Surrey Business News

SUR­REY ECO­NOMIC RE­COV­ERY – CITY OF SUR­REY UP­DATE

Fo­cus on Busi­ness

- Business · Vancouver · Surrey · City of London · Centre

Sur­rey’s Busi­nesses In­vest­ment & In­no­va­tion Im­pact Com­mit­tee

The In­vest­ment & In­no­va­tion Im­pact Com­mit­tee (“I3C”) will meet on an ac­cel­er­ated sched­ule to en­sure quick and mean­ing­ful ac­tion is taken to help vi­tal­ize the lo­cal econ­omy. The I3C will serve as a con­nec­tor with busi­ness, in­dus­try, academia, the Metro Van­cou­ver Re­gional Eco­nomic Pros­per­ity Ser­vice, Sur­rey-based busi­ness as­so­ci­a­tions and cham­bers of com­merce, the Sur­rey

Board of Trade, and other en­ti­ties re­lated to eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment. The I3C will pro­vide ad­vice and rec­om­men­da­tions to Coun­cil on ac­tions the City could take to stim­u­late in­vest­ment, sup­port the lo­cal busi­ness com­mu­nity, and en­cour­age sus­tain­able job growth.

Cur­rent eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment pri­or­i­ties in­clude un­der­stand­ing the ex­tent of the eco­nomic im­pact of COVID-19, pre­serv­ing Sur­rey’s busi­ness base and in­creas­ing lo­cal em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties.

Ac­tions al­ready ini­ti­ated by the City in­clude the ‘Sur­rey Makes PPE’ pro­gram, which en­cour­ages and sup­ports Sur­rey-based man­u­fac­tur­ers to pro­duce crit­i­cal per­sonal pro­tec­tive equip­ment and helps to iden­tify buy­ers for their prod­ucts. Com­pa­nies are al­ready ben­e­fit­ing from or­ders from other lev­els of gov­ern­ment and pri­vate busi­nesses.

Store to Door Cam­paign

In ad­di­tion, the City launched the ‘Store to Door’ pro­gram in March. This pro­gram as­sists lo­cal busi­nesses to move to an on­line sales and de­liv­ery model and pro­motes the busi­nesses by pro­vid­ing height­ened pro­file through the City-hosted Store to Door web­site.

This pro­gram has been well re­ceived by lo­cal busi­nesses. Over 166 com­pa­nies have signed up to the pro­gram and over 30,000 on­line con­nec­tions have re­sulted.

Work­ing with Lo­cal Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tions

The City will con­tinue to engage with our lo­cal busi­ness as­so­ci­a­tions to pro­vide up­dates on City ac­tions and so­licit feed­back from their mem­ber­ship on ways we can col­lab­o­ra­tively pre­pare for re­open­ing our econ­omy.

Un­paid Com­mer­cial Prop­erty Tax

The Prov­ince re­cently an­nounced post­pone­ment of late pay­ment penal­ties on un­paid prop­erty tax on com­mer­cial prop­er­ties (Classes 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8) to Oc­to­ber 1, 2020. This will rep­re­sent a 90-day de­lay in penal­ties for these com­mer­cial classes from the cur­rent late pay­ment penal­ties ef­fec­tive date of July 3, 2020.

Busi­ness Li­cense Late Penalty Fee

The City pro­vided fi­nan­cial re­lief to busi­nesses by de­fer­ring late busi­ness li­cence penalty dates. Cur­rently, late penalty fees are charged if busi­ness li­cence fees are out­stand­ing 30 days after their due date. Due to COVID-19, the late penalty fees will be ap­plied 30 days after the day on which the Provin­cial State of Emer­gency comes to an end. This pro­vides re­lief to busi­nesses that are late in pay­ing their busi­ness li­cence fees due to the fi­nan­cial im­pact of COVID-19.

Sur­rey’s De­vel­op­ment Sec­tor Eco­nomic in­cen­tives for large mixe­duse high-den­sity projects lo­cated in City Cen­tre (the “City Cen­tre Eco­nomic In­cen­tive Pol­icy”).

Be­gin­ning im­me­di­ately, new and in-stream projects that have a con­struc­tion value of greater than $25 mil­lion ben­e­fit from a 50% re­duc­tion of many fees re­lat­ing to the de­vel­op­ment. The terms and cri­te­ria for the City Cen­tre Eco­nomic In­cen­tive Pol­icy are as fol­lows:

• To be el­i­gi­ble, the project must be a con­struc­tion of a new im­prove­ment which is lo­cated within City Cen­tre:

• The el­i­gi­ble project must have a build­ing value in ex­cess of $25 mil­lion, as de­ter­mined by the City.

• All fees re­lat­ing to pro­cess­ing the el­i­gi­ble project must be paid in the nor­mal course as per City by­laws.

• A 50% dis­count to the fol­low­ing ap­pli­ca­tion fees will be pro­vided as a set-off to the Build­ing Per­mit fees when the Build­ing Per­mit is is­sued for the el­i­gi­ble project, if the Build­ing Per­mit is is­sued on or be­tween May 5, 2020 and June 1, 2021.

• Concierge ser­vice for all el­i­gi­ble projects. o Re­zon­ing; o De­vel­op­ment Per­mit; o De­vel­op­ment Vari­ance Per­mit; o Ser­vic­ing Agree­ment; and o Build­ing Per­mit.

This will help to de­velop a project time­line with key mile­stones and will en­sure the City will meet the agreed project sched­ule.

This col­lab­o­ra­tive ap­proach with the de­vel­op­ment in­dus­try will al­low qual­i­fy­ing projects to move quickly through the ap­pli­ca­tion and ap­provals process, thus en­sur­ing these im­por­tant in­vest­ments can move to­wards con­struc­tion phase rapidly and help the eco­nomic re­cov­ery.

In ad­di­tion to the Eco­nomic In­cen­tives for City Cen­tre, staff are propos­ing a se­ries of process im­prove­ments that would help the de­vel­op­ment and con­struc­tion sec­tors city­wide. Pro­posed im­prove­ments in­clude:

• Stream­lin­ing the Road and Right-of-way and Traf­fic Ob­struc­tion Per­mit pro­cesses;

• Ex­pand­ing the use of the Surety Bond Pi­lot from 12 to 20;

• Waiv­ing the re­quire­ments for wa­ter con­nec­tion re­place­ments for Ten­ant Im­prove­ment per­mits and sin­gle-fam­ily home build­ing per­mits;

• Stream­lin­ing the Ten­ant Im­prove­ment per­mit­ting process;

• Im­ple­ment­ing fixed time­lines for pro­cess­ing of sim­ple per­mits; and

• Ex­pe­dit­ing the re­view and pro­cess­ing of En­vi­ron­men­tal De­vel­op­ment and Ero­sion Sed­i­ment Con­trol Per­mits.

The City re­serves the right to de­ter­mine the el­i­gi­bil­ity and fi­nal dis­count amount of any project.

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