Congratulations to FOTA for an outstanding fundraiser

Last night, NHLers Rick Smith, Chris Phillips, Doug Jarvis, Fred O’Donnell, Ron Tugnutt and Rob Murphy joined a large crowd at the Cove, in support of raising money for the arena.  They spent time talking to those who attended the event and signing autographs.  Right here!  In our Village!

Rick Smith, a former Bruins player, has truly become a Friend of the Arena.  He has helped the Village and FOTA out in many ways and was the lead organizer for getting the NHLers here last night.  Thank you Rick!

Once again, hats off to the backbone of our community – the volunteers.  FOTA’s Mark Herlehy, Bob Scott, Marty Hawkins and Councillor Frank Huth stay focussed on   improving the quality and experience of everyone who uses the arena.

And, for anyone with a hammer and paint brush, you can join the work bee’s at the arena this summer.  They meet every Tuesday night from 6:00 – 10:00 for the next 8 weeks.  All hands on deck!

LABOUR REFORMS AND MINIMUM WAGE HIKE – HAVE YOUR SAY!

MPPs SEEKING INPUT ON LABOUR REFORMS, INCLUDING MINIMUM WAGE HIKE

(BROCKVILLE) – Leeds-Grenville MPP Steve Clark is encouraging area businesses with concerns about proposed changes to Ontario’s labour laws, including increasing Ontario’s minimum hourly wage to $15, to present at upcoming committee hearings.

Clark said the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs will hold two weeks of public hearings next month on Bill 148, the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017.

“I’ve heard from businesses of all sizes in every corner of the riding who are concerned about how this legislation will impact their operations,” said Clark. “It’s important that they appear before the committee and speak directly to MPPs at this point in the legislative process before Bill 148 is debated in the Legislature for the first time this fall.”

Week one of the committee hearings will take place in Thunder Bay, North Bay, Ottawa, Kingston and Windsor-Essex during the week of July 10-14. Week two has hearings scheduled in London, Kitchener-Waterloo, Niagara, Hamilton and Toronto between July 17 and 21.

Details for the time and location of the hearings are yet to be announced, but Clark stressed it’s important to register to appear as a presenter now. Presenters can arrange to appear via teleconference.

The deadline to request a presentation during the first week, which includes hearings in Ottawa and Kingston, is 10 a.m. on Tuesday, July 4 and the deadline for week two is 10 a.m. on Monday, July 10.

To register, contact Eric Rennie, clerk of the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs by telephone at: 416-325-3506, fax: 416-325-3505, TTY: 416-325-3538 or email: erennie@ola.org.

Debrief of the “Westport – Let’s Talk Business” meeting – June 14

First, I would like to thank Mark DaSilva for facilitating the discussion at this meeting yesterday.  You did a great job!

There was a good cross section of business owners and residents who attended and several ideas were identified including recognition of store openings, milestones for years of being in business, mentoring for new business owners from seasoned ones, the importance of knowing enough about other businesses so that accurate referrals can be given to potential customers.  Also, lots of information sharing took place, which happens spontaneously when people get together.  The Economic Development and Tourism Committee will take some of the suggestions and put some meat on the bones and report back to this group, hopefully in July.

There were concerns raised about the changes to the minimum wage and the impact it may have on small businesses.  I informed the group that I have a resolution, being heard at the Village Committee of the Whole mtg on Monday afternoon and also at the United Counties Council mtg on June 22 , that challenges the Premier to (among other things) “to withdraw the proposed changes until such time they have done their due diligence by providing the residents and business owners of Ontario with a comprehensive economic impact analysis including mitigation measures in order to help businesses transition into any regulatory changes”.

Another topic that received a lot of discussion was the hours of business for the stores.  Two main concerns were identified – that most stores close at 5:00 p.m and the unannounced changes in store hours, particularly in the shoulder seasons.  Business owners who stay open on Fridays after 5:00 p.m. shared the successes they have experienced and staff from the Cove gave stories of guests checking in on Fridays and rushing to get to the stores before they close.

That being said, the group did land on the idea of “OPEN LATE.  ‘TIL 8” on Fridays during the summer and are encouraging other business owners to consider doing the same.  I am sure you will hear more about this from your colleagues.

We are hoping to get a guest speaker for our next meeting and when Paul Snider asked the group if we should hold off until fall, there was a strong push back that these early morning breakfast meetings can continue during the summer.  So stay tuned – we will plan for one in late July.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact me.  273-9195

Meet the NHL Pros GALA – fund raiser for Friends of the Arena

The Friends of the Arena (FOTA) have volunteered hundreds of hours to repair renovae and otherwise breathe life into the arena since 2015.  They have also spent a lot of time raising money to cover the cost of these jobs.  This summer you can see many of them working every Tuesday night from 6:00 – 10:00 p.m.  The 2017 summer project involves removing all of the stands on the east side, placing them on the rink floor, insulating the (cold) east wall, putting it all back together in a way that will improve the views for the spectators.  Wow!!!  And all without tax dollars.

One of FOTA’s major fund raisers is taking place tomorrow night (June 15) at the Cove and is billed as Meet the NHL PROS GALA.  NHLers Rick Smith, Chris Phillips, Doug Jarvis, Fred O’Donnell, Rob Murphy and others will be at this event and are looking forward to spending some time chatting with you about their careers.  WOW! There are lots of prizes as well as a silent auction and a 50/50 draw.  Great buffet served by the Cove. And of course there will be music!  The Spencer Evans Trio is in the house.  Please consider supporting FOTA and their ongoing work at the arena.  You can call the Cove at 273-3636 for tickets.

NHL Gala 2017

WESTPORT – LET’S TALK BUSINESS

You are invited to the 2nd  Mayor’s Breakfast being held on Wednesday, June 14th at 8:00 a.m. at the Cove Country Inn.

Please join us to continue the discussion with the Mayor on your needs and issues.

Let’s work together to identify solutions for you to grow your business.

The Economic Development and Tourism Advisory Committee will be facilitating discussions to help identify next steps.

Breakfast will be served from 8:00 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. at $ 10 per person.

Committed to community. Dedicated to progress.