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KELOWNA Garry Tomporowski Architecture Ltd. is known for unique and individual designs


Sun Peaks Resort climbs to top of North American rankings PAGE 12


KAMLOOPS CHBA has a proud 50 year history of advocacy for the building industry


INDEX News Update




West Kelowna






Salmon Arm

Kamloops area ski hill named to Top 10 Family Ski Resorts in North America list


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AMLOOPS – Sun Peaks Resort is climbing higher. Top travel magazine, Condé Naste Traveler, recently awarded Sun Peaks Resort a spot in their Top 10 Family Ski Resorts in North America. Sun Peaks was one of only two Canadian resorts to be included, and the only Western Canadian resort on the list. Sun Peaks Resort has come a long way since the first public ski lodge was first opened on the site in 1961. Today, the scenic site, which is a 45-minute jaunt from Kamloops i n Br it ish Colu mbia’s Thompson-Okanagan region, has been transformed into an i nter n at ion a l ly re cog n i z e d summer and winter getaway with many amenities that currently comes second only to the renowned Whistler Blackcomb resort in B.C. T he site’s former Delta Sun Peaks Hotel took on a whole new identity last spring when t he long-t i me m a n a gement contract with Delta Hotels & Resorts was not renewed.

The newly named Sun Peaks Grand Hotel & Conference Centre offers outstanding guest facilities, amenities and services. The name was changed to Sun Peaks Grand Hotel & Conference Centre and the operation began to operate independently

for the first time with a locallybased management company. T h e n e w n a m e w a s c a r efully selected after thorough

consideration to ref lect the vision of the resort’s owner, Japan’s Nippon Cable Company SEE SUN PEAKS RESORT | PAGE 3

Yes, property tax assessments can be appealed Challenge of BC Assessment Authority figures must be done before Feb. 2, 2015


t’s once again that time of year when the annual property assessment notice envelope appears in your mailbox or by e-mail displaying your 2015 property assessment values and classification. T his notice is important a nd deser ves you r close i ns p e c t ion , a s it i s f rom t h i s

estimation of your commercial or industrial property assessment va lues that loca l governments and the Province of BC will determine how much overall property tax you pay this year. The BC Assessment Authority is responsible in the annual valuation of over two million

properties in BC with less than 700 employees but it remains the property owner’s responsibility to review and appeal their assessment values. And what if you don’t agree w ith you r assessment va lue or classification? Perhaps you believe it’s too high, or in some cases, too low. Can anything

be done about it? Yes, but you must file an appeal on or before February 2, 2015. T here i s no fee to f i le an appeal at this first level of review. T im Dow n, P resident of P a cWe s t C o m m e r c i a l R e a l SEE YES, PROPERTY TAX | PAGE 4





Proactive Service, Proven Results Tim Down, AACI, P. APP. CAE, RI Property Tax Services

PacWest Commercial Real Estate Advisors E-mail: Web: F: 1-250-864-9140


BC BC wine to line grocery shelves in spring 2015 Grocery stores will be able to stock 100 percent BC wine on their shelves as early as April 1, 2015, creating new opportunities for BC wineries, supporting BC’s home-grown economy and addressing calls for added convenience from consumers. The second phase of the liquor-in-grocery model will allow existing VQA stores and independent wine stores to relocate or transfer their licence to an eligible grocery store – as long as the licence is only used to sell 100 percent BC wine. Of note, these licences are not subject to the one-kilometre restrictions, allowing more flexibility and choice of locations when moving into a grocery store. In addition, and in an effort to further support madein-BC products, a limited number of new licences will also be made available specifically for the 100 percent BC wine-on-shelves model. Details on these licences will be available in the new year.


THE LOCATION SPECIALIST • Office Space • Retail Space • Industrial/Warehouse • Build to Suit


The following board members were re-elected at the Annual AGM Dec 3, 2014: Chris Bower Executive Director, Tourism Penticton; Robyn Cyr, Director Manager, Shuswap Tourism; George Hanson, Director, Owner, Seven Stones Winery, Similkameen Valley; Sally Pierce Vice-Chair, Proprietor, Pierce Communications, Summerland, Christine Latimer Treasurer, General Manager Best Western PLUS Valemount, Inn & Suites, Valemount. T h e b o a rd we lc om e s two new directors: Kevin Howlett, Director, Senior Vice President, Regional Markets, Air Canada; and Kevin Pearce Director, President & Co-Owner, Landsea Okanagan Tours & Charters, Osoyoos. Returning board members include: Bryan Pilbeam, Secretary and Vice President & General Manager, Hotel 540, Kamloops; Gene Covert, Director, Co-owner Covert Farms & Covert Family Estate Winery, Oliver; Russell Critchlow, Director, Owner, River Safari, Blue River; Ingrid Jarrett, Director, General Manager, Watermark Beach Resort, Osoyoos; Brad Pelletier, Director, VicePresident, Okanagan Region, Wesbild Holdings Ltd.

(parent company of Predator Ridge Resort – Vernon); Kelly Watt Director, General Manager, Sandman Hotel & Suites, Kelowna. The board Chair continues to be led by Michael J Ballingall, Vice-President of Sales & Marketing, Big White Ski Resort, Kelowna.

KELOWNA Economic Development Commissioner Moving to City Hall After 17 years leading the Regional District of Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission, Robert Fine is moving on. But he’s not going far.  Robert has accepted the Director of Business and Entrepreneurial Development position at the City of Kelowna effective March 2, 2015. Mr. Fine is replacing Jim Paterson who retired December 23, 2014. “The City is really excited to welcome Robert to our team,� says Mayor Colin Basran. “Robert has a demonstrated track record of building strong relationships to advance business opportunities that enhance our community and surrounding area.� In addition to acting as the liaison between the City and the business community Robert will look for innovative ways for the City to generate revenue outside of taxation and user fees to help offset costs for increased services and amenities as our community grows. 

KELOWNA SIDIT Approves Funding for Two Hat Security Ltd. Two Hat Security Ltd. located in Kelowna, BC is dedicated to radically improve the security and safety of children’s online games. The company’s software is an industry changing chat filter and research tool that focuses on keeping children safe from cyberbullying, sex(ting), profanity and pedophiles. Two Hat’s software is available to virtual worlds and social media providers to filter all the chat before it is seen online. Previously Chris Priebe, President, led the development of the safety systems for Penguin Chat and later Club Penguin which became the global standard for child safety. Two Hat Security Ltd. will be expanding their team, sales and operations globally.

“Supporting Two Hat Security Ltd. demonstrates SIDIT’s mission of creating long-term, sustainable employment in the area,� states Grace McGregor, SIDIT Chair. “Two Hat brings to the region a reputation for innovation and creating leading edge technology. We look forward to following their success.� Christopher Priebe, CEO, Two Hat Security Ltd. says “We are grateful to SIDIT for their support of our efforts to stop cyber-bullying and reach out to new social media groups. Through the funding we have been able to onboard some significant contracts this month and hope to see it make a big difference in the global internet safety space.�

KAMLOOPS Short list announced for Patient Care Tower Three qualified proponents have been short listed to participate in the next stage of the competitive selection process to design, build, partially finance, and maintain the new patient care tower at Penticton Regional Hospital (PRH). Six teams responded to the Patient Care Tower Request for Qualifications, which closed on November 6, 2014. Following evaluation of the responses, the three teams invited to move on to the Request for Proposal (RFP) stage are: Ellis Don Infrastructure, Plenary Health, and Tandem Health Partners. The RFP is expected to be released to the short-listed proponents in February 2015. The total budget for the project is $325 million. It will be funded jointly by the provincial government, with $122 million provided by the Okanagan-Similkameen Regional Hospital District and $20 million provided by the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation. This project includes two phases. Phase one is construction of the new patient care tower which will include an ambulatory care centre, surgical services centre, 84 medical/surgical inpatient beds in single patient rooms, a new medical device reprocessing unit, and space for the UBC Faculty of Medicine program. The tower will be approximately 26,700 square metres (287,500 square feet). Phase two (not part of this competitive selection process) involves the renovation of vacated areas in the existing hospital to allow for an




Ltd. which purchased much of Tod Mountain in 1992, for the future of the site. Karen Weaver, D i rector of Sales at the hotel and conference centre, said the new management of the operation plans to seamlessly integrate future hotel plans with the next phase of the resort’s development, which includes additional trails for both winter and summer outdoor adventures. “We are a sitting gem for a number of reasons, including the fact that even when we are busy on the mountain, people ca n get up a nd dow n on ou r lifts with almost no line ups,” Weaver said. “Our weather is also phenomenal in the winter months when ‘champagne powder’, wh ich is really dry f luffy snow that fa l l s i n t he ( h i g h-a lt it u d e) area which is ideal for skiing, covers much of this ski in ski out resort. At our altitude, we

generally get much less rain and more snow each season than many other B.C. ski resorts.” Much of the infrastructure i n place tod ay at Su n Pea ks began early in the millennium when former Olympic champion (now Canadian Senator) Nancy Greene Raine and her husband Al Raine focused on the resort, a i m i ng to repeat the success they spearheaded as the driving forces behind the growth and promotion in Whistler. Sun Peaks owners announced $70 m i l l ion i n i nvest ments at the resor t, i nclud i ng a $40-million, 220-room foursta r delu xe hotel w ith a n 12,000 square foot conference centre, the completion of an 18-hole golf course, as well as lift and trail development on nearby Mt. Morrisey. Con st r uct ion on t he hote l b e g a n i n 20 01 a n d p rogressed uneventfully until a devastating fire destroyed it later that year, forcing it to be re-constructed.

But work progressed rapidly and the hotel finally opened only one year later in 2002. F ive ye a rs a f te r t h a t, t h e Residences condo development opened its doors, raising the bar at the resort with luxurious furnished apartments for both sale and overnight rentals. This added a new dimension to the already popular hotel, making it more attractive for extended stays. Weaver sa id there a re now approximately 7,000 beds at the resor t, wh ich is usua l ly enough to handle the capacity so far during the resort’s peak times in the winter. She said Sun Peaks has also made inroads into attracting more summer visitors with its mountain biking and hiking trails that are serviced by the resort’s chair lifts that run year round. She said there is also great f i s h i n g i n lo c a l w ate r w ay s and the increasingly popular and scenic 18 hole golf course, h ig hest elevation cou rse, is



he Summerland Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors appreciated the opportunity to host the new Council at the Chamber offices ver y recently. We were able to highlight the Summerland Chamber’s key areas of work, as well as some of the special projects from the past year. 2014 has been an exceptional year of new projects and exciti ng opportu n ities for the Summerland Chamber. Here’s a short l ist of some of those accomplishments: ■ Summerland Investment a n d R e l o c a t i o n G u i d e: From cl i m ate to l abou r m a rkets a nd e duc ation, this new guide was launched in February and helps put Summerland on the map for entrepreneurs and individuals looking to relocate to the Okanagan. ■ Summerland Business and Community Awards Gala: Held the last Saturday of February, the 76th awards Gala celebrated of the best of Summerland. Nomination forms for the 77th Gala are out now. ■ Tourism website:

pa ra l lel i ng the Platter L i f t, the first of its kind in North America. There is a continuation of the diversification of t he re sor t’s g rav it y-f u ele d summer activity options and investments in new summer infrastructure. She said the conference centre is also becoming a popular destination for weddings, reunions and other events. “We also have a growing list of corporate clients who have been booking the conference centre,” Weaver said. A s w e l l , We a v e r s a i d t h e hotel’s Mantles Restaurant & Lounge serves Pacific Northwest cuisine with a regional f la re for brea kfast, lu nch or dinner, with a mountain view scenic patio. “We’re increasingly seeing people visit from all over the world, particularly Australia ns a nd Eu ropea ns, but we also receive visitors from all across Canada and much of our (advertising) focus is on that tourist sector,” she said.


2014 CHAMBER HIGHLIGHTS Summerland’s new tourism website was launched i n M a y. E y e - c a t c h i n g photos promote ever yt h i n g Su m merl a nd h a s to offer, and the site’s responsive design means it is user friendly on all digital platforms, from laptops to handheld devices. To u r i s m v id e o: A l so lau nched i n May, Su mm e r l a n d ’ s f i r s t t o u rism video is designed to of fer v iewers a c h a nc e to ex p er ience Su mm e rl a n d’s u n i q u e fe atures and lifestyle. Visit www.tourismsummerla or the Cha mber’s Youtube channel to watch it. Econom ic Development Videos: In 2014 the Chamber released five economic development videos. The first introductory video promotes Summerland as a great place to do business, a nd the fol low i ng four are targeted videos to highlight specific sectors or opportunities: Investing in Summerland, Science and Technology, Agriculture and Wineries, and Manufacturing. S i s te r C i t y R e c e p t i o n : The Chamber facilitated a m e e t i n g of Toyokoro delegates a nd Cha mber members, to explore trade opportunities between the two communities. Reg iona l Network i ng: More a nd more, col laboration is becoming a key to economic success, and the Cha mber conti nues to work to ensu re Su mmerland is represented at a regional level in endeavors

d raw i ng more gol fers to the resort all the time. “Ou r concert series each summer is also becoming more p o p u l a r, a n d w e’ve h o s te d such musicians as Blue Rodeo and Burton Cummings in past years,” Weaver said. “We typically have between 4,000 and 7,000 attend these free weekend events. We are now completing phase two of eight of the resort’s construction schedule, and a new hockey rink is scheduled to be constructed in 2016. Other plans w i l l be revea led as we move forward.” Weaver sa id the Su n Pea ks Gra nd Hotel offers ma ny a men ities for its g uests, including an outdoor heated pool and three hot tubs and a fully fitted physical fitness centre. Su n Pea ks’ v isitors w i l l f i nd a n exciti ng new mea ns of descending the mountain nex t s u m mer. A bra nd new Mountain Cross Cart (MCC) course is currently being constructed on ‘Sunbeam’ ski run


that range from the creation of valley-wide cycling paths, to important developing sectors such as wine tourism and agriculture technology. ■ Municipal Election Forum: With twice-weekly questions from candidates on the Chamber blog viewed more tha n 3,000 ti mes, a n d a n A l l C a n d i d a te s Forum attended by more than 600 people, the Chamber was able to provide our members and the community with extensive information leading up to the election. ■ Festival of Lights: Despite this year’s chilly weather, Light-up continues to grow and attract visitors from around BC. Please connect with us online to find out about more exciting projects in 2015. The Summerland Chamber of Commerce wishes you a Merry Christmas a nd a Happy a nd P rosperous New Year.

Christine Petkau is manager at the Summerland Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached at manager@



he subject of leadership is more of a topic for many of our clients as opposed to management. It reveals a new awa ken i ng for ma ny people who want to adjust how they g uide their organizations to greater success. Leadership is a tricky topic because there is a distinct line between it and the traditional management role. My personal observation when work i ng w it h le aders versus managers is their ability to know themselves first, as well as their people. They are i n touch w ith both in a way that is completely different from the management role. Many a leadership expert notes that vision is a key element for leadership however most are not born with the innate gift but it is rather a learned skill. What does one need to work on to build their visionary abilities? The answer could easily fill several books and it’s important that we be able to look at ourselves and know to what degree we have it and what we need to expand it. Leaders see the big picture. Ma ny ma nagers see the i mmediate and the things that will achieve goals in the next days,

weeks, and months. Leaders go beyond the immediate and think in terms of years. They master the context of time and make the purpose of their people and the organization bigger than is obvious and engage others to get behind it. Maybe most important, they know themselves. Most leaders watch themselves closely and are aware of what they do and how it affects others. Learning from mistakes is often the greatest gift that guides great leaders. They don’t hide from their missteps but use them to help others. Mistakes allow them to forge new paths that may have been missed if they hadn’t learned a lesson from the experience. Adapting to these changes is the very essence of leadership. Most leaders are competent communicators. That is different than being a great orator. I have noted hundreds of times that regardless of the role or situation, when things go badly, typically the root of the problem is poor communication. How many times have we intended one thing and it’s been received very differently. Clear communication is the mark of a true leader. They take the time to talk, to ask questions, to listen, and to understand. It is a skill that must be learned if you want to be a leader. Copyright 2014 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 1-866-645-2047 or visit







hy shou ld busi ness organizations such as Ch a mbers of Commerce/Boards of Trade reach out, or partner or communicate with community service and non profit groups? Because it’s a win win. Whether I or a director attends a meeting at one of these organizations, something new is learned. Sharing communication channels is key to connecting the right people at the right time

to reach a common goal and be mutually beneficial. For the past four December Business After Hours, in honour of the giving season, the Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan, provided by TD Benefits, has partnered with GWBOT and a local Westside business to raise funds for the Westside Community Food Bank. The Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan began the tradition of compiling a bountiful gift basket where attendees can purchase raffle tickets to win the basket. Raffle ticket sales are matched by both the Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan and the host business. This year, members raised $305 dollars for a grand total of $915 which will be donated to the Westside Community Food Bank.  This tradition will continue for many years to come! This past spring, the GWBOT was approached by a soft-spoken ye t v i s ion a r y wom a n , L ois Beischer, about transforming the weeds and grasses that had

overtaken the garden space at the front entrance of the GWBOT office into a blooming and fruitful garden landscape. Jealous of a l l g reen thu mbs, si nce I don’t have one, I jumped at this opportunity. There was a twist. Lois asked if the GWBOT be interested in using this space as an example to showcase what an edible landscape was all about so commercial developers, building owners, including the District of West Kelowna, could get a firsthand look at what this concept is all about. How could growing food for those who need it, whether it be for Food Bank clients or the homeless on the Westside, be a wrong thing to do? “We are about growing tasteful landscaping with edibles. Our vision is to transform our community by, growing access for all, to locally grown foods,” Lois explained. “Community resilience can grow and community spirit can explode when a simple idea like growing food in public spaces gets momentum.”



ast month we talked about the benefits of incorporati ng you r business to take advantage of the lower corporate tax rates and tax deferrals offered by a corp orat ion. A s you r b u si ness continues to mature and generate steady cash f low and a healthy bottom line, you can start looking at tax strategies to help reduce your personal tax implications and share your business success w ith other family members. Here are three strategies you c a n u s e to m o ve c o r p o ra te funds out of the company and into family members’ hands: T he fi rst strateg y is to i nvolve your spouse or children in the business and pay a salary for their services. It’s important to note that the salary you pay must be reasonable for the work being done; payi ng a sa la r y at $30/ h r when yo u c a n ge t t h e s a m e wo rk done by a non-related person at $15/hr would be subject to scrutiny by the Canada Revenue Agency. Proper tracking of each family member’s time and the services they provide is important. You also need to be careful about hiring children who are under 18, and in particular if they are under 12, because certain labour codes come into play. I f fa m i ly members ca n not b e d i re c t ly i nvolve d i n t he business, another option is to bring them into the business as shareholders. This is advantageous because it opens up the opportunity to pay them dividends, which are taxed at a lower rate; however, there

Brian Posthumus, CPA, CA

Using a family trust also offers the potential to access the lifetime capital gains exemption (currently $800,000) on a future sale of the company, which could reduce or eliminate income tax on the sale

are potential traps if this is not done properly. For exa mple, issuing new shares to a family member could potentially have serious tax consequences if the company has grown in value, and the new shares immediately become entitled to some of that value. A t h i rd opt ion i s to set up a fa m i ly t r u st w it h va r iou s family members named as the benef icia ries. Sha res of the company could then be issued to the family trust through a reorganization of the company. T his approach allows you to ma i nta i n some control over what happens to those shares, as well as on any dividends paid on those shares. Using a family trust also offers the potential to access the lifetime capital ga i n s exempt ion (cu r rent ly $800,000) on a future sale of the company, which could reduce or eliminate income tax on the sale. This is a complex restructuring and should not be undertaken without professional advice. As in any business, the idea is to make a pie to start with, then make it bigger and divide it among the family, and keep working at making bigger pies. Next time, we will discuss how to get out of the pie-making business and retire. Brian Posthumus, CPA, CA is the Regional Tax Leader with MNP LLP | Accounting - Consulting -Tax. Contact Brian at 250.979-1736 or Please consult a tax advisor for advice on how the above information should be applied.

Edible landscaping is merely a twist on traditional landscape approaches by incorporating trees and plants that produce fruit, nuts, vegetables or herbs into spaces previously occupied by decorative plants. It is a fast growing worldwide movement. Not only do plantings beautify the commons for those who live and work there, they increase business, tourism, and sense of community and decrease crime. This fits well with current trends such as interest in better health, preserving the environment, eating less processed foods, and the growing demand for locally grown foods. So, in June, Lois and her team of volunteers planted and planted. And we watered and watered. Visitors asked questions & picked the garden. Win Win. So for 2015, we have bigger plans. The garden will be dug out and filled with better dirt and irrigation will be installed. Lois and her team are already brainstorming about what to plant to make it look truly extraordinary

yet functional. Be sure to connect with Lois at Incredible Edible Okanagan on Facebook. Now, the GW BOT is one of those organizations that will be fundraising in 2015 as our building requires a new roof before next winter. Directors are busy brainstorming the details to host events including a casino night (get ready for a fun-filled James Bond evening) and golf tournament! Can you say sponsorship opportunities??? Please call me if you’re interested in the many options available. Welcome to new members: Chez Nicole B&B, Dairy Queen West Kelowna (0894904 BC Ltd), Green Valley Carpet Care, SaveOn-Foods West Kelowna, Blue Saffron, Windward Travel Ltd. and Village at Smith Creek. For further info please contact Karen Beaubier, Executive Director, Greater Westside Board of Trade 250.768.3378 or admin@


Estate Advisors (, specializing in annual property assessment a nd ta x appea l consu lti ng t h rou g hout Br it i sh Colu mbia, notes “If an assessment is i ncorrect, the ow ner w i l l be paying more property tax now a nd i nto t he f utu re, so they need to ensure that they have been assessed fairly and consistently”. “P rop er t y ta x payers h ave a right to either the lower of the actual market value, or the equitable assessment value for thei r property,” says Dow n. “It should be no higher than a similar, competing property i n thei r ta x i ng ju risd iction. For ex a mple, a com merci a l property in a downtown locat ion shou ld not be assessed at a higher rate than a similar neighboring property. Down believes “property tax shifting” remains a significant concern in years to come, as municipal governments try to ma i nta i n stable revenues i n light of the diminishing nonresidential tax base in many communities. To make up any shortfalls, property tax revenues w i l l have to be ra ised by increasing either the business, industrial and residential property ta x rates or reduce government spending. Cl a ssi f icat ion of proper ty w i l l conti nue to be a n issue for property ta x payers w ith the BC Assessment Authority taking aggressive ta x policy positions on applying higher tax classifications for mixed use development and agricultural lands. B C A sse ssment Aut hor it y

Tim Down, President of PacWest Commercial Real Estate Advisors has recently implemented an aerial photography program to identify construction that has not been identified by loca l govern ment perm itti ng. T his information allows the a s s e s s o r to i n c re a s e p ro perty assessment values from their office desk. T he result w i l l be a n i ncrease i n property assessment values which provide “new found” annual tax revenue for government. T h e c h a l l e n ge re m a i n s t h e accuracy and fairness of this new information as it relates to market value of a property. B est to stay i n for med a nd vigilant these days. Especially since Down points out that proper ty ta xes, a f ter mor tgage and lease costs, are the largest annual operating expenses for proper ty ow ners and once the appeal deadline h a s pa sse d , prop er t y t a xe s cannot be appealed. Property taxes go straight to the bottom l i ne performa nce of a l l rea l estate assets.







rom the labour standards of migrant workers to tax breaks for working families; those attending a recent round table discussion with Federal Labour Minister Kellie Leitch covered quite a gamut of issues. The round table was hosted by the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce and drew business leaders from various sectors that contribute to the economic vibrancy of the North Okanagan including the forest sector, tourism and hospitality, land development and public education. Minister Leitch outlined the federal government’s current policy initiatives and listened intently as she sought feedback on three main themes; how to improve the status of women, tax policy that will assist working

The report of the Government of Canada’s Advisory Council for Promoting Women on Boards recommended that the public and private sectors in Canada aspire to seeing women attain 30 per cent of all board positions over the next five years

Federal Labour Minister Kellie Leitch at a recent meeting with members of the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce

families and issues related to expediting international trade. “By working with our stakeholders to foster strong labour relations and create economic opportunities for women, our Government is doing its part to ensure that our labour force is resilient, diverse and ready to meet the challenges of tomorrow,” said Dr. K. Kellie Leitch, Honourable Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women. The gathering was just the latest in a series of events the Greater Vernon Chamber has staged as it accelerates its advocacy work as part of the Board’s recently adopted three year strategic plan

that focuses on increasing engagement and adding value to the services the chamber provides its many members across the North Okanagan. The Minister also talked about her other portfolio which is the status of women. She stressed the importance of the inclusion of women on corporate boards, emphasizing the critical role they play in Canada’s continued economic success. She also noted that championing women on boards makes sense for our workplaces by contributing to business success and strengthening Canadian competitiveness. The report of the Government

of Canada’s Advisory Council for Promoting Women on Boards (June 2014) recommended that the public and private sectors in Canada aspire to seeing women attain 30 per cent of all board positions over the next five years. Interestingly enough the Greater Vernon Chamber Board is made up of 55 per cent women which is well ahead of the curve suggested by the government. In other news, we are pleased to see three of our members made the top ten in a few different categories for the Annual Small Business BC Awards. The Rice Box got the nod under Best Community Impact, Durning Directions

and Services Ltd. in the Best Employer category and Sproing Creative cracked the top ten in the Best Workplace category. The awards ceremony is in late February. Good luck to all in the next phase of judging. Thanks again to Okanagan Restoration Services Ltd. for their sponsorship of the Chamber’s Annual Christmas Connections Luncheon. It was another awesome event with many of our members pitching in to help Santa’s Anonymous. Now the planning quickly turns to the Annual Business Excellence Awards which are presented this year by Valley First Credit Union and Kelowna International Airport. Nominations are now being taken with the nominations luncheon scheduled for February 12th and the Awards Gala set for Saturday March 7th. F i n a l l y t h e G r e a t e r Ve rnon Chamber of Commerce is pleased to welcome a number of new members including, Target Pharmacy, Peerless Training Solutions, Salad Greenhouse Inc., O’Conner Smith & Associates, and Henry’s Dad Computer Repair and Technical Solutions. Dan Rogers is the General Manager at the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce and can be reached at

LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT PROGRAM ACHIEVES PHENOMENAL RESULTS The Sandler Training program offers practical tactics for success


usinesses that want serious tra i n i ng for serious results have discovered Sandler T ra i n i ng ’s L e a d e rs h i p a nd M a n a gement P rog ra m. Compa ny ow ner John Glennon sa id that this past year the Leaders h i p a n d M a n a ge m e n t program has had enrolment and results that are off the charts. All of the businesses are growing a nd h i ri ng a nd rack i ng up 15–26 percent profitable g row t h, t ha n ks to t h i s dy n a m ic prog ra m that combines a winning strateg y w ith practica l tactics. Glennon said that in today’s new economy some businesses are rebounding and want to do even better; others are in neutral and want to get their eng i nes ru n n i ng. T he

Leadership and Management program gives them the i mpetus they need. Sun Tzu, the Chinese military general, strategist and philosopher said, “Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory; tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” Sandler Training’s prog ra m g ive s c omp a n ie s both strategy and tactics. “We really give people practical tactics that they take back to the organization and they implement t h e m i m m e d i a t e l y fo r success,” Glennon said. “There are a lot of groups that a re good w ith motivation, but where is the tactical implementation of exactly how you’re goi ng to i nter v iew somebody? How you’re going to coach somebody? How you’re going to motivate and mentor? That’s what our Leadership and Management program works on.” Glennon calls it “the employee l i fe cycle.” It includes everything from recruiting and hiring to coaching and mentoring to getting the best out of

your greatest asset: your people.. “Leaders and managers h a v e to k n o w t h e d i fference between leading and managing,” he said. “You’ve got to be adaptive – and so our curriculum is always fresh and updated. It’s not a sales program – it’s a leaders h i p a n d m a n a ge m e n t program.” He noted that education without implementation is simply entertainment. Sandler Training’s prog ra m work s b e c au se it combines strategy with the real practical tactics. The group meets monthly a nd t hose who wa nt to attend as a g uest a re welcome. “Come as a g uest to make sure it’s a fit for you and your business,” Glennon said. “This is real world practical stuff about running your business and maxim i z i n g i t s p o te n t i a l ,” Glennon said. “Getting adv ice is one th i ng but getting practical knowhow is the key.” www.glennon.sandler. com


• How to make cold calls fun and effective. • A systematic basic way to use Linked In for introductions and referrals. • The difference between Cold, Cool, Warm and Hot Prospecting and ideal ways of approaching each. Date: Friday, January 23rd, 2015 Time: 8:30am - 4:30pm Location: Sandler Training Centre, Kelowna, BC Details and Registration:




Auto repair facility rated in the top percentile in the country


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A-Plus Automotive has strong curb appeal talk to someone who has experience as a technician or, at the very least, has spent years in the automotive industry. “It’s the whole experience,” Gauthier said. “We’re all about people who want to take care of their cars. We’re about an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay. Our service is a step above – and we do exceptional work. That has become expected of us over the years and that’s probably why we have grown and thrived.” The shop has been operating for 15 years and it has grown during that time. Gauthier said that he, his partner and the staff pride themselves on the work they do and the personalized service they deliver. “Our clients get to know us,” Gauthier said, adding that A-Plus Automotive is a NAPA AutoPro affiliate and has won the JD Power & Associates customer service award four years in a row. A-Plus Automotive is consistently rated in the top 10 percent in the AutoPro network. The shop does all repair and

Colin Gauthier (right) and Steve Braconnier have created a special Auto repair facility

“We have that communication with our customers, whether it’s the person coming here for the first time, or the person who has been coming here for 15 years. Our job is to let you know what is going on with your vehicle and give you value.” COLIN GAUTHIER

service work including windshield repairs, electric systems and everything mechanical including transmissions, wheel alignments and engine work. The shop specializes in diesel trucks, particularly the big three: Dodge, Ford and Chevrolet. It also specializes in domestic and




Colin and Steve on your 15 years of great service and customer care. We look forward in continuing to work with you and your team at A-Plus Automotive! KELOWNA







250-260-1660 •

Congratulations Congratulations toA-Plus A Plus Automotive your to Automotiveonon your 15 year year anniversary. 15 anniversary. Thank you for your prompt service and quality workmanship in helping us maintain a reliable fleet of trucks and trailers.



Asian cars and trucks. Gauthier pointed out that the shop is set up to handle all vehicles, including European imports, although the domestic and Asian imports are its main focus. A-Plus Automotive is on the leading edge and stays there. The shop is fully wireless and paperless. Each technician has a laptop hooked up to the Internet and all the information they need is at their fingertips as they work. “The information is in the technician’s hand with the scan tool and the computers that we have on the cars – he’s connected to the Internet the whole time,” Gauthier said. “And that’s unique, especially among independent shops.” He added that customers appreciate the skill of the technicians as well as the exceptional service – and that is why the shop has such a high rating: it’s all due to customer feedback. In an industry where trust is hard to achieve, A Plus Automotive has customers that trust it implicitly. “Trust is a huge factor in our industry,” Gauthier said. “We have


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ELOW NA - For A-Plus Automotive in Kelowna, success is all about giving customers an A plus experience. Colin Gauthier, who owns the shop along with Steve Braconnier, said that as an independent repair facility, the whole idea is to be different and for the partners, being different means being scrupulously honest, doing an exceptional job and going a step above and beyond what might be expected. A-P l u s A u to m o t i v e h a s a beautiful recently remodeled showroom with comfortable seating and a pleasant atmosphere; it also offers a shuttle service. “O u r cu rb app e a l a nd ou r presentation at the counter are probably the best in this city – or nearly so,” Gauthier said. “And that extends into the service as well.” At A-Plus Automotive, customers don’t get an automated telephone service, nor do they get an employee taking down their information whose experience might be limited. Chances are they will speak to one of the two owners. If not, they will certainly





Our own numbers in 2014 were encouraging, and worth a pat on the back to our staff, our board directors, and our members


T A-Plus Automotive has won the JD Power & Associates customer service award four years in a row that communication with our customers, whether it’s the person coming here for the first time, or the person who has been coming here for 15 years. Our job is to let you know what is going on with your vehicle and give you value. My job is to advise you and your job is to tell me what to do. We’re very honest that way. We’re going to give you the information and we’ll put the decision in your hands.” He described A-Plus Automotive as a small independent shop with a

big shop vibe. The shop, at nearly 6,000 sq. ft. has seven bays and employs five journeymen technicians. The compound is locked and borders property also owned by A Plus, so the shop is not only secure, it also has the means to grow and expand. Gauthier said that he and his partner plan to stay with the business until they reach retirement and probably beyond that as well. The have enough space that they have room for immediate

growth. After that, they can expand to the property next door. He said they might also at one point open a second location. “We’re committed to being here,” Gauthier said. “We plan to keep the quality up and we’ll be here to make sure that happens. Steve and I enjoy what we do and we’ll be doing it for a long time – we’re not going anywhere.” A-Plus Automotive is at 2165 Rutland Road in Kelowna

A-Plus Automotive does all service and repair work

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he start of a new year – a good time to reflect on the past twelve months. T h e K e low n a C h a m b e r of Commerce was a terrific place to be during 2014. We watched the economy streng then i ng throughout the year – despite the oil woes of November and December – and our efforts to support and stimulate business in the Okanagan were, I like to think, part of that increased strength. Our own numbers in 2014 were encouraging, and worth a pat on the back to our staff, our board directors, and our members. A new member referral program was introduced in November, which we know will bring us new business throughout 2015. Sponsorship opportunities expanded in 2014, and our members took them up with enthusiasm and their companies’ financial support. We sold out our golf tournaments, our Business Excellence Awards, most of our luncheons – truly a tribute to the value our members see in networking in a structured environment with other businesspeople and prospects. Our website continued to attract more and more traffic as the year unfolded. Our “hit rate” increased by well over 50 per cent to several thousand a week, and of that traffic, a whopping 64 per cent was “new” traffic week over week, meaning lots and lots of new people and new businesses were finding us. Not only were people finding us, but they went on to search our member database for connections and services. Given the size of our website – something like 11,000 pages and growing – our members’ listings seem to pop up on page one most of the time – saving them valuable money that many were paying for SEO – search engine optimization services – by simply coming onboard with our Chamber. That’s a benefit of being the second largest Chamber in the province, with 1450 members, representing 1250 businesses. 2014 saw 235 new members join ou r Cha mber – th rough the second week of December (more will follow by year-end). That meant 20 new members gave us a “thumbs up” every month; our

many networking events, and money-saving benefits, on top of our successful advocacy efforts will keep them on our roster for years to come. Looking forward now into 2015, I see reinvented after hours networking events, with more opportunities for our members to showcase their businesses and products in front of an engaged audience. Higher quality events with more focused outcomes. Our speaker roster is beginning to shape up: in January we’ll welcome Tony Geheran who heads up Broadband Networks at TELUS Communications to tell us how and why Kelowna was chosen to be one of the first communities in Canada to be connected to the fibre optic network, enabling a comprehensive infrastructure build, which will provide connectivity to over 90 percent of Kelowna businesses and residences. This means a huge boost to local businesses. In February, we host Kelowna’s new Mayor Colin Basran who will give us his “State of the City” address. March sees two fascinating presentations: first, the President of the BC LNG Alliance, David Keane – there will be a ton of questions after his address, I am sure. At the end of March, it’s all about the money as we welcome Timothy Lane, Deputy Governor of the Bank of Canada. Lane oversees the Bank’s analysis of international economic developments after spending twenty years in Washington with the IMF. Substantial speakers for our business audiences – we’re delighted to begin our new year w it h host i ng such a stel l a r line-up. 2015: Bring it on. The Kelowna Chamber is more than ready! Caroline Grover is CEO of the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached by email at

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ARCHITECTS Architects work with wood and new building codes Buildings of the future will be more sustainable and have a smaller carbon footprint BY GOODY NIOSI


h at’s new i n a rch itecture? How about 3D printing an entire house? And no, that’s not a spaceage dream; some people have already done that. However, at the moment that’s far from a mainstream concern, said Raymond de Beeld of Raymond de Beeld Architecture in Nanaimo. However, that isn’t to say that it’s not coming, and perhaps sooner than we think. At the moment, architects in Nanaimo and around the world have other challenges they’re dealing with: one of the biggest of those is economics and doing more with less. De Beeld said that around the world there is a push for more sustainable design and building practices, but in some cases, that ideal runs into conflict with keeping costs down. In Nanaimo, there is a trend toward higher density in certain areas. De Beeld cited corridors like Bowen Road where new buildings are two rather than one-storey and may ultimately reach six storeys. In larger cities mixed use buildings are gaining popularity, while in Nanaimo that is still a tough market. Most people still prefer to live in a residential only building. “But some younger people are not so concerned with that,” de Beeld said. “So we’re starting to see a little bit more of a mix of that downtown. And that doesn’t mean you can’t have a multi storey residential building next door to retail, office or something like that. The big word everywhere for architects is “affordability.” “Everybody is very cost conscious here,” de Beeld sa id. “People don’t have a huge amount of confidence anywhere in the world so they don’t want to put a whole pile of money into something. They’re more tentative in everything they do.” And that, he said, makes an architect’s work more challenging. Size of buildings, particularly residential units goes hand-inhand with affordability. Houses are becoming smaller. Condominiums especially are tightening up on space. Certainly, architects are being asked to do more with less. And then there’s the future – 3D printing may still be on the fringe, but people are looking seriously at ways to incorporate the technology into architecture. “It’s on the edge,” de Beeld said. “But some people are playing

Nick Bevanda says that wood is an excellent building material even for high-rises

Uptown Place is a four-storey residential condo development in Victoria that makes use of wood

“The BC Wood Council has been very active in promoting to the architects and engineers ways to use wood we may not have thought about.” CHARLES KIERULF PRINCIPAL, DE HOOG AND KIERULF ARCHITECTS

around with it and some people have built an entire house with 3D printing. It’s like pouring liquid concrete and the printer keeps making all the little pieces.” Charles Kierulf, a principal with de Hoog and Kierulf Architects (DHK) in Victoria and Nanaimo, said that the new building codes that came into effect Dec. 19, 2014 will make a big difference to the profession. “It’s pretty significant because it’s the latest round of updates bringing the code up to a new standard for energy savings,” he said, noting that this final round particularly affects housing and small buildings. He pointed out

Charles Kierulf says that new building codes will make a big difference to the profession that a small office building his firm designed five years ago that will be certified LEED gold, would, by today’s code, simply be considered standard. Certainly there will be additional costs involved, he said, but there will also be savings in terms of energy costs. Kierulf said that perhaps the most exciting change he is seeing is an increased use of wood in construction, particularly in larger buildings. In Prince George the Wood Innovation Centre a sevenstorey wood building has recently completed construction.

“The government has been promoting Wood First for about five years now,” he said. “And the BC Wood Council has been very active in promoting to the architects and engineers ways to use wood we may not have thought about.” The government has mandated the use of wood in the public sector but the private sector is also jumping on board. “Wood looks great and people love wood,” Kierulf said. “it’s a warm material and a friendly material. It’s local – it has all these great things about it. For us, it’s a great material to work with. It’s good to see the benefits of this program bearing fruit.” Nick Bevanda, partner in charge of design at CEI Architecture with offices in Penticton, Victoria and Vancouver, agreed that wood is the next big thing – and for a number of reasons. “The wood industry is a huge part of our gross domestic product in BC,” he said. “From an architectural point of view, wood is one of the few materials that actually sequesters carbon dioxide, so from a global warming point of view and a sustainable point of view, this is something that really interests us.” It sequesters about 1.2 – 1.5 tons of carbon per cubic metre of wood depending on the species. Bevanda said that his firm is very much behind using wood in it designs. It’s easy to work with and looks good too. As for the fear of flammability, he noted that the big timbers used in large structures may char on the exterior but are very slow to burn. While steel SEE ARCHITECTS WORK | PAGE 10




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Paragon is a three storey commercial building designed to LEED Gold standards that uses wood in its construction


melts, wood may actually be a safer material. That, combined with sprinkler systems, should alleviate any fears. “When you look broadly at all of our projects, you’ll see there’s a strong appreciation for wood,” Bevanda said. “I think it represents us as a region. In the Okanagan we have one of the best glue lamination production factories in North America. And we are a firm that does want to be included in the debate about tall wood buildings.” CEI A rch itectu re designed a concept building for an international competition, where it won an honourable mention for it’s 40-storey wood building. The unique structural system uses four primary concrete colu m ns that support the wood. In essence no structural wood element holds more than two storeys. “We believe the technology is there to really advance wood construction,” Bevanda said. “The only issues that hold us back are the public perception and the codes. I think the technology is there and the engineering is there.”

CEI Architects is a big proponent of wood in construction He added that he believes the future in architecture is definitely on the side of wood – and on the side of more sustainable building in both the public and private sectors – and that includes more prefabricated elements in building rather than building on site. “ T h at w i l l help w it h

global warming as well,” he said. “I think it will also speed up the construction process. Buildings contribute a huge amount to that carbon footprint and the construction industry really needs to take responsibility for at least putti ng forth a pla n to mitigate some of that.”

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Raymond de Beeld says that higher density is a trend in Vancouver Island cities





as Bains, who co-owns Bains Family Dollar Store in Kamloops, BC, knows the value of a dollar. That’s why she used to cringe every time that the store’s BC Hydro bill arrived – she k new thei r electricity costs were sky-high because of its outdated lights and lighting fixtures. To make matters worse, bulbs were burning out on a weekly basis and Bains had to climb a wobbly extension ladder to replace the burn-outs. “My mom works rea l ly ha rd – she’s a machine,” says Jas’ daughter, Hamreet Bains. “But even she couldn’t replace the burnt-out bulbs fast enough.” Ba i ns a nd her fa m i ly were tired of high electricity bills and the store’s non-stop maintenance requirements. T hey consulted customers, friends, rel at ives a nd neig hbou rs: shou ld t hey stay a nd spend t he money to upg rade t he store’s lighting, or should they relocate? T h e n a c o m p e t i to r s e t u p shop close by. Suddenly, the Bains family had a decision to make: close the store, or move to a smaller location to remain competitive. For Bains, walking away from the family business was not an option, and she was determined to find a new, smaller location with energy-efficient lighting. In October 2013, after visiting

potential locations w ith her d au g hter H a m reet, she decided on a 3,000-square-foot store just 10 blocks from her old store. “T he location was great, and the size and layout of the store were perfect, but we noticed the store had the exact same lights and fixtures as our old location,” says Hamreet. T he la nd lord must have sensed the Bains’ disappointment. He agreed to defer rent for th ree months i f the pa i r wanted to renovate the store (to meet their franchise agreement requirements) and retrofit the lights. “Honestly, we knew next to noth i ng about constr uction or energy-efficient lighting,” admits Hamreet. “We talked to a lot of different contractors and lighting companies. It was tiring and confusing because the proposals and cost est i m ates we received were so different.” They expressed their frustration to their landlord. That’s when he put them in touch with Allan Crawford, a Kamloops local whose company happened to be a member of the Power Smart Alliance. Craw ford ta lked to Jas a nd Hamreet at length about their re q u i re m e n t s: c o n te m p o rary-looking, energy-efficient l ig hti ng that requ i red l ittle maintenance. The lighting layout in the new store also needed

to be reconfigured to suit a retail environment. Crawford submitted his project proposa l, wh ich, to the Ba i ns’ su rprise a nd del ight, i ncluded a Power Sma r t rebate. “None of the other proposals we reviewed included a Power Smart rebate,” Hamreet recalls. In early January 2014, once the store’s renovations were almost done, Crawford and his team

got to work. They installed 135 four-foot T8 lamps using electronic ballasts. T he lighting installation took just three days and the upgrade qualified the store for a $1,562 Power Smart rebate. The rebate, combined with the projected annual cost savings of $1,613.52 per year, give the store an estimated payback period of just nine months. Even better, not a single light bu lb has had to be replaced

since January, which, Hamreet says happily, means her Mom’s extension ladder is right where it should be – collecting dust in the maintenance closet. The Power Smart Express program provides BC businesses with incentives for implementing energy efficiency upgrade projects. Learn more at

THE DOLLARS ADD UP Restaurant owners receive an average incentive of $2,477* by participating in the Power Smart Express program. The incentive, plus the money you save on energy bills each year, means you can reinvest back into what matters most—your business. And yes, that could include even more kitchen gadgets. Five minutes is all it takes to get started or to request more information about your potential savings. Save power and money at *Incentive amount based on an average of 1,009 projects completed between 2010 and 2013.

BCH141008BC_14_Kitchen_BusExaminer.indd 1

14-10-17 11:07 AM


BCHydro Oct 8 2014






Garry Tomporowski Architecture Ltd. is known for unique and individual designs


elowna - Again this year Garry Tomporowski Architecture Ltd. (GTA) in Kelowna was involved in a number of projects that received significant acknowledgment from the Thompson Okanagan Kootenay Boundary Commercial Building Awards. The annual gala event celebrates the best in commercial building and recognizes the winning efforts of the Thompson, Okanagan and Kootenay regions’ new institutional, commercial, industrial building, multi/single family, recreational or renovation projects completed between January 1st, 2013 and July 31st, 2014. GTA was the Architect for the following recognized Projects: ■ Awa rd of E xcel lence Kensington Terrace ■ Aw a r d o f E x c e l l e n c e - Copper Sky Pool Redevelopment ■ Honou rable Ment ion Convivia Bistro Restaurant ■ Honou rable Ment ion Kelow na Fi reha l l No. 1


Renovation In 2013 GTA entered the commercial building awards in eight categories, bringing home six Awards of Excellence. The firm has also won awards prior to 2013. Company president and principal Garry Tomporowski said that all four projects this year were worthy of awards, perhaps the most visibly unique being Kensington Terrace, an infill townhouse project in downtown Kelowna. “It is unique in its design and character,” Tomporowski said. “It has a lot of old world charm, yet it’s very highly technically designed. It’s well located downtown near all the amenities. Site selection was key to our client. He was very specific about the design intent and we worked very closely with him in every aspect of the design, from start to finish. The attention to detail was uppermost in everybody’s mind – and it was a primary focus. We believe the design team really captured the essence of the project intent.” The Copper Sky Pool redevelopment was a unique project for an entirely different reason. The original pool had been built under less than ideal circumstances, and failed at the nearby retaining wall. First the retaining wall had to be rebuilt; then GTA was brought in to redesign and rebuild the pool and surrounding area. “When the pool design was



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GTA made the Copper Sky pool more user friendly being done, some embellishment took place,” Tomporowski said. “We re-organized the pool deck area; we added some trellises and lighting and really made it more user friendly.” The Convivia Bistro Restaurant in Osoyoos was an entirely different sort of project. The client was a retired chef from Quebec who wanted to open a restaurant in the Okanagan – an eatery with considerable atmosphere. He acquired an old house, which was gutted, added to and completely redone, including an outdoor dining area. “It’s beautiful and very user friendly,” Tomporowski said. “It has an interesting menu, a nice selection of wine – it’s really just terrific.” As for the restoration of the Kelowna Firehall No. 1, Tomporowski said the project’s chief aim was to make it a better environment for the people who work there by creating facilities to accommodate female staff, additional office space and a new kitchen – thereby making the space more

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“One thing people have said to us is that our designs are diverse and never follow a pattern.” GARRY TOMPOROWSKI PRESIDENT AND PRINCIPAL, GARRY TOMPOROWSKI ARCHITECTURE LTD.

comfortable and more efficient. This year’s entries in the awards reflect the diversity for which the firm is known in terms of design and project types. “One thing people have said to us is that our designs are diverse and never follow a pattern,” Tomporowski said. “Our designs don’t all look the same. We can do three different residential projects and they’ll all look different. That’s what they like about us – we take each project for its own merit. We make sure that that particular

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project meets their expectations, that particular site, their particular goals and the goals of the people who are intended to use it. We spend a great deal of time focusing on that.” He added that with each new client and on each project, the firm engages in an extensive interview process to meet the client’s expectations. GTA also utilizes a variety of up to date design software that allows it to explore options quickly. The company’s large database also helps it compile important information. Designs are modeled in 2D and 3D; the firm also has the capability to create its own photo-realistic renderings, including night renderings. The firm can allow its clients to see how the project is going to look finished at any time of day, in any season and with the lights on or off. Even more uniquely, the firm’s designers use an Interactive Design Process, where the design is displayed on a TV screen. The clients are walked through the design and the designer can make changes on the screen instantly. Tomporowski said that in the old days, they would draw something, send it to the clients, get it back, make changes, send it back again, and so on. Today, rooms can be made



Work on the Copper Sky Pool included a new deck as well as other amenities

Kensington Terrace is a unique infill project in downtown Kelowna

The kitchen was one of the major renovations done to the Number 1 Firehall larger or smaller almost instantly. Doors and windows can be moved – ideas can be tried out quickly. “It allows the client to interact with the design,” Tomporowski said. “It’s so important to have our clients be a part of our design process. We don’t want to design in isolation. To have our clients part of our team is important to our success. We feel that if we can continue to do that, they’re going to make us successful, just by the

process that we employ.” GTA has been operating successfully in Western Canada for over 35 years. Tomporowski, influenced by his architect uncle, studied architecture at the University of Manitoba and worked for both the government and independent firms for five years before founding his first firm in Saskatchewan. The firm became large quickly, designing major commercial and institutional buildings. Tomporowski also

became a real estate developer during that time. He also formed a joint venture partnership with an old classmate from Hong Kong; together they worked in Vancouver and on the island of Guam. W hen the economy in Saskatchewan took a downturn, Tomporowski moved to Kelowna, and started the firm GTA, and has been operating successfully since 1994. He said that the unique geographical characteristics and diversity of the firm’s clients, from large corporations to remote aboriginal settlements, has taught the staff flexibility in listening and responding to the unique social and cultural situations of urban, rural and remote communities. Over 70 percent of the firm’s work is for repeat clients; these clients note that the most significant attribute of the company is that the staff are easy to get along with, and above all, listen to their ideas. This provides a very personal and individual service. About 65 percent of the firm’s work is in the residential sector. “You get to explore options for people’s homes and for how people live – and look for opportunities to improve quality of life,

both on a micro-scale within the unit, and also on a larger scale by grouping the buildings and by seeing how they interact with other buildings on the site and how they fit into the urban fabric. It’s how a community is formed.” GTA typically works on 30 – 35 projects a year. In 2014, the firm opened 52 new files – a diverse range of projects that included residential, commercial institutional and even industrial and restoration work. One of today’s biggest challenges is mitigating energy consumption. Tomporowski said that is a direction that the entire building industry needs to move toward. His firm in Kelowna, and the firm he owns in Vernon, TRTA Architecture Ltd., are very much on the front lines of more sustainable building and design practices. GTA is also a building envelope consultant for the Okanagan. GTA has a strong design philosophy: the built environment, whether it is a home, office building or cultural centre and museum, must be in harmony with its surroundings. As designers, GTA is a translator of these ideas and moods whose goal is to turn a client’s vision into reality. The most successful designs always have roots in culture, history and social structure as governing factors, and a design can only be successful when it fulfills the needs and vision of the people and community. GTA places a h igh priority on both internal and external

communication. All staff and team members are kept abreast of a project’s progress. Meetings occur on a regular basis between owner, architect and the consultant team to interact and exchange ideas. Crucial to successful communication of all levels is an excellent staff, Tomporowski said. “I have good people; when you have good people working for you, they make the firm look good.” He added that GTA has many more successful years ahead. “I continue to look for opportunities to get better, to do better things and to do different things for my clients,” he said. “I want to help them to become more profitable and more efficient. I want to offer services that perhaps we weren’t offering before – services that will help them out. I want our practice to become more whole so that we can feel that we have done something that’s totally complete.” He noted that GTA even has software programs that can calculate whether a design is feasible for the client or not. Looking out for the client’s interests is key, he said – right along with clear and consistent communication. “We make sure that we keep track of our project’s costs – everything that is done is with our client’s best interest in mind. We operate on all of these levels all of the time.” Garry Tomporowski Architecture Ltd. is at 243 – 1889 Springfield Road in Kelowna.

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They were the first




Organization has a proud history of advocacy for the building industry


AMLOOPS - Kamloops has changed dramatically in 50 years. Matt McCurrach, president of the Canadian Home Builders Association Central Interior (CHBA CI) and president of Homex Development Corp, pointed out that in the 1960s, Kamloops was a small town. Today it has a population of 90,000 plus – and it’s growing. That growth, he said, is in large part due to the pioneering efforts and risk-taking of the builders and developers – members of the CHBA CI. “Over 50 years, the city has seen the industry and the local association evolve. A lot of these builders and developers, especially those that have been around all these years, are really responsible for building Kamloops and the region as we know it now.” Plainsman Construction Ltd. is one of the builders that has been helping to create the modern-day Kamloops. Company president Jim Thomson noted that he has been a member of the association since 1968, first in Saskatoon then in Calgary and Kamloops. He has served as president of the local board as well as the provincial and even the national boards. He said that there are compelling reasons to be a member of CHBA CI. “It’s an industry group – a group of your peers. So you get together and share ideas and you lobby for the best interests of the industry. If anyone has an issue with the city, they don’t necessarily have to take it on themselves – the association does it on behalf of the members. You would hope that the association would lobby for things that are good for the industry, and not just the industry, but also for the communities that we are in. We give back a lot. That’s part of the reason I joined.” He added that a number of MLAs in the province have been given considerable help by the association in getting elected. “We advocate for governments with like minded policy. We’re for responsible development.” He added that the CHBA CI represents those who, alone, don’t have a voice, and in some cases don’t even know that they need one – the people who buy the houses that the membership builds. “When we are lobbying for government policy, we are lobbying on behalf of the people that buy our homes. If government puts more and more levies and fees and charges on housing, it makes it more unaffordable and these people that buy the houses end up paying them off over 25 years, so it makes a huge difference. Obviously, it’s also a bit self-serving because if the housing market is affordable and strong, then we’re busy.” Thomson said that the local CHBA CI is an excellent group. One of the projects it has undertaken is the Thompson Rivers University (TRU) Training House, which later becomes the YMCA Dream House. Thomson was on the board of CHBA CI when the training house was first proposed and approved. Twenty-five years ago, after some discussion about the lack of real “on site” experience of students graduating from the university trades programs, the CHBA CI and TRU (then College of the Cariboo)

Jim Thomson says that CHBA Central Interior is a strong advocate for the industry

“The CHBA helps bring credibility to the industry,” he said. “Good home builders and other businesses related to the housing industry that are reputable, want to be part of a larger group – and a larger voice.” MATT MCCURRACH PRESIDENT, CHBA CI

School of Trades and Technology decided to partner to build a Training House. The students in residential foundations, electrical and plumbing trades would get hands-on training at the construction site and CHBA members would help to finish the home. The home would be sold on the market and proceeds shared between the two organizations to offset costs and to assist with trades bursaries. The concept worked and was followed for several years. Proceeds from the sales of the house allowed CHBA CI to hire a full time administrator and the trades departments were able to offer several trades bursaries, and to replace and add to their equipment. Nineteen years ago, the local YMCA approached the two partners to see if there was an interest in selling the Training House to them at a discounted price so that the YMCA could use the home as a lottery fundraiser for their community programs. This proved to be a win/win for everyone as the CHBA CI and TRU School of Trades would have a buyer for the home from the start and would not be subject to the fickleness of the market. The YMCA became a part of the community arrangement, and so it has continued year after year. The process has become fine tuned and the product has become more and more of a dream home and has been promoted as such. When CHBA BC launched its Built Green for Builders program, the Training House Committee decided to work towards building a Built Green Home. Every year since, the Training Home has been built to a Built Green Platinum level and has showcased products and systems to make a home more energy efficient and sustainable. From a start where the main point was to give trades students a chance to work on a real house that would meet code and would be finished to be sold on the market, to where the project is today, a show home

Matt McCurrach says members of the CHBACI have helped build modern day Kamloops

with the latest in sustainable systems and products, this unique community project has become very well known and continues to raise the bar of what is possible. Some of the training the students are receiving now includes workshops and seminars for new systems that member builders also participate in. The project has won many awards over the years for not only the partnership, but also for the Built Green nature of it. The intention is to continue to build innovative, state of the art, beautiful homes of the future to benefit the students, the university, the home builders association, the YMCA, and the public. McCurrach agreed that the TRU Training House is a strong local program, which gives back to the community. “But the industry does things for the community all the time, without even wanting accolades,” he said. “There are a lot of people giving back.” McCurrach’s company has been a member of the CHBA CI for 44 years. “The CHBA helps bring credibility to the industry,” he said. “Good home builders and other businesses related to the housing industry that are reputable, want to be part of a larger group – and a larger voice. CHBA attracts good home building companies.” He added that the CHBA gives tremendous value to the industry in terms of ongoing education, networking and advocacy for the industry. “The CHBA is right across the country,” he said. “So you’ve got one voice, which turns into a voice of thousands.” SEE CHBA CENTRAL INTERIOR | PAGE 16

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Each year, the CHBA CI holds its gala Keystone Awards, honouring the best builders and industry members in the area. Those awards, are not just about pats on the back, McCurrach said – they inspire and serve as models of what is possible in the industry. “When people are doing things above and beyond the norm, it’s good for them to get that exposure. One – it recognizes the people who do the work but, two – it gives ideas to homeowners; it opens up everyone’s minds to what is possible.” He said that in BC builders are on the leading edge of design and construction

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and serve as an inspiration for p e ople a c ro ss t he c ou nt r y. Builders in Kamloops are right at the top of great building and design. “And it’s not just about the physical projects,” McCurrach said. “It’s to do with the whole industry. Individuals are also being recognized.” McCurrach’s father, Peter McCurrach, founded Homex Developments and joined CHBA CI in 1971. He became president of the association in 1976. It was a different organization back then he said. It had 35 members who met once a month in the basement of a local restaurant. “The main object was just to keep in touch with other builders and trades so that you were aware of what was going on in the industry,” he said. “And there were a lot of government programs in those days, which were sponsored by Canada Mortgage and Housing (CMHC) like the Assisted Home Ownership Program that was providing financing for smaller, less costly homes. So, by being a member of the association, we were kept apprised of how the government was spending money and where they were spending it.” He added that it was also a very social organization. Members would gather for drinks and dinner with an occasional guest speaker – but with none of today’s audio/visual presentations. Occasionally a member of local government would also show up. “It was more of an informal organization,” he said. “It was run by volunteers, so we didn’t have an office staff and usually one of the member’s wives was the secretary and another member was the treasurer. It was much more informal.” Today membership has grown from 35 to almost 200 and includes other industries that are related to and have close ties to the construction business. Building was different in those

days too, McCurrach said. Today there is a much stronger relationship between the City and the builders. The building code has changed dramatically over the last 40 years and continues to change. Builders have to stay on top of those changes and a strong relationship between the CHBA CI and the City is essential. “Forty-five years ago, when you built a house in Kamloops, you took a permit and the City did all the inspections,” McCu rrach sa id. “A nd it was a much more relaxed atmosphere than it is now. Today, we have to have geotechnical consultants, a structural engineer for the foundations – it has changed dramatically.” He added that in the old days, there weren’t even any development cost charges associated w ith developing. Today the CHBA CI lobbies to keep those charges in check. In that regard and in many other ways, McCurrach said that the CHBA CI has been an invaluable organization for builders and developers. The CHBA CI has been in existence since 1965 and as a duly incorporated body since 1981 when it was incorporated as a not for profit society known as Housing and Urban Development Association of Canada, Kamloops Branch (HUDAC). In 1981 there were 88 members in the Association. In 1985, the name of the Association was changed to The Canadian Home Builders Association – Kamloops, where it became an integral part of a provincial body (CHBA-BC) and a national body (CHBA) that lobbied their respective governments on behalf of the home building industry. In 2004 the Board approved a new Strategic Plan which expanded the borders for recruitment and encompassed more partnership initiatives with related industries such as the City of Kamloops, the TNRD, Kamloops Chamber of Commerce, Kamloops

and the District Real Estate Board to name a few. In 2008, the name of the Association was again changed to Canadian Home Builders Association Central Interior to reflect the broader catchment area it serves. Currently CHBA CI has approximately 180 member companies. One of those companies is Allnorth Land Surveyors, which has been a member since 1972 (first as Ron Stothers & Associates). Although not a builder or contractor, Scott Rhodes, BC Land Surveyor and project manager for the company, said that Allnorth is closely tied to the industry. “We do a lot of work in conjunction with builders and contractors,” he said. “We work with the homes right from the beginning stages. If there’s a subdivision, we’ll do the legal surveying and when it comes time to build the houses, we’ll actually lay out the foundations on the property and make sure it meets all the setback requirements and we complete a survey certificate for them – so we’re very much peers in that market.” He said that the CHBA CI allows Allnorth to socialize with the builders, mingle with them and learn about the issues that impact them. “In some ways, those issues affect us as well, he said. “We learn how the housing markets are trending and that’s beneficial to us because it lets us know how development is going and we can stay in touch with that.” He added that CHBA CI is well run and offers a welcoming atmosphere. “It’s a great place for builders specifically,” he said. “When there a re issues, it’s a g reat sounding board. It allows everybody to be aware of changes and what everybody else feels. Day-to-day competitors can be friends and talk about issues that affect everybody – it’s very good that way.”







on g rat u l at ion s to t he new reg iona l ma nager at Connects Wireless, Stacey Binnie who i s now

responsible for looking after the numerous locations around BC. Stacey invites you to stop in to Connects Wireless to say hel lo a nd to lea rn about the many benefits of having your small business on the Bell network. Salmon Arm’s Connects Wireless is a Bell authorized dealer, specializing in business solutions. Stacey and her team offer a number of ways to maximize your cellular usage a nd g ive you more va lue for your money. For more information, please visit or call (250) 448-7359. T he snow is g roomed, a nd t he t ra i l s a re re a dy for t he 31st Annual Larch Hills Reino

Keski-Salmi Loppet, to be held on Ja nu a r y 17 t h , 2015 . T h e La rch H i l ls Sk i Club hosted thei r ver y fi rst ‘La rch H i l ls Marathon’ in January 1985. The Loppet changed their name in 1987 to honour and remember Reino Keski-Salmi, a founding member of our ski club and an international cross-country sk i ch a mpion who t ra g ically died in a helicopter crash wh i le work i ng w ith a forest fire-fighting crew. Registration for the event is open until m id n ight on January 15th or you can register in person on Ja nu a r y 16t h at t he SA SCU Recreation Centre. For more information, please visit www.

Larch Hills Nordic Ski Area is also inviting young skiers of grades 3 to 7 to participate in their annual Larch Hills Pirate Loppet on January 30, 2015. Once the blast of the black powder cannon sounds, it will release the rowdy pirates through an easy 5km ski route. Afterwards, a free hot lunch will be served to all participants, as well as chances to win draw prizes and prizes for the school with the most representation. Proceeds of the Loppet are used to purchase ski equipment for kids in Salmon Arm. For more information, call “Captain” Brian Smith at (250) 832-2934. A round Salmon A rm, there a re m a n y o p p o r t u n i t i e s to

e n j o y l i v e m u s i c p e r fo r ma nces. O n Ja nu a r y 8t h, a nd then every other week following, there is Jazz Night held at Shuswap Chefs. Admission is by donation and offers a great even i ng of toe-tappi ng ja zz pa i red w ith del icious appetizers. Other musical events include a monthly open-mic Coffee House every 3rd Friday, where either a toonie or a tune will cover your admission. The Wicked Spoon a nd T he Barley Station also host reg ular live music, providing entertainment and mouthwatering meals all wrapped in one. For more details, please visit their website at www.wickedspoon. ca/events.


Responsibly meeting community needs lies behind company’s ongoing success


A L MON A R M – A leading BC land developer has set itself apart by meeting community needs in a creative and sustainable way. Incorporated in 1983, Green Emerald Investments Inc. stood out from the start through a vision centered on innovative approaches to land development. “Our mission is to complete projects that enhance our community and environment, and to pass on a legacy to our children that we can be proud of,” explains President and Founder Gary Arsenault. “ We t u r n c u s to m e r s i n to friends and neighbours by ensuring they know we care and by exceeding expectations. We look after them and build long term relationships.” Building in the Shuswap and North Thompson areas since 2001, the company has joint ventured to complete a range of distinctive projects carefully ta i lored to a l ig n w it h commu n ity objectives wh i le respecting the natural and built environment. “Our focus is on building the best of residential single and multi-family developments, wh i le ca re home bu i lds a nd mixed use projects have been sig n i fica nt add itions to ou r portfolio,” says Arsenault. “As we plan and complete developments, we aim to excel and stay ahead of the curve. Every 10 years or so in the industry you have a peak, and then 5 years later you have a dip. So we take a proactive approach and try to anticipate where we will find ourselves in the cycle.” Clear communication with our customers and a focus on

exceed i ng ex pectat ion s a re central to the Green Emerald approach. “We try to make sure that long term operation of the building, and not just upfront purchase cost is taken into utmost consideration. We try to pay attention to insulation, geothermal and energy efficient design. In one project we completed, the energy savings equated to the removal of two cars from the road, per house,” says Arsenault. “We are at heart a family business,” he adds. “My w i fe i s my pa r t ner i n business and we just celebrated our 40th anniversary. Two of our four sons work with us.” A focus on green stormwater management and reduction of related external costs to communities further defines the Green Emerald approach. “Our plans are centered on doing more projects that are beneficial to the community, ones that are trend setting environmentally. Instead of having storm drains flush polluted runoff into lakes and rivers, which is common but irresponsible, we build rain gardens with perforated pipe, buried sand beds and native plants to filter water and replenish the water

Founder & President Gary Arsenault (pictured with wife Sharon) takes an innovative approach to development table. T here a re huge benefits to be gained from such a reasonable investment,” says Arsenault. Recent and prominent additions to the company portfolio include a suite of fine residential, retirement, mixed use and rural properties in the Shuswap area. Piccadilly Terrace Retirement Residence, a 91 unit independent living complex is the first of its kind in Salmon Arm, built with a vertical ground loop geo-thermal heating and cooling system which saves tremendously on

the utility costs. The complex stands out for quality of life, accessibility and comfort. “We are currently working on a 10 acre subdivision with geothermal named Green Emerald Estates in Salmon Arm. Backing onto a vineyard above Shuswap L ake, our 23 large lots are located right in town but lend a quiet rural feel,” says Arsenault. “Another project currently on the table is a retirement village in Clearwater BC, called Emerald Village on Park Drive.” Promising economic trends leave Arsenault optimistic about new opportunities in the region. “ We f e e l t h a t t h e N o r t h T hompson is goi ng to be a n area of substantial growth over the next few years once the new Hydro line from the Mica dam is brought to the valley. There is more than one new mine in the works, and we also have a large timber base that was not affected by the Mountain Pine Beetle,” Arsenault explains. “Additionally, Pattison Enterprises has recently made a considerable investment in the area with the expansion of the Canfor Forest Products mill in Vavenby and a new mall and grocery store in Clearwater. The Shuswap region is also growing

as a n a f ford able reti rement destination.” A big picture view has made the company especially competitive. “Thinking outside the box to find opportunities that others overlook and not listening to detractors have been key to our ongoing success,” says Arsenault. “A key challenge is the increasing costs of development being downloaded onto developers of all types by municipal regulations and policies. In turn, costs are passed on to the consumer. Federal construction standards and municipal regulations have expanded, and Arsenault believes they may at times be more stringent than necessary. “Members of the construction and development industry need to advocate for reasonable standards,” says Arsenault. “Our goal at the municipal level is to see increased recognition of how green technology and energy saving development practices cut public costs. In turn, we hope municipalities will factor these cost reductions into their development fees.” G r e e n E m e r a l d I n v e s tm e n t s I n c . i s a t 2 10 0 45 t h Av e , N E i n S a l m o n A r m Visit


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Family owned company has a proud 40-year history


AMLOOPS - Located in Kamloops, family owned and operated Kamco Installations Ltd. has been involved with many major construction projects throughout the province since it was founded by Mike Farina in 1974. Company president, Justin Simpson, said much of the success of the past 40 years is directly due to his late fatherin-law’s vision and dedication to quality and customer service. Farina began his business out of his garage. He felt that the BC interior area was in need of a qualified industrial pipe contractor and so, with a Stinger crane and 15 years of experience, he opened for business. Since then, the business has grown considerably. The company operates with a core staff of 20 highly qualified and long-term employees. That number can go as high as 60 depending on how many active jobs it is contracted for in the field. “Mike always put the customer first,” Simpson said. “We work with our customers to make sure they’re happy with the product. And quality is number one. Really, safety and quality are our top priorities.”

“We’ve stayed on top of what’s new in the piping industry, and that’s been good for us. We always look at new products and new procedures and try to become experts with those items.” JUSTIN SIMPSON PRESIDENT, KAMCO INSTALLATIONS LTD.

Justin Simpson says that quality, service and safety are number one concerns He noted that Kamco has been a bit of a chameleon over the years. At one point it was doing structural steel and steel fabrication. It also got into mechanical pipe lining and pipe spooling. Some years ago, Kamco began working extensively pipe lining in the mining industry and has been involved in BC mining for over 10 years. After completing the overland tailings and reclaim lines at Copper Mountain near Princeton, Kamco was featured in the Similkameen Spotlight Commemorative Keepsake Edition 2011. In 2012 Kamco caught the attention of Finning Canada while working at New Afton Mine outside of Kamloops and was featured in its Winter 2012 edition of Tracks & Treads. Kamco has been involved in installing pipelines for mines in British Columbia, both above ground piping as well as underground services. Some of the company’s projects include: ■ Highland Valley 48” Steel Above-Ground Freshwater Line ■ New Gold’s New A fton Mine installing Tailings, Freshwater and Reclaim Pipe Lines using both HDPE and Carbon Steel RubberLined Pipe ■ Te r r a n e M e t a l

Kamco started with a stinger crane 40 years ago

Mike Farina (pictured with his grandson) founded the company in 1974 C o r p o r a t i o n ’s M o u n t Milligan Mine – installing Tailings, Freshwater and Reclaim Pipelines using both HDPE and Carbon Steel Rubber-Lined Pipe ■ Copper Mountain Tailings, Fresh Water, Potable and Reclaim Pipe Lines, including Drop Tanks using both Steel and HDPE Pipe ■ Huckleberry Mine – Fusing HDPE for the Reclaim Pipeline ■ Fresh, Potable, Fi re, and Sewage Lines at Mt. Milligan “We’ve stayed on top of what’s new in the piping industry, and that’s been good for us,” Simpson said. “We always look at new products and new procedures and try to become experts with those items.” In mining, Kamco is heavily involved in water reclamation, tailings ponds, fresh water and fire systems piping. In the shop,

Kamco fabricates and spools pipe and then does the excavation and installation on site. Recently, Kamco has diversified once again into civil work, which it has done in the past. In Kamloops, Kamco did the civil works in Mission Hill in preparation for the buildings there. “We’ve stepped back into that, with the mining industry slowing recently in BC,” Simpson said. “Recently we have worked with the Ministry of Transport, doing some expansion of Highway 23 for them in the Nakusp area, and we have now just crossed into Alberta, doing civil work for the Town of Fox Creek, working on a subdivision. We’re hoping that this will be a new stepping stone within our company.” He added that one of the reasons for the company’s longevity is taking a proactive approach to economic realities and industry trends. Kamco has even moved into

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Kamco does a great deal of work with HDPE pipe plastic pipi ng, even thoug h through its history, the company has been chiefly known for its work with steel. It now does a great deal of work with High Density Poly-Ethylene (HDPE) piping that many industries are beginning to adopt. Seven years ago, Kamco became one of the industry’s leading HDPE pipe installation companies in the province. Kamco’s COO, Len Zwarich, is the only HDPE certified inspector in BC. “He was the guy who steered us toward HDPE,” Simpson said. “He saw the necessity for change in plastic pipe versus steel and took the company in that direction.” Kamco has also recently attained its ISO certification, making the quality of its work internationally recognized. “That’s a big deal for us,” Simpson said. “It’s an ongoing bettering of the company. That’s one of the things that has made us successful: looking forward and keeping our eye on the prize.” He added that over the years, Kamco has built strong relationships with many of its customers and is on the preferred tender list with many. However, Simpson noted that no job is too big or too small.

Someone may drop in needing help repairing his trailer hitch – and Kamco is happy to help. It is also ready to take on all the piping work for a major new mining or civil operation.

Kamco can convert general arrangement drawings into isometrics and shop drawings using AutoCAD. The shop can fabricate to approved procedures and specifications for both carbon

steel and stainless steel. After fabrication it offers installation services using ticketed journeymen where required. Some of its civil projects include: ■ T he Cit y of K a m lo ops Pumping Station and Sewage Treatment Plant ■ Pumping stations for Green Lake, Lac Le Jeune and Paul Lake Provincial Parks ■ Tobiano Potable and Sewage Water Treatment Plants ■ Potable Water Distribution for Dawson Creek ■ Waterline for the Vancouver Regional District ■ Water Filtration Plants Simpson noted that Kamco is committed to safety. The company’s health and safety program focuses on meeting and exceeding the expectations of Work Safe BC, the provincial regulations and federal legislation. Its exemplary safety record supports “zero tolerance” for injury. All of Kamco’s safety programs have been developed and redeveloped to support the commitment and principles set out in the company’s safety policy. Recognized past performance for its high standard of safety is displayed in the numerous certificates of recognition for safety awards from

previous employers and prime contractors who agree Kamco is serious about continuously placing safety in the forefront of quality and production. Simpson said that although quality is number one at Kamco, Safety is on an equal footing. “The people who work with Kamco have long term relationships with us. We have long-term staff – our COO has been with us 20 years. We demand that our employees are safety first. It’s hard to have two number ones, but quality and safety are equally important to us.” He added that it is also important to care about the local community. Kamco hires local staff and uses local services and suppliers wherever possible. When working in other communities, it makes sure that it uses local suppliers and workers also. “We think local first,” he said. “T his is a family owned and family run company. We’re a small family doing big business. We definitely want to continue doing business the way we are. We strive to satisfy the client and we make sure that we do quality work and installations. We want to be sure that the customer is happy with the job and they like the people who they are working with. We want to make sure that Kamco experiences continued success.” Kamco Installations Ltd. is at 1347 Mission Flats road in Kamloops.

Congratulations Kamco Installations on 40 years. We are proud to be your partner.

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City council has approved spending $1.3 million to renovate the entrances, lobby and main bridge at the Vernon Recreation Complex.

KAMLOOPS Al LaChance, Kelowna’s longestpracticing barber, is retiring from his career after 64 years.

Snap Fitness has welcomed Michelle Ostafew to its location at 103-5301 25 Avenue.

Dr. Diane McKelvey and Dr. Ken Gummeson have announced the opening of their new hospital, Aberdeen Veterinary Hospital, at 301-1150 Hillside Drive. River City Nissan has welcomed the addition of Chad Graham to its sales team, located at 2405 East Trans Canada Highway. Raymond Derrick Phillips, Mary Elizabeth MacGregor and Dennis Katsumi Hori have been appointed with an honourary Queen’s Counsel designation, which recognizes lawyers

NexGen Hearing has welcomed Dr. Jacek Szudeck to its team, located at 201-5100 Anderson Way in Vernon.

who have demonstrated merit and contribution in the legal profession. The Interior Health’s Board of Directors recognized Chair Norman Embree and Director David Goldsmith for completing their tenures. Gold Business Technologies congratulated Mike Gryba on achieving first place at the Kyocera 2014 Toronto Technician of the Year contest, winning the Canadian Championship.

Mike Gryba

85th anniversary this year. Jeff Stacer of RE/MAX Shuswap Realty is the 2014 recipient of the Realtors Care Award for the Shuswap Zone of OMREB. He is known for going above and beyond and a generous supporter of not-for-profit organizations.



The Community Foundation of the North Okanagan has elected Janice Mori as its new president, succeeding Michael Tindall.

JC Bradley Jewellers is celebrating its 30th anniversary, located at 380 Alexander Street.

Sutton Group Lakefront Realty has welcomed Meisu Chang to its team, located at 2749-30 Street.

BDO congratulated Noel Paiement and Kevin Seevers on passing the 2014 Uniform Evaluation.

Five Vernon Certified General Accountants have received their CPA, CGA designations. They are: Robin Denton-Cardew, Tina Gourley, Liane Hornell, Nadene Keller and Scott Wallace.

Askew’s Foods is celebrating its

Kingfisher Heliskiing has teamed up with Sparkling Hill Resort to offer the best of the back country and upscale après ski accommodation.

Wet Spot Grooming & Pet Care Centre celebrated its grand opening at 5201 26th Street.


Don Miller of Century 21 Executives Realty, has received the Central Okanagan 2014 Realtors Care Award from the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board.

Angie Lohr, who manages the H.O.P.E. Outreach, received the top honour at the 2014 Community Leader Awards. Pamela Nelson and Mary Statham both received honourable mentions.

Fishers Hardware has received the Kalamalka Rotary Club’s annual Vocational Service Award.

Okanagan Countertop Systems is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

Mickelson Family Chiropractic Clinic has welcomed Janelle Balardo to its practice, located at 3100-26th Street.

Kelowna International Airport will now be offering daily service to and from Toronto Pearson International Airport in June through Air Canada.

Susan Lake Motors is celebrating its 6th anniversary, located at 6285 Highway 97 N. Bannister GM congratulated Scott Young on being promoted to Business Manager.

Inland Kenworth has opened its new, 10,000-square-foot parts and service facility in West Kelowna at 2485 Ross Road. Iain Rennie has been appointed as the new Executive Chef at the



Delta Grand Okanagan Resort. Sandra Sellick has been elected to represent the BC and Yukon chapter of the Canadian Evaluation Society on its national board. Dr. Troy Wielgosz of Okanagan Chiropractic has relocated his practice to 105-1912 Enterprise Way. David Michael Rush of Rush Ihas Hardwick LLP has been appointed with an honourary Queen’s Counsel designation. The Urban Barn location at 5041500 Banks Road will be closed for major renovations from January 5 to February 14. Robert Barr is the new executive director of the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra. Cell Werx Kelowna has moved to a new location at 2640 Pandosy Street. West Kelowna has launched its newly renovated business website, www. Okanagan Chrysler Jeep Dodge has expanded its lot space to include 1.52 additional acres fronting the highway, which was formerly attached to the Subaru dealership. The newly-added space has allowed the company to expand its retail to allow for more new inventory. Kelowna Flightcraft has been awarded a contract to upgrade


the interior of the entire WestJet fleet of B737-600/700/800 aircraft.

Investment Planning Counsel, has moved to its new location at 314-1290 St. Paul Street.

Martin Vann has opened Okanagan Hobby & Crafts at 1795 Harvey Avenue.

Kelowna’s newest Pizza Hut location has opened its doors on Harvey Avenue.

The City of Kelowna’s Jim Paterson has retired from his position effective Dec. 31.

James Elliott is the new owner of ABC Hobby, located at 105-1835 Dilworth Drive.

Predator Ridge Resort’s executive chef, Jeremy Luypen, has won the Okanagan Chef’s Association Member of the Year Award. Also from the resort, Brodie Carle received the PGA of Canada Apprentice/Candidate for Member of the Year Award.

Vice-chair, David McFadden as Secretary, Thom Killingsworth as Treasurer, Katie Balkwill, Nathan Flavel, Donna Markin, Rosemary Paterson, Heather Schroeter, Penny Gambell, Sam Samaddar, Heather Schaub, Tony Stewart, Dan Matheson, Tanya Stroinig.

Kelowna, has received the Central Okanagan 2014 Realtors Care Award from the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board.

Thistletown Boxing has re-opened its doors after being forced to close in July 2014.

The following students have passed the 2014 Uniform Evaluation from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of BC: Stephanie Light, Jillian Battaglio, Dietrich Bauer, Thomas Butterworth, Mitchal Derksen, Ryan Dolan, Jessica Grantham, Victoria Hayes, Colin Kirkpatrick, Brett Matushewski, John McWhirter, Michael Naito, Andrew Rebus, Michael Smith, Billy Thompson, Spencer Trentini, Joshua Widmann and Jessica Wilson.

Crowe MacKay LLP has received an award from The Rotary Club of Kelowna, recognizing its leadership and commitment toward community service.

Kelowna General Hospital is expecting to open its new, high tech heart surgical facility in September 2015. Gail Given has been acclaimed as the chairwoman for the Central Okanagan Regional District, taking over from Robert Hobson. The Tim Horton’s location at the corner of Highway 97 and Cooper Road has recently undergone an expansion and renovation. The location now has 3,400-squarefeet of space, 75 seats, three tills, and is now open 24/7. Tourism Kelowna has announced its new 2015 Board of Directors, which includes: Stan Martindale as Chair, Daniel Bibby as

Mission Hill Winery has been selected by the public in the BC’s Best Buildings Contest, hosted by the Architecture Foundation of BC, as one of the top three buildings in the interior region of the province, and was also named the best in all of the province. Darryl Reuter of Royal LePage

Nuvue Optometry has opened for business at 112-1950 Harvey Avenue.

Donna Kneller has retired from her position at the Mission Medical Centre. West Kelowna Fire Rescue Chief Wayne Schnitzler has announced his retirement from the position effective March 27. Randy Villeneuve, owner/ operator of Villeneuve House, has received the Canada Cares, Caregiver Recognition Award for the Western Region. Martin Mills is a new personal golf and fitness specialist at GoodLife Fitness, located at 1191835 Gordon Drive. Peacock Sheridan Group,

Amber Hall has joined the sales team at the Coast Capri Hotel as its new Sales Manager. Kathy Rush, an associate professor with UBC Okanagan’s School of Nursing, has been honoured with an Award of Excellence from the College of Registered Nurses of BC. The Curious Artistry & Alchemy Café has opened for business at 1423 Ellis Street.

PENTICTON SOCountry Radio has reached the second round of the Small Business BC Awards in the People’s Choice category and White Kennedy LLP for best Workplace. They are both in the top ten in their categories. Canadian Bio, producer of natural health products and the manufacturing portion of Sangster’s Organization has purchased a 33,000 square foot building at 260 Okanagan Ave. They are re-locating from Saskatoon.



JANUARY 2015 A division of Invest Northwest Publishing Ltd. Thompson Okanagan Office #210-347 Leon Avenue, Kelowna, BC V1Y 8C7 Toll free: 1.866.758.2684 Fax: 1.778.441.3373 Email: Website:

PUBLISHER | Mark A. MacDonald, EDITOR | Lise MacDonald, SALES |, WRITERS | Goody Niosi, Julia MacDonald, Christopher Stephens

FRACKING BANS NEEDLESSLY DENY CANADIANS THE FRUITS OF NATURAL RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT Canada controls large “unconventional natural gas formations and reserves,” notes the study, which could be


eci sion s on hyd rau l ic f ra c t u r i n g s h o u l d b e based on rea l istic appraisals of risk, so Canadians are not unnecessarily denied the benefits of their natu ra l resources, finds a new study released today by the Fraser I n s t it ute, a n i n d e p e n d e nt, non-partisan Canadian public policy think-tank. T h e s t u d y, M a n a g i n g t h e Ri sks of Hydraulic F ract uring, exa m i nes the econom ic potential of energy resource d evelopm ent v i a hyd rau l ic f ra c t u r i n g (s o m e t i m e s refe r re d to a s “ f ra c k i n g”) i n Canada, and the often-repeated cla i m s m ade by f rack i ng opponents. “W h i le t here a re r isks associated with any type of oil a n d g a s e x t ra c t i o n , o r a n y

developed in part by hydraulic fracturing

large-scale human endeavor, there’s no evidence of unmanageable risk associated with hydraulic fracturing that justifies a ban or moratorium,” sa id Ken neth Green , sen ior d i rector w ith the Centre for Natural Resources at the Fraser Institute. A n d y e t , t h e re h a v e b e e n anti-fracking protests across Canada, and temporary frack i ng ba ns a nd morator iu m s in Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Br u nsw ick, a nd New fou ndland and Labrador. W hat does Canada stand to lose? Canada controls large “unconventional natural gas formations and reserves,” notes the study, which could be developed in part by hydraulic f ra c t u r i n g. T h e s e re s er ve s have a n est i m ated m a rket value of up to $4.6 trillion. In Quebec a lone, sha le gas deposits (which can be accessed v i a f rack i ng) a re wor t h bet ween $70 bi l l ion a nd $140 billion at current natural gas prices. “By all measures, Canada’s

shale gas and oil potential is significant, and the development of those resources could generate significant wealth for Canadians and their families,” Green said. The study finds that the risks of i n c re a s e d a i r p ol l u t i o n , greenhouse gas emissions and earthquakes associated with hydraulic fracturing are real, but manageable with currently available technologies and existing regulation. Regarding fracking-related water pol lution, a favou rite issue of anti-fracking activists, the study quotes the well-known journal Science, which reports that worldwide “more than 1 million hydraulic f ractu r i ng t reat ments h ave been conducted, with perhaps only one documented case of direct groundwater pollution resulting from injection of hydraulic fracturing chemicals, used for shale gas extraction.” “G o v e r n m e n t s i n Ca n a d a are faced with a choice—they can ban hydraulic fracturing despite t he fact t hat ex per t pa nels have show n the risks

are manageable, or they can work with industry to manage any risks in a pragmatic way while allowing Canadians to reap the benefits of their natural resources,” Green said. Kenneth P. Green is Senior Director, Centre for Natural Resources at the Fraser Institute. He has studied environmental, energy, and natural resource policy for more than 20 years at think-tanks across North America including the Reason Foundation in Los Angeles; the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC; and previously at the Fraser Institute, where he ran the Centre for Risk, Regulation and the Environment.

GOVERNMENTS NEED TO STOP PANDERING TO VOCAL LOBBIES The BC Liberals won the election. Citizens gave them a mandate. So get on with it.



remier Christy Clark’s decision to approve the Site C dam on the Peace River was welcome news, but was a long-time coming. It was also one of the most obvious “must do” moves facing the province. The Peace River already has two dams on it, so placing a third won’t have any more major environmental impact due to a new power producing plant. Cheap hydroelectric power has helped build British Colu mbia, tha n ks to former Premier W.A.C. Bennett’s vision to build dams generations ago. It was a bold step then which has paid massive dividends to the province. Clark’s rubber

sta mp was necessa r y, but a much delayed step in a glacially slow approval process that must ma ke major i nvestors th i n k twice about sinking dollars into big projects here. Look no further than Petronas representatives displaying a very public frown regarding t he si m i l a rly slow prog ress on Clark’s Liquid Natural Gas pipel i nes a nd pl a nts. T hei r stated concerns about the expected levels of taxation and the approval process surely sent tremors throughout the provincial government. After all, LNG was the horse Clark and the BC Liberals chose to ride prior to their surprise election victory, and the economic projections of an enormous profit pool seemed to excite voters. T he BC L ibera ls won t he election. Citizens gave them a

mandate. So get on with it. Not only that, but NDP leader Adrian Dix’ mid-campaign pronouncement about objecting to the twinning of the Kinder Morgan pipeline was the tipping point in the election. That one move shifted middle-income BC voters from the NDP towards the BC Liberals. T hese were their jobs that Dix was going to squash. The voters spoke: We want jobs. Good paying jobs like these. Yet we watch with wonderment how free enterprise gove r n m e nt s te n d e rly to e-t a p a rou nd development issues, trying not to upset the loud and boisterous environmental lobby. There are a couple of major problems with that. Firstly, radical environmentalist groups seem to presuppose that developers’ major goal as they “steamroll to windfall profits” is to destroy the environment. It’s a warped view of how things really work in development, displaying a lack of understanding about what it takes to build projects, and what is left over at the end of

the day. In order to get projects approved, developers are forced to address this backlash and are often on their heels from the start. The other thing wrong with those optics is the idea that developers as a whole want to destroy the environment. Nothing could be further from the truth. Smart investors realize that the environment must be cared for and attractive for residents and companies to buy in. It’s simply good business. Not to mention the fact everyone - and that means everyone - wants, demands, and enjoys clean air, water and beautiful BC. Secondly, the environmental fringe will not be placated, no matter what olive branches are extended. They don’t want development, period, and are perfectly comfortable with moving protesters from one cause to another across the province in order to raise their “voice” of opposition to whatever proj e c t , w h e re v e r. It h a p p e n s everywhere. These groups have learned how to kill projects with “kindness”,

asking developers for an almost never-ending list of requests that, if fulfilled, would demonstrate that the builders are good corporate citizens. That list is part of the landscape now for builders, who almost expect shifting sand and changing rules as they move a long towa rds some type of eutopic development that will become the gold standard of the future. What governments of all levels need to do is to introduce f i r m a n d f a i r e x p e c t at ion s for developers and investors that match the needs and expectations of all people - not just those who are the loudest and most media savvy. At the same time, provide a reasonable and attractive opportunity for those investors to make profits, which will ultimately help them decide where to inject their hard-earned money. And stop pandering to an excessive, never ending list of demands from a small segment of vocal protesters who will never be satisfied, and will never support free enterprise ideals, no matter what.

SUBCRIPTIONS | $45 PER YEAR (12 ISSUES), $80 FOR 2 YEARS (24 ISSUES), SUBSCRIBE ONLINE: WWW.BUSINESSTO.CA. DISTRIBUTION: FOURTH WEEK OF EACH MONTH VIA CANADA POST AD MAIL. The publisher accepts no responsibility for unsolicited submissions. The views and opinions expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher. Produced and published in British Columbia. All contents copyright Business Examiner Thompson Okanagan, 2014. Canadian Publications Mail Acct.: 40069240








Highway 6 & Middleton Way, Coldstream - Trintec Development



PROJECT TYPE commercial new

6021, 6241, 6381 50 NE St Bare Land Strata RV Park and Campground PROJECT TYPE commercial add/alte PROJECT New bare land strata RV Park and Campground - improvements to golf course PROJECT STATUS Rezoning application approval anticipated February/15 - final negotiations with Ministry of Transportation and Highways anticipated early/15 OWNER Club Shuswap Golf and RV Ltd - 5751 Trans Canada Hwy NE, Salmon Arm V1E 3A2 250-8327345 SURVEYOR Browne Johnson Land Surveyors - Box 362 201 371 Alexander, Salmon Arm, 250-832-9701

3505 30 Ave - Catherine Gardens at The Schubert Centre PROJECT TYPE Seniors housing PROJECT New seniors housing - 1 building 5 storeys - 56 units - wood frame building over 2 levels of concrete parking - 47 parking stalls PROJECT STATUS Construction start - blasting, rock work and footings underway - construction completion anticipated summer/15 ARCHITECT TRTA Architecture Ltd - 3500 30th St, Vernon, 250-545-0784 DEVELOPER The Schubert Centre Society - 3505 30th Ave, Vernon, 250549-4201 GENERAL CONTRACTOR Yellowridge Construction - 2022605 Clarke St, Port Moody,

PROJECT New commercial development - 7 commercial Buildings 71,890 sf - Buildings A, B, B1 & C 46,700 sf - Building D 4,040 sf - Building E 4,600 sf - Building F 2,400 sf -Building G 250 sf - Building H 5,600 sf and Building I 8,300 sf - 3 office buildings 69,940 sf - Buildings J1 & J2 22, 440 sf - Building K 26,000 sf and Building L 21,500 sf PROJECT STATUS Construction start of Phase 1 Medical Building anticipated spring/15 - tender for General Contractor anticipated early/15 - project will be developed in 4 Phases contingent on leasing occupancy ARCHITECT Urban Design Group Architects - 600 1140 W Pender St, Vancouver, 604-687-2334


7762, 7764, 7766 Okanagan Landing - Seasons in the Okanagan PROJECT TYPE subdivisions

PROJECT TYPE mixed-use dev PROJECT New master planned resort community on 6.75 acres of Lake Okanagan waterfront - 3 buildings - 19, 15 & 12 storeys - 450 condominiums and townhouses boardwalk - promenade - public space - 400 feet of sandy beach

PROJECT New strata subdivision - 40 SFD lots - final Phase of the Season Development - strata owners will have access to development amenities - pathway will connect to Ellison Parkway

PROJECT STATUS Design and preliminary planning underway

PROJECT STATUS Development permit application submission anticipated spring/15 - construction start anticipated summer/15 - construction completition anticipated spring/16


ARCHITECT MQN Architects - 100 3313 32 Ave, Vernon, 250-542-1199 DEVELOPER Lakeside Development Corp 7760 Okanagan Landing Rd, Vernon, 250-558-4795


550 Truswell Rd - Resort Community – Aqua

As a business owner, you never log off. Your mind is always plugged into your business. From forecasting this quarter’s results to contemplating the impact a single contract can make, our Private Enterprise professionals know the calculations that define your company’s success are numerous and constant. We can help you streamline costs in new and impactful ways, by optimizing your financial structure and tax strategies – allowing you to focus on growing the business you know best.

It’s business. And it’s personal. PRIVATE ENTERPRISE SERVICES Karen Christiansen, CPA, FCA, Business Advisor Private Enterprise at 250.979.1735 or


DEVELOPER The Mission Group Creations 620 1632 Dickson Ave, Kelowna, 250-448-8810

648 to 692 Richter St - Seniors Rental Housing PROJECT TYPE seniors housing PROJECT New seniors housing - 4 storeys - 50 units - peaked roofing - surface parking PROJECT STATUS Excavation underway - construction completion anticipated February/16 ARCHITECT Norr Architects Planners - 710 1201 W Pender St, Vancouver, 604-685-3237 GENERAL CONTRACTOR Vanmar Constructors - 9110 196A Street, Langley, 604-8820700


hem This year’s t

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, a n w o l e K d an 5 - Delta Gr


1 0 2 , 2 1 y r a Febru

Hosted by...

CCO Workshop, February 12, 2015 Delta Grand Hotel, Kelowna, BC Join us for an open, constructive dialogue between

CONSULTANTS, CONTRACTORS AND OWNERS engaged in the procurement and construction process. This year’s theme is, “What Do Owners Want?” featuring: • Moderated Panel Debate • Instructional Workshops • Industry Experts • Legal Review More information & registration:

Business Examiner Thompson/Okanagan - January 2015  

Featuring the latest business news and information from Kamloops, Salmon Arm, Vernon, Kelowna, Summerland and Penticton.

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