Economic corporation one step closer to autonomy

According to the terms of the agreement, the city will provide $1.37 million to the NEDC in return for economic development and tourism services that will benefit Nanaimo.

The City of Nanaimo officially entered into a partnership agreement with the newly developed Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation Monday, which will allow the city to help the organization carry out its mandate under the Community Charter.

The agreement stipulates the city will provide $1.37 million in return for economic development and tourism services that will benefit Nanaimo.

The agreement, which has a term of 20 years, will allow the city to assist the corporation through grants and loans, as well as property transfers. The city will also, for now, be the sole shareholder in the corporation, but that could change if nearby municipalities and regional districts express interest.

Nanaimo Mayor John Ruttan created the corporation after determining in early 2010 that the former economic development office and other city-run economic and tourism offices were not transparent enough and were underperforming, despite enjoying a $1.5-million budget.

The move also means Tourism Nanaimo will no longer receive city funding.

“There is excitement around this and that’s the reason it was set up,” said Ruttan. “Around a year and a half ago I was starting to get some feedback from the business community wondering why the economic development office was run by the city and why there wasn’t more input from business owners or more information provided. I felt there needed to be a great deal more information out there for both council and local business.”

Already approved by the province, the corporation has just one more step to take before it can move forward – hire an economic development officer. Ruttan said the short list is down to two candidates and that the 17-member board will make the final decision.

“Both candidates appear to be of a very high calibre and both have the attributes and background that we’re looking for,” said Ruttan. “A decision is expected in the coming weeks, but it’s important that as many of the board members as possible are present to contribute to the decision.”

Once an economic development officer is hired, the city will turn over its economic development responsibilities.

While the corporation is designed to operate as a separate entity, a 14-member progress board, which includes council representatives, was established to monitor the fledgling organization’s operations. The corporation will also operate under the rules and regulations of the Business Corporations Act.

 

Just Posted

Young people graduating in COVID-19 times have shown resilience. (Stock photo)
Editorial: Class of 2021 has shown smarts and resilience

Congratulations and good luck to Grade 12s who have persevered during the pandemic

The Nanaimo Business Awards are accepting nominations now. (Greater Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce image)
Nanaimo Business Awards accepting nominations of worthy winners

This year’s awards aren’t until the fall, but the nomination period ends June 28

Retailers say they’re ready for the ban on single-use plastic checkout bags in Nanaimo when it takes effect July 1. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Retailers report they’re ready for Nanaimo’s single-use checkout bag ban

Business operators say there’s been plenty of time to plan and prepare for bylaw that kicks in July 1

Nanaimo Fire Rescue crews on scene at a boat fire near the boat ramp at Long Lake on Sunday, June 20. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)
Boat burns up on Nanaimo’s Long Lake, man and child unhurt

Jet skiers attempt to put out fire by circling around to spray water on burning boat

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

John A. Read, who was inspired to leave his former career to become a professional astronomer by the purchase of a $13 telescope, will give beginning astronomers key pointers on how to set up and get the best performance from their instruments at Nanaimo Astronomy Society’s meeting June 24. (Photo courtesy Jennifer Read)
Astrophysicist will talk about getting the most out of a telescope at Nanaimo astronomy meeting

John Read’s purchase of a $13 telescope led to a degree in astrophysics and a career in astronomy

Emergency vehicles are parked outside of the Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni RCMP investigate stabbing on Fourth Avenue

Two men were found with ‘significant’ injuries near Wintergreen Apartments

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

Most Read