Mayor’s Task Force on Business Development Opportunities
In December 2011, Mayor Moore announced the creation of a Task Force to search for ways to support businesses and make it easier for businesses to succeed by reviewing municipal processes and identifying barriers and opportunities for local businesses.
Chaired by Councillor Mike Forrest, membership included: Councillors Dean Washington and Brad West; former Executive Director of the Urban Development Institute, Maureen Enser; Tri-City Chamber of Commerce President, Davide Fantillo; Downtown Business Improvement Association President, Lih-Ming Tam; and local business representative Chris Galer.
The Process and Consultation
The Task Force considered detailed background information describing the role of economic development and chracteristics of businesses in Port Coquitlam. It obtained extensive public input including a business survey that revealed higher levels of satisfaction with the City’s location, community image and customer services and higher concerns about the cost of land, fees and taxes.
In October 2012, it hosted a business forum to provide an opportunity for local businesses to network and be engaged in the work of the Task Force. The development community provided input on the City’s development approval and implementation processes and an internal review of customer services contributed to the comprehensive report that was presented to Council April 8, 2013.
The report presented in April 2013 includes seven recommendations, each of which is complemented by specific actions to be taken. Listed in priority order, they are:
- Create a strong customer focus throughout City Hall
- Adopt “business-friendly” regulations
- Enhance communications
- Set reasonable taxes and fees
- Increase opportunities for local businesses to provide goods and services
- Recognize and celebrate Port Coquitlam’s businesses
- Create an integrated economic strategic plan