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VICTORIA Città Group founder — Bill Patterson, received a Lifetime Achievement Award





Top Vancouver Island Companies Honoured at Business Excellence Awards Gala

VICTORIA Dodd’s Furniture celebrates 40 years in business




INDEX News Update


Victoria 6 Sooke 7 Esquimalt 7 Who is Suing Whom 22 Movers and Shakers 23 Opinion 26 Saanich Peninsula

Quality Foods Earns Business of the Year Title


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ICTORIA – Quality Foods, which has 2 of its 13 locations in Greater Victoria, was announced as the Business of the Year the 17th Annual Vancouver Island Business Excellence Awards, honouring the best of the best in Island business January 26 at the sold-out Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort in Victoria. Quality Foods was joined a finalist in the Business of the Year category with Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress and Chemistry Consulting of Victoria, and The Coulson Group of Port Alberni. “A s we’ve come to ex pect, there were some spectacular success stories this year,” notes Mark MacDonald of Business

Empire Hydrogen Energy Systems of Victoria was named Green Business of the Year at the 17 th Annual Business Excellence Awards


Key Metrics And Room Rates Indicate Opportunities In Hotel Industry Renovated To Retain Character And Authenticity, The Craigmyle Offers Luxury Accommodation At Budget Friendly Pricing BETH HENDRY-YIM

Canadian Publications Mail Acct.: 40069240


ICTORIA – Surging performance in the Victoria hotel ma rket has seen occupancy and average room rates at an all-time high. “Revenue per available room (RevPA R) is a key metric for looking at hotel performance. In 2016 Victoria saw the rate increase by more than 50 per

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cent since 2012. It’s poised to be even stronger in 2017,” said Randy Holt, vice president and pa r t ner at Newmark K night Frank Devencore Victoria. Coupled with the reduction of room inventory in the city, he explained that the industry will continue to see accelerating rates and improved returns for hoteliers. “There are proposals in front

of the local city councils to convert an additional 300 rooms to alternate use. With RevPAR reflecting the combined impact of the increase in occupancy from 62 per cent to about 74 per cent and average room rates rising from $120 to $160 in the past four years, it’s a great time to enter the business.” Four years ago, with the market still recovering, seasoned


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investors, Mireille Lafrance and Denis Cuerrier began searchi n g fo r a re ve n u e p ro p e r t y that constituted a ‘diamond in the rough’. According to Holt their objective was to acquire an underperforming site with good fundamentals then use their capital and management skills to affect a turnaround to SEE CRAIGMYLE |  PAGE 20



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BRITISH COLUMBIA Province approves Kinder Morgan pipeline Premier Christy Clark announced that the conditions the provincial government outlined for the approval of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Pipeline Project nearly five years ago, have been met. The announcement comes after the provincial government reached a financial deal with Kinder Morgan worth nearly $1-billion over the next two decades. The $6.8-billion project will triple the capacity of Kinder Morgan’s existing pipeline, which spans 1,150-kilometres from Edmonton, Alberta to the marine terminal in Burnaby. The province has granted an environmental certificate to the BC portion of the project, with 37 further conditions, including consultation with First Nations and further protection of wildlife habitats, wetlands and caribou and grizzly populations. The federal Liberal government approved the pipeline expansion in November, with 157 conditions to be met by K inder Morgan. Additionally, the federal government announced their plan to take action on marine spill prevention, response and recovery with a $1.5-billion Ocean Protection Plan. The Ocean Protection Plan will ensure investment in First Nations and community training, new technology and staff and equipment including two new salvage tugs capable of rescuing and towing large vessels. The plan also insures BC against any cost associated with a potential spill by providing a guarantee of unlimited funds available for clean-up and compensation, allowing dollars to get quickly into the hands of first responders and those affected by oil spills. This backstops BC’s polluter-pay principle, which ensures those who are responsible for spills are also responsible for cleaning them up. The agreement between the province and Kinder Morgan will also see British Columbians first in line for the jobs of the more than 75,000 person-years of employment. The project will boost BC’s GDP by $19.1-billion during construction and operations over 20 years and generate over $2.2-billion in tax revenue for provincial and local governments. The remaining conditions the province outlined nearly five years ago have either been or are being satisfied. The Trans Mountain pipeline is expected to commence operations as early as December 2019.

VICTORIA Royal BC Museum to undergo renovations T he Roya l BC Museu m i s s l ate d for renovat ion to en ha nce v isitor’s experience. The area by the gift and coffee shops on the main floor will be transformed into a new gallery space to exhibit the museum’s Emily Carr collection. The Museu m has the la rgest Em i ly Ca rr collection in the world with more than 1,100 pieces of her work.

T he upgrades will also include the creation of a space adjacent to the Emily Carr Gallery called the Pacific Words Gallery. The new gallery will feature First Nations cultural treasures from the museum’s collection. Renovations w i l l be conti nu i ng i n other areas of the museum as well. Once complete, the roughly 5,200-squarefoot space will include learning labs that can be used for lectures or classes for students and adults. This renovation will be the largest renovation since the museum introduced the IMAX theatre in 1997. The development of the learning space is expected to be complete by April this year. Construction of the two new galleries is expected to begin this fall and be completed by the end of 2018. The renovations and development will cost roughly $10-million, some funding of which is still being secured. The museum is also planning on launching a campaign in the spring to help pay for some of the upgrades. The exhibition and permanent gall e r i e s w i l l n o t b e a f fe c t e d b y t h e construction.

VICTORIA Glenlyon School gets major makeover Glenlyon Norfolk School’s Beach Drive campus has been approved to undergo a major makeover which includes the development of new buildings and the restoration of heritage structures. The project was approved by Oak Bay council in mid-November and will begin either this year or next year at the latest. New energy efficient buildings will be built to replace the existing gymnasium, classroom buildings and kindergarten buildings. A new two-storey classroom building and two new 1,800 square foot buildings for kindergarten and pre-kindergarten schools will also be constructed. The existing 1,795 square foot coach house will be converted to become the designated music room, while the boathouse will house the marine adventure program. The boathouse renovation will create more kayak and canoe storage. The school’s new design is intended to combine a modern and progressive image for the school which follows a modern and progressive educational philosophy. T he Glenlyon School property was purchased in 1935 by Major Ian Simpson. Now Glenlyon Norfolk’s Beach Drive campus serves about 225 students up to Grade 5. The senior campus is located on Bank Street.

BRITISH COLUMBIA BC’s GDP growth expected to outpace nation in 2017 British Columbia is on track to remain one of Canada’s strongest economies in 2017 as most private sector economists, banks and think-tanks are forecasting the province will continue to record SEE NEWS UPDATE |  PAGE 3




economic grow th that ranks among the best in Canada. Statistics Canada repor ted that BC’s real GDP grew by 3.3 per cent in 2015, the highest rate of econom ic g row t h i n Canada and a full 2.4 percentage points above the national average. The Province’s independent E conom ic Forecast Cou nci l predicted that BC’s economy w i l l outperform Ca nada; on average, they forecast real GDP growth at 3.0 per cent in 2016 and 2.3 per cent in 2017. B r it i s h C olu m b i a’s n at i o n-l e a d i n g G D P g r o w t h can be credited to its strong g ro w t h i n re t a i l s a l e s , e xports (especially to the United States), housi ng sta rts, a nd Canada-leading employment growth. For 2016, projections for the province’s economic growth ra nge b etween 2.9 p er cent (Scotiabank) to 3.4 per cent (Conference Board of Canada), well above the Canadian real GDP growth rate of between 1.2 per cent (Scotiabank) and 1.4 per cent (TD Economics). Next year, British Columbia’s real GDP is anticipated to show moderate growth, increasing between 1.7 per cent (RBC Economics) and 2.5 per cent (BMO). While BC’s growth will be tempered compared with the past two yea rs, most econom ists and ban ks are forecasting it will be higher than Canada as a whole, which is expected to grow from a low of 1.8 per cent (RBC Economics) to a high of 2.1 per cent (Conference Board of Canada) in 2017. Looking to 2017 and beyond, T D e c onom i s t s rep or t t h at British Columbia’s above-average GDP growth will be spurred by c on s u mer s p end i n g a nd that, “federal-provincial government stimulus (that) will add to growth over the next two years – especially in BC where the government will likely redeploy su rpluses i n new ta x cuts and spending increases.”



Redevelopment proposed for View Royal rental units

Victoria real estate sees record breaking 2016

A $200-million rezoning application has been submitted to the Town of View Royal for a rental housing proposal that would be built on a peninsula jutting into the middle of the Portage Inlet. If approved by town council, t he Ch r i st ie Poi nt redevelopment would be the largest rental project in View Royal history. Christie Point Apartments is a 15.8 acre rental housing site located in the Tow n of View Royal in the Greater Victoria area. Realstar Management of Toronto, the owner and manager of 25,000 rental housing units across Canada acquired t he prop er t y i n 201 4. T hey bega n ex plori ng redevelopment options in early 2016, as cosmetic refurbishment of the suites were no longer adequate for the long-term sustainability of the property. Comprehensive redevelopment of the site is now proposed to replace the existing 161 units and to increase the supply of the rental housing units, with an additional 312 new units – resulting in a total of 473 rental housing units. Plans for the new development call for buildings to meet LEED system environmental standards or equivalent. Environmental features for the project include implementing the ‘Greenshores’ program to support environmental sustainability along the shoreline. Other initiatives include a new path system to divert people from sensitive areas, salt marsh and beach grass restoration, restoration of vegetation and a fenced off-leash area for dogs. Realstar submitted their rezoning application in December. If approved by the City it will take three to four years to complete construction and will result in 2,000 person years of employment.

A total of 471 properties sold in the Victoria Real Estate Board (VREB) region this December, 1.3 per cent more than the 465 properties sold in December last year. Inventory levels edged lower than last year, with 1,493 active listings for sale on the Victoria Real Estate Board Multiple Listing Service at the end of December 2016, 40.7 per cent fewer than the 2,517 active listings at the end of December 2015. “As we expected, 2016 broke records in terms of the number of properties sold in our area,” notes Mike Nugent, outgoing VREB President of the Board. “10,622 properties sold, which exceeds our previous high of 9,241 sales in 1991.” The Multiple Listing Service Home Price Index benchmark value for a single family home in the Victoria Core in December 2015 was $613,600. The benchmark value for the same home in December 2016 has increased by 23.6 per cent to $758,500. “We expect sales to continue to be strong but we don’t expect to see the phenomenal activity we saw in 2016 for 2017. Inventory continues to be low,” adds President Nugent. “You can’t sell something that isn’t there. There is certainly an ongoing demand for properties. This is reflected in the fact that 25 per cent of sales this month sold over their asking price. The majority of these properties were in the up to $750,000 price point, so your average buyer will face a competitive market.”

BC Province adds 69,000 jobs in 2016 More than 69,000 jobs were created in BC during the first 11 months of 2016 compared to the same period of last year. And w ith over 2.3 m illion people

working in the province and the country’s lowest unemployment rate, this good news is set to continue into the New Year. For 2017, private sector fina ncia l i nstitutes R BC Economics, BMO Capital Markets, Desja rd ins, Scotiaba n k  a nd the Conference Board of Canad a  a re proje c t i n g t h at job growth in BC, will once again outpace Canada as a whole and will either be leading all other provinces or be right near the top. These forecasters expect BC’s u nemploy ment rate to continue its downward trajectory next year, to sit between 6.1 per cent and a low of 5.7 per cent. Furthermore, the Canadian Fe d e rat i o n of I n d e p e n d e nt Businesses (CFIB) released its Job Vacancy Report in December. The voice of over 109,000 small businesses from across the country says BC’s private sector job vacancy rate is the h ig hest a mong prov i nces at 3.5 per cent a nd the h ig hest it h a s b e en i n t he prov i nc e since 2008 – prior to the global recession. To support long-term job creation and grow British Columbia’s economy, the Province launched the BC Jobs Plan in 2011. Since its launch, BC has g a i n e d ne a rly 175,000 ne w jobs with 88 per cent of these in full-time positions. BC has gone from having Canada’s fourth-lowest unemployment rate in 2011 to having the lowest in Canada at 6.1 per cent in November 2016. This marks six consecutive months BC has had the lowest unemployment rate in the country. T hese reports bu i ld on the most recent L abou r M a rket Outlook which forecasts nearly one million job openings in BC by 2025. To help fill these one million jo b op e n i n g s, of w h i c h a lmost 80 per cent will require post-secondary education or training, the Province is realigning BC’s education system a nd tra i n i ng prog ra ms w ith the needs of the labour market through BC’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint.

3 VICTORIA Hotels transitioning to residential units despite demand A number of hotels in the Victoria area are looking to be converted to residential units, despite growing hotel room occupancy. The Harbour Towers hotel in James Bay has applied for rezoning in order to convert the building from a hotel into a 219-unit residential tower. The rezoning means that the city will be without another 189 hotel rooms in a hotel market that is experiencing high occupancy. In the first 11 months of 2016, Victoria hotels reported an average occupancy of roughly 76 per cent, compared to 72 per cent in the same period for 2015. According to real estate experts, residential units are more lucrative than hotel rooms, even in a busy tourist market. Regardless of the controversial rezoning, the hotel will be closed due to long overdue renovations that are expected to take 20 months. If the permit and rezoning process goes smoothly, construction may begin as early as November. The renovation will include all new mechanical, electrical and glazing, which hasn’t been touched since 1971. GMC Projects has purchased the 123-room Econo Lodge and Suites along the Gorge Waterway with the intention of converting the units to residential spaces. The Admiral Inn is also the subject of a development permit that would see the existing hotel demolished in favour of an eight-storey, 35unit apartment building. In recent years, the city has lost rooms at hotels including the Queen Victoria, Traveller’s Inns, Dominion and others to either rental developments or social housing. Victoria’s average daily room rate last year was $154, while the Canadian average was $149. Greater Vancouver’s rate for last year was $178, while downtown Toronto was $200.

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ICT OR I A – A profess i o n a l p a i n t i n g c o ntractor with offices in Cou r ten ay a nd i n Victor i a, Abrahams Painting has been serving its expanding list of resident ia l a nd com mercia l clients since 1999. For company founder and President Jim Abrahams the keys to successfully growing and expanding a business is to provide the best service and by doing the best quality work every time. “W hile I spend most of the t i me r u n n i n g t he c ompa ny these days I’ve been involved with painting for most of my life. My first painting job was in 1962 painting signs in Regina when I was just a kid so I’ve been involved with painting for a long time,” Abrahams explained. Having worked in a number of different fields, from a mill worker to crew on a tug boat, Abra ha ms beca me i nvolved with painting as a business in 1988, working part time in a painting company started by his wife. After leaving Elk Falls Pulp Mill in Campbell River in 1999 he went full time into the painting business opening the first Abrahams Painting outlet in the Comox Valley. The company opened its Victoria branch in November 2003

Since 1999 Abrahams Painting and its team of certified painters have completed hundreds of residential jobs

“I literally could not run an office down there without him, Mark essentially looks after everything for us.” JIM ABRAHAMS PRESIDENT, ABRAHAMS PAINTING

when then employee Mark Steer expressed a desire to move back to his home in the Capital region. “Mark was working for me and said he wanted to move back to Victoria and I really didn’t want to lose him as he’s a very organized guy and a really good painter,” he said. “I literally could not run an office down there without him. Mark essentially looks after everything for us.” Tod ay Abra h a m s Pa i nt i ng employs a team of trade certified painters and provides a

Much of the work the company carries out in Victoria involves working on classic and heritage homes full range of interior and exterior painting services as well as support in such related areas as interior decorating and wallpaper hanging services. “The Victoria branch does far more residential work than we do in the Comox Valley, due to all of the classic and heritage homes located in the city.

Renovations of older homes are definitely a specialty of the Victoria office,” he said. “Being reliable, doing the job right, fixing what needs fixing. That’s how we’ve always run the business.” To lea r n more plea se v i sit the company website at: www.





NPA is Looking to Attract New Customers as a Cost Effective Alternative for Ships Waiting to Off Load or Experiencing Yard Capacity Constraints at Vancouver’s Port

infrastructure which positions us as an ideal Marine Trans-Shipment Hub.”


A NA IMO - At only 33 nautical miles from Metro Vancouver and the Fraser River, the Nanaimo Port Authority (NPA) offers cost-effective alternatives for storage, ship and barge service, lay by and quick turn-around. “Time is money in the shipping industry,” said Jason Michell, terminal facilities manager. “We have the capacity and infrastructure to offer cost effective alternatives, potentially saving clients both time and money.” Since 2014, NPA has seen, on average, a 31 per cent increase in the use of its container barge service. With the initiation of Phase 2, the Duke Point Terminal Expansion is seeking government infrastructure funding to double the size of the terminal by lengthening the deep sea dock and by providing a second deep sea berth by 2020 or earlier. The growth will allow NPA and DP World Nanaimo


Jason Michell said that NPA and DP World Nanaimo have diverse service offerings that provide solutions for getting cargo moved efficiently CREDIT:NANAIMO PORT AUTHORITY

to offer additional opportunities to clients and to enhance their ability to act as a stop gap for mainland and island bound cargo. “ T h e t re n d s h o w s s te a d y growth, we’re planning for the future,” Michell emphasized. “We understand the costs of sitting at anchor and how alternative options can help maintain a steady

flow of goods.” Michell, with extensive training and experience in terminal operations, pointed out that the NPA’s diversity is the key to its success and growth. It boasts rail/barge access to the Fraser River, facility versatility for short sea and international shipping, a pilotage boarding station, a 100

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metric tonne mobile harbour crane, available berth capacity, weekly LO-LO container barge service to Centerm, 100 metric tonne Roll on/Roll off barge ramp, 30 acres of paved storage space including a 60,000 square foot bonded warehouse. “We have considerable storage on the property and, for Island bound cargo, the Duke Point location makes it easy to truck north and south with its close link to the Inland Island Highway. For instance, Duke Point was chosen recently for offloading and the storage of Vestas Windmills for a windfarm project on the North Island.” Michell said that paying close attention to what the terminal clients are asking for allows NPA to find solutions that work and are both comparative and cost

effective. “We have good relationships with many cargo vessel carriers. We are constantly looking at how we can enhance our service. And with our existing property and facilities we can keep costs reasonable.” As it continues to attract new and existing ventures, NPA is on target for creating exceptional value for bulk, breakbulk and container movement. The DP World Vancouver-Nanaimo agreement provided Vancouver Island’s first load-on/load-off container service to the DP World Centerm terminal in Vancouver. NPA’s growth hasn’t gone unnoticed. Westwood Shipping saw the opportunity and now provides flexible solutions with breakbulk and container service to Japan and Korea for the wood and manufacturing industries. “Our clients are becoming more aware of the benefits of Nanaimo’s proximity to Vancouver. This, coupled with an ability to provide cost effective handling solutions for a broad range of cargoes, is key for the Port’s and Island communities’ future progress and development.” said Michell. “Being able to assist small, medium and large businesses with transportation and handling solutions are what we are good at – it’s really our passion.”

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asps were heard across Greater Victoria in January as property assessment notices landed and thoughts of, “My property is worth how much?”, gave way to, “What does this mean for my property taxes?” The good news is that a rise in your property value does not – necessarily – mean you will be paying more in your property taxes. But the bad news is it may. So let’s open a dialogue about property taxes. Each year municipalities decide how much money they need to bring in, and then set their property tax rates accordingly. Property taxes also include levies collected on behalf of different authorities, e.g. BC Government (school 1 2015 average single family dwellings (BC Assessment) 2 SD = School District

2016 Residential Rate

2016 Commercial Rate

2016 Ratio

2015 Ave. Property Value1

2016 Ave. Residential Taxes

2016 Ave. Business Taxes

Central Saanich Colwood Esquimalt Highlands (SD21) Highlands (SD2) Highlands (SD3) Langford Metchosin North Saanich Oak Bay Saanich (SD1)







6.7904 7.82484

24.1616 22.73613

1:3.6 1:2.9

$435,700 $483,000

$2,959 $3,779

$10,527 $10,982

Saanich (SD63)


Sidney Sooke Victoria

6.19211 6.94079 6.8297

View Royal (SD61)


View Royal (SD62)


5.8950 6.1517

1:3.6 20.9657



$3,052 $517,800





5.9665 3.2499

17.8579 11.4398

1:3 1:3.5

$402,200 $525,700

$2,507 $1,708

$7,504 $6,014

4.6147 6.0601

19.8333 15.5345

1:4.3 1:2.6

$663,000 $785,900

$3,060 $4,763

$13,149 $12,209









1:2.7 1:2.6 1:3.1

$453,600 $362,300 $547,200

$2,809 $2,515 $3,737

$7,618 $6,550 $11,754

6.40717 21.8305

16.79481 18.07772 21.4646

1:3.3 19.25562

$2,969 $509,200


districts), Capital Regional District, Capital Regional Hospital District, BC Transit, and Municipal Finance Authority. The combined rate of all levies to be collected is often called a mill rate. In Greater Victoria, mill rates are based on $1,000 of taxable value and vary by class of property, such as: residential, industry, commercial/business, utilities, supportive

$9,805 $3,100

housing, farming, non-profit, and recreational. One of our concerns is the difference - or ratio - between property taxes. In the City of Victoria municipality, for example, the 2016 mill rates were 6.8297 for residential and 21.4646 for commercial, for a ratio of 1 to 3.1. That means in 2016 an average City of Victoria resident would have paid $3,737 in

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FEBRUARY CHAMBER EVENTS • Tuesday, February 7 It’s 2017 – What’s Changed in Social Media 2 to 4 pm The Chamber (852 Fort St.) • Thursday, February 9 Prodigy Group 10th Anniversary Mingle 5 to 7 pm - Fairmont Empress Lobby Bar • Thursday, February 16 property taxes (before any grants) on a residence valued at $547,200, while a business would have paid $11,745 on a commercial property of the same value. The rationale for this ratio is unclear, raising the question, does a non-residential property owner consume more than two times the tax-supported services of a residential? We suspect not. A 2007 report by MMK Consulting for the City of Vancouver found that, on average, residential properties in Vancouver paid $0.56 in property taxes for each dollar of tax-supported services consumed, while non-residential properties paid $2.42 for every dollar of tax-supported services they consumed. While this report is dated, the issue is not. We anticipate a similar study of Greater Victoria municipalities would find the same results. Businesses need to understand what drains their bank accounts. Commercial property taxes affect

Business Mixer 5 – 7 pm l Poppies Floral Art (The Atrium 800 Yates St.) • Tuesday, February 21 Chamber Week Seminar: Recruiting to Win 2 – 4 pm - The Chamber • Thursday, Feb 23 Chamber Week Seminar: Measuring your Marketing Success Using Analytics 2 – 4 pm - The Chamber a business’ competitiveness and profit margins. With our region facing serious challenges such as the rising costs - and decreasing inventories - of housing and inadequate transportation systems, we simply do not need any more disincentives to do business in Greater Victoria. As the voice of Greater Victoria businesses, The Chamber is asking all 13 of Greater Victoria municipalities to outline their intentions for their 2017 mill rates. We will watch ratios carefully, and intend to be quite vocal - locally and provincially - if we see increases. We hope this effort will enable a common understanding and informed dialogue, contributing to sustainable, fair, and transparent property taxes. Catherine Holt is the CEO of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce. 250-383-7191,, www.

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nyone taking a drive around Esquimalt these days will see signs of economic development. From the site preparation happening for Mark Eraut’s Esquimalt Road condominium project to the new Tutor House liquor store at Admirals Road or the Red Barn redevelopment across the street there are positive signs that Esquimalt is awakening from a rather prolonged development slumber. There are also signs of impending construction along Lampson Street with Aragon clearing land at the English Inn for its hotel improvements and future condominium developments. Likewise, preliminary work is underway for the townhouse development just north of Esquimalt Road. With all this development underway, it is vitally important that citizens have faith in Council’s capacity to properly manage the development process so that the community fully realizes the benefits of these projects. Unfortunately, the way Council

has handled the sewage treatment issue gives us little confidence that Council has such capacity. For example, Council originally capitulated saying it had no authority to alter the decision regarding the plant location. Then we were told Council did actually have authority to issue a development permit and therefore, Council had a wide range of options in determining the final outcome of the project. When Council said it had no authority, the Chamber asked for a full accounting of all the advice it received in reaching that conclusion. Unfortunately, Council has yet to provide any answers and in the meantime, has now reversed its no authority position to that of being in a position to grant or deny a development permit. Such a dramatic about face deserves an explanation but Council has provided none. Unfortunately, until Council provides full disclosure of the all the advice related to this monumental flip-flop, citizens would be right to wonder whether Council has the capacity to properly manage development. While the Chamber supports economic development, we do so as a means of improving the over-all well being of our members and the community. However, if our Council doesn’t have the capacity to ensure we achieve optimum benefits from these developments, then the people we entrusted to look after our best interests are shortchanging us all.

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RJ Senko is a Vice-President at the Esquimalt Chamber and President of RJStrategies. He can be reached at 250-888-3534.


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In 2016, Telus completed its high-speed

Vancouver Island | Thompson-Okanagan | Peace| Cariboo Skeena Vancouver Island| Victoria | Victoria | thompson-okanagan Fraser Valley

fibre optic Internet build-out making Sooke one of the select few BC communities directly connected to Telus’ state of the art



it h business metrics sh i f t i ng away from “time in seats” to “achieved results”, more and more successful businesses are embracing the trend of telecommuting. Some take it a step further by recognizing the posit ive i mpact of t he environment on the productivity of their employees. These businesses are setting up or relocating to areas where employees can work, live and play in surrounded by nature. S o o k e i s t h e p e rfe ct pl ac e for SOHO s,

telecommuters and businesses that understand the advantage of their employees being able to easily connect with the great outdoors. We have low housing costs, numerous development opportunities, and everything a nature enthusiast could ask for – hiking, biking, kayaking, fishing, and whale watching, (just to name a few). Oh, and we have the fastest Internet available in North America. In 2016, Telus completed its high-speed fibre optic Internet build-out making Sooke one of the select few BC communities directly connected to Telus’ state of the art PureFibre network. “Less t h a n t h ree p er cent of Canadian communities

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Kerry Cavers is the president of the Sooke Chamber of Commerce and can be reached at the Chamber office at 250-642-6112.


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and less than five per cent of North American communities are connected to a fibre optic network” said Larry Vanderveen, Senior Market Manager for Telus “The expansion of i nter net ser v ices i n Sooke gives residents and businesses access to the most advanced technology available today.” With this new technolog y Sooke has become a “Smart City”. Couple that with the lifestyle we offer and this is the place where you need to bring your business.


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Construction Industry Anticipates Record Breaking Year Heated Activity During 2016 Shows No Sign Of Cooling Off


ICTORIA – By any yardstick, construction activity across Vancouver Isla nd a nd i n pa rticu la r the Capital Region was at an all time high last year. Based on the record-breaking amount of work currently underway or planned, 2017 could be an even busier year. “2016 was a record breaking year; we know that without even having the Fourth Quarter results compiled. We had already surpassed levels set back in 2007 (the previous high point) at the end of the Third Quarter,” explained Greg Baynton, Chief Executive Officer of the Vancouver Island Construction Association (VICA). By November of last year residential building permits across Vancouver Island totaled more than $562 million, an increase of 12 per cent over the Second Quarter of 2016. By the end of last November construction employment had risen by 12.6 per cent to 38,500 persons across the entire Island, compared to the 34,200 persons who had been employed in the construction sector at the end of the Second Quarter. Most of this gain had taken place in the Greater Victoria area which had seen a 31.2 per cent jump to 14,300

The expansion at the Mayfair Shopping Centre is just one of the city’s big construction projects persons working in construction. “I’ve been involved in the construction sector now for 35 years and I do not recall ever seeing every segment of the construction industry this active or firing on all cylinders like it is right now,” he said. Information released by the City of Victoria indicated that just shy of $300 million worth of building permits had been issued during 2016, the highest level in the past decade. The last time that

value of permits had been issued in the city was in 2007, when $280 million worth of building permits were issued – that spike was then immediately followed by the economic trauma of 2008 when building permit issuances dropped to $176 million. VICA statistics show that across the entire Capital Regional District more than $1.5 billion worth had been issued by the end of the Third Quarter of 2016. “The commercial sector, the industrial

sector, the institutional sector, the public sector – just all of it – is roaring along a full tilt,” he said. Baynton explained that there are a number of key, large scale construction projects either already underway or in the advanced planning stages in Victoria that will ensure continued activity throughout 2017 and into 2018. “Multi-family residential highrise condominium construction is super hot right now and sales are very active in that area,” he said.

“On the commercial side the Mayfair Mall expansion ($70 million plus), the completion of the Hillside Mall expansion, the Uptown Mall is moving to its final stages so the whole shopping centre sector remains strong. The Capital City project across from City Hall is another notable example as is the work going on by the Legislature which is a massive five year project.” For him this level of activity promises a continued bright future for the construction trades, particularly in Victoria. “We’re forecasting 2017 to be essentially a mirror image of 2016 in terms of activity. We’re even forecasting a bit of an uptick in 2018 so the next couple of years look good.” Baynton himself will be retiring from his post with the Vancouver Island Construction Association in March after having served in the role for the past decade. His replacement has been selected and will be beginning his duties in late February, allowing for about a month for the gradual transition in leadership to take place. To learn more please visit the organization’s website at: www.

BDC is where you need us to be: right here in Victoria. As the only bank devoted exclusively to entrepreneurs, we’re there to give you the financing and advice you need to create your business from scratch. Call us at 1-888-INFO-BDC or go to

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2017-01-13 4:19 PM



BE Awards Winners Announced at Gala AWARDS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

Examiner, which coordinates the event. “We had 83 finalists this year in 17 categories. There was a tea grower, an underwater robot maker, and a company that builds mini-houses, just to name a few.” Bruce Williams of CTV Vancouver Island served as Master of Ceremonies for the event, which had Black Press as a Platinum Medium Sponsor this year. RBC Royal Bank and Grant Thornton LLP as Gold Sponsors. Category sponsors were CIBC, Coastal Community Credit Union, Helijet, Grieg Seafood, Top 20 Under 40, Liquid Capital West Coast Financing Corporation and Invest Comox Valley. Q u a l i t y Fo o d s s t a r t e d a s Qualicum Foods in a very small store in downtown Qualicum Beach, and the small group of founders felt that if they could provide exceptional service, they would be successful in that community, and in others against larger competitors. Now heading into its 35th year in business, it’s more comfortable to look back at the store’s beginnings, when owners faced 20-plus per cent interest – believing if they could survive and thrive in that environment, they would make it anywhere. Victoria area winners included RingPartner as Entrepreneur of the Year, Empire Hydrogen Energy Systems as Green Business of the Year, Bayshore Home Health of Sidney as Health Care Business of the Year, Victoria Eye as Professional Business of the Year, Coastal Heat Pumps of Sidney as Trades Business of the

Year, Level Ground Trading of Sidney as Small Business of the Year (Less than 50 employees), and Inn at Laurel Point as Hospitality Business of the Year. Inn at Laurel Point shared the Hospitality award with Telegraph Cove Resort of Telegraph Cove near Port McNeill, as they were tied on the judges’ ballots. Other award winners were: Salish Sea Foods of the Comox Valley as Aquaculture Business of the Year, Bailey Western Star Trucks as Automotive Business of the Year, GNB Builders of Ladysmith as Construction/Development Business of the Year, The Nest Bistro of Nanaimo as Food Establishment of the Year, Woodland Flooring of the Comox Valley as Wood Products/Forestry Business of the Year, Westholme Tea Company of the Cowichan Valley as Manufacturing Business of the Year, NYLA Fresh Thread of Nanaimo as Retail Business of the Year, SEAMOR Marine as Technology Business of the Year, and Living Forest Oceanside Campground of Nanaimo as Tourism Business of the Year. Empire Hydrogen Energy Systems has developed a system to inject a minute amount of hydrogen and oxygen gasses into a diesel engine’s air intake. This causes the diesel fuel to burn faster a nd much more completely, resulting in a 15-25 per cent reduction in fuel use and greenhouse gases, an 85 per cent reduction in diesel particulates, and a 3 per cent increase in engine horsepower. Event photos and a full report on the event will be in the March issue of Business Examiner Victoria.

Coastal Heat Pumps of Surrey earned the Trades Business of the Year Crystal Award at the Vancouver Island Business Excellence Awards



An Elegant and Delightfully Unique Boutique Hotel • Beautifully upgraded, historic building designed by Samuel Maclure • Located next to renowned Craigdarroch Castle, 2.5 kms from Inner Harbour • 15 stylish, well-appointed guest suites, all fully renovated results on steep growth trajectory • Excellent

ASKING PRICE: $3,600,000 Randy Holt, Vice President / Partner 250-888-1621 Devencore Realty Victoria Ltd. 250-382-3400




CITTÀ GROUP HAS EVOLVED TO MATCH A CHANGING MARKETPLACE Company Founder Patterson Received Lifetime Achievement Award


A A NICHTON – For Bill Patterson winning a life time achievement award from the Victoria Residential Builders Association (VRBA) is only the latest milestone on a construction career stretching back more than four decades – and the story is far from over. The founder and President of the Città Group of companies, a commercial and residential builder and developer that has operated in the greater Victoria area since 1985 (but who was involved with other construction companies before that), Patterson has played a direct role in constructing and preserving some of the region’s most exceptional properties. “We started the Città Group in 1985 having launched the company in order to start renovating a number of the buildings in ‘Old Town’ - I had been involved in renovating older buildings previously in another partnership,” Patterson explained. In the 1970’s and 80’s Victor i a’s dow ntow n a re a wa s noted for its classically beautiful but aging infrastructure. Motivated to preserve and revitalize the city’s heritage heart was dynamic businessman and philanthropist Michael Williams who had made it his mission to return the Capital city to its former architectural glory. Williams served as the inspiration and catalyst for much of the downtown’s revitalization efforts. “Michael Williams became my client in 1985 and I did all of the lower Johnson Street, Swan’s Hotel and other buildings for him on a design / build basis so that was really the beginnings

The Città Group of Companies has been involved in the construction of exceptional properties since 1985

“But it doesn’t mean I’m retiring or anything like that, I intend to keep on doing what I do for a while yet.” BILL PATTERSON PRESIDENT, CITTÀ GROUP


Città Interiors is the division of the company responsible for interior design and is operated by Deborah Patterson

Partnering with Victoria's best builders. Congratulations Partnering with Vancouver Island’s best builders. CongratulationsCittà CittàGroup! Group!

ILLUMINATIONSVICTORIA VICTORIA ILLUMINATIONS 601Boleskine BoleskineRoad Road | Victoria, | V8Z 1C5 601 | Victoria, BCBC | 250.384.9359

ILLUMINATIONS NANAIMO ILLUMINATIONS NANAIMO 4300 Road||Nanaimo, Nanaimo,BCBC| 250.756.3614 | V9T 2H3 4300Wellington Wellington Road



The building of exceptional high end custom built single family homes is a specialty of the Città Group


of the company. Over the years I’ve been involved in renovating numerous buildings in the city. I actually started my career in Market Square in 1974 working for Sam Bawlf in the restoration of Market Square. He found renovating older buildings more challenging and more fascinating than regular construction work.” Williams, who emigrated from Britain in 1950 passed away in 2000, leaving his entire estate, valued at more than $20 million to the University of Victoria. Bawlf, who could include

serving as a provincial cabinet minister on his extensive resume (in addition to being a developer and self-described history lover) passed away last su m mer. He was considered a pioneer i n helpi ng to preserve Victoria’s architectural heritage. “Taking an old building and breathing new life back into it is very much a form of historic preservation. It’s a great feeling to see an older structure come back to life while preserving its original character. I found that to be really rewarding,” he said. Patterson is ver y much a hand’s on construction person. SEE CITTÀ GROUP |  PAGE 12

TURNHAM WOODLAND Barristers & Solicitors

Harold Turnham · Ross Woodland


Congratula�ons Ci�à Group on 30 years that we have been privileged to share with you!! 1002 Wharf Street · Victoria · BC · V8W 1T4 Phone: 250-385-1122 · Fax: 250-385-6522 Website:

Gravel & Concrete Sales municipalities and the outlying areas of the 6700 Butler Crescent, VictoriaB.C. CRD also extending our service over the 250-652-4484 Malahat and into the CVRD. We have a large Victoria portfolio of mixes designed to meet your & Concrete Sales project’s needs along with a wide varietyGravel of Sooke 6228 Sooke Rd., SookeB.C. washed or crushed sands and stone. 250-642-5296

Gravel Sales

Don Mann Excavating Ltd is pleased to provide our services to Citta Group.

Congratulations to the team on your many years of hard work, quality and dedication.


Butler Brothers is a proud supplier to Città Group. Butler Brothers Supplies Ltd. is aSupplies family runLtd. company 4998 Langtry Rd, DuncanB.C. that Congratulations has been supplying Vancouver on South your many yearsIsland of success, and best wishes for the future. 250-746-1080 with building supplies since the early 1930’s, along with Ready-Mix Concrete since the 1950’s. Today our focus is primarily on concrete, sand and gravel supply. We currently operate 3 gravel pits, alongside 3 concrete batch plants, with a large fleet of concrete trucks for prompt delivery.




Being a journeyman carpenter and having a degree in Architectural History, he has combined his love for the past and his skills to build new projects to grow the Città Group into one of the region’s premier developers and builders. As the name implies the Città Group is a collection of unique stand alone enterprises, each specializing in a different creative field that collectively provide the company with a diverse and extensive repertoire of services for its expanding client list. Today the Città Group has three main divisions: Città Construction which is tasked with the physical building of the projects, Città Interiors, operated by wife and business partner Deborah Patterson. This is the unit that handles the finishing touches of the projects and Città Millwork a stand-alone custom cabinetry business operated by division chief Shawn Fagan. Overseeing the daily operations of the various units, much like the conductor of an orchestra is Mike Dalton the Group’s Vice President a nd Construction Manager. “W hile I enjoyed it I really stopped swinging a hammer by about 1978, even before the start of the Città Group, when I began to focus more on the management side of things. I

Much of the company’s early work involved the restoration of classic and heritage homes across the city had been the owner / manager of another construction company prior to the Città Group SEE CITTÀ GROUP |  PAGE 13

#4-2227 James White Blvd., Sidney, B. C., V8L 1Z5 (250) 656-5155 • (250) 656-5175 fax Congratulations on 30+ years in business! We look forward to many more years of working together! Custom millwork is the specialty of Città Millwork, a company division operated by Shawn Fagan

Congratulations on over 30 years We send our very best wishes in business! everyoneat atSearle’s Searle’sAuto AutoRepair Repair totoeveryone

304- 1321 - 1321Blanshard BlanshardStreet Street 304 Victoria,British BritishColumbia, Columbia,Canada Canada Victoria, V8W0B6 0B6 V8W

Phone:(250) (250)388-6266 388-6266 Phone: Fax:(250) (250)388-5438 388-5438 Fax:




being formed and continued in that capacity once we got the new company up and running,” Patterson said. The business model developed by the Città Group of essentially providing a one stop shop for design, construction, development and finishing services has helped to keep it at the forefront of the regional construction industry. Primarily builders, the company also has extensive design skills which give it the capability of offering a lot of design input to any assignment. “My wife Deborah got involved in the company in the late 1980’s as an interior designer which led to us setting up Città Interiors, which is her interior design company,” Patterson explained. Since its inception providing exceptional finishing to any project was another hallmark of the Città Group, with custom cabinetry one of its noted strengths. Capitalizing on that strength Città Millwork was spun off as a separate entity to provide custom cabinetry design, fabrication and installation for both Città customers and many others. Città Millwork is a six person shop capable of handling a wide range of projects. “We’ve tried to stick with doing custom millwork, not the m a nu factu r i ng of sta nd a rd

products. We like to work on a case by case basis for specialty projects. That’s another thing that has helped to set us apart,” he said. Overall the Città Group has a staff count of fewer than 40, but works in concert with a small a rmy of tr usted sub trades, companies that it has developed successful relationships with over the years. According to Mike Dalton there could be 100 or more workers (staff and sub trades) at the various construction sites at any one time. “Our people will certainly be there, a nd I’ll probably be there at times during the day, but we certainly don’t do everything in house. Our sub trades are very important to the operation,” he said. While the Città Group occasionally is involved in major renovation projects changing market needs and ongoing customer demands have seen the fi rm evolve pri ma ri ly i nto a builder of new projects, both residential and commercial. Città’s workload is currently divided fairly evenly between the two types of assignments. While the company has carr ied out some con st r uct ion projects north of the Malahat, and into the Central Vancouver Island area, the lion’s share of its work has always taken place within the Capital area. “We SEE CITTÀ GROUP |  PAGE 14


B&E Glass and Mirror isis independently independently owned and B&E Glass independently owned B&E Glassand andMirror Mirror is owned andand ŽƉĞƌĂƚĞĚ͕ǁŝƚŚƐƚĂīǁŚŽŚĂǀĞďĞĞŶƐĞƌǀŝŶŐŽƵƌ operated, with staff who have been serving our ŽƉĞƌĂƚĞĚ͕ǁŝƚŚƐƚĂīǁŚŽŚĂǀĞďĞĞŶƐĞƌǀŝŶŐŽƵƌ sŝĐƚŽƌŝĂĐŽŵŵƵŶŝƚLJĨŽƌŽǀĞƌϮϬLJĞĂƌƐ͘ Victoria community for over 20 years. sŝĐƚŽƌŝĂĐŽŵŵƵŶŝƚLJĨŽƌŽǀĞƌϮϬLJĞĂƌƐ͘ tĞĂƌĞƉƌŽƵĚƚŽǁŽƌŬǁŝƚŚŝƩă'ƌŽƵƉ WetĞĂƌĞƉƌŽƵĚƚŽǁŽƌŬǁŝƚŚŝƩă'ƌŽƵƉ are proud to work with Città Group. 721Pembroke Pembroke St, BCBC 721 St,Victoria, Victoria,

250-385-4028 250-385-4028

A complete package, Città Group projects are noted for their fit, finish and extraordinary details

Congratula ons to Ci à Construc on Ltd. for your con nued success. It has been a pleasure working with you for the past 14 years and

You’ve really outdone yourselves Congratulations to Città Group on your 30th year! It is always a pleasure doing business with you.

Saanich 4248 Glanford Ave // 250.727.9976

I look forward to many more in the future.




don’t like to go overnight, we like to come home at night,” Patterson joked. There are exceptions to the ‘South of the Malahat’ guideline of course, with the company currently involved in the building of a custom home on Lake Cowichan for example. “We’ll get as far north as Nanaimo on occasion, we constructed a huge warehouse just south of Nanaimo, so we do get into the area some of the time,” Dalton said. “We did a 75,000 square foot tilt up (a construction technique involving pre-formed cement slabs) last year so we will go further afield, it just depends on the job. But our preference has always been to work in the Victoria area.” Producing exceptional projects for both the commercial and residential markets has kept the company constantly busy. In recent years Città Group has also been increasingly involved in large scale subdivision development. During the past 13 years alone the company has b u i lt m ore t h a n 750 s i n g l e family homes, making it a leader in the regional construction industry. “We’ve also done a tremendous amount of commercial construction as well so it’s really hard to say which we do the most of, it’s probably split 50 / 50 right now but that

Città Group does occasionally work outside of Victoria, such as this commercial project near Nanaimo could change in the future,” Patterson said. The diversity of projects and the variety of skills and services currently offered by the Città Group can be traced to about 2003 when the company formally evolved from a renovation specialist into a leading builder

of new projects. At that time Città became the builder of the Sunriver Estates subdivision in Sooke, a massive challenge that saw the company transform into its present business model. “We built well over 500 homes there alone so that was a significant change to the company.

24 Hour Service Heat Pumps sales, service & repair 1985 Millstream Rd gratulations Citta Group for 30+ years of award-winning construction and development. Victoria 250 590-3339

MAX Camosun Chatterton Way | Victoria, BC | 1-250-744-3301 | Sending our best wishes as you look back on the first 30 years

Prior to that we had been doing a lot of custom homes and custom renovations and small commercial jobs so that project marked a significant change for us,” Patterson said. Città Group has become so busy and in demand in recent years it seldom takes on small renovation projects any more as it simply doesn’t have the time or personnel to devote to small, short term projects. “We do commit to major renovation projects as they are often as complex and detailed as a new build. If the job is the same size as a new build we do it but if it’s smaller we just don’t have the management to do it properly, and doing things the right way is the only way we do business,” he said. The company is headquartered at 101-1763 Sean Heights Road in Saanichton, while maintaining a satellite office at 2387 Poplar Drive in Sooke, as part of its ongoing involvement with the Sunriver Estates subdivision.

Patterson and Dalton are the principals involved in the day to day operation of the company, with Patterson’s emphasis being on the development side of the enterprise while Dalton’s focus is centered more on the operat ion a l por t ion s of t he firm. “I kind of run the construction company now and he is more actively involved in the development work we do as one of the divisions of our group,” Dalton explained. For Patterson the winning of the lifetime achievement award came as both a surprise and as a pleasure. “It’s good to be recognized by your peers. I’ve tried to be actively involved with the homebu i lders si nce we fi rst joined the Association about 25 years ago so it’s really satisfying to receive something like this. But it doesn’t mean I’m retiring or anything like that, I intend to keep on doing what I do for a while yet,” he said. SEE CITTÀ GROUP |  PAGE 15


Città Group for 30+ years of award-winning construction and development. MARK LAWLESS

RE/MAX Camosun 4440 Chatterton Way | Victoria, BC | 1-250-744-3301 |



Congratulations to Città Group on many years of excellence in the industry 2005 Boxwood Rd, Nanaimo, BC 250.754.1400



efforts of everyone involved. “I never could have taken the company to where it is on my own, it is the happy result of a lot of work from a lot of different people,” he said. Da lton sa id the compa ny’s ‘customer-first / service-oriented’ approach to busi ness can be found in every project it completes – residential and commercial. “Being able to do the work and to provide the service is what it’s all about. This is a service business, we’re builders but at the end of the day this is a service business and our customers are number one.” To learn more please visit the company’s website at: www.

Properties built by the Città Group are designed with long term comfort and enjoyment in mind


In operation for more than 30 years, responsible for building literally hundreds of residential and commercial projects over that time, the Città Group of companies has evolved with the growth of its home region and to the changing needs of its clients to remain a leading regional builder. For the future the company anticipates continuing to provide the best in products and service, with corporate growth never being a significant part of the corporate equation. “ O u r f o c u s 15 y e a r s a g o changed from renovation and restoration work into the development of subdivisions and townhome projects and that is where our energies will cont i nue to b e devoted for t he

foreseeable future. We found we could accomplish more by focusing on new work rather than renovations so it was a major change for us,” Patterson said. For Dalton a key to the company’s long term success has a lways been t he compa ny’s business model, of providing the widest possible range of quality services under one roof, coupled with unparalleled customer service. “There have been other companies that have tried to emulate our business model but not as successfully as we have,” he said. “I think the strength of our Group is having a lot of really good teams and teammates who are willing to help out. It’s certainly not a one person show by any means, our success has always been a true team effort. Growing for growth sake has never been part of the plan, I

We are a proud partner in the success of Città Group. Congratulations! 250.475.2561 • 3400 Douglas St, Victoria, BC V8Z 3L5

think it’s always better to chase good customers than it is more projects and we’ve been lucky enough to work for some very

good customers.” Patterson echoed the statement that the Group’s success is linked solidly to the coordinated

Proud to supply

Happy 30th Città! We are proud of our relationship with Città Group and we congratulate you on many years of success.

Please visit us at our new showroom location:

2920 Ed Nixon Terrace, Langford

Proud to support Città Group. Best wishes for continued success.



ICONIC FURNITURE RETAILER MARKING ITS 40TH ANNIVERSARY Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress Opened For Business In 1977


ICTORIA – A business l e a d e r, a c o m m u n i t y icon, a local celebrity, regardless of the hat he’s wearing Gordy Dodd will wear it with style. The founder, inspiration and good natured front man for Victoria-based Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress, Dodd is proof that business success and community involvement are compatible achievements. “When I first came to this country from India I had a chance to work in a furniture store in Grand Prairie, Alberta which was my first experience working in the furniture business,” Dodd recalls. “I spent quite a bit of time working in the north which I enjoyed. That was back in 1959, I was only a lad then, but then really I’m still only a lad.” Gurdial Singh (Gordy) Dodd was born in 1945 in the small village of Jalwehra in the Punjab Region of India. His home was located in a rural farming district located at the foot of the Himalayas in the nations far north. Coming from a family of seven children he later immigrated to Canada where one of his sisters lived. Once in the country his fondness for northern climates saw him travel throughout the area and take on many jobs including his first exposure to the business of furniture sales. Later moving to Victoria with his wife Ravinder he worked a number of jobs, including that of taxi driver before opening his original furniture store at the corner of Quadra Street and Kings Road. T he fi rst Dodd’s store was opened in 1977. Now, 40 years later, Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress has g row n i nto one of Vancouver Island’s most iconic furniture store brands. “That first job in a furniture store in Grand Prairie really give me some good experience but eventually we moved to Victoria where we

Gordy Dodd (left) founded Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress in 1977, his son Love Dodd is the current President

“I really think that one of the things that has helped us to grow have been the way we advertise.” GORDY DODD FOUNDER, DODD’S FURNITURE & MATTRESS

opened our first store which only had a couple of thousand square feet. So you could really say that I had grown up in the furniture business,” he said. The company’s main outlet is a 35,000 square foot store located at 715 Finlayson Street in Victoria. The company also operates a 25,000 square foot store in Nanaimo (which opened in 2011) with its newest store being a 16,000 square foot retail outlet in Campbell River. That store opened for business last September. To help keep the stores stocked and the customers satisfied, Dodd’s also operates a large (43,000 square foot) distribution warehouse in Victoria and maintains a fleet of 14 delivery trucks, moving goods all across Vancouver Island to keep up with client demand. In total Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress has a staff count of just over 70 employees. With the homeowner in mind, Dodd’s offers a vast range of furniture options to complete any bedroom, dining room or living room. At its three outlets Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress sells everything from sofas and sectionals to recliners, dining rooms sets, home entertainment centres, coffee tables, chairs, office furniture, bookshelves and so much more. A sampling of the brand name

Love Dodd was a winner of the 2015 Top 20 Under 40 Awards, an acknowledgement of his skills as a businessman

Home furnishings is the company’s main focus, selling a wide variety of products from leading manufacturers products carried by Dodd’s include those produced by Ashley Furniture, Elite Sofa Design, Palliser and Best Chairs. The Silverton Sound furniture collection is a Dodd’s featured product line,

providing high end furniture solutions for virtually any room in the home. The Dodd’s Sleep Centre offers SEE DODD’S FURNITURE |  PAGE 17

Commercial Banking Congratulations to the Dodd family on 40 successful years in business! Congrats on the first 40! 250.381.2400 | 200 - 1137 Yates Street |



The latest Dodd’s outlet is its operation in Campbell River, a 16,000 square foot retail store which opened in 2016

A true family run business, the Dodd family continues to own and operate the business started 40 years ago


the largest Simmons mattress selection on Vancouver Island and

the largest Serta mattress selection in the province. Willing to stand behind the products it sells, Dodd’s offers a 30 night sleep guarantee on all of its mattresses.

All of the Serta and Simmons mattresses sold by Dodd’s are manufactured in Canada. Dodd’s has become Serta’s largest independent mattress gallery in

Canada, while the company is Simmons largest independent gallery in BC. The company also prides itself on selling high quality Canadian made furnishings. Its Elite Sofa Design products are crafted by a family-run business in Delta that specializes in custom living room furniture. The company can also produce custom orders, with deliveries expected within four weeks. Dodd’s also carries Mako Wood Furniture manufactured in Surrey using British Columbia lumber, and Elran, a line of high end products produced by a family run enterprise in PointeClaire, Quebec. “Our Palliser gallery is the largest in BC. You can have what you want, just choose your style and choice of leather or fabric,” he said. Dodd’s purchasing philosophy has always recognized that by offering products produced locally the entire regional economy benefits. Locally made products also offer improved value for the customer, in the form of quality materials and faster delivery

We are proud to send our warmest wishes to Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress as you celebrate 40 years.

1.604.526.5685 (Canada) |


times. “We set out from the beginning to furnish pretty much everything inside of the home, that’s why we have such a broad range of products and choices,” Dodd said. In addition to its exceptional lines of furniture and mattresses Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress is probably best known for its quirky, tongue in cheek television advertising. This long running series of locally produced television spots feature Dodd assuming different pop culture personas to help sell his products. Over the past few decades he has appeared as everyone from Indiana (Hindiana) Jones to Captain Kirk to Spiderman to Zorro in his never ending quest to bring humor and wit to the business of sales. The light hearted but memorable advertisements have helped to cement the image of the Dodd’s Furniture brand in the hearts of buyers across Vancouver Island. “I really think that one of the things that has helped us to SEE DODD’S FURNITURE |  PAGE 18




grow has been the way we advertise. When we started doing the TV spots it was viewed as a very different form of advertising and I think that difference really helped. The marketing people found a different way to advertise and the television ads have worked really, really well for us,” he said. “Every time a customer walks into the store they have a smile. The ads send out a positive message, and that’s what we want. There’s enough sorrow so why not make people smile? So I’d definitely have to say that the way we advertise has helped us to grow.” In the early days of operating a furniture store in the capital region, there was a lot less fun and much more work and worry involved. During his first few years of operation Dodd would be on the job practically around the clock. Then lacking the mature distribution systems the chain now employs, it would not be unusual for Dodd to rent a truck in the morning, buy furniture in Vancouver, transport the furniture back to Victoria and then use the truck for deliveries in the evening – all of which he would do himself. The days were long, but the end results for Dodd and his family have proven well worth it. “But it was all worth it and today it’s really a family business

The 25,000 square foot Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress store in Nanaimo opened for business in 2011 with my son (Love Dodd) and my daughter Aman and my son in law (Jag Sahota) all being part of the business. My wife also worked with us for a long time so it really does involve the whole family,” he explained. “We have to thank God, but we also worked hard, day and night to make it happen, so nothing really happened by accident.” The often hard life lessons Dodd has picked up over the past seven decades, from his earliest farming experiences in rural India, to his success as a Canadian

Manhas Mar would like to congratulate Dodd's Furniture on

40 Years of Success!

entrepreneur and businessman, have also taught him the importance of being a good corporate citizen. Dodd has found a comfort and a personal satisfaction in taking steps to help those less fortunate in the communities that his business serves. The President of the Indo-Canadian Cultural Association Dodd is frequently involved with myriad community-focused projects. He is particularly involved with helping to feed the homeless and as a result the company hosts two full turkey dinners per year (at Thanksgiving and at Christmas) where as many as 2,000 people are fed at any one time. Dodd’s Furniture has been hosting its annual turkey dinner program for more than 20 years. “It’s not just at special times of the year either. Year round we collect clothes and food and other things for the community. We do the turkey dinner in Victoria and now in Nanaimo and we estimate that we’ve fed something like 40,000 people over the past 20 years. This is something that we’ve done for a long time and I believe it is the intention of my son to continue doing this in the future,” he said. SEE DODD’S FURNITURE |  PAGE 19

Congratulations on your 40th anniversary from your partners at Elran Furniture. P R O U D LY M A D E I N C A N A D A

2751 Trans Canada Highway | Pointe Claire, QC H9R 1B4 |

Gordy Dodd says his store’s goal is to furnish everything found inside the home, including living room chairs

40 years

From your friends and partners at

Congratulations Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress on your continued success and dedicated customer service.



The Dodd’s Sleep Centres sell mattresses from industry leaders such as Serta and Simmons


Giving back to the community that has helped it to grow and prosper is an important part of the Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress story. Gordy Dodd is actively involved in a number of multicultural groups and activities in the city, not only the Indo-Canadian community. “We’re community minded people. I work with the Greek community, the Portuguese community and others. There’s a local newspaper that I support with advertising, I try to spend some money with everybody to help the widest possible number of people,” he said. As a de facto local celebrity, to have Gordy Dodd attend a cultural event has been a proven way for a group or organization to attract interest to its cause or plight for years. He regularly makes appearances in aid of causes or issues where his presence is always warm and welcoming. “We advertise in the Chinese community and I regularly go to their

community functions, joining in community dinners and that sort of thing, so it really does make a difference,” he said. “You know it’s kind of nice to be treated like a celebrity and the groups I go to love it. It’s a way of celebrating Victoria’s multicultural history and a way to help and to have fun.” While Gordy Dodd continues to be the most visible ambassador for Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress through his ongoing television commercials (the latest will feature a Game of Thrones theme) his son Love Dodd now operates as company President. “Love is the President, but I’m still keeping an eye on him and the company,” Gordy jokingly said. T he sen ior Dodd has some serious health concerns about 10 years ago that required a realignment of the firm’s corporate structure. “Everything’s okay but I’m 71 now so I’m just keeping an eye on everything but mostly it’s up to Love now,” he said. While still an active part of the company the senior Dodd is

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slowly making way for the next generation of management to guide the company he created through the 21st Century. While effectively serving clients across Vancouver Island from its three regional outlets, the opening of the Campbell River store in September 2016 effectively caps the company’s building plans for the immediate future. Will there ever be a Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress store on the Mainland? That’s a decision he’s leaving to his son Love. “If we ever decide to open a store off the Island that decision would have to depend on my family. I think we’re pretty much settled down on the Island and are doing a good business and if they want to expand to the Mainland or elsewhere that would be up to them,” he said. For Love Dodd the company’s future remains bright and with the opening of its 43,000 square foot distribution centre in Victoria the enterprise is better equipped than ever to serve the needs of its expanding customer

base. “This distribution centre allows us to service the whole Island better than ever,” he said. “Having a facility like this, and with our fleet of delivery trucks, we can provide right away delivery for our customers. You’re not going to have to wait two or three weeks or anything to receive your furnishings. Providing personal service has always been a real strength of the company as it has been from day one.” New stores, new distribution systems, new management may mark the evolution of Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress, but one thing that will not be changing is the company’s long standing involvement with and commitment to the communities that it serves. “Being involved in the community is a huge part of our company, it’s a big part of our Mission Statement, so that is something that won’t be changing,” Love Dodd stated. Another key area of corporate business that won’t be changing, rega rd less of m a n a gement, will be the firm’s iconic and

distinctive television advertising. While it’s certain that Gordy Dodd will be prominent in the company’s advertising for as long as he can wear a wig or don a super hero costume, increasingly Love Dodd is taking his place in the company’s advertising effort. He’s front and center in the latest ‘Game of Dodd’s’ advertisement for example. “Yes, that’s me, the big guy with the bald head,” Love explained with a chuckle. “No matter who is in charge we’ll be continuing with our ads, that’s a big part of what we’re known for. Who can’t find some humor in seeing someone poke fun at themselves? That’s what makes those ads work. You can get the message out and have fun doing it, why wouldn’t we continue doing them? We have been doing those ads for so long it’s like we’ve become part of people’s families.” For t he i m m e d i ate f ut u re Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress intends to continue to offer its Vancouver Island customers a wide range of top quality furnishing choices, while brightening their television viewing with its unique marketing approach, all while being actively involved in supporting Island communities. Gordy Dodd is quoted as saying that one of the keys to his, and ultimately his businesses success was to be curious about the community and the people that make that community a whole. “Basic curiosity, a need to do more than is required” is how he described his motivation, that and being willing to offer a helping hand when you can. The other key to the success of the company is having an excellent and loyal staff, with some employees being with Dodd’s as long as 35 years. For more than 40 years Dodd’s Furniture & Mattress has been a retail leader and a community champion, a winning combination that won’t be changing any time soon. As Gordy put it: “When you take from the community, you give back to the community.” To learn more please visit the company’s website at: www.

On behalf of Winners Only, we would like to extend our sincere congratulations on your 40 years of success! Winners Only (Canada)...Because quality furniture is always in style




“This is the right time for


us to step aside and allow

position the asset to take advantage of the City’s growth and inevitable market upturn. The Craigmyle is a boutique hotel located next to Craigdarroch Castle, an historic landmark in the city’s prestigious Rockland neighbourhood. The h o te l , d e s i g n e d b y Sa m u el Maclure and originally constructed in 1913, was initially operating as a trad itional bed-and-breakfast with a very modest clientele. This was the “fixer-upper” that LaFrance and Cuerrier were looking for, completing the purchase of the property in August 2012. E x tensive i mprovements transformed the property, including substantial upgrades to each of the 15 guest suites and renovations of the common areas. The rooms are beautifully designed, with comfortable chairs, dramatic views of the castle and finishings that are both contemporary and elegant to retain its authenticity and character. “Equally as significant are the variety of enhanced guest ser v ices, st rateg ic m a rketing initiatives and innovative m a n a ge m e n t s y s t e m s t h a t h a v e b e e n i m p l e m e n te d i n order to streamline the operations. Service is professional and efficient with a contracted

our successor to build on the momentum we have created.” MUREILLE LAFRANCE OWNER, THE CRAIGMYLE, VICTORIA

The Craigmyle is located within walking distance of downtown Victoria and beside the iconic Craigdarroch Castle CREDIT:DEVENCORE REALTY

i n n ke ep er, a nd do e sn’t require a lot of staffing,” Holt emphasized. “ D e n i s a n d I h a v e g r e a tly enjoyed meeting the many cha l lenges presented i n upg rad i ng T he Cra ig myle. We are very proud of the work we have done and gratified by the strong response from our growing clientele. This is the right time for us to step aside and allow our successor to build on the momentum we have created,” said Lafrance. Within walking distance of dow ntow n Victor ia a nd t he

Seattle ferry terminal as well as the city’s waterfront parks, the Craigmyle offers luxury accommodations at a budget-friendly price. It’s earned TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence three years in a row. “This is an opportunity for i nvestors to ta ke adva ntage of the upturn in tourism, the g row i ng room rates a nd the successful built-in management systems L a f ra nce a nd Currier have created.” T h e C r a i g m y l e i s a t 10 37 Craigdarroch Road in Victoria.

Renovations to the 15 guest suites and common areas and efficient management systems have shown dramatic increases in occupancy and guest satisfaction CREDIT:DEVENCORE REALTY



Let the Fun Fun Let us us Bring Bring the


250-661-2219 250-661-2219

Find Us On



TALENT POOL MAKING INROADS IN WORKPLACE ATTITUDES TOWARDS DIVERSABILITIES “This talent pool meets Ready Willing and Able Sources Job Seekers With Intellectual Disabilities and Autism Spectrum Disorder to Meet Employers And Labourforce Needs


hen Rocky Mountain Printing (RMP) added a new paper delivery service to its product line, it needed to hire someone with a specific skill set. The successful applicant would need to be personable, reliable, able to operate light equipment and lift and carry 50 pound boxes of paper. “David fit the criteria well. He learned quickly and is getting positive comments from our customers,” said Stephen Wik, general manager of RMP. With a new report by the Conference Board of Canada claiming that BC does not have the skilled labour to replace its aging workforce, finding David provided a solution for a very real problem, one that could change the way businesses look for workers. A client of REALM (Realize Empowerment Access Life to the Maximum) in partnership with Ready, Willing and Able, David is a young man with an intellectual disability (ID) who is working two jobs. He takes the bus to work, has impressed his employers with his work ethic and gets along with his coworkers. In short, he does his job and he does it well. “Like any employee there is no guarantee,” Wik explained. “But having David here has positively impacted us all.” RMP isn’t the only company finding a workforce from a traditionally under represented talent pool. InclusionBC Director of Employment Initiatives, Gordon Ross, said that people with ID and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) bring a wide range of practical and specific skills. More than 93 per cent of respondents to an employer survey

tangible and intangible needs. Not just by fulfilling operational requirements but by introducing a diverse culture into the workplace.” GORDON ROSS DIRECTOR OF EMPLOYMENT INITIATIVES READY WILLING AND ABLE INCLUSION BC

Pacific Bolt Manufacturing, RWA’s initial employer partner, continues to benefit from diverse talent CREDIT:READY, WILLING, ABLE

RWA’s employer engagement model is designed to be flexible and responsive CREDIT:READY, WILLING, ABLE

rated the RWA employees to be on par with or better than the average employee in terms of: punctuality, attendance, use of sick days, turnover, attitudes towards work, getting along with coworkers and management, contributing to positive workplace morale and spirit, frequency of occupational health and safety problems, impact on workers’ compensation costs, and impact on employee benefits costs. “This talent pool meets tangible and intangible needs,” Ross said. “Not just by fulfilling operational requirements but by introducing a diverse culture into the workplace.”

Ross explained that to date, the majority of RWA outcomes continue to be found in the sectors associated with employment initiatives, namely retail and food services. “The prevalence of hires within these two sectors continues to be influenced by the size and scope of some of our national partnerships, particularly Costco and Value Village. However, i n-roads have been made to spread outcomes further afield with notable increases in hires in sectors such as manufacturing, warehousing, travel and tourism, professional services and public administration, and arts and culture, collectively

representing 28-30 per cent of total outcomes.” Flexibility has emerged as the key strength of RWA, not only at the national level but also in the direct delivery of supports. “David needed to be partnered with another worker during deliveries and for training. RWA offset the employer’s costs by pay i ng a portion of the employee’s salary,” explained Debra Preston business relations, R EA LMBC. “He also needed steel toe boots, RWA provided the funds for their purchase.” “The ability of the project to respond directly to the range of needs that individual job seekers, employees and employers have

is a somewhat unique feature of RWA over traditional approaches to employment of people with intellectual disabilities and autism spectrum disorder. This is an employer-based demand model, customized to meet the employer needs,” said Ross. Ross added that the program is quick in responding, working at immediately implementing supports to ensure quality within the workplace. “The program’s nimbleness reflects the business process and model it is using, ensuring that there is a ready access point to source inclusive talent and that it responds quickly to specific employment requirements.” For R E A L M BC, t he key to matching its clients with the rig ht employer is by a clea r understanding of what is needed. The agency finds placements for a wide range of disabilities and is one of over 65 employment agencies in 37 BC communities that Ready, Willing and Able has partnerships with. For RWA, the theme it sees emerging, concerning the impact RWA is having on the workplace, is on the attitudes, awareness and culture of working with persons with ID and ASD. “It’s important to give it a try,” said Wik. “With David we started with him lifting the boxes. We also have a machine called the stair climber that lifts the boxes up stairs. Most of the employees are extra cautious around the machine. David nailed its operation.” Ross sa id t h at suppor t i ng businesses by meeting some of their labour force requirements through the hiring of inclusive talent is helping RWA contribute to the province’s goal of becoming the most progressive Province in Canada for people with disabilities by 2024. “There’s no risk in reaching out and no cost,” he said, adding that a client is hired not ‘because of’ but by answering the question, ‘what can they contribute’. Ready, Willing and Able Inclusion BC is at

High-performance organizations are

37% MORE LIKELY TO HIRE people with intellectual disabilities or Autism Spectrum Disorder


22 WHO IS SUING WHOM The contents of Who’s Suing Whom is provided by a third-party resource and is accurate according to public court documents. Some of these cases may have been resolved by publication date. DEFENDANT Famous Players Limited Partnership 1800-510 West Georgia St, Vancouver, BC PLAINTIFF Moodrey, Mind CLAIM $25,236 DEFENDANT Famous Players Co 1800-510 West Georgia St, Vancouver, BC PLAINTIFF Moodrey, Mind CLAIM $25,236 DEFENDANT Hotel Des Encans De Montreal Inc 872 Couvent St, Montreal, QC PLAINTIFF Erling Tyrell, Thomas CLAIM $ 5,685 DEFENDANT Dream Enterprises Ltd 2305 Evelyn Heights, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF

WHO IS SUING WHOM Coastal Community Credit Union CLAIM $ 42,150 DEFENDANT 0938803 BC LTD 300-736 Broughton St, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Bank Of Nova Scotia CLAIM $ 117,823 DEFENDANT GP Systems Limited 101-1335 Bear Mountain Parkway, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Bank Of Nova Scotia CLAIM $ 260,375 DEFENDANT Across Canada Vanlines Inc 108-14273 Knox Way, Richmond, BC PLAINTIFF Wanless, Victoria CLAIM $ 16,187 DEFENDANT 1028850 BC LTD 8850 Chemainus Rd, Chemainus, BC PLAINTIFF Business Development Bank Of Canada CLAIM $ 69,243 DEFENDANT


Mike Seargeant Enterprises Ltd 225 Vancouver Ave, Nanaimo, BC PLAINTIFF National Holdings Ltd CLAIM $ 277,579

7-4180 Island Hwy North, Nanaimo, BC PLAINTIFF RB Engineering Ltd CLAIM $ 6,126

DEFENDANT Belfor Property Restorations Inc 3300 Bridgeway St, Vancouver, BC PLAINTIFF Whynott, Douglas Scott CLAIM $ 25,216

DEFENDANT Holmes Realty Ltd 8930 4th St, Sidney, BC PLAINTIFF Freer, Janet Amber CLAIM $ 19,388

DEFENDANT Space Setters Construction Inc 1630 Davies Rd, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Culley, John CLAIM $ 25,000

DEFENDANT Roger W Bailey Corp 3rd Flr 26 Bastion Square, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Sharpe, Michael CLAIM $ 11,148

DEFENDANT Westwood Roofing Inc 2450 Highland Blvd, Nanaimo, BC PLAINTIFF Convoy Supply Ltd CLAIM $ 12,711 DEFENDANT Mircom Technologies Ltd 1850-745 Thurlow St, Vancouver, BC PLAINTIFF Olsen, Darryl CLAIM $ 25,216 DEFENDANT 0735973 BC LTD

DEFENDANT Mesa Design Group Inc 1244 Esquimalt Rd, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Digger Dale Contracting Ltd CLAIM $ 47,240 DEFENDANT Sculpin Fish Design Ltd 1564 Rockland Ave, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Cram Food Group Ltd CLAIM $ 12,243 DEFENDANT Sysco Victoria

2881 Amy Rd, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Fig Deli Ltd CLAIM $ 25,176 DEFENDANT Braes Mhor Farm Ltd 6-7855 East Saanich Rd, Saanichton, BC PLAINTIFF Farm Credit Canada CLAIM $ 1.469,430 DEFENDANT Castle Carpet One Floor & Home 1163 Franklins Gull Rd, Parksville, BC PLAINTIFF Crane, Sidney CLAIM $ 7,200 DEFENDANT B Mystified 821 Agnes St, New Westminster, BC PLAINTIFF Gill, Mandip CLAIM $ 10,666 DEFENDANT Ability In Motion Home Medical Equipment Ltd 101-2776 Bourquin Cres, Abbotsford, BC PLAINTIFF Levo USA Inc CLAIM $ 28,165 SEE WHO IS SUING WHOM |  PAGE 25



Victoria-based Island Ferry Services has been named the preliminary preferred applicant to operate a foot passenger ferry service between Nanaimo and Vancouver. IFS proposed a commuter-style service while their counterpart applicant, Riverside Marine, proposed a tourism theme. IFS currently has two 42-metre-long catamarans under construction in Asia that should be ready for sea trials in April or early May. Each vessel will be able to carry 376 passengers, have an operating speed of 37 to 38 knots and make the Nanaimo-Vancouver trip in 68 minutes. UrbanConcierge Services is a new business in the West Store open at #207-1395 Bear Mountain Parkway. The company provides services for owners who want to rent their homes out for short or extended periods of time. The company handles bookings, full laundry service, in and out cleaning service, AirBNB, calendar management and other services for absent home owners. The City of Colwood has been honoured with the Order of the Bear award by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB). The award is given to governments that take actions to support small business. Mayfair Mall is undergoing a multi-million dollar expansion that will see a new entrance, pedestrian plaza and more landscaping on the property. The expansion includes building 85,000 square feet of new retail space, a pedestrian plaza on the west side of the property on Douglas Street and a new twostorey parking deck. The mall will also be renovated with new ceilings and floors. The renovations are expected to be completed by the fall of 2018. Treck Wear is celebrating their grand opening at 1010 Broad Street. Jawl Bundon LLP announces that Kim E. Johnson and Robert J. Millar have joined their firm on the 4th Floor of 1007 Fort Street. Kim specializes in business law and providing strategic advice and services to individuals and companies, in the areas of business formation and succession, equity financing, crowd funding, tax credits, real estate disclosure documents and commercial lending. Rob will continue his general business law practice, including commercial transactions, real estate development, corporations, joint ventures, business succession and business start-up. One Tooth Active Wear is celebrating their 10th anniversary. The store is at 1006 Broad Street. Collins Barrow Victoria congratulates their successful Common Final Examination (CFE) gradutes, Laura Gibbs, Stephen Leaver and Jennifer Cole. The CFE is the final academic requirement to achieving the Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) designation. Collins Barrow is at #540 645 Fort Street.


The building that once housed the Andrew Sheret Ltd. business for 60 years has been demolished. Demolition began recently at 712 Bay Street to make way for a new building on the site to suit BCAA, which has signed on as a long-term tenant. Construction on the new building is set to be completed in September. Thrifty Foods is celebrating their 40th anniversary. Thrifty Foods opened their first store in 1977 in Victoria’s Fairfield neighbourhood. Today they have 25 stores across Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland. Black Ball Ferry Line will dry-dock the MV Coho car ferry which runs between Victoria and Port Angeles for its annual refit from January 17 to February 3. While in dry-dock, the company will refurbish and add more seating to the vessel’s solarium deck. Pizzeria Prima Strada has decided to close its Bridge Street location and open a new store in Cobble Hill. The Bridge Street outlet will close February 4. The company is also planning on opening a new location in the Valley View Centre at 1400 Cowichan Bay Road in the spring. The head office and production will remain on Bridge Street, while Prima’s locations in Cook Street Village and on Fort Street continue to operate. The Small Office Home Office (SOHO) Summit takes place January 27 at the Victoria Conference Centre. For more information or to purchase tickets, go to Royal Roads University has appointed Cheryl Eason as vice-president and chief financial officer, effective February 27. Eason brings over 25 years of financial management experience with 15 years at an executive level to the position. Most recently, she worked for the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), where she directed their financial accounting and reporting for a pension fund of more than $300 billion. Charles Chandler has been appointed to the Royal Roads University Board of Governors effective December 14, 2016. Chandler has practiced as a chartered professional accountant and chartered business valuator for more than 30 years. The Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce its 2017 board of directors and executive team. The new executive is comprised of Al Hasham (Chair), Dan Dagg (Vice-Chair), Frank Bourree (PastChair), Patricia Jelinski and Mark Mawhinney (Executive Members-at-Large), Kris Wirk (Treasurer) and John Wilson (Secretary). The board of directors are Carmen Charette, Lise Gyorkos, Gary Kinar, Natasha Reger, Mark Smith and Captain Steve Waddell. The Family Business Association (FBA) Vancouver Island recently announced SEE MOVERS & SHAKERS |  PAGE 24


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that Dean Clarke, Partner in Business Development of Tru Value Foods, will receive the 2017 Family Business Excellence (FBE) Award February 9 at a gala held at the Beach House Restaurant in Victoria. Dodd’s Furniture and Prince of Whales Whale Watching were award finalists. The Award is given annually by the FBA to recognize, celebrate and promote achievements of Vancouver Island family businesses and the considerable contribution they make to both their local communities and our national economy.

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The Victoria Foundation has added Jo-Ann Roberts, Zaman Velji and Lindsay Auld to their team. Roberts is a former CBC broadcaster and will serve on the Foundation’s board. Velji joins the Foundation’s investment committee and currently works with the BC Investment Management Corporation. Auld joins the foundation’s finance department from the Winnipeg foundation. She will be temporarily replacing Nathan Lapointe while he is on leave until the end of March. Sooke-based poet Wendy Morton was among over 70 Canadians honoured by Governor General David Johnston recently during a special ceremony in Edmonton. She was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, which celebrates Canadians who have performed an exceptional deed or activity that brings honour to Canada.

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The Sooke Chamber of Commerce has voted in a new board of directors for 2017. The board will be led by president Kerry Cavers. The other board members are Alayne MacIsaac, Steve Grundy, Alison Forster, Beth Couglar Blom, Dan Houle, Gillian Dixon, Les Haddad, Linda Ferguson, Lorna Danylchuk, Michael Russo and Shandra Collins.












The West Shore Chamber’s Coffee Talk will take place January 24 from 7:30 to 9 am and will be hosted by Raymond James at 211-963 Langford Parkway.




RE/MAX Camosun has announced their top

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producers for the month: Jason Leslie, Dale Sheppard, Shannon Jackson and Glenda Warren Adams, Don Burnham, Lorne Tuplin and Shirley Zailo. RE/MAX Camosun is at 101-791 Goldstream Avenue. The Town of View Royal is transitioning to a new program called ‘CivicWeb’ as a way to reduce paper usage at the municipality. Council and committee agendas will now be available online as well as a public document centre which will allow for easy access to these documents, meeting schedules and minutes of past meetings. The Latch Inn and Restaurant has reopened under the ownership of Chef Robert Mountfort. Mountfort is a Red Seal Chef who has training in classic French cuisine and creates dishes that marry the flavours of the Orient to local West Coast ingredients. The Latch is at 2328 Harbour Road in Sidney. As of December 31, the Sidney Business Improvement Area Society (SBIA) took over the contract for visitor information services for the Town of Sidney. SBIA takes over from the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, after they did not pursue renewing the contract. Peninsula CrossFit has new owners: Stefanie Hitchborn, Whitney Corbett, Casey Jones and Christina Woodcock. The new owners completed renovations right before the new-year and now have increased offerings including a new kickboxing class from Centurion kickboxing. Peninsula Crossfit is at 2075 Henry Avenue West in Sidney. The District of Central Saanich announces the appointment of Chris Vrabel as the community’s new fire chief. Vrabel will take over from chief Ron French who announced his official retirement in September. RE/MAX Camosun Peninsula announces their top producers for the month: Jeff Bryan, Shelley Mann and Bev McIvor, Jeff Bryan, Jack Barker and Lori Sutherland. Their office is at 14-2510 Bevan Avenue in Sidney.





Amica at Saanich celebrated the opening of their Presentation Centre January 14-15 at Suite 104, 104-1517 Admirals Road. Canwest Accounting Ltd. is celebrating their 25th year in business and have opened a new branch at 132 – 328 Wale Road in Colwood. Dance Victoria has announced their board of directors for 2016 to 2017 following their recent annual general meeting. New board members are Susan Howard (President), Nikki Sieben (Board Secretary) and Kristen Kitchen. Directors continuing in their twoyear term include Mariann Burka (Chair of the Governance and Planning Committee), Renee Peloquin (Vice-President), Regan McGrath (Treasurer), Kari McLay and Lynda Raino. Now in their 20th season, Dance Victoria is a non-profit that brings dance to the Royal Theatre and supports the development of new dance for the international stage from its studios in Quadra Village. The Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce has introduced a new category of membership: Young Entrepreneur Member. The new membership category is for those who may be operating a business in Sooke or be part of an entrepreneurial, business management or leadership program in school and is under the age of 25. The category costs $25 per year and offers a full membership with access to all benefits including an opportunity to sit on the Board of Directors. Darren Kiedyk is leaving his position as Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) of the Village of Sayward to join the City of Langford as their new CAO beginning January 30. Since joining the Village of Sayward in March, 2012, Kiedyk has been instrumental in the Sayward Beautification project, infrastructure upgrades to the Kelsey Recreation Centre, parks and trails, the public works yard and Newcastle Creek Dam. Tania Wegwitz, MCIP, RPP is joining WATT Consulting Group in their Victoria office as a Senior Transportation Planner and Transit Lead. Tania is the former Manager of Planning for BC Transit. Investors Mireille Lafrance and Denis Cuerrier announce they are looking to sell The Craigmyle boutique hotel. The investors bought the hotel in the summer of 2012 and undertook extensive improvements to the facility including upgrades to the 15 suites and common area. Since the renovations and

improved business model, The Craigmyle has earned TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence in 2014, 2015 and 2016. The hotel has been listed for sale with Randy Holt in the Victoria office of Newmark Knight Frank Devencore. The Royal BC Museum welcomes the return of Lucy Bell in a new role. On January 12, Lucy Bell joined the Royal BC Museum as the new Head of the First Nations Department and Repatriation Program. A member of the Haida Nation, Ms. Bell served most recently at the Haida Heritage and Repatriation Society, where she has been at the forefront of the Nation’s repatriation programme. Tooks on Cook bakery and café has moved to a new location at 104-1175 Cook Street. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) Vancouver Island welcomes its 2017 Board of Directors. The Executive Committee consists of Walter Donald (Chair), Richard Gordon (Past-Chair), Mike Regimbal (Vice-Chair), Robyn Walle and Melissa Wang (Co-Treasurers), Gary Eisenstein (Secretary), Sharon Cartmill-Lane (Independent Legal Counsel) and Rosalind Scott (President and CEO). The new directors are Chris Gillen, Dr. Robin Richardson, Rose Arsenault, Dave Roggers, Gregg Meiklejohn, Vern Fischer, Jeremy McLeod, Marion Harding-Soare and Chief Constable Les Sylven. The historic 110-year-old English Inn heritage building on Lampson Street will undergo a series of upgrades. The upgrades include the addition of an 80 to 90-seat restaurant, extending the wine bar, updating rooms and adding another 14, redoing the floors and adding a spa. The gardens will also be given a facelift to include a Garry Oak meadow and a Chinese garden. The upgrades on the Inn will begin in fall 2018. The BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA) announced that Beacon Community Services’ Nurse Manager Mari Green is a recipient of its 4th annual BC Care Award. Green won the Care Provider of the Year award in BC’s home care sector. The award will be presented at a ceremony February 20 at the Fairmont Empress Hotel. The Kate Rubin Theatre and Drama Studio is now owned by Theatre SKAM. The school will still function the same way with the same teachers and programs, with Kathleen Greenfield stepping in as school administrator. The new SKAM studio is at 1030 North Park Road. Island Dream Kitchens has moved to Unit #102 - 10124 McDonald Park Road in Sidney.


DEFENDANT Esquimalt Dockyard Legion No 172 622 Admirals Rd, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Swanbeck, James Raymond CLAIM $ 34,462 DEFENDANT Royal Canadian Legion Branch No 172 622 Admirals Rd, Victoria, BC PLAINTIFF Swanbeck, James Raymond


CLAIM $ 34,462 DEFENDANT Scotiabank 44 King St West, Toronto, ON PLAINTIFF Lafrance, Mireille CLAIM $ 23,635 DEFENDANT Dahflin Water Systems 1200 Pat Burns Ave, Gabriola Island, BC PLAINTIFF Bonder, Dianna CLAIM $ 20,870

DEFENDANT Russell J Holdings Ltd 202-58 Station St, Duncan, BC PLAINTIFF Ladysmith & District Credit Union CLAIM $ 405,942 DEFENDANT Macher Equipment Ltd 1153 Garden Gate Dr, Brentwood Bay, BC PLAINTIFF Watson, Stanislava CLAIM $ 6,337

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s ex p e c te d , when t he Federal government annou nced its spend i ng intentions following their 2015 election victory, at one point or another, someone or some group was going to be expected to pay for those promises. Wit h t he prom i sed def icit alarmingly higher than what Justin Trudeau said it would be – with no brakes in sight – there are hints of where the extra revenue the government now claims it needs. T he Ca nad ia n Cha mber of Commerce sent out a notice recently indicating the federal government is considering taxing employer-paid health and dental benefits. In its release, the Chamber states: “Along with adding hundreds or thousands of dollars to

Canadians’ tax bills, this proposal could cause many employers to stop offering coverage to employees.” Before urging members to contact the Minister of Finance or their local MP’s to protest such a move, the Cha mber noted when Quebec introduced a similar tax, 20 per cent of employers dropped health and dental benefits for employees. Studies suggest the removal of this tax benefit across the board could result in a decrease of 50 per cent of small firms that will be able to offer health benefits. So, it’s time to speak up. At this juncture, it’s not clear whether Trudeau’s tactics will be similar to those of former PM Paul Martin and his famous “trial balloons”, where he would float a high number in terms of a potential tax increase before crossing the country, “listening and gathering input” from everyone before announcing a lower hike. Which resulted in congratulatory thanks when the final increase was less than expected, and somehow made us feel better that we weren’t going to be paying that much more tax – just a titch more. It was clever salesmanship, politically speaking. L etters of compl a i nt f rom

constituents do register with politicians, and are an important part of the process. If this is just a trial, then rest assured if few Canadian businesses complain about the benefit tax, the federal government will proceed. A statement made years ago by a local politician rings true at every level of public office: “We will tax until we find opposition”. If there is no push back, the government considers this path of least resistance the best route to take, and proceeds undaunted. There were more than a few hints that the feds were also going to increase Employment Insurance premiums for companies – perhaps as much as $1,000 per worker. Nothing has materialized on that front yet. Other suggestions were increasing the GST a point or two, or even drawing funds from currently healthy Canada Pension. Whichever pockets the federal government decides to pick for its pet projects has yet to be determined, but rest assured they’ll be aiming at business in some way, shape or form. It remains, therefore, for business to somehow offset those increased costs to the market – if the market can indeed bear it. It’s not as if Canada’s economy

is exactly robust. While we did extremely well to weather the recent global crisis better than most, indicators are showing that clouds may be gathering on the not so distant horizon. National economic growth has slowed to 0.7 per cent. Canada’s economy needs to be around 3 per cent growth in order to be considered growing, or healthy. T r u d e a u’s L i b e r a l s c a mpaigned on investing in infrastructure, which was palatable to voters. The country needs upgrades on its highways, water and sewer lines, for example, that haven’t been updated for decades. Public buildings like schools and hospitals – shared responsibilities with the provinces but nevertheless a federal concern via transfer payments from Ottawa – and other projects were what many would have anticipated. Yet virtually nothing has been announced as yet, although the Liberals have been pouring millions into their priorities – including sending bucket loads of cash overseas to various foreign governments, which doesn’t help Canadian taxpayers. Canada became very tax competitive internationally under the previous government, and new U. S. P re sid ent Dona ld

Trump has already announced moves to bring America back towards reason with corporate tax rates. It might not make sense to non-business people that lowering corporate income tax actually stimulates the economy and ultimately gives the government more money in its coffers at the end of the day, but that is exactly what it does. Why? Because it provides that all-important component: Incentive. Where if an investor sees an opportunity to move forward and profit from their risk, they’re more likely to take it. If the potential reward is not greater than the risk, they hold back. It’s human nature. So it remains to be seen what the federa l Libera ls w i l l do. Will they revert back to former established Liberal patterns of higher taxes to pay for government whims and wants? Or will they leave tax rates where they are and seek to remain competitive with our neighbours to the south? Or will they keep current tax levels reasonable for investment and industry, and aim at increasing jobs and therefore the number of taxpaying employees who will contribute to the national purse? A s the Ca nad ia n Cha mber urges, it’s time to speak up now.




n a letter  to the ed itor published by the Vancouv e r S u n , B C Fe d e r a t i o n of Labour president Irene L a n z i n ge r i n t e r p re t s a recent Fraser Institute study as demonstrating the benefits of joining a union. T his misses the main point of our study,

wh ich i s t h at gover n ment workers in BC receive higher wages than their private-sector counterparts, regardless of whether they are covered by a union agreement or not. Usi ng data f rom Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey, the study finds that government employees in BC (federal, provincial and local) receive, on average, 7.4 per cent higher wages than comparable workers in the private sector. This wage prem iu m accou nts for differences between individual workers in the two sectors such as age, gender, education, tenure, experience and type of work. And the wage premium is in addition to the more generous non-wage benefits—such as pensions, early retirement and job security–that the government sector also enjoys. Our analysis shows that even after accounting for unionization, there is still a wage premium for government workers

(4.2 per cent). Put differently, gover n ment workers—even those who are unionized—receive higher pay than comparable pr ivate sector workers doing similar jobs. S o, w h a t’s t h e re a s o n fo r the disparity in pay between the govern ment a nd private sector? The reason is twofold. In the government sector, political factors largely determine the wage-setting process, while wages in the private sector are guided by productivity, market forces, and profit constraints. Employers in the private sector compensate their employees based on employee productivity, the value they add to the bottom line. If employers overpay, they risk going out of business. But if they pay too little, they risk losing valuable staff. Government employers, on the other hand, do not face the same risks, as they have the ability to fund overly generous

compensation through higher taxes. W hile raising taxes entail political and economic costs, the budget constraints and economic realities in the government sector are much less stringent than in the private sector. These differences are amplified by the monopoly environment in which the government s e c to r o p e ra te s v e r s u s t h e competitive environment of the private sector. Most of the govern ment sector operates without the threat of compet it ion, me a n i ng con su mers ca n’t choose a n a lter n at ive provider of government services that may be cheaper or of higher quality. The monopoly on ser v ice prov ision mea n s that government workers can demand and in fact receive a wage premium without competitive discipline and fear of responses from other firms. Un l i ke f i r m s i n t he pr ivate sector, gover n ments do not

have an incentive to balance the need to retain and attract workers with their ability to compete aga i nst riva ls on price, quality, and cost. The fact is wages and benefits in the government sector are out of step with the private sector. Si nce compensation costs constitute a significant portion of govern ment program spending—about half in most provinces—governments cou ld f i nd substa nt i a l savi ngs by a l ig n i ng wa ges a nd benefits w ith private sector norms. T h is wou ld not on ly be the financial prudent thing to do, but it would also ensure fairness to the taxpayers in the private sector who ultimately foot the bill. Charles Lammam, Hugh MacIntyre and Milagros Palacios are coauthors of the Fraser Institute study Comparing Government and Private Sector Compensation in Canada.

SUBCRIPTIONS  |  $45 PER YEAR (12 ISSUES), $80 FOR 2 YEARS (24 ISSUES), SUBSCRIBE ONLINE: WWW.BUSINESSEXAMINER.NET. 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 Victoria, 2017. Canadian Publications Mail Acct.: 40069240



First Light Technologies Markets Products Worldwide Tech Firm Winner Of BC Export Award BY DAVID HOLMES


ICTORIA – Over the past eight years an innovative Victoria technology company has not only developed a global market for its expanding product line, it has also become the winner of one of the province’s top business awards. Founded in 2009 by Sean Bourquin and Justin Taverna, First Light Technologies Ltd. (FLT) has become an industry leader in the design, manufacture and distribution of solar powered lighting systems, primarily for commercial, institutional and municipal customers. “Justin and I started the company in 2009, both of us coming to the business with engineering backgrounds. Justin had extensive experience working on larger scale power system projects. My background is more focused on embedded systems, controls systems and things like that,” Bourquin explained. With a staff of 12 and operating out of a 4,400 square foot office and manufacturing facility at #104 - 455 Banga Place, First Light Technologies specializes in the design and fabrication of high performance solar powered

Sean Bourquin (left) and Justin Taverna were recipients of the 2016 BC Export Award for Clean Technology LED (Light Emitting Diode) lighting products used primarily for illuminating parking lots, walkways and other similar applications. While the shape and colors may vary, the FLT products typically come in two distinct forms: pole-mounted or as free standing bollards planted in the ground. “I n essence we desig n a nd manufacture solar power lighting products. We aren’t involved in the installation but we ship the products that we design and build here in Victoria to customers all

across North America and beyond,” he said. Currently the bulk of the firm’s output is purchased in the United States, but increasingly the company has found a ready market for its world class systems all across the globe. To date First Light has sold its products to customers in more than 30 countries around the world, including Australia and in the M idd le East. T he fact that the lion’s share of the company’s sales were to clients outside of Canada was one of the

key reasons FLT won the prestigious 2016 BC Export Award in the Clean Technology Category. Launched in 1982 the BC Export Awards Program was created by the provincial Ministry of Economic Development as a way to recognize the achievements and contribution the manufacturing and service sectors make to the provincial economy. “Just about every th i ng we make leaves the country and goes somewhere else. You’d have to categorize what we produce as an export product as more than 95 percent of what we do is purchased outside of the country,” Taverna explained. Not intended for individual residential users, the bulk of First Light’s customers range from municipalities and universities to hospitals, military bases and other government purchasers. That’s not to say there is no residential application for the company’s products. Numerous developers of large scale residential developments such as subdivisions have made extensive use of the First Light products. “The United States is definitely our number one market but we’ve done a fair bit of work in the Middle East, Australia and the Caribbean would probably

represent our next three main sales areas,” Bourquin said. W h i le customers i n places known for the amount of direct sunlight they receive, such as Australia and in the Middle East have embraced the FLT product line, that’s not to say cooler climates such as Canada could not make greater use of this innovative approach to clean and free illumination. “We have lights in Newfoundland, we have some in a variety of places not known for lots of sunlight, so that’s not the issue. We like to go to where there are people, where there is sun and there is a need,” Bourquin said. With annual sales in the $3 million to $5 million range, and after having distributed literally thousands of products around the world, First Light Technologies anticipates a continued bright (pun intended) future. “The exciting thing for us is that we’re just getting started. We’ve grown a lot over the last few years so we’re very excited about how much this can grow and about how quickly it can grow,” Taverna said. To learn more please visit the company website at:

EMBRACING DIVERSITY OF OPINION Organizations can experience paralysis and overload when they try to be all things to all people



n investment in your local Chamber of Commerce is an investment in your own prosperity, as a businessperson and as a member of the community. Our role is to promote business, monitor all levels of government and champion managed growth in the economy. As the voice of business, we mobilize like-minded individuals who, together, work to cultivate a community with a healthy, diversified, economy. The events and activities we undertake are a means to achieve that end. On occasion, we take a position that is unpopular with some of our members. Organizations can experience paralysis and overload when they try to be all things to all people. We, at this Chamber,

would rather be seen to be being proactive than to be doing little by attempting only those activities where we had consensus. And so, while it is never comfortable to have members unhappy with our choices, we trust that our purposes remain aligned and we will continue working together to see the Peninsula become the very best place to live, work, and play. One duty we take very seriously is to continue stimulating passionate discourse on the Saanich Peninsula! Denny Warner is Executive Director of the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached at 250-656-3616 or execdir@

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Business Examiner Victoria - February 2017  

Featuring the latest business news and information for Greater Victoria, including Sidney, the Saanich Peninsula, Langford, Colwood, Sooke,...

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