Businesses will drive growth here

Every week should be Small Business Week. The growth of Rimbey’s economy doesn’t just happen — it’s driven

Every week should be Small Business Week.

The growth of Rimbey’s economy doesn’t just happen — it’s driven by small businesses and their patrons who have an incredible influence on success. From restaurants to car washes and your hometown newspaper, small businesses have a huge economic impact on our communities.

Today is certainly a period of opportunity and crisis for small businesses in Alberta. It takes a lot of courage to be in business.

Economies are growing and creating huge emerging markets. Businesses are setting their sights on the enormous potential of these expanding new economies. To survive and thrive, our small town entrepreneurs need to be part of this movement by taking advantage of the tremendous opportunities arising in a world without boundaries. Even as some small businesses are laying off workers, there are still lots of job openings to take up the slack.

Certainly the entrepreneurial spirit of these business owners is inspiring: they have an idea, a business plan and the drive to see their dream come true. With their ideas they are making our communities better places to live and work. They make our communities stand out from the cookie cutter power centres that assault the scenery on your trips to the Big City.

Shopping locally recycles your paycheque through the community. Local small businesses use local suppliers, pay rent to local landlords, advertise in community newspapers, and open accounts in our banks and credit unions to pay their bills and employees.

A vibrant downtown must be a central part of planning Rimbey’s economic future. Rimbey’s planners, facing a new set of growth challenges, must be reminded that there are a number of economic, social and environmental benefits to strengthening local businesses. We are facing the challenge of preserving historic small town values without stifling economic growth. We need to retain our communities’ character and values while at the same time providing and nurturing new economic opportunities.

A dozen small businesses, offering a multitude of product and service choices, will do more for the community and competitive pricing than a couple of big box stores giving us the same product at “bargain” prices.

We need prosperous small businesses in our local economies. Without them, we lose our power to influence the decisions that affect our community.

On a personal note: Congratulations to my old drinking and fishing buddy, Randy Bertrand, recently retired as the Town of Devon’s manager of economic development.

The Alberta Tourism Awards Committee has given him the 2012 Alto Ambassador Award for his outstanding contributions to Alberta’s tourism industry. Randy was an inspiration to many of us on the economic development board and chamber of commerce in Devon. He is known throughout Alberta as a leader and true ambassador of tourism. His vision and dedication has contributed to tourism becoming the largest economic driver in Devon, which now welcomes more than 750,000 visitors annually.

His successes are proof this economic development mumbo jumbo actually works.

Just Posted

Class of ‘69 recognized

Rimbey and District Oldtimers Association holds 64th reunion

Fun for the whole family

Grand opening for Liberty Hall coming soon

Council approached about changes

Looking at changes to outdoor arena at Rimbey Christian School

Buck Lake/Alder Flats one step close to new fire hall

County of Wetaskiwin council approves purchase of necessary land

Weather alert

Thunderstorm warning

10 facts about Father’s Day

Did you know that the special day for dads was first celebrated in 1910?

Update: Two shot, two arrested at Toronto Raptors victory rally

The team and several dignitaries, including Justin Trudeau, remained on stage

Oil and gas sector cautious as deadline on Trans Mountain decision nears

Trudeau government expected to announce whether it will approve pipeline for second time on Tuesday

Feds announce $50M strategy to fight dementia

Emphasis is on prevention and and supporting caregivers

Federal Liberals’ plan to help first-time homebuyers to kick in weeks before election

Ottawa to pick up 5% of a mortgage on existing homes for households that earn under $120,000 a year

No business case for Trans Mountain expansion, says former environment minister

Cabinet is expected to announce its decision on the expansion of the Alberta-to-B.C. pipeline by Tuesday

Alberta Mountie found not guilty of dangerous driving causing pedestrian’s death

RCMP Const. Michelle Phillips also found not guilty of dangerous driving causing bodily harm

Three Albertans land ‘monster’ sturgeon in B.C.’s Fraser River

For angler who landed the exceptionally large sturgeon it was an ‘incredible dream come true’

Most Read