The municipality is about to form a new economic development committee which will advice council on economic activities and strategies.
The reason for the committee is a good one. Advice and suggestions can lead to some positive solutions.
And right now, as we notice vacant downtown buildings and other signs of a continuing economic slump, there is a need to take a look at ways to promote Summerland businesses.
However, the downtown retail sector is not Summerland’s only economic activity.
There are some thriving businesses and others which are holding their own, despite the bleak national and global economy.
Put simply, what one sees in the retail sector or in the downtown does not tell the whole story.
Over the past year, there has been a lot of interest in enhancing and improving Summerland’s economy.
In addition to the Summerland Chamber of Economic Development and Tourism, there is also a downtown merchants’ committee and the newly formed Summerland Economic Improvement Group.
The new municipal committee will add another group to the mix.
While we can appreciate the value of having many people involved in discussions about Summerland’s economy, the number of groups is concerning.
It is much more efficient to have one group or committee instead of several. Or, if several committees and organizations are in place, it is important to have communication between them.
The discussions are important and we welcome new suggestions to promote Summerland’s local economy.
At the same time, we need to see a unified or synchronized approach to the challenges we are facing.