GOOD MORNING NANAIMO – We’re all familiar with the Salvation Army Christmas Kettle campaign, but there’s
another way you can contribute and get something in return. This year’s campaign offers little snow trees for sale – real trees that come in little ceramic pots and are covered with a cotton flocking to make them look like snow. Once
they outgrow their pots, they can be planted outdoors where they will grow up to be 4.5 metres. The trees are $12 each and proceeds support the Salvation Army.
BUSINESS is big business in Nanaimo and Central Vancouver Island. Chesapeake Shores and the Sonic the Hedgehog movie were among productions that contributed close
to $20 million to the economy across the Regional District of Nanaimo, says Joan Miller of Vancouver Island North Film Commission (INFilm) which is seeking $50,000 in support funding from the Regional District of Nanaimo. Miller said Chesapeake Shores,
the Hallmark Channel series, has provided a multimillion-dollar boon for the economy over the last four years with an $18.5 million economic impact. The show used 35,000 hotel room nights, vendor spend $9 million, local payroll $9 million. She said Nanaimo
was where all the hotel rooms were. The Amazing Race Canada, another project we worked on this year, the extra total room nights were 4,000 and close to $1 million, Miller said, so close to $20 million direct input into this region.
VANCOUVER SALUTING VETERANS - Vancouver city council has voted to give veterans free parking year-round. Vancouver is not the
first – Red Deer, Regina, White Rock and London, Ont., allow free parking for veterans year-round. White Rock and Regina allow veterans to park free at metred parking spots if they display a veterans’ licence plate.
ON THE BUS - Victoria has handed out more than 500 youth transit passes since they became available on Tuesday. The city instituted paid Sunday street parking
to fund free youth transit passes. Sunday parking is anticipated to raise $850,000 per year. Victoria is piloting the program after reaching an agreement with BC Transit to access U-Passes similar to those used by students at the University of Victoria and
Camosun College. In total, the passes cost the city $11.25 each per month. Nanaimo is looking at a similar program.
PUT BRAIN IN GEAR BEFORE PUTTING MOUTH IN MOTION – Former Alberta NDP premier Rachel Notley accused new Premier Jason Kenney and his United Conservative government of corruption, claiming the UCP government had made an unethical liquor purchase from a Tory-friendly
company. Oops, open mouth to change feet, the purchase was made by Notley’s government three months before the NDP was tossed from office. The NDP issued a statement on its Facebook page apologizing to Prestige Liquors, but not to the Tories or
NOT AT ALL CHARITABLE – It isn’t always the way it appears. A King County judge in Washington
State has ruled that Value Village used deceptive advertising by leading customers to believe they were a charity or a non-profit. Value Village is a privately-owned business with $1 billion in annual sales in Canada and the U.S. The judge ruled Value Village
deceived its customers, citing an overwhelming barrage of advertising, signs, brochures and in-store announcements. No portion of any purchases owned by Value Village’s parent company, TVI Inc., has ever benefited charities, a press release from the
Attorney General office stated.
THE BEETLE COMES BACK TO LIFE – We all know beetles
are hard to kill. Volkswagen killed the Beetle last year with the final production ending in July. But the iconic car isn’t gone for good, it’s coming back as an electric car. The new electric model is good for 200 km between charges. Pricing and availability haven’t been announced,
but a prototype for the vehicle will debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show next week. There has been no information whether the electric bug will be available in North America.