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Policy Wins

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Policy Wins

A list of the policies that the Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce has successfully used to affect change in legislation, in order to keep our member businesses successful, vibrant and growing.

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Trade & Transportation - Municipal Policy

There has been concern regarding the City’s proposed solution to the development of 603-1st Street and the restrictions placed on the property, creating a project that is deemed as economically unviable without large subsidization.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Trade & Transportation - Provincial Policy

The Government of Alberta currently provides funding through Alberta Health Services (AHS) to the following helicopter-based air ambulance service providers: • Shock Trauma Air Rescue Society (STARS) from bases in Calgary, Edmonton and Grande Prairie, and • Helicopter Emergency Response Organization (HERO) from Fort McMurray.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Finance & Taxation - Municipal Policy

There have been concerns raised regarding the City’s involvement in land development related to: proportion of market share, transparency, and fair competition with the private sector.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Workforce Development - Provincial Policy

Alberta continues to face a chronic shortage of physicians, specifically in the rural areas of the province. Having access to family physicians is a basic need of any Albertan and a driving factor in the ability of a community to attract business. Although some gains have been made, factors such as pending physician retirement, aging populations, and timeworn infrastructure may nullify these gains. To ensure that all Albertans have timely and meaningful access to health care, action is needed to improve the distribution

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Energy & Environment - Provincial Policy

The government has made strides towards providing for a transmission system capable of handling the current needs, however, Alberta needs a transmission system capable of handling both current and future provincewide demands of Alberta businesses and industries, not to mention any opportunity for energy export. If Alberta is to regain its claim as Canada’s leader in wind power, a system must be put into place that not only meets current energy needs but allows for significant future capacity.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Municipal Policy

The minutes of Municipal Council meetings can be difficult to decipher and analyze based on the information provided, as the motions presented do not always clearly indicate the issue or the action being voted upon by Council without the need to reference a committee report or other supporting documented evidence.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Workforce Development - Provincial Policy

Bill 17: the Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act was first read on May 24, 2017, receiving Royal Assent on June 7, 2017 with the final regulations being passed in early December 2017 with a number of changes coming into force on January 1, 2018. One of the primary reasons for this bill being introduced was due to the fact that the rules that govern our workplaces had not been updated since 1988. The purpose was to provide Albertans with modern, balanced workplace legislation that protects the rights of hardworking A

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Agriculture - Provincial Policy

Country of Origin Labelling legislation, as adopted by the U.S., adds huge implementation and enforcement costs to Canadian producers in the form of huge price discounts applicable to livestock exported into the U.S.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Agriculture - Federal Policy

Country of Origin Labelling (COOL) legislation, as adopted by the U.S., is market protectionist in nature, constitutes a technical barrier to trade, and is deemed inconsistent with international trade rules including those established by the World Trade Organization (WTO). COOL legislation adds additional implementation and enforcement costs throughout the supply chain which are then being levied against Canadian producers in the form of immense price discounts applicable to livestock exported into the U.S.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Finance & Taxation, Agriculture - Provincial & Federal Policy

On May 6, 2009, Canadian and European Union (EU) leaders announced the launch of negotiations towards a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). The agreement set out a broad and ambitious negotiating agenda.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Trade & Transportation - Provincial Policy

Released in December 2008, the Land-use Framework (LUF) sets out a comprehensive approach to managing the province’s land and natural resources. The Alberta Land Stewardship Act, legislation complementary to the policies outlined in the LUF, was brought into law in October 2009 and governs the establishment and implementation of regional plans. According to the Alberta government “... the purpose of its Land-use Framework (LUF) is to manage growth, not stop it, and to sustain our growing economy, but balance...

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Finance & Taxation - Municipal Policy

The Development & Infrastructure Division Fees and Charges are being proposed to increase by as much as 185%, with primary areas of concern related to the Planning Building & Development Services - Engineering Services, Planning Services and various permit increases under the Safety Codes Services

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Finance & Taxation - Municipal Policy

The off-site levy bylaw #3746 was adopted on November 8, 2006 with levy rates to be reviewed every two years. In the absence of a review in 2008 and 2010, the rates were automatically adjusted by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the previous calendar year. Within the financial review of bylaw #3746 concerns surfaced from the City of Medicine Hat regarding developer contribution, municipal assist and actuals. In contrast, the current bylaw review has resulted in substantial increases to off-site levy costs, exceeding t

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Workforce Development - Provincial Policy

There is a need for the continuance of provincial investment in Dual Credit Opportunities for high school and post-secondary students to assist their transition from secondary to post-secondary education.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Workforce Development - Provincial Policy

The development of an electronic health system has the potential to be a competitive advantage for Alberta’s health care system. To be effective, the Alberta Chambers of Commerce (ACC) recognizes that health information must be collected and integrated into Alberta Netcare and that the Health Information Amendment Act facilitates the handling of this information.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs, Finance & Taxation - Provincial Policy

Businesses across Alberta are growing increasingly concerned about municipal tax burden and the equity in the system. Businesses are concerned that municipalities are increasing tax bills beyond the benefits businesses receive, and that taxes are rising without municipalities considering the effect on their economic competitiveness. The Municipal Government Act Review provides an opportunity to reform municipal budgeting practices to encourage consideration of policy objectives and principles and long-term planning.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Agriculture - Provincial Policy

In the agricultural industry, when an animal succumbs to injury that deems the animal as unfit for transport under the legislation, the outcome is very limited and results in negative options to the farmer or rancher. It has been researched and addressed by various groups, organizations and industry that turning a blind eye to a problem is not a solution. Therefore, organizations like the Animal Farm Care Association (AFCA), along with industry, are in full support of an initiative to implement a provincial video inspec

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Municipal & Provincial Policy

A high level of commercial and residential development has occurred in the south end of Medicine Hat which has caused an increase to traffic flow to the area. This has increased the potential for major traffic collisions at the Highway 1 and Dunmore Road intersection.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Finance & Taxation - Municipal Policy

The City of Medicine Hat’s 2013 assessment of non-residential property values resulted in sudden, unexpected and significant increases to many property owners’ tax liabilities. Of the concerns raised, four main issues were identified.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Provincial Policy

In June 2010 severe flooding in southern Alberta resulted in the activation of the Disaster Recovery Program (DRP). This program is designed to provide financial assistance to businesses, farms and residents who are victims of disasters. Persistent delays in the response of this program to provide much-needed funding have caused serious disruptions to businesses in the affected regions and overall progress of commerce.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Workforce Development - Provincial Policy

There is a need for integrated, effective, and efficient mental wellness support in the workplace for Alberta businesses. Mental health issues and concerns that were present previous to the COVID-19, and were costing businesses in both financial and human terms, have now been further exposed and accelerated.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Workforce Development - Provincial Policy

Bill 17: the Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act and Bill 30: An Act to Protect the Health and Wellbeing of Working Albertans are viewed as comprehensive pieces of legislation that have been passed with very short consultation periods and an inadequate timeframe for employers to adjust. The changes have placed pressure on organizations to meet new legislation standards with limited additional resources from the government, coupled with a lack of understanding by Government of the time commitment and requirements to

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Trade & Transportation - Municipal Policy

The Medicine Hat Airport (YXH) has a single air service provider for passenger flight departures from and arrivals to Medicine Hat. The current standards and practices are imposing barriers to increase load capacity for flights from Medicine Hat

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Municipal Policy

Should the City of Medicine Hat construct a new events center to replace the existing hockey arena?

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Municipal Policy

The Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce has consulted with members of the Chamber of Commerce and other municipalities regarding Draft 4 of the update to the Medicine Hat Land Use Bylaw. The consultations conducted have led the Chamber to identify three primary concerns within this latest draft.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Municipal Policy

The Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce has consulted with Members of the Chamber of Commerce, other municipalities and the provincial government regarding the process, permitting and regulations required to gain approval for signage within the Municipal Land Use Bylaw.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Municipal Policy

Should the City of Medicine Hat increase accountability in its use of funds for Tourism Medicine Hat through the formation of a formal Tourism Advisory Board

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Municipal Policy

The City of Medicine Hat does not currently have a municipal public engagement strategy policy that defines an effective, efficient, consistent and transparent consultative process between the City of Medicine Hat’s and its citizens and stakeholders.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Provincial Policy

The Municipal Government Act is one of Alberta’s largest pieces of legislation, containing 18 parts and more than 650 sections. There has been an overarching concern as to the application and interpretation of the Municipal Government Act in the different municipalities. This extensive document is in need of updates and provisions in order to ensure that it is transparent, fair, effective, appropriate and predictable and can be applied consistently across municipalities to ensure good governance and equity is applied ac

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Energy & Environment, Workforce Development - Provincial Policy

There is an increasing use of natural gas vehicles being used across North America, however as natural gas is a gaseous fuel and has unique fuel systems that are unfamiliar to traditional technicians, adequate training is required for cost-effective, efficient and safe maintenance and repair of natural gas vehicles.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Trade & Transportation, Workforce Development - Provincial Policy

There is a critical shortage of trained physicians to meet the needs of a growing and prosperous Alberta. This shortage will become more acute with the above-average population growth that is expected as people move here from other areas of Canada and abroad seeking employment and economic opportunities. Premier Alison Redford, in her address to the Alberta Chambers of Commerce in March 2013, reported that the government expects about 95,000 new people to move to Alberta this year alone. To ensure Alberta can recruit ph

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Trade & Transportation - Provincial Policy

Alberta Transportation plans, designs, builds, operates, and maintains provincial highways. When new highways are in the design stage, the department conducts a functional planning study of the highway corridor.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Finance & Taxation - Provincial Policy

Since corporate income tax represents a very large percentage of pre-tax income, decision-makers are highly sensitive to corporate income tax rates. It is in Alberta’s best interests to reduce and keep corporate income taxes low to attract business to Alberta and retain them in our province.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Municipal Affairs - Municipal Policy

The Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce has had concerns from members regarding Bylaw 1926, the Medicine Hat Anti-Noise Bylaw, in relation to commercial snow removal and the difficulty to remove snow in commercial areas within certain times.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Workforce Development - Federal Policy

Recently announced changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TWFP) are putting businesses in Canada and especially those in Alberta at risk. Announced changes slow down access to temporary foreign workers (TFWs). The changes suspend the Accelerated Labour Market Opinion (A-LMO) process and will require each application for a TFW to include a transition plan to replace the temporary workers with Canadian workers. The introduction of new user fees may also disadvantage and discourage applications to the program. Th

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Finance & Taxation - Provincial Policy

The recent accounting practice of the Government of Alberta was to budget zero dollars for disaster and emergency spending when the provincial budget is tabled. Since 2003 the government has spent over $4.6 billion on emergency and disaster relief but it does not budget for these expenditures at the start of the year. While Budget 2012 marked a shift in the province’s budgeting practice with an estimated $44 million being set aside for emergencies, this approach continues to underestimate the true cost of disasters and

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Agriculture - Provincial Policy

The devastating effect that bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) has had on Alberta ranchers is still a significant obstacle to the success of the cattle industry. In 2007 “enhanced animal health protection” requirements were introduced by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) designed “to help eliminate bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) from Canada.”

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Agriculture - Federal Policy

Increased costs associated with the removal of specified risk material from cattle have caused significant cost disadvantages for Canadian cattle producers, processors and veterinarians. In order to maintain slaughter capacity and restore competitiveness in the Canadian cattle industry, the federal government should work to implement regulatory reform and policies to offset costs and harmonize regulations with the United States.

Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce
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