Auto Service World
Feature   December 1, 2000   by Auto Service World

Across Canada: Season’s Greetings to all and a happy, healthy and prosperous 2001

It seems that AIA is starting the year out right with an Industry Lobby Day and its Parliament Hill Event on February 13. There’s nothing like striking while the fire remains hot a couple of months after the federal election.

These events have been designed to educate government on the role of AIA and the Canadian automotive aftermarket industry.

The first portion of the day will involve some members of the AIA board of directors, key industry people and division representatives who will meet one-on-one with Members of Parliament. This is an opportunity to supply MPs with information on the industry and to make them aware of the key issues that are of concern.

From 4-6 p.m. members of the board, councils and committees along with the largest stakeholders from the industry will host the Industry Hill Event Reception. MPs, Senators and Ministers have been invited as well as members of the trade press.

AIA has dramatically strengthened the voice of the aftermarket at all government levels, much to the credit of people like former president Dean Wilson and the current president Ray Datt and the Government Relations Committee. This is something that needs to be worked at continually because governments and issues are always changing. I highly applaud this initiative.

And speaking of initiatives, AIA president Ray Datt went on a Western Road Trip during the first week of December. He met with AIA members on Vancouver Island, Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton to explain AIA’s new mission statement and mandate. He also looked to get feedback from members and to learn more about the issues that are critical to them and need to be addressed.


In Western Canada, Peter Gilchrist, the B.C Interior rep, says that Lordco is on the move again, opening a 8,000-square-foot store in Merritt, B.C., and another in Summerland, B.C. Also, the Lordco store in Kamloops is now in full operation. Jamie Wotherspoon is the store manager.

A former Auto Value outlet in Merritt, B.C. now operates under the Uni-Select banner. Rob McDonald owns the store.

Harold Nichols, Vancouver and B.C. rep, notes that Vancouver area jobbers with machine shops recently met to revise the 1998 Machine Shop Labor Guide. He says there were large numbers of shops that had to make adjustments relating to a journeyman’s wages.

Doug Dawson reports from Northern Alberta that two PartSource stores in Edmonton have signed up as AIA members.

The big news in Quebec, according to Michel Tremblay, is the recent announcement of the Quebec Action Plan on Climate Change 2000-2002. Part of this initiative includes action in the transportation sector. That includes the establishment of a mandatory inspection and maintenance program for light and heavy-duty vehicles. The multiphase program will come into force in 2002. The first phase will apply to all heavy-duty vehicles throughout Quebec and to light duty vehicles in the Montreal area. Subsequent phases will cover other regions in Quebec.

A special salute to the Atlantic Division for contributing $1,000 to Christmas Daddies which helps needy children during Christmas time. The cheque presentation was televised throughout Atlantic Canada. The Atlantic Division is now preparing for its March Winter Event in Halifax which includes bowling and curling tournaments and a night at the Grafton St. Dinner Theatre in Halifax.

Again, all the best to all of you and my sincere thanks to those who regularly contribute items to this column.

Note: If you have any information to contribute to this column please call Bob Blans at (905) 844-8616, Fax (905) 844-8731, E-Mail to or write to Across Canada Report c/o Jobber News Magazine, 1450 Don Mills Rd., Don Mills, ON M3B 2X7. In addition to AIA Division activities we are interested in hearing from you about the opening of a new business, change of ownership, expansions etc.

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