Upcoming budget discussions in Sidney will look into hiring an outside contractor to help develop a long-term economic strategy. (Black Press Media File)

Upcoming budget discussions in Sidney will look into hiring an outside contractor to help develop a long-term economic strategy. (Black Press Media File)

Sidney businesses, council working together on long-term economic pandemic strategy

Search for outside consultant part of 2021 budget discussions

Sidney will look into developing a long-term economic strategy, with businesses being asked for additional input on how to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.

In November, council unanimously approved having the municipality consider an “appropriate” budget to work with a contractor to develop a long-term economic strategy next year against the backdrop of COVID-19.

Councillors also approved having the town work with Sidney Business Improvement Area (BIA) Society and the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce to develop a follow-up survey of businesses impacted by COVID-19 – at a cost of $5,000 – during the first quarter of 2021.

RELATED:Pandemic hurt almost eight out of 10 Sidney businesses, says survey

An earlier survey found almost 10 respondents (79 per cent) reported the pandemic had negatively impacted their business, with 15.5 per cent saying they experienced what the report calls “business-as-usual” conditions. The rest — 5.5 per cent — said the pandemic had a positive impact on their operations.

The two decisions flowed out of a meeting of Sidney’s economic advisory committee in late October that revealed some support but also reservations about the measures, according to the committee minutes.

RELATED: Sidney surveys residents about their pandemic experiences

Chief administrative officer Randy Humble “expressed concerns” about conducting a survey because of on-going COVID restrictions and what the minutes call “survey fatigue,” a point also echoed by Andrew Hicik, Sidney’s director of corporate services and chief financial officer. According to the minutes, Hicik described businesses in “survival mode” and questioned how much they will want to engage in a survey.

The survey idea had several supporters among committee members including Denny Warner, executive director of the chamber, and Brad Edgett, Sidney BIA’s president.

Some committee members, however, appeared less enthusiastic toward the idea of developing a long-term strategy. Rod Hunchak, director of business development and community relations for the Victoria Airport Authority, agreed with the survey, because it may shed light on some business priorities. But going beyond a survey would have no value, he added, noting that the airport has scrapped long-term planning, looking ahead only in terms of months or the next quarter.


Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

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

Just Posted

Sidney Jon Blair said he would have died if a van and car had collided at the intersection of corner of Resthaven Drive and Brethour Avenue in early December. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Sidney senior urges motorists to slow down on Resthaven Drive

Jon Blair said community must become more pedestrian-friendly

Bob Joseph, author of 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act, will be available for a Q&A through the Vancouver Island Regional Library Jan. 28. (Courtesy of Vancouver Island Regional Library)
Q&A on the Indian Act with Bob Joseph open to Greater Victoria residents

Bob Joseph is the author of 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act

Tarpaulin-covered tents sit next to one of the ponds in Beacon Hill Park. The location of the Meegan community care tent has still not been nailed down, as Victoria council rejected the recommendation offered by city staff. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Location of care tent for Victoria’s Beacon Hill campers still not settled

Council roundly rejects Avalon Road site, road’s edge on Cook Street appears the top alternative

Coaches with the Juan de Fuca Minor Hockey association have had to get creative during their weekly practices to keep players interested and improving their skills without physical contact. (Damian Kowalewich photo)
West Shore minor hockey coach shares what it’s like on the ice without parents, fans

Most practices consist of relay races, goalie shots and passing drills

The Songhees Wellness Centre is a symbol of First Nations strength in the region. Representatives of local First Nations will soon play a greater role in decision making and governance relating to the Capital Regional District. (Courtesy Royal Roads University)
Capital Regional District to add First Nations representatives to advisory committees

Board approves bylaw, looks forward to Indigenous input on future decisions

A scene from “Canada and the Gulf War: In their own words,” a video by The Memory Project, a program of Historica Canada, is shown in this undated illustration. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - Historica Canada
New video marks Canada’s contributions to first Gulf War on 30th anniversary

Veterans Affairs Canada says around 4,500 Canadian military personnel served during the war

(Black Press Media file photo)
From arts to environment, nominate your West Shore hero

Nominations for the Goldstream Gazette’s Local Hero awards are open to Jan. 15

A 17-year-old snowmobiler used his backcountry survival sense in preparation to spend the night on the mountain near 100 Mile House Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021 after getting lost. (South Cariboo Search and Rescue Facebook photo)
Teen praised for backcountry survival skills after getting lost in B.C.’s Cariboo mountains

“This young man did everything right after things went wrong.”

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa on December 10, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
No place for ‘far right’ in Conservative Party, Erin O’Toole says

O’Toole condemned the Capitol attack as ‘horrifying’ and sought to distance himself and the Tories from Trumpism

A passer by walks in High Park, in Toronto, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. This workweek will kick off with what’s fabled to be the most depressing day of the year, during one of the darkest eras in recent history. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
‘Blue Monday’ getting you down? Exercise may be the cure, say experts

Many jurisdictions are tightening restrictions to curb soaring COVID-19 case counts

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID-19: Provinces work on revised plans as Pfizer-BioNTech shipments to slow down

Anita Anand said she understands and shares Canadians’ concerns about the drug company’s decision

Tourists take photographs outside the British Columbia Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday August 26, 2011. A coalition of British Columbia tourism industry groups is urging the provincial government to not pursue plans to ban domestic travel to fight the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. travel ban will harm struggling tourism sector, says industry coalition

B.C. government would have to show evidence a travel ban is necessary

(Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
‘Targeted’ shooting in Coquitlam leaves woman in hospital

The woman suffered non-life threatening injuries in what police believe to be a targeted shooting Saturday morning

Everett Bumstead (centre) and his crew share a picture from a tree planting location in Sayward on Vancouver Island from when they were filming for ‘One Million Trees’ last year. Photo courtesy, Everett Bumstead.
The tree-planting life on Vancouver Island featured in new documentary

Everett Bumstead brings forth the technicalities, psychology and politics of the tree planting industry in his movie

Most Read