Chamber axes civic all-candidates meetings

Financial issues cited in decision to cancel four meetings next month

The South Surrey White Rock Chamber of Commerce will not host any all-candidates’ meetings in the lead-up to the Nov. 19 municipal election.

The move is part of efforts to get the organization’s financial affairs in order, interim executive director Doug Hart said Friday.

Four meetings – two in White Rock and two in South Surrey – scheduled for next month have been cancelled.

“To put something on like that, is a tremendous amount of work,” Hart said. “The bottom line is we were going to lose a fair amount of money. I just ran the numbers and it just was not right that we should put it on this year. Running things on a loss-basis isn’t fair to our members.”

Financial struggles were cited last week in cuts made to four chamber employees’ hours and the elimination of executive director Cori Lynn Germiquet’s position. In announcing the move, chamber president Jay Fettinger noted changes in the economy forced the “difficult and immediate” decisions.

Germiquet had replaced Hart as executive director on May 16.

Hart, who ended a four-year term in March, would not elaborate on the chamber’s financial position Friday, noting it was his first day back and “there’s a lot of things I have to look at.”

Hart confirmed his interim role is on a voluntary basis, “for the moment.”

And while he was confident the chamber will eventually bring back a paid executive director, Hart said his priority now is to ensure decisions are fiscally prudent and provide value and support both to members and to the communities of White Rock and South Surrey.

He is hopeful other groups will step up to organize all-candidates’ meetings, events he described as “important to the community.”

At least one such meeting has already been booked at the First United Church in White Rock, 15385 Semiahmoo Ave.

Hosted by the church, Peninsula Homeless to Housing Round Table, South Fraser Women’s Services Society and other groups, it is to take place from 7-9 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 9.

Affordable housing, homelessness and food security will be key topics.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

White Rock’s top cop calls for ‘healthcare led intervention model’

Review aims for better understanding of crime related to mental health, substance use

Surrey man found guilty in West Kelowna killing of common-law spouse

Tejwant Danjou was convicted of second-degree murder in the July 2018 death of Rama Gauravarapu in West Kelowna

New collective debuts with Crescent Beach show

Nela Hallwas and Lyn Verra-Lay team for ‘Flow’

‘Lifting Hands’ mural on White Rock wall celebrates community’s COVID efforts

High school students, grads inviting health-care workers, emergency crews to add handprints

Former students’ mural showcasing Delta elementary school’s new logo on hold, for now

Ashriya and Karam Purewal painted the spirit logo last spring; formal logo mural delayed due to COVID

STANDING TALL: Forestry workers meet the challenges, remain hopeful

A look at the forest sector in B.C. – and those hoping for the best – amid mill curtailments

Missed rent payments ‘cause of COVID-19? You have until July 2021 to pay up

Each monthly instalment must be paid on the same date the rent is due.

U.S.-Canada pandemic border restrictions extended into September

‘We will continue to keep our communities safe,’ says Public Safety Minister Bill Blair

578 British Columbians currently infected with COVID-19

Seventy-eight new cases confirmed in past 24 hours

WE Charity registers as lobbyist, lays off staff, looking to sell real estate

WE Charity said its financial position has been greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic

Conservation seizes fawn illegally kept captive in Vancouver Island home

A Comox Valley resident charged and fined under the Wildlife Act

Pandemic could be driving more parents to get on board with flu shot: study

University of B.C. study gauges willingness for parents to vaccinate children for influenza

Watchdog clears Okanagan RCMP in death of man after arrest over alleged stolen pizzas

The man died in hospital after having difficulty breathing and broken ribs

35,000 doses of fentanyl part of huge Maple Ridge bust

Largest seizure in RCMP detachment’s history included submachine gun, body armour

Most Read