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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: June 23, 2022

Winners of 2022 Niagara Business Achievement Awards to be announced tonight, interest relief for agriculture producers, and more.

In this edition:

Winners of 2022 Niagara Business Achievement Awards to be announced tonight
Niagara History Museum to host Countering Hate at Home
Government of Canada announces interest relief for agriculture producers
Minister Gould directs Service Canada to “do more” to speed up passport processing
Number of Employment Insurance claimants drops below 500,000
Rankin family donates $2 million to South Niagara site of Niagara Health

Winners of 2022 Niagara Business Achievement Awards to be announced tonight

The GNCC is hosting the 18th annual Niagara Business Achievement awards, presented by RBC, recognizing the success of our local businesses, entrepreneurs, and non-profits.

The finalists in 2022 are:

Young Professional Award (sponsored by Bell)

  • Arienne Good
  • Daniela Escobar
  • Jarod Bleijerveld
  • Josh Knoester
  • Kailene Jackson
  • Ryan Walker
  • Stephanie Unsworth

Outstanding New Business (sponsored by Niagara College)

  • Captains Cabin Café Inc.
  • Ears Canada
  • InspireClean Inc.
  • McKnight Operational Consulting
  • Niagara Orthopaedic Institute Fonthill
  • Oggi Spa

Excellence in Business: up to 25 Employees

  • Baker Tilly Niagara LLP
  • Giant Shoe Creative Agency
  • Hero Dog Treats
  • Lofttan
  • Movement Unlimited Inc.

Excellence in Business: 26 Employees or More (sponsored by MNP)

  • Days Inn & Suites
  • Niagara Regional Broadband Network Limited
  • PBI – Printing by Innovation Inc.

Excellence in Business: Not-for-Profit (sponsored by Fedcap Canada)

  • Community Crew
  • Niagara SPCA and Humane Society
  • St. John Ambulance
  • The Norm Foster Theatre Festival
  • Welland Public Library

Technology and Innovation Award (sponsored by Innovate Niagara)

  • Dine Niagara
  • Intuitive Shipping Inc.
  • McKnight Inclusive Design

Excellence in Manufacturing (sponsored by Brock University’s Professional and Continuing Studies)

  • FSD Robotics
  • General Motors St. Catharines

Excellence in Tourism and Hospitality

  • Inn on the Twenty
  • Niagara West Tourism Association
  • Old Stone Inn Boutique Hotel

Excellence in Agribusiness, Farming and Rural Achievement (sponsored by Niagara Peninsula Energy)

  • Always June Organic Farm
  • Sunrise Greenhouses

Environmental Leadership Award (sponsored by Walker)

  • Bench Brewing Company Inc.
  • Goodwill Niagara
  • Spirit in Niagara Small Batch Distillers

Business of the Year (sponsored by RBC)

  • CAA Niagara
  • Kraun Electric
  • Merani Hotel Group
  • Shaw Festival

Bestowed Awards:

Community Leadership (sponsored by Niagara Region Economic Development): Caroline Mann. This award recognizes an individual or individuals whose leadership has made a significant impact in the community.

Entrepreneur of the Year (sponsored by Meridian Credit Union): Bill Schenck, Schenck Farms & Greenhouses. This award celebrates a Niagara entrepreneur whose work has been impactful or exceptionally significant in the region.

Innovative Leader Award (sponsored by CAA Niagara): Keith Simmonds, Great Wolf Lodge. This award celebrates prominent business leaders who show exemplary dedication to their community through volunteer efforts.

Builder of the Year: Merit Contractors Niagara. This award is presented to a company that has had an historically significant impact on the economic prosperity of the community.

Niagara Falls History Museum to host Countering Hate at Home

While the surge of right-wing extremism in Canada predates the onset of COVID, the pandemic has provided additional fodder to feed the conspiracy theories and disinformation that inspire the far-right. “Countering Hate at Home,” a discussion with Dr. Barbara Perry, explores the emerging patterns that characterize the contemporary movement, while providing some thoughts about how local communities can – and have – faced down hate at home.

In light of recent events very close to home, the Niagara Falls Anti-Racism Committee is hosting this event to provide a better understanding of the rise of extremism and the impact it has on our community.

The event is free to attend, and will be held at 6:30 p.m. on June 27 at the Niagara Falls History Museum’s Sherman Zavitz Theatre.

To learn more about this free event, and to register, visit ActiveNet.

Government of Canada announces interest relief for agriculture producers

Today, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, announced that the interest-free portion of the Advance Payments Program will increase from $100,000 to $250,000 for the 2022 and 2023 program years. As a result, participating producers will save on average $5,500 in interest costs over the next two years. This change will represent total savings of up to $61 million over two years for approximately 11,000 producers.

The amendment to the Agricultural Marketing Programs Regulations is not retroactive, meaning the new limit will be applied to existing advances under the 2022 Advance Payments Program as of June 20, 2022, when the regulatory amendments came into force. Farmers experiencing financial challenges are also encouraged to apply for assistance available under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership’s Business Risk Management (BRM) programs.

Click here to read more.

Minister Gould directs Service Canada to “do more” to speed up passport processing

“I am deeply concerned about the delivery of passport services to Canadians,” said the Honourable Karina Gould, Federal Minister of Families, Children and Social Development in prepared remarks issued today, “and the difficult and stressful situation too many Canadians are facing in getting passports in time for their travel plans. Improving this service is a top priority for the Government of Canada. I share the frustration of Canadians and want to reiterate that these lineups, waits and uncertainty are unacceptable. That is why I have directed officials in my department and at Service Canada to work to find and implement solutions to these problems.

“Service Canada has added staff, streamlined procedures and increased processing capacity to help deal with this unprecedented situation. However, significant challenges remain. I have directed that Service Canada continue to do more, and it is now implementing measures to make waits at specialized passport sites more predictable and manageable.”

Click here to read more.

Number of Employment Insurance claimants drops below 500,000

In April, 20,000 (-3.8%) fewer Canadians received regular Employment Insurance (EI) benefits, bringing the total number of beneficiaries to 496,000. There were 1.2 million (-70.2%) fewer regular EI beneficiaries in April than in May 2021, when the number reached its COVID-19 pandemic peak.

According to the Labour Force Survey (LFS), the unemployment rate edged down 0.1 percentage points to 5.2% in April after reaching a record low of 5.3% in March.

Click here to read more.

Rankin family donates $2 million to South Niagara site of Niagara Health

The Niagara Health Foundation is celebrating a $2 million donation to the new South Niagara Site of Niagara Health.

The donation from Tom Rankin and the Rankin family is part of the $21 million dollars that has been raised by the foundation for the new hospital.

Lynn Guerriero, President and CEO of Niagara Health says, “Once again, the Rankin family has demonstrated its unwavering commitment to the health and wellbeing of the Niagara community. Following its recent support of Niagara Health’s third MRI machine, it is fitting that this significant donation is directed to South Niagara Site’s MRI suite that will be a part of the comprehensive diagnostic services available at the site. We are incredibly grateful to Tom Rankin and his family for their continued generosity and philanthropic leadership.”

Back in February of 2021, Tom Rankin spearheaded the Niagara Health Foundation’s $2.8 million campaign to bring a third MRI machine to Niagara.

Click here to read more.

Reading Recommendations

Should Canada join other countries and take a gas tax holiday?

CBC News

If U.S. President Joe Biden is successful in his bid to pause gas taxes in the U.S., Canada will be the only G7 country not to bring in a tax cut or subsidy to help deal with prices at the pump.

Biden on Wednesday called on Congress to suspend federal gasoline and diesel taxes for three months. Meanwhile, the U.K., Italy, and Germany (lower taxes), France (a consumer rebate) and Japan (a subsidy to wholesalers) have all taken similar action.

As inflation — headlined by gasoline price hikes — hits highs not seen since Billie Jean was topping the Billboard charts and Return of the Jedi was in theatres, will Canada follow suit? Should it?

Click here to read more.

‘It’s just about survival at this point’: High gas prices affecting Canadians’ summer travel plans

CTV News

A majority of Canadians who intend to travel this summer say high gas prices are affecting those planned getaways, according to a pair of recent surveys.

A survey from CAA South Central Ontario says the rising price of fuel is forcing many to adjust their road trips.

Seventy-six per cent of respondents said they have a road trip planned within the province of Ontario, 26 per cent are planning to drive out-of-province and 23 per cent are driving to the U.S.

Of those planning a road trip, 64 per cent said gas prices would likely affect their plans, either limiting the number of trips they take overall, driving shorter distances or adjusting their budgets.

Click here to read more.

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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