New Chemainus BIA president looks ahead

Chemainus BIA president Doug Smith shares his thoughts about 2013.

Editor:

The cost of maintaining our community is vigilance.

Apathy, both residential and commercial, is a major component of community erosion. Change is inevitable; destruction of community should not be.

Small towns preserve their heart and health when residents and businesses care enough to be proactive participants.

The lifeblood of our community is the people. The characteristics of our town and its values are passed from elders to children. Without the children, who will we pass the baton to? Without a vigorous business environment, what will support the families needed to provide the community’s infrastructure?

Our challenge is to attract businesses and investors despite a limited labour pool and market access. If we’re not successful, then young people have little choice but to leave. And, with the exodus goes the future with too few people to support schools, or libraries, or doctors, and most importantly businesses

Dwight D. Eisenhower said, “For … any who had the great and priceless privilege of being raised in a small town, there always remains with him nostalgic memories of those days. And the older he grows, the more he senses what he owed to the simple honesty and neighborliness, the integrity that he saw all around him in those days.”

The Chemainus Business Improvement Association (BIA)’s focus will continue to promote the success and expansion of healthy and profitable commercial ventures to guard against any significant economic leakage of business activity to larger trade areas.

Development of a 2013 Strategic Plan in conjunction with our existing Marketing Plan are essential ingredients to the ultimate success and sustainability of not only the businesses but the community as a whole.

Encouragement in the development and the advancement of business prosperity and economic well-being of this community is the essence of the Business Improvement Association. To stimulate the growth of new and existing businesses, thus maintaining the economic stability and providing employment opportunities, is a critical component of the association’s mission.

A new board of directors was elected at the annual general meeting early November. The 11-member board is made up of both new and familiar faces. At the first meeting of the board, the executive was also established. The new board is: president Doug Smith, vice-president Ellen Bootsma, secretary/treasurer Geoff Hincks, Barb Bond, Randy Huber, Barkley Logan, Cim MacDonald, Peter Matthews, Len Wasnborough, Carol Wilde and Ward Yeager.

We are passionate about this community, its people, history and continued viability.

Where are we now? Where do we want to get to? And how do we get there? These are compelling questions with no definitive or single solution.

Over the next several weeks and months as our plans are finalized and new initiatives are formulated, the BIA will continue to update our community via the website and with the help of local media.

EVERYONE’S participation is welcome and encouraged. An innovative idea, an offer of help or just a positive discussion of our people, our commerce and our community is a simple but effective investment in our future.

Doug Smith

President,

Chemainus Business Improvement Association