At the Annual General Meeting on Feb. 18, 2021 Ally Sieber-Peyton was elected to the Wingham BIA Board. Ally is a realtor with Re-Max in Wingham. At the March monthly Board meeting Ally stepped up to be the Retail Representative on the Board. We’ve created a subcommittee of 3 other retailers to assist Ally with promotions going forward. At this point the 3 retailers are Alicia Dietner of 2 Step Shoes, Bill George of Naturally Bongins and Christine McGrath of Christine’s Clothes Closet. These will be the only 4 people representing the Wingham BIA for promotional events.
The Board also passed a motion to draft a letter of support for moving the Museum from the original location across from the Town Hall to the former train station at the northern area of Josephine St. This letter is in principle at this time as there has not yet been a formal plan presented to Council.
Lastly the Board has been notified that as of April 1, meetings of North Huron committees will be allowed in person, with Covid protocols in place. As such, the BIA Board meetings will take place in the small Knights of Columbus Lounge the third Thursday of each month at 6:30 p.m. These meetings are open to the public, however seating is limited to 12 including the 7 Board members. Notice of meetings are listed in the Coming Events section of this website and an email is sent to the membership ahead of time. If you would like to attend a meeting email firstname.lastname@example.org prior to the day of the meeting so we know expected attendance and won’t go over the allotted number.
In a Zoom meeting March 9 with several Huron County BIAs, Huron-Bruce MPP Lisa Thompson reported that applications for the Small Business Support Grant can be submitted up to the end of March (provincial fiscal year end). Information regarding the grant can be found at https://tinyurl.com/2b9k83ka.
This Provincial grant may provide up to $20,000 for eligible businesses impacted by the provincewide shutdown. Minister Thompson reported that to date, during the pandemic, approximately 89,500 businesses have received support totalling $1.28 billion dollars.
If you have questions about the grant after viewing the website you can contact Minister Thompson’s office or discuss with your business accountant.
With the Covid restrictions in place, the BIA AGM was forced online on Feb. 25. Chair Dave Tiffin called the meeting to order at 7:01 p.m. After reviewing protocols due to being online the Chair reviewed the minutes of the 2020 AGM. These minutes were approved as presented. The Chair then read a review of 2020 noting that Wingham’s assistance to businesses through hand sanitizer stands, plexiglass shields, floor dots and signage were duplicated by other BIAs in the area. Considering the restrictions, Wingham still saw business growth with several new businesses opening their doors.
Jason Schiestel, who is stepping down as Treasurer, presented the financial statements for 2020. There were no questions from those in attendance and the statements were passed. Chair Tiffin then presented goals of the BIA for 2021 with continued support for businesses dealing with Covid. A major project for 2021 is the expected installation of an LED sign at the south of end town to promote events. Funds for this were passed at the 2020 AGM, but Covid restrictions postponed the installation. The complete 2020 review and 2021 goals can be viewed at the links below.
Treasurer Doug Kuyvenhoven then presented the budget for 2021. There were no questions from attendees and the budget passed unanimously. Trevor Seip, Council Representative on the BIA Board provided a Council update. This year the Board was looking to add one new member. Ryan Fergusson nominated Ally Sieber-Peyton who allowed her name to stand and was unanimously elected pending Council approval.
The BIA awards were announced by Lisa Hearnden. This year Ideal Supply received the award for Civic Improvement with their new building on Josephine St. Jason Schiestel received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his years of service on the Board as Treasurer. Lisa Hearnden was named Volunteer of the Year for her unwavering dedication to BIA work including the Festival of Lanterns and this years “parade of the gnomes” along Josephine St. during the Christmas season. Lisa also sits on the Hospital Foundation Board. Recipients of the new business plaques went to Pizza Hut, Sacred Tree, BoHo Tide, Moments Spa, Naturally Bongins, Petro Canada gas bar, McDonalds and Esso. The meeting was adjourned at 7:38 p.m.