support, including organized labour. It’s bewildering how non-government labour continues to pay much of the freight for the NDP; despite the fact the party’s policies choke off the very jobs their members hold. There is one thing that can cause B.C.’s economy to come to a screeching halt: An NDP government. On May 9, voters will decide the next four years of B.C.’s fiscal future, depending on where they decide to mark their X.

FEDS PAINT MISLEADING PICTURE OF CANADA’S MIDDLE CLASS Based on a host of indicators, Canada’s middle class is actually doing much better relative to past decades



illed as a pre-budget briefing, federal minister and well-regarded economist Jean-Yves Duclos recently gave a high profile presentation on the purported worrisome state of Canada’s middle class. One can only surmise the government is trying to create angst among Ca nad ia ns to justi f y pol icy choices taken in the upcoming

federal budget. The reality is very different from the misleading picture painted by Duclos. Far from stagnating or falling behind, Canada’s middle class is actually doing much better relative to past decades based on a host of indicators. Duclos nonetheless cla i ms median income - the income level where half the population has higher and the other half has lower income - has been stagnating, despite the fact that his own chart shows median income rising since the mid-1990s. In general, however, claims that Canada’s middle class is stagnating - or worse, falling behind - are based on incomplete analyses. F i rs t, t hey tend to e x a mine income before ta xes and

government transfers (the GST credit, child benefit payments, etc.), failing to account for important changes in taxes and government transfers over time. What ultimately matters is how much a family has available to spend (and to save) after it has paid all taxes and received all transfers. Second, too often analyses fail to account for the fact that the average family is smaller today than in the past. This matters because it means a family’s income now spreads across fewer people. Any measure of economic well-being should account for the resources available to each family member. Finally, there’s a well-documented problem with the standard measure of inflation, which overestimates the increase in overall prices. Using the standard measure to adjust for inflation will understate the real value of current income relative to past income and give the appearance that median income is increasing less than it actually is. After accounting for all these

considerations, a recent Fraser Institute study found that median income in Canada has in fact increased by 52 per cent since the mid-1970s. This pronounced growth can hardly be described as stagnation. Duclos makes another puzzling claim - that costs for essentials are increasing. This overlooks the reality that spending on household necessities (food, clothing and housing) has fallen as a share of the average family’s income over the past half century. Specifically, the average Canadian family now spends 38 per cent of its income on necessities, down from 56 per cent in 1961. While more of the average family’s budget is consumed by a larger tax bill, the declining share spent on necessities is a sign of economic improvement. Or look at it another way. The average Canadian worker now works a lot fewer hours to purchase common household items, many of which have dramatically improved in quality. For example, in 1976, a Canadian earning the average hourly wage had to work

109 hours to buy a microwave. Today, a much better microwave (given improvements in technology) costs only 10 work-hours. Similarly, a colour television used to cost the equivalent of 113 hours of work compared to just 12 workhours now for a much sleeker TV with the same screen size. And the list goes on. But there’s perhaps no better indication of economic progress than the significant economic mobility enjoyed by the vast majority of low-income Canadians who over time rise up the income ladder, enjoying marked gains in economic well-being. Despite the doom and gloom rhetoric, and misleading claims by Minister Duclos, Canada’s middle class is doing better today. Yet this progress may be threatened by government policies aimed at curing a disease that doesn’t exist. Charles Lammam is director of fiscal studies and Hugh MacIntyre is a policy analyst at the Fraser Institute (

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APRIL 2017




ave you ever lost a sale? Did you ta ke it personally and walk around thinking and feeling like a failure for awhile? The bad news is that failures will probably continue to happen in your life. The good news is that you can choose to see your failures as opportunities from which to learn. If you failed at a goal, a task, a sale, or anything else in your life, know that you as a person did not fail. You, the person, are made up of your character, and you, the role, is the role you are committed to (mother, father, teacher, friend). You as a person do not fail, but you in a certain role might not succeed at everything you try. The real you is defined by your self-identity, and maintained by your sense of self-worth. For

example, you might be determined, have integrity, follow your heart, or listen well. T he role you i s def i ned by your performance in a specific role, and sometimes those roles c a n b e con f u se d w it h the real you (for instance, as a spouse, a parent, a coach, or a sa lesperson). Even though you might not always exceed ex pectations i n those roles, t h a t d o e s n’ t d e v a l u e y o u r self-worth. Even if you might acknowledge this reality intellectually, it can be a lot harder to accept it emotionally. So before you can learn from your failures, fi rst, you need to lea rn how to fail. Or rather, how to react when you inev itably do fail, b y p ut t i n g t he sit u at ion i n perspective. N o t m e e t i n g a n e x p e c t ation or goal does give you the chance to define where there’s room for improvement. As a salesperson, this means that not getting an appointment or closing a sale does not mean you have failed. It just means you have room to improve your sales approach. To stop taking failures personally, begin to try to think about them objectively. If this h app ene d to some one el se, while you would sympathize,


you would also likely give advice on how to do better next time. Do the same for yourself. Analyze your approach, the behavior of your prospective(s) during conversations, and the deci sion-m a k i ng moments. Think about changes you can make that might bring different reactions each step of the way. You will know when you have learned to accept failure as a necessary step in improving your skills, rather than taking it personally, when you start thinking about each situation as a lesson to learn from. Once you realize that you as a person have not failed, you can come to terms with your results and begin to use them to accelerate your success. Recognizing failure as an experience to learn from gives you freedom to try new methods, explore different creative options, and make goals outside of your comfort zone. John Glennon is the owner of Insight Sales Consulting Inc, an authorized Sandler Training Licensee. He can be reached at jglennon@sandler. com, toll free at 1-866-645-2047 or visit Copyright 2013 Sandler Training and Insight Sales Consulting Inc. All rights reserved.





here is a lot going on at the South Cariboo Chamber of Commerce, It’s time to make sure you are register to vote in the Provincial Election May 9 th , 2017. To get prepared for your vote you can attend the All Candidates Forum the South Cariboo Chamber of Commerce will be sponsoring with the Northern BC Real Estate Board. The forum will be April 28th, 2017 at the Valley Room in 100 Mile House. Doors open at 6:30pm. There are three ways to get your questions answered. Submit your questions early by visiting www.southcariboochamber. org and either submit on line or download the paper document and email to manager@, submit a question on the evening of the event, or let your voice be heard when questions are taken from the floor. All three candidates will be in attendance for the Cariboo Chilcotin Riding. MLA Donna Barnett (BC Liberal), Candidate Sally Watson (NDP) and Candidate Rita Giesbrecht (BC Green Party). ■■■ The South Cariboo Chamber of Commerce is very excited to bring to the South Cariboo the 1st Annual South Cariboo Summer Festival August 11th and 12th, 2017. A dedicated committee has been brought together to build a Festival that everyone can enjoy. The main focus of the event is to promote our businesses and organizations with the celebrations of a Summer Festival. The South Cariboo Chamber of Commerce Simmer Festival will be taking over the South Cariboo Rec Centre and all the surrounding grounds for indoor and outdoor events. T he com m ittee has pu l led together some amazing events. Attendees will be able to participate in judging of a food competition with restaurants competing for bragging rights, enjoy a l l day l ive music a nd entertainment, enter to win the first place ribbon in many

competitions, and even register to knock sky diving off your bucket list. A Home Run Derby Competition will be running and don’t miss out on the Lawn Mower Races. There will be a lively Kids Zone with Uncle Chris the Clown and the Famous Local Mascot Games. A beer gardens and food vendors will be there to satisfy all your cravings. A horse shoe demonstration for your interest, sheep herding and even a crib tournament. The South Cariboo Chamber of Commerce is proud to bring the South Cariboo this event. Programs will be available in June and booth rental for the trade fair is available now. ■■■ The South Cariboo Chamber of Commerce Annual General Meeting is scheduled for May 10th, 2017 at 12:00pm. Let us buy you lunch! Come and see what we have been up to and what we are planning in the future. To attend please RSVP to manager@ Shelly Morton is the Executive Director of the South Cariboo Chamber of Commerce. To reach her, please email manager@, or call 250.395.6124.

2016 and 3,626 in 2015. Seabourn Cruise Line is returning to Alaska for the first time in 15 years, and will include Prince Rupert on six voyages of the 450-passenger Seabourn Sojourn beginning on June 23. Crystal Cruises will return to Prince Rupert for three calls in 2017, after the successful inaugural visit of its Crystal Serenity ship in 2016 on the heels of its iconic sailing of the Northwest Passage. Norwegian Cruise Line is coming back to Prince Rupert for the first time since 2011, with the two largest vessels of the 2017 season. T h e O c e a n i a R e gat t a w i l l re t u r n fo r s e v e n c a l l s t h i s season, bringing the largest sha re of P ri nce Ruper t passenger tra ffic w ith capacity for 4,788 guests. Regent Seven Seas Cruises w ill sail the Seven Seas Mariner into the Prince Rupert’s harbour for two calls, and Ponant’s 264-passenger Le Boreal will make one of the last calls of the season in September.

QUESNEL Bonanza Ledge Mine Restart Brings Jobs to the Cariboo With permits now in place, Barkerville Gold Mines Ltd. (BGM) is set to restart operations at its Bonanza Ledge mine site near Quesnel, creating around 90 jobs in the region. A M i n i s t r y of E nerg y a nd Mines statutory decision-maker has authorized BGM’s application to amend its Mines Act permit, allowing the company to start underground operations at the Bonanza Ledge gold mine site. The mine previously was an open pit operation from June 2014 to March 2015. BGM estimates its operations at the Bonanza Ledge Underground Mine will produce approximately 54,000 ounces of gold over the mine’s initial three year mine life. Under the conditions of its amended Mines Act permit, BGM is authorized to produce up to 150,000 tonnes per year. Ore from the Bonanza Ledge operations will be processed at BGM’s Quesnel River (QR) Mill located at the company’s QR Mine, 80 km east of the City of Quesnel. The mine is situated on the southwest flank of Barkerville Mountain, about three kilometres northwest of the Barkerville Historic Townsite.

BC Agrifood & Seafood Exports Grow 4 Years in a Row

British Colu mbia ag ri food a n d s e a fo o d p ro d u c e rs e xp or ted more products t h a n ever before in 2016, setting a new record for the fourth year in a row. 2016 exports reached a new h ig h of $3.8 bi l l ion, a nd a n increase of over $300 million from 2015, led by a $195.5 million increase (17%) in the export of BC seafood products, and an $104.6 million increase (4%) in agrifood products. The growth in 2016 exports is the fourth consecutive year of record ag ri foods ex por ts in B.C. and is over $1 billion (44%) higher than 2013, when $2.7 billion set the export record of the day. B r it i s h Colu m bi a e x p or ted 712 ty pes of foods to 160 markets in 2016, building on the demand for high-quality, trusted BC products, and the network British Columbians have with family, friends, and businesses all over the world. The BC government supports local businesses to reach new ma rkets th rough trade m iss i o n s , 15 i n t e r n a t i o n a l B C government trade offices, and participation in about 20 international agrifood and seafood trade events a year.

BC WorkSafe BC Refunds Welcomed by Small Businesses The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) on behalf of its 10,000 BC small business owners is pleased to see the BC govern ment w i l l e s t a b l i s h a n e w p o l i c y requiring WorkSafeBC to return funds to employers when they have a surplus of contributions from employers. In 2015, WorkSafeBC’s assets exceeded l i abi l it ies by $ 4.5 billion – meaning the fund is nearly 40 per cent over-funded. CFIB has been advocating for a threshold similar to what Alberta or Saskatchewan have put in place. Having a threshold will ensure the fund is not over f u nded b eyond wh at i s reasonably needed. WorkSafeBC has done a good job of keeping rates low a nd stable, providing predictability for employers. Small business owners care deeply about thei r employees’ sa fety a nd understand the importance of WorkSafeBC being adequately funded. However, being significantly overfunded is unfair to employers. CF I B h a s met w it h WorkSafeBC multiple times about t he f u nded posit ion, del ivering over 1,700 petitions from members about the issue. CFIB reminded them that employers are the only contributors to the fund, and excess funds should be retu rned to employers to re-invest in their business and employees.


APRIL 2017


Today located at 402 St Laurent Avenue, Big Country Printers’ origins can be traced back to the 1960’s

Print Shop Has Been Serving the Changing Needs of Its Clients Since 1968


UESNEL – It may be the better part of a year away, but at Big Country Printers they’re already getting ready to celebrate the company’s Golden Anniversary – 50 successful years in business. “There aren’t too many local companies that have been in business for 50 years, so it’s something we’re already very excited about,” explained company owner Gilbert Schotel. Big Cou nt r y P r i nters f i rst opened for business in 1968 and was originally launched as a companion print shop to the City’s local newspaper the Quesnel Cariboo Observer. That fixture in the community has been successfully serving the region since 1908. While originally an internal function the newspaper decided to operate the print shop

“Our team and the level of community involvement that everyone here shows is a huge part of our success.” GILBERT SCHOTEL OWNER, BIG COUNTRY PRINTERS

Big Country Printers also carries a wide range of goods including stationery products and arts supplies

Congratulations to Gilbert Schotel and Big Country Printers! Debbie Wiens, CPA, CGA 460 Reid Street Quesnel, BC P. 250.991.0940 TF. 1.888.991.0940

Tenline Sales Ltd. Western Canada’s Artist Materials Distributor Congratulates Big Country Printers The Cariboo’s Source for Quality Artist’s Materials


APRIL 2017

Big Country Printers and its staff offer support to many local groups and causes, including girls soccer as a separate corporate entity. Last year’s winner of the Quesnel Chamber of Commerce Business Person of the Year Award – Schotel has essentially grown up in the printing business, having taken over operation of the company from his parents Gary and Alida Schotel who moved to Quesnel from their native Holland in 1974. A printer by trade the elder Schotel had settled on Prince Albert, Saskatchewan as his potential Canadian destination. As that prairie community was essentially located in the middle of the country it seemed like the right place to settle for a pair of new arrivals. “Why did they settle in Quesnel? It all came down to Dad going to the barber,” Gilbert good naturedly explained. Before immigrating to Canada the senior Schotel stopped off at a barbershop in Rotterdam in the Netherlands for some tonsorial updating when an ad in a newspaper caught his eye. In an example of pure serendipity the Dutch newspaper, as unlikely as it seems, had a classified ad announcing the need for a printer in far off Quesnel, BC. That chance viewing of an advertisement saw him readjust his plans, and reset the stage for Gilbert Schotel’s future career and chamber accolades. “They were in the process of acquiring immigration status at that point, so for him to have a job

to go to went a long way toward them settling in Canada. I was actually born here in Quesnel in 1975, so if he hadn’t gone to the barber things would have been totally different for me,” he said. A full service commercial printer serving clients from all across the region, Big Country Printers is today heavily involved in any number of business related services including selling office furniture, stationery products, art supplies, promotional products, marketing trophies and engraving services and is now actively involved with producing trade show products such as banners and other booth-related materials. Located at 402 St Laurent Avenue and with a staff of seven, including its own in-house graphic design team, the print shop continues to serve its major industrial and commercial clients, but can also provide short run color duplicating and other services for small firms and individuals. “We still do a lot of printing and copying, but increasingly our design services are becoming a larger part of what we do for our customers. The days of black and white are gone, but there’s lots of color design so that’s where our in-house designers really come into their own,” Schotel explained. A fairly new addition to the company’s product line is its ra nge of trade show related

The iconic local print shop has the technology to handle any short run printing or duplicating assignment materials, including displays, sta nd up ba n ners a nd other marketing materials designed to used while on the road. “Designing materials with an across the board continuity is also very important. We can create trade show material that matches your letterhead and business card for example. We can provide a full gamut of products to allow you to present one clear brand for all of your promotional needs,” he said. A part of the community for nearly 50 years, while eagerly

embracing the latest technology and servicing the most current of marketing needs, Big Country Printers continues to be a one stop shop for individual and corporate duplication and promotional services. For Schotel, despite technology or trends, the longevity of the firm is a tribute to its greatest strength, it’s staff. “Our team and the level of community involvement that everyone here shows is a huge part of our success. Everyone who works here is passionate about

their community. Being a good corporate citizen I feel is a very important part of Big Country Printers,” he said. “We’ve been involved in everything from youth soccer to the arts. My staff and I are involved in a number of different areas in the community. The common thread here is that we’re all doing our part to make Quesnel an even more livable place, which I feel benefits everyone.” To learn more please visit the company’s Facebook page.

Business Examiner Peace Cariboo Skeena - April 2017  

Business Examiner Peace Cariboo Skeena includes business news from Fort St. John and Dawson Creek to Prince Rupert and Kitimat, and from 100...

Business Examiner Peace Cariboo Skeena - April 2017  

Business Examiner Peace Cariboo Skeena includes business news from Fort St. John and Dawson Creek to Prince Rupert and Kitimat, and from 100...