Building a diversified and inclusive local economy
The Government of Alberta is committed to investing in job creation, economic diversification, renewable energy, and being the best place to start and grow a small business. The innovative tools of community economic development (CED) can amplify these economic initiatives by enabling the creation of more social and co-operative enterprises, providing jobs for disadvantaged Albertans, and advancing community-owned renewable energy. The following three strategies can most benefit Albertans given the current economic challenges and opportunities in Alberta.
|Supporting the development of locally-owned business, social enterprises, and cooperatives.
|Investing in a Community and Coop Business Secretariat, supported by the Ministry of Economic Development, and hosted at a community based agency. A focus on technical support and connecting businesses to capital and resources.
|Social enterprises and cooperatives are unique forms of business that elevate social returns to communities. They are more likely to be member or worker-owned, employ disadvantaged Albertans, pay living wages, protect the environment, create sustainable jobs, and invest in community.
|Supporting the creation of community-owned renewable energy projects.
|Providing technical, regulatory, and financial support to community-owned start-ups and projects focused on renewable energy development.
|Renewable energy projects will contribute to economic diversification, green job creation, a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening of local ownership, and the creation of economic development opportunities in rural regions.
|Enabling and promoting local investing opportunities.
|Creating a market exemption for everyday Albertans (unaccredited investors) to invest in local businesses, social enterprises and co-operatives, and ensuring they benefit from the Alberta Investor Tax Credit.
|Local investment opportunities will mobilize local capital, ensure access to capital for social enterprises and co-operatives, provide local investment opportunities to everyday Albertans, and support the growth of local business and job creation.
The Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNet) and Alberta CED stakeholders are committed to working with the provincial government and sector colleagues to advance these key community economic development initiatives in Alberta, building on proven practices from across Canada and the world.
The brief was prepared and submitted on behalf of:
The Alberta Community & Co-operative Association
The Canadian CED Network
The Canadian Worker Coop Federation
Edmonton Community Foundation
Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers
REAP (Respect for the Earth and All People)
Social Enterprise Fund