Liz Kovach, WRLA president, talks about the continued lumber supply and demand issues with Jordan Armenise of Global News Radio 900 CHML Hamilton
To ensure that the WRLA continues to represent the industry, a pre-budget submission was issued to the Minister of Finance for review and consideration as the Manitoba Government works toward their next fiscal budget.
The WRLA alongside other stakeholders was invited to participate in a Roundtable Discussion with Minister Jim Carr, Special Representative for the Prairies. The purpose of the meeting was to bring organizations together that represent various businesses and industries that contribute to the Saskatoon Region and Provincial economy.
WRLA president Liz Kovach was a key panelist in the Canadian Home Builders' Association (CHBA) recent exclusive webinar discussion with CHBA CEO Kevin Lee, Michael Almond of Canfor, Derek Nighbor of Forest Products Association of Canada & Paul Quinn of RBC on lumber shortages, skyrocketing prices and where to go from here. To watch the full webinar click below.
"The WRLA, in addition to several partnering stakeholders, advocated for an eco-retrofit programs either in the form of tax credits or grants. The 2016 Census identified 4.5 million dwellings that require minor or major repairs. We are pleased to see that the federal government listened to recommendations from the industry and its partners and will support economic recovery while taking action towards climate strategy."
"We continue to follow developments in the funding arena to support business and want to provide you with an update as this may benefit your company."
"Scott Moe’s Saskatchewan Party secured its fourth consecutive majority mandate. The WRLA is thrilled for our members at this outcome as this means that the Home Renovation Tax Credit (HRTC) announced on September 30, 2020 is now effective!"
"Scott Moe, Leader of the Saskatchewan Party announced today that if the Saskatchewan Party is re-elected, the government will introduce a Home Renovation Tax Credit. From the beginning of the pandemic, the WRLA has been advocating for a renovation and eco-retrofit tax credits as a strategic way to support economic recovery. We are very pleased that the government listened to our requests and took our proposals to support economic recovery into consideration."
"While it may have been some time since the last bulletin, the WRLA team and government relations committee volunteers have continued to work diligently behind the scenes. And there is no time like the present to reiterate that we are here to support you. Our focus is on the betterment of the LBM industry and working on programs and services that you can take advantage of to grow your business, industry connections and knowledge!"
“The building supply dealers sector will be an important driver of economic activity as the national economy recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic."
"The building supplies dealers sector across the Prairie provinces is a strategically important retail sector with more than 1,300 stores employing 27,000 staff and generating $7.2 billion in sales in 2019."
"...As we progress through the initial stages of recovery, new funding has been announced by the federal government to support large employers, in addition to provincial programs available to members."
"...The WRLA wants to help the government understand the full weight of what the LBM industry brings to the Canadian economy, and show them what our member businesses contribute to our overall economic health. To give our industry a more powerful voice and larger impact when decisions are made, we need information from you.
Please take our very short economic impact survey, so we can stand up alongside other key industries, such as oil and gas, and demonstrate our strength..."
"...While we won’t be back to normal for the foreseeable future, some much-needed optimism was announced by the Province of Saskatchewan last week by Premier Scott Moe and yesterday’s announcement made by Premier Brian Pallister releasing their phased-in approach made for Manitobans...."
"...COVID-19 is having a global impact. Everything is changing, quickly. The challenge is enormous, but Manitobans have once again risen to the task, some at great personal risk and financial hardship. I want to personally thank each and every one of you for your sacrifice..."
"...COVID-19 has currently changed the way we live and work – in Saskatchewan, across the country and around the world. It’s impacted the way in which we socialize with our family and friends..."
"...During a time when there are more questions than answers, we hope to provide you with some clarity and keep you updated on the business support available to you. Time is of the essence with some of these programs, so please be sure to review and respond accordingly if you plan to take advantage of the federal or provincial supports currently available..."
"...The building supply industry is an $80+ billion industry that directly employs over 262,000 Canadians. This industry brings a multitude of economic benefits, jobs and investment to the provinces and country..."
"...As coronavirus (COVID-19) forces more employees to work from home, businesses are adapting to a new remote-work business model quickly and effectively. Fortunately, technology has made things a lot easier as many companies are using virtual meetings and conference calls to keep in touch..."
"...To ensure that you are kept up to date on new developments we have pulled together additional resources and recent information to help support your needs at this time...."
"...The Western Retail Lumber Association and its 1,200 member firms in the building supply industry extend into every community across the country contributing to the very fabric of Canada. The industry plays a vital role in our communities, from providing jobs to over 262,000 Canadians to producing and supplying materials that are vital to the construction sector and essential to all Canadians..."
"...As we continue to navigate through this difficult time together, the WRLA wants to ensure it is providing you with important resources and announcements to help support your business. The next 2-3 months will be critical. We know that several businesses in the West were already in a fragile state as a result of the economy and are now having to weather yet another storm..."
"...On Tuesday, January 21, the WRLA held its 1st annual Advocacy Summit. Members participated in a half-day session to identify areas where the WRLA needs to advocate to governments on behalf of its membership. The session was facilitated by Eric Pelletier of Prospectus Associates, an advocacy firm that we are working with to move our advocacy program forward..."
"...As the federal election date of October 21st rapidly approaches, public opinion polling suggests we are witnessing one of the closest federal election races in recent history. It would appear to be still quite a toss up as to whether the Liberals or the Conservatives will capture the most seats, and whether they will do so with enough seats to form a majority government. Suffice to say that we’re likely in for a late night on Monday (or an early Tuesday morning) before we know the final results...."
"...A couple of major political developments have taken place since our last bulletin. The federal election campaign has officially begun, and the Manitoba election has come to an end. Federal Election: With Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s recent visit with the Governor-General, Parliament has been dissolved and as expected Canadians will vote in a Federal election on October 21st....."
"... I wanted to update you on a few things… 1) Our Advocacy and Government Relations Action Plan leading up to the federal election; 2) The key messages we will be delivering to federal politicians over the coming months; 3) Details of my recent trip to Ottawa to meet with like-minded organizations which have many of the same objectives as we have, and to share ideas on plans leading up to the election and explore ways in which we can collaborate with these organizations in order to fully maximize our effectiveness on your behalf..."
"...Yesterday’s Federal Budget certainly contained a number of positive initiatives for our industry, which are the result of much of the lobbying we have been doing over these past several months. These additional incentives to increase the supply of housing, and make more houses, more affordable, for more Canadians are all good news for you our members and our industry colleagues across Canada...."
"...I’m pleased to provide an update on our advocacy efforts to date and plans for further advocacy efforts on your behalf in the coming weeks. We all know the compound effect of policies such as the 25-year mortgage (introduced in 2012) and the January 2018 “stress test” requirement (among others) have had a crippling effect on housing markets. This of course is having a devastating impact on our industry and you, our members, whose livelihoods depend on a robust residential construction sector..."