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Updated OHS Starter Kit 

Alberta OHS has updated the OHS Starter Kit to help small-to-mid-size businesses improve their health and safety performance. This revision features new and updated templates, current legal requirements, and a simplified, easier-to-use structure, while remaining a “one-stop shop” for occupational health and safety information. 

The OHS Starter Kit is currently available as a downloadable PDF; a printed version is also planned in the coming months. Get the starter kit PDF (and the printed version, when available) on Alberta’s OHS Resource Portal at 

Read more in the latest OHS eNews. 

Veterinarian shortages and Solutions (Canada West Foundation) 

Farmers and others who rely on veterinarians for animal health care are turning to telemedicine amid vet shortages, particularly for large animals. The Alberta Veterinary Medicine Association recently expanded telemedicine to include emergency situations, Alberta Farmer Express reports. Previously, a veterinarian had to have a pre-existing relationship with a client and their animal before photos could be shared for remote consultation. However, the association now allows photos to be sent to a vet during an emergency with the understanding the vet and client will continue their formal relationship and treatment after the consultation.  

The lack of education spaces in Canada is partially driving the vet shortage. The 2023/24 Alberta budget includes $59 million over three years in new and continuing funding to “support lab services and program expansion at the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Veterinary Medicine.”  Read the brief online 


Alberta’s Tourism Industry 2023 Town Halls 

The results are in! It’s been just over a month since Travel Alberta finished hosting town halls across the province, including round table discussions about the state of the tourism industry. They have released the top five most discussed topics and the resources available to you: 

  1. More funding for business support and project development 
  2. Increase knowledge of Indigenous products and operators 
  3. Product development, particularly year-round attractions, that address seasonality and labour challenges 
  4. Support surrounding regulation and policy 
  5. Boost resident sentiment and support towards tourism 

Check out the full report and resources here. Looking for even more? Our Chamber business resource page has access to funding links, workforce supports and other supports: 

Proposed Financial Statutes Amendment Act, 2023  

Proposed legislative amendments through Bill 10 include:  

  • Legislating a new fiscal framework to mandate balanced budgets, limit expense increases and set policies for the allocation of surplus cash. 
  • Enabling the government to keep all of the Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund’s investment income within the fund. 
  • Enabling changes to Alberta’s charitable tax credit rate to come into effect for 2023. 
  • Implementing a two per cent cap on tuition increases. 
  • Creating a new agri-processing tax credit program. 

  • Covering dental, drug, vision and other supplemental health benefits for children adopted in Alberta from government care or a licensed adoption agency. 
  • Boosting the adoption expenses tax credit for Alberta families and helping subsidize adoption costs for some families adopting through licensed adoption agencies. 
  • Tying future municipal funding levels more closely to provincial revenues. 
  • Supporting the national implementation of a new delivery model for financial information in the securities regulatory system. 
  • Creating new revenue opportunities, streamlining policies, and reducing red tape for credit unions. 
  • Increasing flexibility within Alberta’s horse racing industry. 

Full details of the legislative amendments contained in the bill are available online. 

Red Tape Reduction Statutes Amendment Act, 2023 

If passed, Bill 9 would give irrigation districts more modern options for providing public notifications while clarifying and simplifying rules around board governance. The bill also proposes language improvements to trespass legislation to clarify that the federal government is bound by the same, current rules around unlawful entry onto Albertans’ private property. Additional changes being proposed in the Red Tape Reduction Statutes Amendment Act, 2023 include: 

  • Supporting the economic growth of Alberta’s bee industry by allowing for quicker and more effective responses to threats from pests and disease outbreaks. 
  • Simplifying the process to ensure borrowed works of art are protected from legal claims while in Alberta. 
  • Ensuring a smooth implementation of new continuing care legislation coming this fall. 
  • Supporting the implementation of government’s commitment to extend prompt payment rules to public works projects. 
  • Changing the official titles of provincial court judge to provincial court justice to align with an upcoming name change of the Provincial Court of Alberta to the Alberta Court of Justice, reflecting the modern role of the court. 
  • Ensuring the justice system can provide information so that government income supports can be suspended for violent offenders with outstanding warrants until the warrant is executed or cancelled. 
  • Restoring the ability of municipalities to add costs associated with remedying dangerous or unsightly properties to an owner’s property taxes. 
  • Enabling faster and easier transactions between lenders and debtors when personal property is used as collateral. 
  • Allowing Albertans to sign and submit certain documents electronically to the Land Titles Office. 
  • Expanding presumptive cancer coverage to all firefighters who served during the 2016 Fort McMurray wildfire 

View this announcement online 

Advocacy in Action

Plain Language Policy: How Policy Works

What happens when you have an issue in your business that you just can’t figure out?

You might go talk to your accountant or lawyer, or maybe you’ll go see a business coach if the issue is internal. But what if that issue is something that the government is doing? What if there is so much red tape that something that should take you 1 hour is taking a full week? What if it’s taking you months? What if it’s costing you thousands of dollars?


That’s where the Chamber policy team comes in.

Ultimately the government might mean well, but they are often making decisions about something they have very little practical understanding about. They may have had conversations, but anyone who runs a business knows that a conversation is no substitute for living it. Not to mention there are often a lot of opposing perspectives that should be considered to come to the best decision. So naturally, the government is going to get some things wrong.

What happens next?

As a grassroots organization, we are driven by our members. So when a member has a situation where government is harming their ability to do business, they can come to us. They fill out a Business Advocacy Submission Form where they let us know what the issue is and what they think should be done about it. We will gather our members and discuss the issue to determine what the next best steps are. From there, staff will write a policy recommending that government (whether that’s municipal, provincial, or federal) make a very specific change to address the identified issue.

chamber of commerce logo

Okay we have a policy, now what?

Once we have a policy that has been approved by the board, it’s time to start advocating for that policy. That means we work to get meetings with the right people in government and state our case. We make a compelling argument and do everything we can to get government to adjust their policy to address the issues and solutions we’ve identified.

And that’s the process.

It doesn’t always go smoothly, but we will often see government address the issues we’ve brought up in some way. Ultimately, it’s always going to be worth it if we can help business do business better.

Next Level Events

Working Safely Around Overhead and Underground Facilities

The City of Medicine Hat invites you and your staff, from operations big and small, to attend our free damage prevention session to reinforce what it takes to work safely around overhead and underground facilities.

Tuesday, April 25th, 8-00am – 10:15am at the Esplanade 401 1st Street SE

For a FREE breakfast, please register to attend by RSVPing to Jason Wheeler, Corporate Safety Lead at the City of Medicine Hat

Event Cover

The Conference

The Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce is bringing a large-scale professional development conference to Southern Alberta. Hosting a panel of speakers that present new concepts and ideas that Medicine Hat has never seen before. This event will not only be an amazing learning opportunity but also will attract business owners from all over the province. 'The Conference' is going to feature a wide variety of speakers including topics of interest such as economic development, operational strategies, marketing, leadership, and motivation. 'The Conference' is perfect for long-term business owners looking to grow on a wide scale.

This "new to" Medicine Hat Event looks to bridge the gap of learning opportunities within an ecosystem presented to professionals within and outside of the city. 'The Conference' will begin early on Thursday, May 25th, and extend into the afternoon of Friday, May 26th.

Get your event passport here

Enriching Your Business

Limited time offer!

Let Elavon meet or beat your current payment processing rates. If Elavon is unable to match your current rate or provide you with a better rate, you will receive a $250 Visa gift card.

Please submit a web inquiry to learn more!

Lunch & Learn (1)

Chamber Group Insurance Plan Lunch and Learn

Don’t miss out…..Register Here

Chambers Plan Lunch and Learn Event will be held at Brightan Financial Strategies Inc - #3, 1335 Trans Canada Way SE, Wednesday, March 22, 2023, from 12:00-1:00 pm.

Is your small or medium-sized business currently looking into a Group Health & Dental Benefits program? Or perhaps you are already enrolled in one but would like to research all of your options?

Are you experiencing rate fluctuations with your current carrier?  If so, then this session is for you!

Come enjoy lunch with us and learn about the Chambers Employee Plan - the #1 Plan in Canada for Small Business.

We'll have you in and out in an hour! Limited seating so register early!

Hosted by: JoAnne Letkeman, Advisor, Brightan Financial Strategies Inc.

Fuelling the Business Community

New Members!

We would like to welcome The Mom Market, Lesak Vac & Water Ltd, Kilkenny Wellness, Bryan De Jong - 2 Percent Realty, and Ted's Autobody to the Chamber Family!

We continually look forward to helping our members during their business journey and wish each the best in all future endeavors. We are extremely happy to have such amazing members, and are very glad that we can serve a part in that journey! Keep your eye out for more new member posts moving forward!

Don Coulter

Member News!

connectFirst Credit Union announced their new CEO, Don Coulter, joining the team as of February 27, 2023. Don brings over 20 years of financial services experience to the CEO role, including significant credit union system experience. Most recently he served for five years as the CEO of Wyth Financial (formerly Concentra Bank) following more than three years as CEO at Coast Capital, one of Canada’s largest credit unions. In addition to the announcement of their new CEO, there was also an announcement about the intent to merge both connectFirst Credit Union and Servus Credit Union:

Fill Up On Funding

Alberta Culture Days grant applications closing March 17 

The Alberta Government is accepting grant applications of up to $10,000 available to help eligible community organizations offset the cost of planning and hosting events, showcasing local talent and highlighting cultural programs in their communities during Alberta Culture Days, which will take place Sept. 1-30.  

Organizations could qualify for three different grant categories: 

  • Feature celebration sites, which offer at least three days of programming in September and are eligible for grants of up to $10,000. 
  • Host celebration sites, which offer at least two days of programming in September and are eligible for grants of up to $5,000. 
  • Pop-up celebration sites, which offer at least one day of programming in September and are eligible for grants of up to $1,000. 

Applications close March 17. 


National Volunteer Week Enhancement Funding Now Open!  

Funded by the Government of Alberta and distributed by Volunteer Alberta, funding is now available for National Volunteer Week. The theme chosen by Volunteer Canada for NVW 2023, “Volunteering Weaves Us Together”, highlights the important role that civic engagement has in bringing feelings of connection to each other and our communities. Despite the different shapes, lengths and textures the threads that individual experiences may take, coming together through volunteering makes the fabric of our communities stronger, more unique and truly interconnected.  

Check out the 2023 Grant Guidelines to familiarize yourself with some changes we made to this year and the important deadlines ahead. You can find all of the necessary links, documents and files on our NVW webpage. 

Retail Education Scholarship Deadline Approaching 

Do you have an employee who is currently studying in a business, fashion, marketing or retail-related program? Encourage them to apply for a Retail Education Scholarship!  Deadline to apply is March 30, 2023. 

Retail Education

CanEport funding applications are now open 

CanExport SMEs and Innovation funding is now available to help you grow your business abroad. Access funding to help cover the costs associated with expanding your business in new international markets: 

  • apply for intellectual property protection 
  • gather market intelligence 
  • create marketing materials 
  • seek expert and legal advice, and more. 

Funding is available for projects starting after April 1, 2023. See if you're eligible for funding and apply 

Supporting Psychological Health in First Responders program 

Non-profit service providers and Canadian-based researchers can apply for the fourth round of funding through the Supporting Psychological Health in First Responders program. Up to $1.5 million is available for the program in 2023. These grants support services such as peer support and resilience training for those living with or at risk of developing post-traumatic stress. In its first two cycles, 20 non-profit and research organizations received funding from this grant. Organizations like the Alberta Municipal Health and Safety Association provided access to free mental health training to first responders in rural communities. The application deadline is May 28, 2023. 


Other Events

March 21: Employment Standards in Alberta – Focus on Vacation Pay and General Holiday Pay | Find out more 

March 21: Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Social Impact | Register 

March 27: Finding Your Summer Star: Best Practices for Hiring Students & New Grads | Register 

March 28: Executive Summit Series Net-Zero | Register 

March 29: How Women-Led Funding is Changing the Game | Startup Women | Register 

Useful Links

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