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 June 13 , 2017 

» Few Spots Left! Come Golf with Hospitality’s Best! 

Join the Ontario Restaurant Hotel & Motel Association (ORHMA) for our 14th Annual Golf Tournament on Wednesday, June 21 at Nottawasaga Inn Resort & Conference Centre in Alliston. ORHMA’s Annual Golf Tournament brings Ontario’s hospitality industry together and is one of the best opportunities to reach the leaders and opinion-influencers in our sector! For participation details, click here. 


» Ontario Updating Labour Laws & Committed to $15.00 Minimum Wage by 2019

Last week, in a campaign-style speech, surrounded by union members and workers’ rights advocates, Premier Kathleen Wynne betrayed the hospitality industry and promised to increase Ontario’s minimum wage to $15, if her government is re-elected. This is a 32% increase within 18 months, with an increase to $14 by 2018 and $15 by 2019. Wynne said the labour market and economy are failing many Ontarians, noting that new technologies and automation continue to put jobs at risk. She said the role of government is not to let the market “sort it out,” but is to take a stand “to ensure that the people of Ontario are given every chance to thrive and achieve their potential during this time of dramatic change." Wynne mentioned the risk President Donald Trump poses to Canada’s important trade relationship with the United States, requiring government action that is “bolder and better” during these volatile times. Wynne said Ontario must ”double down” on its strong economy and balanced budget in order to create more new jobs and must “protect the wages and the well-being of [Ontarians] by being bold and inventive.” Wynne is also ensuring equal pay for part-time workers and increasing the minimum vacation entitlement as part of a major labour overhaul. To see Wynne’s speech, click here

MINIMUM WAGE INCREASE: Premier Kathleen Wynne made the announcement in response to a government-commissioned report that included 173 recommendations addressing precarious work. The report didn't examine the minimum wage, which is currently indexed to inflation and had been set to rise from $11.40 to $11.60 in October (and remains so). She says the minimum wage will increase to $14 an hour on Jan. 1, 2018 and will rise to $15 by 2019. About 30 per cent of Ontario workers currently make less than $15 an hour.

The special minimum wage rates for liquor servers, students under 18, hunting and fishing guides, and homeworkers will be maintained, and will increase by the same percentage as the general minimum wage. Subsequent minimum wage increases after January 1, 2019 would continue to be tied to Ontario’s Consumer Price Index, providing reliable annual increases for workers and predictability for businesses.

Minimum Wage Categories

Current to Sept. 30, 2017

Oct. 1, 2017 to Dec. 31, 2017

Jan. 1, 2018 to Dec 31, 2018

Jan 1 2019 to Sept. 30, 2019

General Minimum Wage

$11.40 per hour





Students under 18 who work not more than 28 hours per week when school is in session, or work during a school break or summer holidays

$10.70 per hour





Liquor Servers

$9.90 per hour




Equal Pay


Wynne also announced that part-time workers will get equal pay for doing work equal to full-time staff.




In yesterday’s announcement, Wynne noted the minimum vacation entitlement will be increased. Instead of getting two weeks of vacation, workers will be able to get three weeks of paid vacation a year after five years of employment with a company.




Wynne included provisions for scheduling. The changes to workplace laws will change the rules for scheduling, including making employers pay three hours of wages if they cancel a shift with fewer than 48 hours notice.


Personal Emergency Leave


Wynne believes employees have the right to take up to 10 days of personal emergency leave each year, two of them paid.

Wynne did not include joint employer or provisions that specifically target the franchise industry or franchise business model. Although franchising specifically was not targeted, the government's proposals do contain a number of provisions which will have an impact on Ontario businesses. Those include: Card check certification for the building services sector, home care, and community services industry (CFA will reach out to these segments of our membership separately)

There are other elements to her plan. She heard that enforcement is key to making this work -- so they are stepping that up.

To read more on the announced changes, click here. 

MEDIA: ORHMA and various members provided the media with comments on these policies. We also circulated a press release and interviewed by media.

ORHMA has submitted a letter on this matter to the Premier, Minister Flynn and Cabinet Ministers. See letter attached. We will be submitting further comment in the coming days.

See government announcement for more details. 

As you know we are part of the Keep Ontario Working Coalition made up of several like minded business associations. See press release from the Keep Ontario Working Coalition regarding today’s announcement attached.

TIMING: The province will introduce legislation with these policies and others in the Fall 2017 – they will consult at first reading – ORHMA remains participating in several discussions with all elected officials and staff to educate them and seek an economic analysis on the impact these policies will have on the restaurants, hotels and accommodations in Ontario. We are searching for an Economist that can be subjective on the impact this will have in Ontario.

RESPONSE: We continue to encourage you to reach out to your MPP and let them know how these new policies will impact your business. Download this letter template to send to your MPP.   We would like to hear from you too – send us an email about how the $15.00 minimum wage and other new labour laws will impact you and your business.

ORHMA will continue to work with the coalition and other like minded associations to advocate opposing such drastic costly changes. 

» Toronto Accommodations Sharing Economy Report

The Toronto Accommodations Sharing Economy report was released on June 12, 2017. ORHMA & GTHA (Greater Toronto Hotel Association) were successful in accomplishing positive outcomes. The report, stemming out of Municipal Licensing and Standards, outlines the following key highlights.

  • Addressing three issues: Impact on the rental/housing market, neighbourhoods and impact to hotels
  • Restricting commercialization
  • Allowed for Primary Resident’s rental unit only- limit rental to 20 consecutive days if primary resident goes on vacation (allowed in residential zones and no annual cap)
  • Will not allow more than the one unit to be listed by the same owner
  • Rental units need to be registered with the city, pay a fee and post safety regulations.
  • City Tax to be determined once the Province provides finalizes the implementation of the Hotel Tax regulation
  • Enforcement will be reviewed as the report moves forward through the consultation stage

The report will be presented to Toronto’s Executive Council on June 19th. There will be public consultations before City Council votes on this-by the end of the year. We will continue to pursue some of the items mentioned in the report to ensure fairness and strengthen the success of the hotel industry. The debate on Toronto’s Airbnb and Sharing Economy is very important because it sets the tone for precedent for other municipalities in Ontario.

For more information, see the following links to the report:

» Design For Sidewalk Cafes, Marketing Displays, Patio Fees & Consultations 

When the City of Toronto report went to Licensing and Standards Committee in April of this year MLS staff were directed to undertake additional consultations. Two meetings are scheduled for June.  This notice has been sent out by mail to all permit holders. The information that will be presented at these meetings will be the same as what was in the April 2017 city staff report. The City is reviewing permit fees, as well as the design for sidewalk cafés and marketing displays. This includes looking at the space required for walking and movement for persons with disabilities, and how this will impact existing café and marketing permit holders. Information presented at these consultations will build upon the recent "Framework for Harmonization" report that was considered by Committee.  Public input invited on guidelines, rules and fees for sidewalk cafés and displays in Toronto.

Fees proposed earlier this year have been revised after the City received input from the restaurant industry and other stakeholders. The revised proposal will result in a modest fee increase for most permit holders, while some will see their permit fees lowered.

Two public meetings will be held to give residents and businesses an opportunity to view the proposed changes, speak with staff and provide feedback on the proposed fees.  

Public meetings:

§  Tuesday, June 13 from 2 to 4 p.m., City Hall, Committee Room 2, 100 Queen St. W.

§  Tuesday, June 20 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., North York Civic Centre, Council Chamber, 5100 Yonge St.

Live-streaming of the June 13 meeting will be available here

For residents unable to attend the meeting, input can be provided here

A report recommending a revised sidewalk café bylaw, updated guidelines and fees is expected to be submitted to a joint meeting of the Licensing and Standards and Public Works Committees this fall. 

If you are unable to attend, information will be posted online the day of the event. An online feedback form will also be provided for collecting opinions and comments. 

ORHMA & TORONTO PATIO FEES: The City of Toronto MLS Committee discussed patio fees in April – the Framework and Consultation Plan for a Harmonized Sidewalk Café and Marketing Bylaw (Item: LS18.2) This report aligns with, and supports, the Transportation Services' (TS) report entitled, A Framework for the Toronto Sidewalk Café Design Manual, which was presented to the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee on April 12, 2017. We must bring to your attention that the proposed change in the pedestrian clearance on sidewalks is a much more harmful standard and we are very concerned it will close many of existing patios including tourism hubs such as those located on the Danforth and on King street which support vibrancy and culinary tourism experiences which are keen ingredients in building a great city.  Please see letter from ORHMA to the Public Works & Infrastructure Committee that was submitted on this matter.

» Update on the LCBO Bargaining

Collective bargaining is currently ongoing between the LCBO and OPSEU Liquor Board Employees Division (LBED), the Union representing 8,100 of the LCBO's hourly employees.  Upon a request of OPSEU, the Ontario Ministry of Labour has issued No Board report. This means that the Union is in a legal strike position as of 12:01AM Monday, June 26, 2017. While this is not an uncommon step in the bargaining process, the LCBO have started to make arrangements to ensure that the licensee wholesale networks will be able to operate in the event of a strike to ensure continued service to their customers. The LCBO provides updates regarding their contingency plans as necessary. With a number of negotiation dates set in June the outcome remains to be seen. The LCBO Negotiations website ( is set up to provide timely information throughout this process. ORHMA will do its best to update our members on any information we receive directly.

» Government suspends anti-spam changes after receiving blowback from businesses and NGOs

Mobile Syrup  

New provisions of Canada’s anti-spam legislation (CASL) that were set to come into effect on July 1st have been suspended due to complaints from businesses and non-governmental organizations. The provisions would allow lawsuits to be filed against individuals and organizations for violations of the legislation, a change that concerned businesses and non-profits due to the fact that over a three-year transition period that began in 2014, those organizations were permitted to rely on a recipient’s implied consent to receive electronic messages, while ostensibly giving them time to obtain express consent. Read more


» Get your Sales up with Electronic Gift Cards from AnyCard

AnyCard is a digital marketing platform with a closed loop payment system for creating promotional offers and selling electronic gift cards. With a focus on the hospitality industry, AnyCard helps businesses effortlessly and affordably offer digital gift cards and launch new sales channels in minutes. Now AnyCard and ORHMA have partnered together to offer you exclusive savings including a no fee signup, preferred customer pricing, and free promotional credits when you register with AnyCard.  For more information, click here or visit


» Canadian Tourism Awards – Submit Your Nomination


TIAC is looking for the most outstanding businesses, places, events and people for the 2017 Canadian Tourism Awards! The Canadian Tourism Awards are the standard of excellence for the nation's travel industry, showcasing our country's best tourism products, services and experiences. They honour the people, places, organizations and events that have gone above and beyond to offer travellers superior tourism experiences in Canada.  Do you think you have what it takes? Read more.  

» Health and Safety 101 – Complimentary Webinar for ORHMA Members

Organizing a health and safety program can be an immense undertaking.  However, with the right knowledge and advice, a health and safety program can be an efficient part of your business’ success. So, what is health and safety all about, and how can you ensure it is implemented properly? This webinar will look at the basics of health and safety management and provide you with foundational knowledge to take the guess-work out of organizing a health and safety program. Read more.  

» Real Estate for Non Real Estate Professionals
Toronto Board of Trade

Real estate is a component of all businesses, whether as building owner, tenant, borrower under a mortgage, or someone just looking for space. In this session, participants will gain insights into the critical legal, regulatory, financial, and operational aspects of commercial real estate, from an owner’s, tenant’s and landlord’s point of view. Read more.  

» Wynne’s Minimum Wage Hike Will Kill Businesses
Toronto Sun

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne’s government has announced a whopping 31.6% increase to the minimum wage.  The hourly wage floor will climb from $11.40 today to $15 in 2019. In the days leading up to and following the decision, much analysis focused on the negative impact on low-skilled workers.  Economists and other analysts raised concerns that such workers would see their hours reduced, and that in the worst case, some employees would be let go altogether.  These are important implications of a minimum wage hike. Read more.  

» Minimum Wage Hike A Bad Deal For Businesses, Grocers Say
Canadian Grocer  

The Ontario government’s decision to raise the provincial minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2019 will lead to staff cuts and higher prices, while also negatively impacting service, the province’s independent grocers warn.  The Wynne government’s plan to raise the minimum wage from the current $11.40 an hour to $15 an hour by Jan. 1, 2019 drew applause from the Ontario Federation of Labour and advocacy groups such as Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. However, small grocery owners say the more than 30% wage hike is being implemented too quickly, and warn of adverse spin-off effects for their business and employees. Read More.  

» HITEC Toronto – Invitation to Hospitality Operators 

Do you qualify for a complimentary VIP Buyer's exhibit pass?

The VIP Buyers complimentary registration for HITEC Toronto includes access to the exhibit hall only. The complimentary show passes are valid for qualified buyers only, as defined by HITEC Management.

Qualified VIP Buyers are professionals employed by hotels, resorts, casinos, clubs, etc

Complimentary registrations cannot be used by suppliers/vendors, consultants; nor personnel, board members, dealers, distributors, subsidiaries, investors, partners/associates, or family members of exhibiting companies.

All registrations are subject to approval by HITEC Management and anyone that does not meet the qualifications will be declined.

The deadline to apply is June 20, 2017. Read more. 

» Interac® Debit on Android Pay launches in Canada

Consumers with debit cards issued by participating financial institutions can pay with Android Pay starting on Monday

Interac Association/Acxsys Corporation (“Interac”) announces the launch of Interac Debit on Android Pay. As part of Google’s rolling deployment, consumers with debit cards issued by BMO Financial Group*, CIBC*, Desjardins* and Scotiabank* will be able to pay using Android Pay starting on Monday, June 5, 2017. Interac Debit on Android Pay allows consumers to use their eligible Android device to make fast, secure and convenient mobile contactless transactions at hundreds of thousands of merchant locations across Canada where InteracFlash® contactless payments are already accepted. Read more.


» Ontario Foodservice Sales Growth – March 2017


Overall Ontario sales for the food services and drinking places industry showed an increase (+10.42%) from Mar 2016 to Mar 2017 .Total year on year growth is up at (+8.42%).

The full service sales in Mar 2017 showed an increase in growth from the previous year of Mar 2016  by (+14.69%) with limited service posting an increase of (+8.12%).

Drinking  places showed an increase in growth by (+8.74%) and special food services showed an increase compared with 2016  by (+4.68%).

In the month of Mar 2017 YTD, Full service places revenues increased from Mar 2016  YTD  by (+10.60%) with limited service also showing an increase of (+8.04%). Drinking places registered an increase of (+8.16%). Special services showed an increase YTD  by (+0.79%).


Sales for the food services and drinking places industry increased (+3.60%) from the previous month. In Mar,2 of the industry sectors posted increases compared with Feb. Special Food Services sector decreased by (-1.00) and Drinking places also showed a decrease of (-1.90%) The other two remaining sectors showed increases in the same time period. Full Service Restaurants Sector, increased by (+5.20%) and also Limited Service eating places showed an increase of (+3.40%).

  • Community Accessibility Forums 2017 – various locations and dates. Click  here  for more info and to register. 

  • You Got the Power - Event for Hospitality Operators - June 14, 2017 - International Centre - 7:30 am to 3:15pm - For more information, click here. 

  • ORHMA Provincial Annual General Meeting - Tuesday June 20, 2017- Nottawasaga Inn Resort and Conference Centre. All members welcome- For more information, click here. 

  • ORHMA 14thAnnual Golf Tournament- Save the Date!  Wednesday June 21, 2017 – Nottawasaga Inn Resort and Conference Centre. For participation details, click here.