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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: March 15, 2023

Connecting long-term care residents in Niagara to specialized support, home sales drop 40 per cent in February vs. last year, and more.

In this edition:

Ontario connecting long-term care residents in Niagara to specialized care and supports

The Ontario government is investing $294,513 in 19 projects throughout the Niagara region to help seniors with complex medical needs like dementia and bariatric care connect to specialized care and supports in their long-term care home instead of a hospital. This is part of a $20 million investment this year in 189 projects provincewide through a new Local Priorities Fund operated by Ontario Health.

Some of the local projects will do this by helping residents get the specialized care they need in their long-term care home without having to go to the emergency room or be admitted to hospital. Others will support the admission into homes of people who no longer require acute care in hospital, but who have complex needs that can be difficult to accommodate without specialized services and supports.

For a complete list of projects in Niagara receiving funding, click here.

Ontario requiring cleaner washrooms on construction sites

The Ontario government is making washrooms on construction sites private, clean and safe. There are nearly 600,000 construction workers in Ontario, but only one in 10 are women. These changes, if approved, would make the skilled trades more accessible to women by ensuring they have access to at least one women’s-only washroom on jobsites and properly fitting equipment such as uniforms, boots and safety harnesses.

The government is further improving portable washrooms by requiring them to be private and completely enclosed, have adequate lighting and hand sanitizer (where running water is not reasonably possible). Additionally, the government is doubling the number of toilets on most jobsites.

Click here for more details.

Canadian home sales drop 40 per cent in February compared with year ago

Home sales in Canada decreased 40 per cent last month compared with a year ago, with new listings and prices also dropping. The plunge in sales came as prices declined 18.9 per cent compared with the all-time record posted in February 2022, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) said today.

Compared with January, CREA said national home sales rose 2.3 per cent in February, powered by gains in Toronto and Vancouver, while the number of newly listed properties dropped 7.9 per cent month over month.

The drop in transactions in February brought sales in line with what was recorded in 2018 and 2019, suggesting the rise in interest rates over the past year “has blown off some of the pandemic era froth in Canada’s housing market,” BMO chief economist Douglas Porter said.

Home sales in Niagara were 31 per cent down compared to a year ago and the actual average home price was $627,500 in February 2023, a decrease of 0.25 per cent compared to January 2023.

Click here for more details.

Competition Bureau provides recommendations to improve competition law in Canada

The Competition Bureau presented its submission in response to the Government of Canada’s ongoing consultation on the future of competition policy in Canada. The submission includes over 50 recommendations to help modernize and strengthen Canada’s Competition Act.

In short, Canada needs more competition, and Canadians need a modern and effective competition law to support that.

Canadians are witnessing the largest price increases seen in decades. This new reality underscores the importance of competition in the marketplace because it helps make things more affordable for consumers and businesses. Stronger competition also fuels economic growth by giving new businesses an equal opportunity to compete.

Click here for more details.

Median annual wages and number of wage earners rise in 2021 

In 2021, annual median wages, salaries and commissions increased by 4.8 per cent to $43,190 for tax filers who had wages, while the number of wage earners rose by 194,910 individuals, according to tax filer data.

Median annual wages increased in all provinces and two territories. The increases ranged from 1.9 per cent in Newfoundland and Labrador to 7.2 per cent in British Columbia.

While monthly trends in employment and wages are most commonly reported through the Labour Force Survey, tax filer data presents a picture of annual wages and salaries.

Click here for more details.

Niagara Falls City Council calls on residents to share their opinion on the 2023–2027 Strategic Plan Pillars

For each four-year term of Council, the City of Niagara Falls authors a new Strategic Plan that outlines key goals and initiatives that will shape the future of the community. The plan is adopted by City Council, who provides direction to City staff on areas of focus as the organization moves toward achieving its vision.

As part of the strategic planning process, Council and staff want to ensure that the priorities of the corporation reflect what matters most to residents; recognizing that to consistently deliver exceptional services to the community depends on effectively spending time and resources, as well as tracking results.

Starting today, residents are encouraged to take the 2023-2027 Strategic Plan Survey and provide their feedback before the Tuesday, April 4 deadline.

Click here for more details.

Focus on Climate

Designing a climate advocacy strategy

Sophie Dembinski, Charmian Love, and Beth Thoron, Harvest Business Review

Although the business community has made progress toward climate goals since the 2015 Paris Agreement, fewer than one-fifth of net-zero targets set by national and subnational governments and only a third of the largest public corporations with net-zero targets actually meet science-aligned criteria.

Businesses committed to being on the right side of history must advocate for policies, regulations, and laws to achieve economy-wide systemic change at the pace and scale required to achieve climate targets. Based on their cross-organizational work at three B Corps, the authors identified five critical elements for advocacy strategies that will help businesses use their power and influence to push for the system change required to meet climate targets.

Click here to read more.


Climate change and the rising cost of potholes

Nicole Williams, CBC

Fluctuating temperatures create a destructive cycle of expansion and contraction of brittle, frozen asphalt, and more powerful rays of sunshine melt ice that has, for weeks, concealed cavities in the road. Some experts say the problem is only going to get worse.

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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