This year the Nelson & Area Economic Development Partnership (NAEDP) released a Report Card that provides economic indicators in four strategic priority areas:
- Business Retention and Expansion;
- Building Our Digital Economy;
- Housing; and
The Report Card shares encouraging news. Nelson’s businesses, development and population are growing. Business Tax Rates are one of the lowest in both the Kootenay’s and the Province. We’re seeing workforce attraction and development in building our digital economy through the growing Tech & Knowledge Workers Group and Ladies Learning Code course. To top it all off, not only is the City of Nelson an ICF Smart 21 Community that uses best practices in technology to improve the economic, social, and cultural well-being of citizens but we’re also a connected community with several significant sized, Nelson-based organizations, theatres, and small businesses connected to active fibre (high speed broadband and internet).
To get a better idea of what this news means and how it relates to economic development in Nelson and Areas E & F, let’s take a closer look at some of the numbers in the four areas being reported on.
Business Retention and Expansion
As of July 2018, we have seen an increase of 155 active business licences issued from the 1,250 issued in 2017. That’s a 12% increase which is all the more positive, given 2018 isn’t over yet. Nelson also has one of the lowest Business Tax Rate’s in the Kootenays compared to Castlegar ($11.53) and Cranbrook ($19.40), and compared to other communities in British Columbia including Kelowna ($14.70), Vancouver ($12.44) and Victoria ($12.46).
Building Our Digital Economy
Nelson’s Tech and Knowledge Workers Group is growing daily, which is an indicator that tech and knowledge savvy workers are here and increasing. It also shows that at least 11% of Nelson’s working age population (20 – 64) work in our digital economy1. The Coding profession is getting a boost through training targeted at women. And the Nelson Fibre project has been able to connect 68 buildings to the fastest tier of high speed broadband and internet services.
Nelson has seen 90 new housing starts this year which is higher than the annual total for 2017 (70), 2016 (30), and 2015 (58). We are also seeing potential growth in the taxable revenue generated through building permit values, which is currently just over $33 million ($33,016,836) and is expected to exceed 2017’s building permit revenue which was $33,246,725 for the entire calendar year.
Advertised Employment opportunities listed on Kootenay Career Development Society’s Kootenay.jobs continues to grow since the platforms 2017 launch with an average of 112 opportunities advertised per month in 2018 versus 76 employment opportunities advertised per month in 2017.
The NAEDP will continue with its efforts to work together to drive Nelson and Areas local economy.
- 2016 BC Census
See 2018 Report Card