Next week chambers of commerce and boards of trade across Ontario will be gathering virtually to debate just under 50 policy resolutions.
In a world without COVID-19, this process would have happened in person in one of our fine Ontario
communities. As delegates to the Annual General Meeting we would have debated on the floor and taken our dollars into the community in a series of networking events.
This week of September is also usually the Canadian Chamber AGM, which will now happen virtually at the end of October.
Even though the policy debates are now online, this does not diminish the importance of the process or the discussion. In fact, through the lens of COVID-19 Economic Recovery, many of these resolutions gain in relevance and significance.
The Peterborough Chamber of Commerce is submitting three resolutions for consideration.
The first encourages more opportunities for the spirit sector of the alcohol and beverage industry. With many distilleries jumping up to make hand sanitizer we’ve gotten to know this industry on a deeper level and some of the barriers such as taxes, product placement in the LCBO, and distribution and sales
opportunities, that are holding these businesses back from achieving their full potential.
The second resolution asks the province to develop a mechanism that allows for multiple municipalities who have invested in a regionally significant project to account for jobs created when reporting to
government. The Peterborough Chamber of Commerce believes this change of view on reporting
requirements would encourage more regional collaboration, which in turn would be to the benefit of all communities involved. There are many collaborations that cross geographical boundaries in the conservation and transit authority space, but not many in the economic development space.
The third resolution is on data and building a data dashboard that Ontario businesses and residents can access. This dashboard would be able to merge and release data sets upon request for businesses and Ontarians. The idea is that residents and businesses can be even more informed in their decision making. From a business perspective we are opening ourselves up further to more ingenuity and entrepreneurship with access to more information in a timely and relevant format.
Other resolution topics to be debated and voted on include further planning on smart cities and digital
transformations, provincial procurement reform, resolving the provincial housing crisis to support economic growth, and improving the skilled trades in secondary schools.
Many of these resolutions are aimed at community betterment and ensuring businesses and
municipalities have the tools in place to ensure sustainable economic growth in Ontario’s urban and rural areas.