As we continue our series on various initiatives that the Sarnia Lambton Chamber of Commerce is focused on, this week’s update is on work being done by staff and volunteers on ways to improve development services, a key need for any municipality committed to growth.

This group seeks to serve as a liaison between members and levels of government that will ultimately facilitate development. Strengthening the relationship that exists between business and government is a key priority.

With that in mind, members of the group have met with the City of Sarnia’s planning and building department and received updates on what the City has done to improve their process.

Discussion of issues such as the Commercial Vacancy Rebate, a proposed Destination Marketing Tax, economic development activities and a survey of members to determine their priority needs has also been part of a strategy undertaken by this group.

The group has also identified new ways of effectively measuring the effectiveness of progress being made by area municipalities and drafted input to local government, all with a view to advocating on behalf of members who see further improvements as being necessary.

A continuing dialogue remains one of the central themes of this group along with identifying potential incentives that local government can bring to the table to facilitate growth.