With the formal notification of the U.S. Congress’s intention to initiate negotiations related to the North American Free Trade Agreement, Canada is undertaking what it is calling a “broad consultation process with Canadians.”

The government is particularly interested in hearing about what aspects or elements of NAFTA have worked well for Canadians and should remain “as is” and where changes or improvements could be desirable.

Businesses are able to provide feedback through an online consultation form. The link to the form can be found HERE.


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The Ontario government is inviting participants to respond to the proposed changes to the Consumer Protection Act, 2002. These changes would implement door-to-door marketing and contracting restrictions passed in Bill 59; the Putting Consumers First Act (Consumer Protection Statute Amendment); 2017. The government is open to comments on the proposed changes and looking for input on the transition process for businesses.

For more information click here. Responses are due by August 21, 2017 and can be submitted online here.

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The Electricity Distributors Association (EDA) and its member local distribution companies have launched the Ontario Electricity Customer Panel. The initiative is a first-ever online opinion panel exclusively drawn from electricity customers in the province who have agreed to participate. The goal is to establish an online community so electricity customers can express their opinions on such public policies as pricing, conservation and local power generation that can inform relevant decision makers. To join the panel, or to find out more information, visit www.YourVoiceHasPower.com.

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The Ontario Ministry of Labour, through Workplace Safety & Prevention Services, wants to help businesses protect their workers from noise.

This comes after a new noise regulation that was passed in July 2016 that requires employers to follow a “hierarchy of controls” to protect workers. Engineering controls and work practices come before personal protective equipment (such as earplugs and ear muffs), the reasoning being that controlling noise everywhere eliminates the reliance on workers to wear protection.

How big of a deal is this?

One in five adults aged 19 to 79 already have mild hearing loss or more in at least one ear, according to experts. Chances are, with time and continued exposure their hearing will worsen.

It’s one reason the Ministry of Labour has launched the initiative, which will run through March 31, 2018. During this time, inspectors will be looking at how—and how well—employers are protecting workers from noise.

4 steps you can take to prepare:

1. Determine if your workers are exposed to high levels of noise. Be sure to pinpoint the sources of noise and who’s going to be affected where.

2. Conduct a risk assessment. Performing a rudimentary assessment can be done by walking around and listening. You can also rent a sound meter if you’re looking for preliminary numbers. Apps for a smartphone can also be used as a screening tool, although they should be used cautiously and not relied upon for complete accuracy. If an app provides a number that hovers around 85 decibels (the current occupational limit over eight hours), call in an occupational hygienist to do a proper survey.

3. Determine the best way to protect employees. This step includes starting with engineering controls. Can you reduce noise at the source or along the path of transmission? Next, look at work practices such as doing any repairs that might make machines less noisy. Finally, consider Personal Protective Equipment if other controls are not possible.

4. Ensure your controls are working. Implement a surveillance program that includes audiometric testing to make sure people are using hearing protection correctly and not suffering hearing loss.

More information on the issue of hearing protection is available at www.wsps.ca/noise.

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You can save up to 45% when you ship products, critical documents and much more with Purolator.

Purolator offers:

  • An extensive network that reaches nearly every corner of the country
  • A complete suite of services, including online shipping and time-guaranteed delivery
  • Best-in-class performance rates

As part of the Sarnia Lambton Chamber of Commerce and network, be sure not to miss out on these negotiated rates exclusively for  members.

If you have already signed up, then enjoy the savings! If not, just visit www.purolator.com/occ to enroll and start taking advantage of these special rates.


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An organization dedicated to improving internet broadband service throughout the area is encouraging businesses and farmers, especially those with membership in the Sarnia Lambton Chamber of Commerce, to participate in a survey designed to help them determine where to invest funding.

The survey can be found online at www.swiftnetwork.ca/survey. Those without internet access can complete the survey through a nearby Lambton County Library branch.

SWIFT—Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology Inc.—is a project initiated by the Western Ontario Wardens’ Caucus in 2011.

At a July 5, 2017 meeting, Lambton County Council entered into a partnership agreement with SWIFT that allows the County to benefit from significant funding from municipal partners and senior levels of government. A combined funding of $180 million for Southwestern Ontario was made to SWIFT from the federal and provincial governments. A portion of that funding will go to projects in Lambton County.

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Sarnia City Council decided on June 19, 2017 to extend consultations over the summer on two important issues: a proposal to impose the transit levy on properties that don’t have access to conventional bus services, and a proposed bylaw that would regulate trees located on private properties.

Residents wanting to comment on the transit levy now have until August 4 to complete the survey: http://clerks.smartsarnia.com/transit-service-property-taxation/. Comments can also be shared by emailing transittax@sarnia.ca or calling 519-332-0330. A staff report and final recommendations will be presented to Council on September 11.

Residents wanting to comment on the tree bylaw now have until October 1 to complete the survey: http://planning.smartsarnia.com/tree-by-law-questionnaire/ . Comments can be emailed to trees@sarnia.ca. Council will review the draft bylaw at their meeting on October 23.

If you would like to share your questions or concerns with the Chamber, contact us at speakup@slchamber.ca or 519-336-2400.

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