The Haida Gwaii Tourism Association will not merge with the QCI Chamber of Commerce, but will continue as a separate group focusing on promoting tourism, members decided Sunday at the association’s annual general meeting in Port Clements.
The vote was close, eight to seven, and the count had to be taken three times before everyone was satisfied, but in the end the tourism association will continue.
The idea to merge came up a few months ago when low attendance at meetings was concentrating the association’s work in a handful of members, some of whom were also chamber members. President Urs Thomas suggested that amalgamating with the chamber would be more efficient, and suggested that members discuss it at their annual meeting.
“I disagree with integrating (the two),” Delina Myles said, “The tourism association is focused on development and promotion of tourism. The chamber has a different function. I would like to see it as a separate association, ‘ while Art Lew said “we have limited funds. We do have to look at how we can share costs, but we have created a branding of the HGTA and that would be lost if we merged with the chamber.”
“I would love to see the HGTA become a committee of the chamberÂ…There are the benefits, you have one fee and you then become eligible for all the benefits of the chamber,” said Jean Traplin, chamber president and Dutes Dutheil added “it is time for the islands to unify. We’ve got to do it all together if we want to succeed. If we have all these little groups, we are going to get nowhere.”
After the vote, members briefly discussed streamlining association activities, and may continue to cooperate with the chamber as in the past year.
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