The History of the RASAS

January 2007

Tim Struck (Welcome Woods Market) sent out a letter to RAS owners asking all of us to write to our MLA, asking them for their support to better the RAS Business Model. There was a lot of feedback from the RAS.

September 25, 2007

Tim Struck, Dave Formosa, (Lund General) and Ted Hlokoff (Anaheim General) had their first meeting with Minister Les (Solicitor General) and Minister Thorpe (Small Business) to present their proposal. “RAS Convenience for our Communities”.  At this time they had the ear of the Ministers on the Red Tape issues and the promise of a follow up meeting.

November 22, 2007

Minister Les granted a follow up meeting. Tim, Dave, Ted and Annette (Scotch Creek Super Valu) attended. They presented the cost of doing business and reviewed the discount factor and how it worked.

The outcome from this meeting:

٭ One paid delivery per week

٭Buying wines directly from BC Wineries

٭ Purchase Sips products (wholesale)

٭ Promise of a regulatory review of the RAS Program

The Minister indicated that he was receiving a lot of pressure in question period from the MLA’s due to all the letters that were written.

January 2008

We were contacted by Minister Thorpe and he announced that he would be doing the review on the Red Tape Issues. This would be a review of the administrative policies and procedures relating to the RAS program. This review would be to streamline and simplify the delivery program and reduce the paperwork burden currently faced by the RAS operators.

February 2008

Guy Cookson was placed in charge of this project by Minister Thorpe. Guy hired Bill Erichson as the consultant for this project. His purpose was to collect as much information as he could from both the LDB and the RAS Operators. In March, Bill sent out a survey to all the RAS. Bill and Guy went on a road trip to visit several different sizes of RAS’s to collect information for their review.

March 2008

The four of us decided that we needed to do a mail out to let the RAS know that there was a steering committee working for the RAS. We needed direction from all the RAS’s. The “United we stand and Divided we fall” petition was sent out.

Tim Struck e-mailed the BC Chamber requesting their assistance, but there was no response.

Minister John Les was asked to step down. We were back at square one; it was announced that a new Solicitor General would be taking over our portfolio. The project of the Red Tape carried on but we had to start over with our proposals for the financial review and discount factor.  Hon. John Van Dongen would be the new acting solicitor general overseeing our portfolio. Due to his short time in office and his responsibility for the Ministry of State for Intergovernmental Affairs we were not able to meet with him.

June 29 2008

Minister Rich Coleman is the new Minister responsible for Liquor Control and Licensing. Again we have to start over.

August 2008

We receive our first response from the Ministers office, Coleman asked Mary Freeman, Associate Deputy Minister responsible for the liquor portfolio to meet with us. This meeting did not happen until late fall.

October 16, 2008

The copy of the Red Tape Review was released. The report focused on price changing, shipping and communication. The recommendations made were for the LDB to support the establishment of the Rural Agency Store Advisory Society thus improving communication with them. The report had the monetary portion edited out as the main focus was on the Red Tape Issues (paper work). The group was very disappointed with the lack of progress and results of the report after they worked on it for eight months.

October 23, 2008

We had our meeting with Mary Freeman and reviewed our proposals.  At that time she requested from us a short point form summary of the RAS’s needs and requirements. This summary was sent to her early November.

November 2008

The group contacted Guy Cookson.  He indicated that Bill Erichson, the consultant, met with the Senior Management of LDB to brief them on the report.  At this time Guy said that he could not do any more for us.

In November and December we sent Mary e-mails asking for a response for the summaries that were sent and a meeting with Coleman.

January 2009

This was our first meeting with LDB; minutes are posted on the website. (Jan 9, 2009)

On January 23rd the government announces that Mary Freeman has retired. Ministry of Small Business and Revenue has been eliminated.  Again we have to start over and we lost two members of the group.

February 2009

Approximately 10 RAS owners went to the legislature building in Victoria and met with the media.

We contacted Minister Coleman’s office and we were repeatedly ignored.

March 2009

We sent an e-mail requesting “Who is taking over our portfolio”? This is when the Ministers office requested that all matters be handled through the RAS group with LDB.

We hired the lobbyist, Mike Geoghegan.  He was able to schedule a meeting with Minister Coleman on March 28th, 2009. The results of the meeting are in the memo area of the website. There was nothing else he could do for us so we let him go in April.

March 30, 2009

We had a conference call with LDB; the details are in the minute’s section of the website.

We started working on an e-mail asking for members to be part of the advisory board for the RAS.

April 3, 2009

This is the time we accepted the 5%+/- flex pricing from LDB. Memo- Policy changes for Rural Agency Stores – Pricing flexibility and posting price change report, is on the website.

May/June 2009

Rise’ Johansen (Takysie Lake Resort) joins the RAS Group as the secretary. She started right away working on our constitution and bylaws for the soon to be RASAS.

June 4th, 2009

Conference call with LDB, minutes posted on the website.

October 15, 2009

Conference call with LDB, minutes posted on the website.

November/ December 2009

Our Board of Directors is formed:

Ted Hlokoff                          President               Anahim Lake Trading

Annette Brausse Treasurer              Scotch Creek Super Valu

Rise’ Johansen                     Secretary               Takysie Lake Resort

Trent Leggett                        Director                 Heffley Creek / Mountain View Handi Mart

Imi Haji                                Director                 Royston Mini Mart

Colby Woodhead                 Director                 Blind Bay Village Grocer

Tim Struck                            Director                 Welcome Woods Market

Rise’ completes the Constitution and bylaws that make our society official.

We started working on a questionnaire for mail out and the idea of a website.

January 12, 2010

The new group had a meeting with LDB in Vancouver. Minutes are on the website.

LDB offers an additional 5%+/- flex pricing to us. The group states that they would have to have the RAS’s vote on it. 111 of 222 stores voted, 101/yes, 10/no.

February 12, 2010

At this time a memo: Pricing Flexibility Increase is on the website. Flexible pricing is now 10% +/-.

March 2010

Welcome to our first Newsletter and questionnaire. Results are on the website.

March 2011

Our first Annual General Meeting is held in Kelowna.  We experienced a good turnout with great questions and discussion.  Our presenters, Mark Anthony, did a great job and we all had a lot of fun!  We are looking forward to our next AGM and meeting more of you.

March 2012

Our second Annual General Meeting was held in Prince George.  We had a nice turnout and excellent presenters.  Cheryl Lawrence, Pacific West Brewery and Vincor all did a great job of presenting their products and engaging us in future development with their products and in doing business with them.