While December obviously brought the end of 2018, it also brought with it a new beginning for Hope’s Chamber of Commerce after their Annual General Meeting (AGM)on Friday, Dec. 7.
The organization, which is composed of volunteers from Hope to Boston Bar, works together with local businesses in the community as an advocate to further economic interests and prosperity. And at its last AGM, the Chamber underwent a restructuring of staff as half of its directors, and the president, were replaced.
But with a new year and Chamber directors, president Stephen Au-Yeung says 2019 will be the year of the Hope Chamber. “One of the main reasons the Chamber exists is to to be for businesses,” he said at the Chamber’s most recent meeting on Jan. 15. Following that, it’s Au-Yeung’s goal that the Chamber return to its roots of helping build up the community, promote the community, ensuring a pro-business local climate, being the unified voice of the business community, and creating well-functioning networks.
“We need to make the Chamber a business advocacy again,” said Au-Yeung, outlining his three-point plan for the upcoming year.
Coming out of the holidays, Au-Yeung’s first point of action for the Chamber is lighting up Hope: the District’s holiday lights are old and in “disrepair,” so the Chamber would like to work with community members to come up with the funds to replace at least 10,000 feet of lights.
“It works out to about a dollar per foot,” Au-Yeung explained.
The second point on the Chamber’s action plan for the year is creating an inventory of the Chamber’s highway signage, and updating what they can.
And lastly, and perhaps most importantly, Au-Yeung says the Chamber needs to be the go-to advocacy group for local businesses.