Benefit Highlight: Discounts on Purolator Shipping

You make promises to your customers and it's your job to ensure their satisfaction. But, promises don't matter if you can't deliver.  As the preferred shipping provider of the Alberta Chambers of Commerce, Purolator will help you deliver on those promises and save on shipping; with volume discounts up to 30% on Purolator Express® and Purolator Ground® services for being a member of your local Chamber.


New M2M Discount: 10% off at Mobil 1 Auto Service

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce members and their employees now enjoy 10% off all services at Mobil 1 Auto Service & Lube Express when they present a valid Chamber membership card!

Member News: Being Human Services has moved!

Effective January 4, 2016 Being Human Services will now be operating out of their new location at 222 South Railway Street SE.


New Canadian Laws Surrounding Health & Safety

Did you know that Effective March 1, 2016, all Canadian companies with 20 or more employees are required - by law - to have an established and trained Joint Health and Safety Committee. This Committee must be comprised of employee and management level staff, and must be Health and Safety Certified.

International Opportunities Workshop: Taking Your Goods to International Markets

The Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce has organized a half-day workshop on international opportunities:
  • How can you access international markets? Find out in this half-day International Opportunities workshop featuring presentations by industry experts.
  • Learn about a range of topics, including: Import/Export Letters of Credit and the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Also, hear from a local business about their issues and experiences.
Presentations from: Export Development Canada, Government of Alberta, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, Sakai Spice, RINSA and RBC.

Presenters include:‚Äč

• Joey St. Pierre, Export Development Canada
• Albert Eringfeld, Government of Alberta
• Jeff Gaulin, Vice President Communications, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers
• Pamela Gwyer, RBC
• Dave Macfarlane, Sakai Spice
• John Arnold, RBC
• Bill Haley, RINSA
• Dixie Fowler, Maritime Travel

An information session for the Chamber's next International Awareness trip Incredible India will be held beginning at 4:00 p.m., immediately following the workshop. This is a FREE information session and anyone interested in this trip is welcome to attend.

Date:
January 20, 2016

Time:
01:00 PM - 04:00 PM MST
Location: Lethbridge
Prime Catering (Sandman Hotel)
421 Mayor Magrath Dr. S.

Date/Time Details: 
Wed. Jan 20, 2016
1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Fees/Admission:

Click here for more information


United States government repeals COOL for beef and pork

The Alberta livestock industry will have greater access to American markets following the repeal of mandatory Country of Origin Labelling (COOL) requirements for beef and pork in the United States.

This legislation has had a considerable negative impact on beef producers on both sides of the border. While it was intended to help educate consumers, it ended up costing producers significant amounts without benefiting consumers. 

“This is good news for Alberta's beef and pork producers. The province and the industry have been working hard to put an end to COOL. The long-overdue decision to repeal COOL enhances Alberta's trade with the U.S. and restores markets for Alberta's beef and pork products which helps maintain jobs in our crucial agricultural sector. It also brings the U.S. into compliance with WTO obligations.”
 - Deron Bilous, Minister of Economic Development and Trade

The Canadian government cautions that there will likely be a delay until new procedures are in place, but are confident that it is only a matter of time.

Sources:
- Alberta Government Announcement
- Agri-pulse (US) news article
- Ag-Canada news article

5 min for Business - How to Help the Middle Class

In this edition of 5 Minutes for Business, Hendrik Brakel, the Senior Director of Economic, Financial and Tax Policy with the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, looks at the new tax cuts for the middle class and the real impact they will have on the Canadian economy.

The government argued in favour of these tax cuts because “supporting the middle class is the wise thing to do.” Indeed, we agree the best boost to business is a growing, spending middle class, which helps everyone from the tiny restaurants to the big banks.

There is also hope that tax cuts will stimulate the economy. Here, we are more doubtful. Is this really the best way to help the middle class, and will it be sufficient to boost the economy?

Read 5 Minutes for Business to find out.

News We're Following December 18th, 2015

Medicine Hat Receives New Opportunity to Invest Funds - AB Gov - Medicine Hat joins Edmonton and Calgary as the third city in Alberta to be included in the Major Cities Investment Regulation, which allows municipalities enhanced flexibility and independence to invest the money in their reserves.

Interest Rates for the First Calendar Quarter - Gov Canada - The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) today announced the prescribed annual interest rates that will apply to any amounts owed to the CRA and to any amounts the CRA owes to individuals and corporations. These rates will be in effect from January 1, 2016 to March 31, 2016.

Economic Value of the Provincial Land Development Industry - Fall 2015 Report - UDI - In 2014 Alberta's land development industry generated over $32.0 billion dollars in provincial economic benefit, creating 136,608 jobs, $9,359,332,868 in labour income, $19,084786,000 in residential land development and $13,008,721,000 in non-residential land development.

Grants Support Preserving Alberta’s History and Stories - AB Gov - Heritage projects that are preserving local landmarks and the stories of Alberta’s past are getting a boost with provincial funding through the Alberta Historical Resources Foundation (AHRF).

The Business & Community Newsletter - Statistics Canada

Policy News: Physician Recruitment Seeing Success in the Southeast Region

The Medicine Hat Physician Attraction and Retention Network was set up in 2012  to build a sustainable system for physician attraction, recruitment support and retention in collaboration with local physicians that will ensure ongoing physician services to the community. This is achieved by providing supports amongst existing physicians, AHS and the community, as well as assisting with integration into medical practice, family integration into the community and providing information for a sustained quality of life in our community. The Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce has a strong role in the network in response to its policy on Physician Recruitment, which calls for an effort to have:
  1.        A strategic approach to recruitment and retention
  2.        A positive Alberta Health Services (AHS), community and physician partnership.
  3.        An ongoing, organized, healthy community action group such as the Community Attraction and Retention (A&R) Committee.
  4.        A multi-faceted approach (community development, marketing, recruitment, incentives, retention strategies).
  5.        Focus on fit (physician values, skills, compatibility) and a high level of physician / family / community support and involvement.
  6.        Inter-community competition replaced with cross-community and Alberta Health Services collaboration.
  7.       Concentration on multi-physician, multi-practitioner medical practices, or ability to replicate these advantages /qualities in a smaller practice.
  8.       Focus on retention skills mix, skills enhancement, quality of life, family satisfaction and succession planning.
At the beginning of 2015, local physician leadership identified a physician recruitment need of 27 for Medicine Hat and South Zone East.  Over the course of 2015, an additional 7 positions were added to the recruitment plan.  The areas with recruitment need include: Addictions and Mental Health (4); Emergency Medicine (3); Family Practice (8); Laboratory Medicine (1); Pediatrics (3);  Internal Medicine (3); Geriatrics (3);  Rural sites (Bassano-1; Bow Island-2; Oyen-1; Brooks- 4), MOH (1).  As of December 2015, 25 physicians have been recruited.  21 of the recruits have commenced practice and 4 physicians are committed to begin practice.   AHS South Zone Medical Affairs with local physician leaders is currently developing and refining the recruitment plan for 2016.

We would like to welcome the following 21 physicians who have commenced practice:

Dept. of Addiction & Mental Health: Drs. Shafiq Khan, Rishi Singhal, Akeem Iyiola and Kathleen Perreault
Dept. of Family Practice:  Drs. Teurayi Motsi, Arnold Nzale Nzali,  Matthew Marsay,  Anienne Marsay,  Asafa Adedeji, Noorun-Nissa Lagadin
Dept. of Medicine:   Ayman Selim,  Subrata Datta, and Soundouss Raissouni
Depts. of Pediatrics: Dr. Ahed Isa
Dept. of Rural Medicine: Dr. Akin Osakuade in Oyen  and Dr. AjaysonGopie in Bassano; Dr. Carly Fletcher and Dr. Ben Wasserman (1 year locums to Bow Island); Dr. Hassan Ali a new internal medicine specialist in Brooks.
Dept. of Senior’s Health: Dr. Cesar Rodriguez Velez
Medical Officer of Health: Dr. Lena Deri-Gillespie

We would also like to extend our welcome to the 4 physicians who will joining the Medical Staff in Medicine Hat in 2016:

Dept. of Family Practice: Dr. Jani-Carlein van der Walt
Dept. of Laboratory: Dr. Pingchuan Zhang
Dept. of Pediatrics: Drs. Andrea Tam and Mohamed Solton

Since 2012 the Physician Attraction and Retention Network has met with over 30 physicians to assist in making the connections to the community and the assets within our region.


Benefit Highlight: Would you like a free membership?

Most businesses can think of someone in their network that would benefit from what the Chamber offers, but some of our members may not be aware that we have a Membership Referral program that actually rewards you for referring them to us. Refer us one member, and if they sign up you get 10% off your membership next year. Refer 10 new members, and your membership next year is free!

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