In 2017 the Pemberton Valley saw a surge of economic activity that was noticeably felt in the community. From new businesses opening and other businesses for sale, a large stock of housing construction underway, real estate booming, local first nations driving economic development in their communities and community non-profits continuing to weave our families together.
While the loss of the Pemberton Music Festival removed some financial and social benefits from this valley, I feel it has also had us refocus on Pemberton being Pemberton 12 months a year. Our community is at a pivotal point right now as watching the trickle effect of growth is not an option anymore and it has become quite apparent that a steady flow has begun.
Economic growth in this valley needs to be managed and facilitated in a responsible manner to ensure Pemberton is in the driver seat for steering economic development into the future.
What does this community look like in 20 years? Where will our children be working and living? In 2017 the Pemberton and District Chamber of Commerce was very active in advocacy through the development of policy through the BC Chamber, writing persuasive letters to the provincial government, meetings with local government and most recently creating a space for collaboration through the newly formed Pemberton Valley Economic Development Task Force.
This year we focused our main advocacy efforts on sufficient public transportation, quality high speed internet, tax reform and less red tape that supports small business and affordable housing.
In 2018 the Pemberton and District Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to being the voice for an integrated and prosperous business community that fosters economic development and advocates on behalf of its members. Our team is working to improve membership value though membership engagement, quality content, communication through technology and a plan to reintroduce the annual Business Awards in 2018.
In closing I would like to thank Shirley Henry for all her years of work with the Pemberton and District Chamber! Please get involved, know who your chamber is and let us know how we can help you and your business! We can’t help, if we don’t know the issues or needs of our members. We thank you for your continued support through 2017 and hope you have a busy 2018.
President, Pemberton Chamber of Commerce