*** A Big Move for Our Chamber ***

 

A Big Move for Our Chamber

In just over a week, our Chamber will hold a vote that, with any luck, will support our future in this community for many years to come.

Like many of our counterparts across the province, our not-for-profit Chamber of Commerce has for several years had to contend with rapidly rising costs, attempting to meet them with slowly increasing membership revenues. The time has come that we can’t keep up.

The Board has struggled with funding our operations and determined a possible solution, one that other Ontario chambers have already taken – merging with neighbouring chambers to become a larger, more efficient entity.

Once the Board determined this was the best opportunity to strengthen our Chamber, they began “tire-kicking” discussions with the West Grey Chamber of Commerce. After a few meetings of the joint task force, it was determined by both Chambers that this merger would bring about a stronger Chamber to support our local businesses, with only a few drawbacks that could be overcome operationally.

Members of both Chambers have been surveyed to determine if there is enough support for us to move forward with planning, and this survey follows multiple information emails and a Zoom meeting. We’ve been asked many questions, some of which we don’t have answers to and won’t until we’re much further along in discussions, such as where the new Chamber’s office might be. That will be the decision of the new Board, but these individuals will take into consideration the preferences of ALL our Members.

We have answered some questions, such as how money coming from each municipal area will be allocated for spending; each municipal area will receive services equally and with an eye towards supporting our Members the same.

Other questions are on issues that we’re discussing but haven’t finalized yet, like how the new Board will be comprised.

It’s now time to hold a formal vote, on July 19, via Zoom to get our Chamber Members’ approval to move ahead with the merger, enabling us to begin addressing formal issues, such as finances, bylaws, corporate structure, and geographic boundaries.

Members should expect further emails this week answering the questions we’ve received as a result of this survey and beyond, and we encourage any Members with questions to contact the Office via phone or email as soon as possible. This is YOUR CHAMBER and your voice should be heard.

Members, please plan to join the Zoom on Tuesday, July 19 at 7pm for just 15 minutes to ensure your Chamber’s stability into the future. The invitation is in your email and will be re-sent this week.

 

To stay up-to-date on business resources, please visit www.greyhighlands.biz.