ʔaq̓am Community Enterprises Quarterly Update December 31st 2020
Chief and Council Strategic Planning Session – November 13 2020
On Friday November 13th 2020 ACE and Chief & Council held a joint strategic planning session from 9am – 12pm. We discussed strategic priorities now and into the future as ACE begins work on a five-year plan.
ACE will continue working towards completing our five-year strategy based on the conversations that we had with Chief and Council and the ACE Board of Directors on November 13 2020. This was a very valuable session and the intention is to continue coming together for these kind of strategic conversations annually.
ʔaq̓am Trading did well despite the 2020 pandemic, and it looks like we will finish close to our net profit goals for the year. We are very proud of new updates that we have made to our Human Resources Policies to better to take care of our staff. Our intent when we are profitable is to share that success with our employees.
Trading continues to operate with all covid19 protocols in place with the health and safety of our staff and customers top of mind.
D&B Flagging & Traffic Control
D&B flagging and traffic control services performed well financially in 2020 and we continue to drive good revenues in the winter months. D&B continues to grow its opportunities and continues to look at ways to diversify its business portfolio. We continue to update our truck fleet and grow our equipment assets and look forward to a busy and profitable 2021.
B/A Blacktop & Terus Inc. operations within our pit have now shut down for the winter. We are now working with D&B Flagging to install moveable fencing around the pit work areas. We will also work on installing a new 8ft x 4ft sign at the entrance of the gravel pit as part of our lease requirements with ʔaq̓am. Further environmental work is now underway to work towards lease compliance in phase areas one and two.
Renewable Forest License
ARLP’s winter contract with Canfor has been approved and is proceeding. We did miss a full harvest this past summer due to covid19 restrictions and wildfire risk. We continue conversations about possible opportunities with British Columbia Timber sales. We also continue to await word from the provincial government on an increase in volume for First Nations within the new provincial proportionment policy.
Utility Scale Solar Project
The solar project continues to be a high strategic priority for 2021. We will be taking actions to continue our lease requirements and to continue negotiations and engagement with the Province for an Energy Purchase Agreement. ACE will be focussing on further environmental studies, archaeological review and land appraisal. All agree that resources and energy are required to push this project to completion. The approved 2021 budget reflects much of the work we would like to accomplish in the new year.
Agriculture Food Production Project
In December 2020 ACE submitted an application in step two of the Provincial agricultural grant program. This step has aligned us with an expert greenhouse designer as we continue to explore large scale green housing combined with outdoor crops and animal production. This step of the grant provides up to $10K in funding for business planning and modelling.
ACE will continue to explore and identify a location on the ʔaq̓am reserve to potentially locate a new agriculture food business. Food security will continue to be an important issue locally and globally that we would like to put our energy towards, as per our strategic priorities.
Due to the Covid19 pandemic and travel restrictions the feasibility and business plan has been under constant delays. We are now expecting the final report early in 2021. Once we have the report we can then discuss strategies on how to move forward. This project continues to excite us but tourism has taken a massive economic hit during the pandemic so delays with this work may be ok as we continue to evaluate the opportunity.
ACE Board of Directors
ACE continues to operate with two board directors. We currently have three interested board candidates and will work on organizing the selection committee in the New Year. We can then take some time to discuss the candidates and how and when to move forward with adding a third director.
Business Development Assistant
Ryan Phillips-Clements’ role as the BDA continues to be a critical success and need for the corporations. Ryan continues to manage many administrative tasks and has now taken on further work with D&B Flagging and Traffic Control Services.
Ryan is also headed back to classes this coming term to work on completing his business diploma at the college of the Rockies.
ACE is always open to exploring new and existing business opportunities and we will continually look for opportunities to diversify our own source revenues.
Christopher McCurry CEO, ʔaq̓am Community Enterprises and
On behalf of the ACE Board of Directors