Saturday, October 25th6.8°C
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John Thomson

John Thomson's I Didn't Know That!

It’s hard to believe, but the U.S.A. national press has finally figured out the scuffle in Bellingham over the Canadians buying all the milk available in the Costco store there. Big headline in U.S.A. Today, “Canadians Flock to U.S. for deals.”  This is due to the increase in the dollar and the larger limits we can bring back in dollar value across the border.

The editors took the stats from the release by Stats Canada that 673,000 Canadian shoppers crossed the border during the first quarter. I would have said it was more.  The cows were working overtime!

My e-mail numbers on cross border shopping went sky high. Most Canadian shoppers had one big complaint and that was about the high cost of dairy products in Canada.  Milk, cheese and eggs are double the price on this side of the border.  This has always been a difficult one to explain to the public because so much that is written about the subject is really carrying the wrong information.

I have a new report from the Montréal Economic Institute and researcher Mario  Dumais. He is an economist and author of this report.  He claims that Marketing Boards haven’t helped stabilize farm income or preserved the number of family farms.

The report says that Canadian consumers are paying an extra $3.9 billion a year because there is no competition between producers to improve productivity which normally leads to lower production costs and a drop in prices.   A marketing monopoly such as this means one thing - the board controls the sale of products such as those in the dairy and poultry industry.

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Bob Gauley the VP at Colliers Kelowna has put the piece of land at Highway 97 and Highway 33 on the market. This is  where the Vineyard Motel was for years.  It is one of the last good locations left on the highway. 

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Have your heard of ClubLink? ClubLink Enterprises is a golf club, resort and transportation group.  Under the name Club Link they have pioneered “One Membership More Golf” where, with a certain membership, golfers can play many courses including Canada’s most famous course Glen Abbey. Forty-two signature golf courses at your beck and call in Ontario, Quebec and Florida.

The one thing ClubLink doesn’t have is courses in the west and like any successful business they are looking. Here is the rumour and it is a good one.

The real estates people for the ClubLink have their eyes on some properties in the interior. I am told by a very reliable source that both Gallagher’s and The Bear/Quail Ridge which are owned by B.C. Golf have been looked at with much interest. This group also went to have a look at Tobiano in Kamloops -  a beautiful course that is in bankruptcy.

Will anything come of this?  Who knows?  But it is interesting.

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I was sad to hear of the passing of Barbara Ann Scott. The Ottawa skating sensation passed away in Florida with her husband Tom King by her side.  I don’t think there was ever another Canadian champion that was loved by a nation more than Barbara Ann and yet most young Canadians won’t know who I am writing about. In 1948 she won a gold medal in women’s skating at the Olympics. At that time figure skaters were judged on how precisely they could cut figures into the ice with their blades.  She won the Canadian championship four times, the North American, the European and, the World championship twice.  This was all before her 21st birthday. She turned pro and stared in a Hollywood Ice Show and then retired at 25.

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Construction is moving quickly on the Four Points Hotel so that the inside of the property can be finished over the winter. It is expected to open in the spring 2013. This new hotel is located across from the entrance to the Kelowna International Airport. The 120 room hotel will be the first to be that close to the busy airport.

I understand that Argus Properties, the builder, has made an arrangement with Ric’s Grill, the Canadian chain of fine restaurants, to be the food location at the new hotel. Ric’s already has a very popular grill in downtown Kelowna.

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Finally a right answer to the problem we have been discussing for weeks:

RE:  Theft of Vehicle Registration

Always enjoy and look forward to your column.  I am a retired 27 yr. [Sept. 1984] veteran of the RCMP.  1975/76 Pr. George I started and ran the Police Community Relations program (today's Crime Prevention Unit).   Continued my interest in this field throughout remainder of my career; post retirement here in Kelowna as a volunteer.  One had to keep abreast of current criminal trends. 

"Bad guy(s)" breaking into vehicles and stealing the registration - insurance documents goes back thirty years.  What the more sophisticated thief would do - break into your vehicle; may/may not steal anything obvious however, would steal either your vehicle docs. or simply record your address.  If your remote garage door opener is apparent [most are], i.e. attached to sun visor or resting in the console, guaranteed he would steal it.
 
Now, when you return to your vehicle, depending on how the thief broke in, you would probably not realize your papers or even your remote had been stolen until arriving home.  You see, if your vehicle is parked in a business lot, the thief would know he has until late afternoon to help himself to your worldly belongings.  If parked in customer’s parking lot, he could count on 1 - 2 - 3 hrs.

Once equipped with address and method of entry, thief would go to your residence, assure himself no one was home prior to activating your remote.  Sure you say, the door into my home is locked!  Well after lowering your garage door, he could use a chain saw to open the door to residence and no one would hear him.
 

Interesting note----Seattle Sea Tac a/p  >> Greater Vancouver.

A number of years back individual(s) would walk through the extended parking area of Sea Tac a/p; break into the BC license plated vehicles, either stealing the vehicle registration or record address then pass along the info to his contact in the Greater Vancouver area.  Most BC vehicles parked at Sea Tac would be families on a vacation flying out of Seattle!!  Called a smorgasbord time for the "bad guys".
 
Encourage your readers to place vehicle docs in an envelope and place in trunk off to the side, protected from materials that one usually has clustered in their trunk.  Make sure all drivers of the vehicle know where docs are located.
 
Where you ever given the courtesy of a phone call from the RCMP???


JT  - No I was not.

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About the Author

John Thomson is the Okanagan's pre-eminent business columnist writing his column, Rumours and Things, for over 24 years. Plugged in to the valley's who's who, John keeps his readers coming back for more with his straight talk and optimistic perspective on where we are headed next.

When John is not writing his column, he runs a sixteen year old think tank called the Executive Roundtable and holds his popular "Thomson Presents" quarterly business speaker seminars.

Have a comment, question, or tip for John? 

E-mail John at
[email protected]
or send him a fax at 250-764-8255.

 







The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet presents its columns "as is" and does not warrant the contents.


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