Posted on December 12, 2017 in Front Lines
As we wrap up another year, I am pleased to say that the NSBA has had an exciting and successful period of growth in 2017. The organization’s reputation and brand continue to be elevated – we have clearly become the go-to voice on business and political issues in our city and province. There has never been a year that the NSBA has made more headlines on hot button issues.
One recent example of this – and a major municipal initiative we have been vocal about, is the bike lane pilot project. At the request of many members, the NSBA has been paying close attention to the bike lanes since the implementation of the pilot project. As we were trying to understand their effectiveness and usage, we went as far as using video monitoring to conduct our own primary research and count cyclists. In addition to the research, we have heard from some very vocal members and non-members on this topic. As a result, we appeared in front of Transportation Committee and have been a key voice in the bike lane debate. To be clear, the NSBA supports an active transportation plan – we just don’t think the current bike lanes are working as well as hoped, and need to be taken back to the drawing board.
Although we did not dwell on that topic, we did have an opportunity to have a unique, intimate “fireside chat” with his Worship Charlie Clark at an NSBA luncheon. This was the best-attended luncheon in quite some time for our organization, with approximately 250 in attendance. We had a great conversation with Mayor Clark and asked him tough questions about the role of government vs. business in development; the connection between social issues and economic development, and his thoughts on what he’s looking for in leadership as the City recruits a new City Manager. We may not always agree on policy, but we appreciate Mayor Clark’s openness and willingness to discuss opportunities and challenges.
I want to take this moment to give a special send off to Henry Dyck. Henry has skillfully lead the Economic Development Committee as Chair for the last three years. Henry and his wife Netha are
moving to Manitoba. Henry, you will be missed; thank you for all you have done for the NSBA and community.
Before I wrap up, I would also like to ensure you pay close attention to some events taking place in early January. First, on January 5th, we are inviting you to come and Meet the Next Premier in a speed dating luncheon format. Second, on January 24th we will be a hearing from NexGen Energy, a quiet success story that our members need to hear!
Although the weather doesn’t feel like it, Christmas is just around the corner. While many of us work hard on year-end production pushes, we are also getting ready to celebrate the season with staff, friends and family. Please have a fun, safe, and enjoyable holiday season with those who are important to you. On behalf of the NSBA staff and Board of Directors, Merry Christmas, and let’s get ready for a great 2018!