Earlier this month, Federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau announced $2.1 billion towards the Trade and Transportation Corridors Initiative. The majority of that funding is going toward a merit based program to strengthen Canada’s trade corridors to international markets. In addition, that funding is to be supplemented by at least $5 billion from the Canada Infrastructure Bank for similar trade related infrastructure.
That is a whole pile of money, and there needs to be a laser focus on ensuring all of it goes towards infrastructure that will give the biggest bang for the buck. A firm return on investment criteria needs to be placed on these trade focused infrastructure projects. Investments need to ensure that our goods and services are moving faster, cheaper and more reliably than they would of previously.
Manitoba has been largely overlooked in past federal trade infrastructure programs, but we are key to the mid continental corridor. Over 100 million people live within a 24 hour drive of Winnipeg, and we are home to North America’s largest inland port, CentrePort. Imperial Seed is just the latest company to open up a facility there. We already have strong assets in place: now is the time for focused investments so we can meet the opportunities that lie down the road.
For further reading, check out the recently released Canadian Chamber of Commerce report “Stuck in Traffic for 10,000 Years: Canadian Problems that Infrastructure Investment Can Solve”.
Whether you’re lining up a first time Bumble stumble or celebrating ten years with your sweetheart, creativity matters to romance. Stepping off the beaten path for an unusual night out shows you’re more than interested in your partner; you’re hoping to make a memory.
Winnipeg’s got plenty for couples to do. This is where Canada’s heart beats, after all. But if you’re looking for more options after trying solid choices like a movie at the VIP theatre, board games at Across the Board, or busting out of Enigma Escapes, don’t worry – we’ve got ideas your love will love.
1. Go for a sunset canoe cruise along the Red
Is there a more quintessential Canadian move than holding your partner in the sun’s last light as waves gently rock your canoe? Our plaid-wrapped hearts are pounding just thinking about it. Twin River Travel runs Friday evening excursions along the Red and Seine River almost every week. They take care of the logistics; you enjoy a new view of the city’s landmarks as the day fades into night.
3. Raise your hipster cred at a pop-up party
Whether you’re swimming on a skyscraper’s rooftop while a DJ drops the beat or shimmying with salsa dancers in the East Exchange, The Hub’s experiences are unforgettable and never to be repeated. Download the Culture Card app to sync their party schedule with your date plans. Bonus points: the app will get you and your flame deals to most local hot spots, from Thermea to the symphony.
5. Align your chakras in mid-air
We could all use a bit more peace, love and flexibility in our lives, so why not show your partner you care about wellness by getting your asana to a yoga session. Yoga Public offers such a wide variety of classes, we guarantee there’s something you haven’t tried, like the floating yoga sessions that move you from the mat into the hammock.
7. See (and taste) Winnipeg's booming beer scene
The recent surge in our brewing community is well known and worth checking out if you and your date enjoy a cold one. Most local breweries will offer a free tour – PEG Beer Co holds theirs Monday evenings while Little Brown Jug’s tasting room actually looks over their equipment. You’ll meet some great local entrepreneurs and add some talking points to your next party. Just pace yourself: words like “mouthfeel” “harmonious” or “undertones” are no guarantee of a second date.
BONUS: Get into Winnipeg's top attractions for less
If you want to take your companion on a tour of Winnipeg – or want to give yourself some variety over eight blind dates (no judgement) – pick up a Winnipeg PASS and you’ll get admission to eight of the city’s top attractions while saving over 50 per cent.
Recently the provincial government took a step forward in fulfilling a campaign promise of bringing Social Impact Bonds (SIB) to Manitoba. A SIB is a tool where government sets a specific social outcome to be achieved, such as reduce recidivism in the justice system. However instead of traditional government delivery models, investors then fund a service provider to meet that objective. Investors are then paid by the government if the outcome improves, but if outcomes are not achieved, the investors don’t get paid.
Manitoba Housing has now issued a request for proposal for a consultant to help the province develop the first SIB in Manitoba, build staff capacity, and to help develop the framework for future SIBs. The jury is still out on the effectiveness of SIBs overall though as they are a relatively new mechanism. There have been success stories and failures in the same issue areas even. However it takes years to properly judge if a SIB is successful. It is also important to recognize that SIBs are another arrow in the government’s quiver and not meant to replace existing programs, but to complement them.
The provincial government deserves credit for being willing to try a new more innovative approach to delivering services with a greater focus on outcomes. But will SIBs work in Manitoba? Time will tell, but as the most generous province in Canada a strong culture already exists of investing in worthwhile causes. If those investments can be better tied to lowering homelessness, reducing poverty or improving educational outcomes, all Manitobans will benefit.
“After centuries living at high altitude, the Sherpa population of the Himalayas have evolved to master the ability to survive in this atmosphere.” (Meera Senthilingam, CNN).
For mountaineers tackling the highest peak in the world, a skilled, acclimatized guide isn't just valuable - they can be lifesavers. The key is letting the Sherpa know as soon as possible if a problem arises so they have time to act accordingly and make sure you both survive the climb to the top.
The recent "Everest" Legacy Bowes Group has been asked by clients to assist them climb is in the area of Strategic Business Advisory Services. Terry Brown is excited to lead this area as one of the newer partners of the firm. With the other partners, the skilled team at LBG and his 20 years in business - dealing in the high levels of business with entities ranging from multinationals to local governments - Terry charts a path that echoes mountain climbing: clients have climbed higher and higher and Terry has been that guide.
Eleven years ago, with the introduction of a new partnership between Barbara Bowes and Paul Croteau – an executive search professional - our firm became the now well-known Legacy Bowes Group, assisting others in navigating the "people side" of the business. Our clients ask us to assist them in the areas of Human Resources, Executive Search and Recruitment, Career Transition, Leadership Development and Strategic Business Advisory Services. We thrive on providing guidance to our clients – one person at a time.
Essentially, we fix problems related to dollars and people. We provide customized, high-level advisory services for both governments and businesses ranging from start-ups to multinational corporations. We help with business planning/strategy, project development, mediation/negotiation services, human resource management, leadership mentoring, grants, and funding, as well as networking to our wealth of industry specific connections.
We have a significant Indigenous Advisory practice where we specialize in bridging communication between Indigenous entities and governments with mainstream business and mainstream governments.
Having worked alongside a countless number of Chiefs & Councils for over 30 years, we have built a reputation founded on trust and mutual respect with both First Nations and the Metis. Our experience, and our Indigenous cultural knowledge are what make us experts in helping clients achieve organizational effectiveness and financial stability. Furthermore, we believe in the importance of providing cultural awareness education to the mainstream community and can assist in taking advantage of shared opportunities by connecting you with the right people in our vast professional network.
For firms without an HR manager, we still provide hourly ad hoc advice on how to deal with difficult situations ranging from addiction to coaching to termination. Legacy Bowes Group leads this through Barbara Bowes' almost 30 years experience handling those difficult situations. For firms who have a full HR Team, we will also be there to assist in Career Transition Services for times when tough people decisions are made that impact long term and right sized employees..
When you know there is a problem but you just don’t know how to define it, we also offer Organizational Review services focused on identifying the good, the bad and the ugly from a combined legal, financial, and people perspective.
Finally, successful negotiation requires experience and strategy. The Legacy Bowes Group team offers negotiation services and mediation services designed to put you in the driver’s seat to ensure you gain a strategic advantage.
We are always open to having a discussion about your challenge/opportunity and giving you the honest advice if we can help or at least point you in the right direction. Don’t climb Everest alone!
In today’s market where charities and non-profits are competing for donors and funds, it’s becoming increasingly important for organizations to explore innovative and alternative revenue streams. One innovative option is Social Impact Bonds.
What is a Social Impact Bond? Essentially, it’s a finance instrument that enables public-private-social partnerships with the government paying a return-on-investment tied to successful social outcomes. Examples of successful social outcomes include lower homeless rates for vulnerable people, improved graduation rates for young people who have been marginalized by society, and reduced recrimination rates for offenders.
Social Impact Bonds in Canada
Social Impact Bonds in Canada and around the world are a relatively new development. Recently, Manitoba’s Minister of Families Scott Fielding announced next steps for them in our province and Saskatchewan and Ontario are also included in the list of jurisdictions pursuing Social Impact Bonds.
Saskatchewan’s Sweet Dreams project – a new supported living home for single mothers, is a good example of a Social Impact Bond. The project was established with a Social Impact Bond funding model between the Government of Saskatchewan (issuer), Conexus Credit Union (private funder), Wally and Colleen Mah (private funders), and EGADZ, the service provider that provides programs and services to youth and their families.
Under the agreement, EGADZ receives $1 million from private investors (Conexus Credit Union $500k, and Wally and Colleen Mah $500k) to deliver the program and achieve the desired social outcome, which is to keep children out of foster care. The Government of Saskatchewan reimburses investors based on whether the social outcomes are met. In this particular instance, investors will receive $25,000 each if the project keeps between 17-21 children out of foster care, plus 5% interest. Failure to meet these criteria results in no reimbursements being issued. The success of the social impact output will be measured by an independent assessor at the end of the second, fourth and fifth years of the agreement. The Sweet Dreams project is expected to result in savings to the Government of Saskatchewan of between $540,000 and $1.5 million over five years. These savings are based on the current cost of children-in-care, and the subsequent cost savings for the Government.
Manitobans are the most generous philanthropically in Canada and donors play an important role in providing critical social services to our citizens. We continue to be grateful to the hard work done every day by the non-profit sector of Manitoba and grateful to the generosity of our donor community.
Today I stand taller, braver, more knowledgeable and grateful. I drank the Kool-Aid and it leaves me wanting more. A back stage pass to our city, Leadership Winnipeg is a 10-month course that takes you on an impactful journey through our city’s greatest treasures, while meeting our most notable leaders, innovators and change-makers from all sectors.
Having a standing passion for non for profits and charities, I wanted to explore and connect myself with the unfamiliar. This program provided me a real opportunity to evaluate, learn, practice and evolve on my journey. The daylong sessions (once a month) left me encouraged and at times overwhelmed.
Our class shared stories of vulnerability and many of us were emotional. We admitted that we had blind spots preventing us from fully identifying with our city. Most of us merely “existing” in our city rather than “living” in it. This program changes your way of thinking and challenges your beliefs for the better.
Our session program featured the following 10 sessions:
Leadership Winnipeg has redefined the boundaries of learning to create an experience with so much intent, emotion and creative frameworks. A guide to create your own personal leadership development plan, and make an impact right here in Winnipeg. For anyone looking for a transformational challenge, this program was practical, useable and so impactful.
Thank you to Doneta Brotchie, Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce, Volunteer Manitoba and the vision sponsors for your hard work and support. Endless appreciation to my committed colleagues who will challenge the status quo and pioneer new ways of thinking.
A skilled workforce is essential to a strong economy. A skills gap occurs when employer needs don’t match the education and skills that students and the broader workforce have. Research by the Conference Board of Canada shows the skills gap costs Ontario over $24 billion a year - around 4.0% of their entire economy.
Last week, the Province of Manitoba announced the first review of college education in a decade. This review will look at how to enhance not only individual colleges, but the entire system. Higher Education Strategy Associated has been contracted to complete the review, and they have reached out to the Winnipeg Chamber to provide input.
In Manitoba BOLD, the Winnipeg Chamber advocated for closer ties between educational institutions and industry. Building on that, the Chamber advocated for colleges to be given the ability to more quickly implement different programs and courses to fit industry needs, and to focus learning outcomes on market demand. Those themes will continue to feature prominently in the Chamber’s contribution to the provincial review.
In a rapidly changing global economy, it is imperative that educational institutions remain flexible to meet the changing needs of industry. It is estimated that 65% of children entering elementary school today will end up working in jobs that don’t currently exist. To prepare our students and the workforce of tomorrow, we must ensure industry and colleges work closer than ever before.
Snowflake Place for Children and Youth is a unique and special place. It is Manitoba’s only Children’s Advocacy Centre. As a charitable non-profit organization, we offer a central service model for victims of child abuse. Snowflake Place is designed to facilitate multi-system collaboration and foster best practices in child abuse investigations. Our goal is to ensure that victims receive sensitive and immediate support in a setting that puts their needs first.
We are looking for dynamic, motivated and energetic volunteers to be part of our fundraising committee. The committee, led by the Executive Director of Snowflake Place and board members, will provide leadership, guidance and oversight to ensure that its work meets our fundraising strategic plan.
Do you have experience in fundraising or campaigning? How about proposal writing? Or, are you interested in making a difference in the lives of children and young people? If you are, this might be a good fit for you.
Every day, the staff and partners of Snowflake Place provide support, hope, and healing to the children who have been traumatized by abuse, often at the hands of a known and trusted adult in their lives.
By getting involved in our fundraising committee, you are helping a child or youth victim who has been traumatized by abuse to begin their healing process.
Our by-laws require that the following notification be sent to all representatives of Chamber member companies.
Three Chamber Board seats are due to become vacant in October, and business leaders from various business sectors have been nominated to fill the vacancies. The slate of names was put forward by the Nominating Committee, a group appointed by the Board in accordance with The Chamber’s By-Laws, to set the annual election process in motion. The nominees were selected on the basis of their individual strengths and the demographics of The Chamber’s membership, according to Johanna Hurme (5468796 Architecture), Chair of the Nominating Committee.
Last call for nominations
Additional nominations for the Board may be made until July 15, 2017. The following conditions governing nominations are described in paragraph 5.4 of The Chamber By-Laws:
Board Nominees for 2017-2018
To be installed by virtue of office
This article first appeared in the Winnipeg Free Press on June 26, 2017.
Climate change is real. Continued debate as to this fact is counterproductive and diminishes our available window for action. What remains open for discussion – or should be open – is how Manitoba, as part of national and international efforts, contributes our responsible share to the solution.
In 2015, over 190 countries signed the Paris Climate Agreement to slow the rise in global temperature. Subsequently, the federal government initiated The Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change. The framework sets a Canadian greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions target of 30 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.
Further, the federal government announced a price on carbon. Starting in 2018, the price of carbon will be $10 per tonne of C02, and rise by $10 a year up until 2022. That means by 2022 carbon emissions will cost $50 a tonne.
The federal government has been unequivocal – carbon pricing is coming, but provinces are able to design their own pricing system. The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce believes strongly in a “made in Manitoba” system; one-size-fits-all solutions rarely work in a country as diverse as Canada.
Details on the Manitoba system have been scant, but anything put in place must ensure our businesses stay competitive with other jurisdictions. There’s much truth, perhaps an inconvenient one, in the old adage, ‘don’t throw out the baby with the bath water.’
The US federal government has been clear it will not put a price on carbon any time soon. Acting without regard to the fact our business community’s largest competitors will not face emissions penalties is illogical at best, destructive at worst.
However, the federal government has been adamant a price is coming. The train’s left the station; we can either stand on the tracks in defiance or build the track ahead to determine where it goes. It is incumbent upon the federal government, who put the train in motion, to allow Manitoba latitude to do just that.
To ensure our carbon price lets local business remain competitive – particularly in the face of American policy – independent data on the effects of different carbon pricing levels on the economy must be made publicly available. For example, if data shows a price above $30 a tonne damages our local or provincial economy significantly, then the carbon price simply cannot rise above that.
A clear correlation needs to be shown on how implementing a carbon price has reduced greenhouse gas emissions. If we put a price in place and emissions continue to rise, what have we accomplished? A review mechanism needs to be put in place to determine if a carbon price has been successful in reducing emissions and at what cost to jobs, growth and community prosperity.
A carbon price will potentially raise hundreds of millions of dollars in provincial revenue. How we ‘recycle’ these revenues will spell the difference between Manitoba seizing the green economy opportunity or making a bad situation worse.
It is imperative this revenue not go to debt or deficit financing. All revenues collected need to support what the carbon price is intended to do: reduce emissions and promote the green economy.
A carbon price will particularly affect manufacturing, transportation and agriculture industries. They’ll need to be offered transitional supports. Likewise, support needs to be set aside for low income Manitobans who are least able to adapt to any new costs.
Other revenue from the carbon price must go toward investments in innovative technologies that will reduce emissions. For example, a $25,000 investment in energy efficiency technologies in a semi-truck can reduce that truck’s fuel intake by 22 per cent a year: the equivalent of taking more than seven cars off the road.
As well investments should be made to support the acceleration of Manitoba’s green economy. We have green energy and clean-tech advantages over other jurisdictions, and revenues from a carbon price can position Manitoba as a global green energy superpower.
The introduction of a carbon price also presents an opportunity for the province to step back and look at our entire taxation ecosystem. That system has not been reviewed in 17 years, and our code has become riddled with inconsistencies. With a possible PST cut coming, now is the time for an independent commission to provide recommendations on how to make our entire taxation system more competitive, fair and efficient.
Climate change is real. The urgency to respond with effective, immediate action is real. The need to act without damaging the livelihoods of Manitobans is equally real and requires a realistic framework to achieve enduring success.