The Wetaskiwin Regional Chamber of Commerce is interested in approaching their Leduc counterparts to unite permanently, heard local members at their annual general meeting Mar. 16.
The AGM was held during the regular luncheon meeting and chaired by Wetaskiwin Regional Chamber of Commerce president Wayne Di Lallo.
Di Lallo was explaining why the AGM agenda included tweaking some of the bylaws, and in essence these changes were geared toward approaching the Leduc Chamber of Commerce about a permanent merge.
“Our concept is…in May the Leduc Chamber will have their AGM and do they agree to combine with Wetaskiwin to create the fourth largest chamber in Alberta,” said Di Lallo.
He noted a working name for the organization would be “The Chamber, Leduc and Wetaskiwin Regions.”
Di Lallo said talks have been ongoing since 2016 since major changes occurred to the Wetaskiwin chamber. The Leduc organization was approached to provide operating services for the Wetaskiwin organization and Di Lallo said members have been very happy with the arrangement.
“Without a doubt the standard of our events and meetings has increased drastically since this team took over,” said the president.
Di Lallo said, if Leduc approves, the Wetaskiwin organization will hold a meeting within three weeks to begin the process.
The members approved changes to the chamber of commerce bylaws.
Members heard a presentation by Grant Thornton’s Steve Latimer on federal budget changes to certain tax laws, especially pertaining to small and medium sized businesses.
He touched on subjects such as changes to private corporations holding passive investments, “clean energy” equipment, the new ‘stop the clock” rule for reviewing certain tax returns, foreign business ownership, new reporting rules for trusts, medical expense tax credit, family businesses, charities and tax on split income.
During the question and answer session, one member asked what the benefits of incorporation would be now that changes have been brought in. Latimer responded that, regardless of tax changes, incorporation still holds many legal benefits such as “legal entity” status.
During the AGM part of the meeting, members heard from Grant Thornton accountant Cyrus Dastouri; after reviewing the financial situation in 2017, members approved the financial statement.
Di Lallo noted, “So, 2017 was a successful year for the chamber.” He said, with 241 members, the year was solid both financially and in terms of promoting Wetaskiwin and area business.
He noted agriculture is garnering more and more of the spotlight in this region. “We are putting more of an emphasis on our rural business,” added Di Lallo.