Over 228 members and guests attended the sixty-eight Annual General Meeting of the Vanderhoof and Districts Co-operative Association. The meeting was held at the Nechako Senior Citizens Friendship Centre on April 22, 2013.
The Board of Directors reported record sales for 2012, increasing $9.6 million or fife per cent, to $201.9 million which generated a net savings of $14.1 million or 7.1 per cent of sales. This is a decrease of net savings of $500,000 from 2011.
Sale of petroleum litres continued to grow with Quesnel having another strong year contributing five million litres to an annual total of over 21 million litres. In June, 2012, we opened a new Quesnel Agro/Convenience Store, located next to our cardlock. In Vanderhoof, Food Store sales increased by 5.4 per cent and Home Centre sales grew by 4.3 per cent.
Management projected 2013 sales to increase $16.1 million; 7.9 per cent, and a litre increase of 10.8 million or 6.8 per cent.
The second cardlock site in Prince George, the continued growth in Quesnel and expanding further south to the Williams Lake area will all contribute to this growth. The members approved the following distribution of 2012 savings: patronage allocation in equity and cash back to members of $8.9 million at a rate of 4.6 per cent on member’s 2012 purchases with a provision for general reserve of $5.5 million. In 2012 Co-op members earned an average of 5.1 cents per litre at 4.6 per cent of allocation.
Board election incumbents Rene Jones, Marje Makow and Colleen Erickson from Vanderhoof, Prince George and Burns Lake District, were declared elected by acclamation for a three-year term. The other six members of the board are Bud Pye, Ken Loper, Henry Dyck from the Vanderhoof, Prince George and Burns Lake District, Cesar Isidoro from Houston District, Nirmal Parmar from the Terrace District and Kim McIvor from Quesnel District.
Member relations reported that Co-op donated over $100,000 in financial or
in-kind aid to a variety of groups in the communities. Recycling efforts and our goal towards a greener footprint are still continuing with our support of the Nechako Waste Reduction Initiative program and used oil recycling. Activities in the forthcoming year include doing environmental studies in Smithers and Williams Lake to ensure the chosen ground is suitable for building cardlocks.
A local project that is well underway is the building of a new building supply centre in Vanderhoof at the East side of the Co-op Mall. The chemical and open storages areas are both already completed and the foundation for the lumber area is currently being poured. Contracts have been awarded for the main hardware and supplies area. Construction is expected to begin late spring with completion within a year. The current building used for supplies is to be moved to the Bulk Plant to increase its storage and the grain storage building was donated to the local museum.
Cliff Irving, General Manager, has continuously provided the vision, the hard work and the effective leadership needed to keep the Vanderhoof and Districts Co-op flourishing. Cliff will be retiring in August this year, after 47 years. He started in Vanderhoof in June 1966 bagging groceries and gradually moved up through various Co-op stores, learning and developing. He returned to Vanderhoof in 1982 to manage the Vanderhoof Co-op. We have been benefiting from his knowledge and dedication ever since.
Employees were thanked for their continued hard work and dedication. Dan O’Connor and Judy Wesner received their Five Year Award; Valerie Gerz, Dave Irwin and Bea Turgeon received 20 Year Awards; Mark Stevenson received 30 Year Award; David Flegal received 40 Year Award; Certificate of Achievement and Training Awards were also given. Director Awards were given to Colleen Erickson for 12 Years; Kim McIvor and Cesar Isidoro for 15 Years; Rene Jones for 21 Years.
Members with any questions about the Annual Meeting or operations, please call Cliff Irving, General Manger or Glenn Currie, Controller at the Vanderhoof Co-op Administration Office at 1.250.567.4414 or toll free at 1.877.567.4414.