Kimberley chamber, 2018

The Kimberley & District Chamber of Commerce supports business in all of its forms and phases

Mike Guarnery is the manager of the Kimberley & District Chamber of Commerce

Mike Guarnery is the manager of the Kimberley & District Chamber of Commerce. — Virginia Rasch photo

As well as supporting the general business community in Kimberley, the city’s chamber of commerce is focused on advancing the growth of the technology sector there. Mike Guarnery, manager of the Kimberley & District Chamber of Commerce, arranged for special guest Karilyn Kempton to speak at an information session in Kimberley in late September. Kempton is the technology co-ordinator for the City of Revelstoke.

“The tech meeting demonstrated that we have an appetite in the region for tech sector people to meet and share what they are doing,” said Guarnery.

The current administration in Kimberley is actively seeking expansion of its commercial and industrial base. It is working to streamline bureaucratic processes to make it easier for new businesses to get established.

“Kimberley has a lot to offer,” Guarnery said, “and we need to try to make more sites available for businesses. The provincial regulatory processes are a little cumbersome in terms of timing, though that may be because of environmental considerations at these sites.”

Big-picture focus

The shortage of childcare options for B.C.’s working parents is creating difficulties for parents who need to get out and work or operate their businesses. The Kimberley chamber is in discussions with College of the Rockies to explore options to relieve the situation.

Labour shortages are a province-wide concern, and Guarnery is excited about a program called Employing Newcomers in Canadian Hotels, a pan-Canadian project from the Ministry of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship.

“We’ll be able to take advantage of this program,” he said. “With newcomers getting trained, we’re hoping that they will be available for employment in the hospitality industry, where there is a great need for more workers.”

At the B.C. Chamber AGM, the Kimberley & District Chamber of Commerce and the Columbia Valley Chamber of Commerce put forward a resolution to advocate with provincial leaders on a policy to make cannabis distribution less complicated.

“We attached our chamber’s name to other resolutions,” said Guarnery, “including removing the speculation tax and changes to the B.C. Business Payroll Tax.”

Recognizing excellence

The Kimberley chamber held its annual Business Excellence Awards gala on October 19 at the Kimberley Conference & Athlete Training Centre. This event recognizes the individuals and businesses that consistently maintain the highest standards in their respective industries and their community. For a complete list of award recipients, go to our webpage.

Marie Milner

Marie Milner is a writer and photographer for Kootenay Business magazine and several other publications. She appreciates the inspiration that she gets during her interviews and hopes to share that inspiration with you. View all of Marie Milner’s articles

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