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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: December 16, 2021

The governments of Canada and Ontario are committed to connecting more communities to broadband internet by 2025.

Increased high-speed internet services coming to eight additional municipalities in Niagara

The governments of Canada and Ontario are committed to connecting more communities to broadband internet by 2025. As part of that, construction is underway to connect more than 4,800 homes, farms and businesses in Fort Erie, Grimsby, Lincoln, West Lincoln, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Niagara Falls, Pelham and Wainfleet, to reliable high-speed internet services by December 2022.

This $17.9 million initiative to build three new infrastructure networks in the Niagara region will help ensure that farms and businesses will have the ability to attract new customers, grow their business, create new jobs and stay competitive in an increasingly digital marketplace.

The expanded fibre-optic service is supported by the governments of Canada and Ontario, each committing $ 3.5 million.

Click here for more details.

Average Canadian house price hit all-time high of $720,850 in November

The average selling price of a resale home in Canada last month was $720,850, topping the previous high set in March of this year. The average house price in Ontario in November was $931,324, representing a 24% increase over last year.

The Canadian Real Estate Association said that the volume of sales was strong, too, with sales increasing by 0.6 per cent from the previous month’s level.

Typically, housing market activity peaks in the spring, before declining through the summer and fall, and slowing further in the winter months before rebounding again. But 2021 has bucked that traditional trend, as sales for the year have already smashed the previous annual record for sales with one month to go.

More than 630,634 homes have been sold on CREA’s MLS system this year, well ahead of the record of 552,423 set in 2020.

Click here for more details.

Canada Summer Jobs 2022: Application period for employers begins today

Today, the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth, Marci Ien announced the launch of the employer application period for the Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) 2022 program. CSJ is a long-standing Government of Canada program that strives to help youth (15–30 years of age) obtain their first summer work experience. The program provides opportunities for youth to develop and improve their skills within the not-for-profit, small business and public sectors, and supports the delivery of key community services.

This year, CSJ 2022 is targeting the creation of up to 100,000 full-time summer job opportunities for young people. This represents a 40% increase from pre-pandemic targets. Not-for-profit organizations, public sector employers, and private sector employers with 50 or fewer full-time employees can apply for funding now until January 25, 2022, to hire young Canadians next summer. Full-time job placements will take place during the summer of 2022.

Click here for more details.

Prime Minister releases new mandate letters for ministers

Today, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, released new ministerial mandate letters to guide the Cabinet in moving Canada forward.

The mandate letters (38 in total, one for each Cabinet minister) outline the government’s commitment to finish the fight against COVID-19 and support a strong economic recovery. The mandate letters also outline the government’s focus on tackling climate change, creating new jobs and growing the middle class, putting home ownership back in reach for everyone, delivering on $10‑a‑day child care, and walking the shared path of reconciliation.

Click here for more details.

Port Colborne City Hall is now available virtually for residents 

Port Colborne residents can now manage property taxes, water, and wastewater bills online with the city’s launch of Virtual City Hall.

This is one of the many upgrades the City of Port Colborne is taking to be a leader in providing a convenient, user friendly customer focused service. This new digital system also promotes paperless billing to reduce environmental impacts and the costs associated with processing/mailing statements to property addresses.

Click here for more details.

Niagara College implements temporary changes to program delivery

Due to the given current COVID-19 trends and the uncertainty around the rise of the Omicron variant, Niagara College is implementing what they expect to be short-term modifications to program delivery for the start of the Winter 2022 term.

They will be providing regular updates in advance of the start of the Winter Term, while they pause a planned increase in on-campus learning by shifting some program elements to remote/online delivery. These changes will be in effect until January 28, at which time they will reassess the delivery mode of these courses for the remainder of the term.

Click here for more details.

Reading Recommendations

Ainslie Cruickshank, The Walrus

More than three years have passed since a panel of scientists convened by the United Nations issued a stark warning: to avoid the most devastating effects of climate change, the world has until 2030 to cut greenhouse gas emissions by almost half. With just under a decade left, transforming Canada’s fossil-fuel-reliant economy in line with that monumental goal requires not only political commitment and innovation but also money—possibly as much as $200 billion in capital spending over the next nine years, according to Ryan Riordan, the director of research at Queen’s University’s Institute for Sustainable Finance. More windmills and solar panels need to be manufactured and installed, gas stations need to be upgraded with charging stations, diesel buses need to be swapped with hydrogen-powered ones, and buildings need to be retrofitted for energy efficiency. What’s not yet clear is who will pay for it all.

How driverless cars will change our world

Jenny Cusack, BBC

The promise of driverless technology has long been enticing. It has the potential to transform the experience of commuting and long journeys, take people out of high-risk working environments and streamline the industries. It’s key to helping us build the cities of the future, where our reliance and relationship with cars are redefined – lowering carbon emissions and paving the way for more sustainable ways of living. And it could make our travel safer.

But in order for driverless technology to become mainstream, much still needs to change.

The ultimate vision experts are working towards is of completely driverless vehicles, both within industry, wider transport networks, and personal-use cars, that can be deployed and used anywhere and everywhere around the world.

But with many hurdles in place, what exactly does the next 10 years have in store for autonomous vehicles?


The impacts of a changing climate: Canada’s top ten weather stories of 2021

Environment and Climate Change Canada

Today, Environment and Climate Change Canada presented the 26th annual edition of the Top 10 Weather Stories in Canada.

This year’s stories demonstrate that Canadians across the country are experiencing unprecedented extreme weather, in the form of devastating flooding, widespread wildfires, relentless heatwaves, and powerful tornadoes. Scientists have made a clear link between climate change and more frequent and severe weather events.

Top 10 Weather Stories of 2021

  1. Record Heat Under the Dome
  2. British Columbia’s Flood of Floods
  3. Canada Dry Coast to Coast
  4. Wildfire Season – early, active and unrelenting
  5. Canada rides out four heat waves
  6. Year of the EF2 Tornado
  7. Dreaded Arctic Blast Freezes Canada in February
  8. Another hailer-flooder in Calgary
  9. Hurricane Larry belonged to Newfoundland
  10. January Prairie Clipper

Niagara COVID-19 statistics tracker

Niagara COVID vaccination tracker

Free rapid COVID-19 testing kits are now available to businesses. Visit to learn more and reserve kits for your organization.

Information on government grants, resources, and programs, policies, forms, and posters for download and use, are available here. The GNCC is here to support you. Contact us with any questions you have.

Through the Daily Updates, the GNCC aims to deliver important business news in a timely manner. We disseminate all news and information we feel will be important to businesses. Inclusion in the Daily Update is not an endorsement by the GNCC.

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