The local Chamber of Commerce has been under fire over the recent Business Showcase that has been in the planning stages since 2012 and recently hosted at Centennial Hall Oct. 18. Some have suggested the Chamber was not being non-partisan due to the fact that two candidates in the upcoming municipal election were allowed to purchase tables at the showcase, where they chose to use the opportunity to campaign for office.
Chamber president Ron McKenzie stated: “The optics of having candidates at the showcase to some most certainly has left the impression that we have become politically involved in the upcoming election, but the facts are the Cowichan Lake District Chamber of Commerce has and always will be non-partisan. We regret what occurred at the showcase and we want to assure the community that we have no position on who is elected to town council.”
Glenda Osborne, the Chamber’s secretary/treasurer and the committee chair responsible for organizing the Business Showcase indicated: “Our only intent was assembling participants or exhibitors for the Business Showcase and we focused solely upon this goal.”
McKenzie went on to indicate “the Cowichan Lake District Chamber of Commerce apologizes for not recognizing at the time what some may have seen as our becoming involved in the election but I want to assure the community that in no way, shape or form was this our intent. We wish all the candidates good luck and no matter who is elected, are looking forward to working with them to make Lake Cowichan a better place to live, work and play.”
-submitted by Cowichan Lake District of Commerce