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Gateway Co-op holds 2023 annual information meetings

The Gateway Coop, Preeceville and Sturgis branches hosted its community annual general meeting with new delegates voted in.

STURGIS - During the week of April 30 to May 2, 2024, Gateway Co-op held their Annual Information Meetings to review the 2023 fiscal year. The Canora District Meeting was held Tuesday evening at the Rainbow Hall in Canora with Board Chair, Lyle Olson chairing the meeting.

Financial report

Heather Prestie, office manager, led off with the financial report. She indicated that MNP had been appointed as the auditors for the year, and their audit opinion that the financial statement presents fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of Gateway Co-op as at the year-end date of Jan. 31, 2024.

“The balance sheet indicating that current assets increased approximately $1.5 million with the majority of this increase due to an increase in special deposit,” reported Prestie. “Members share capital increased $42,000 which was as a result of the current year allocation being netted with equity repayments of $987,000 that were paid during the fiscal year.”

Prestie said memberships continue to rise with 294 new memberships being sold during the year. Sales decreased to $48,922,284 and margins increased to 16.5 per cent. After operating expenses, the local savings amounted to $223,893. The allocation from Federated Co-operatives Limited totaled $1,405,086 for a net savings after income tax of $1,550,765. Approximately $986,000 will be allocated to the membership.

General manager’s report

General Manager Brad Chambers began his report by noting that “Fiscal 2023 saw sales finish the year at $48.9 million, which is a slight decrease from fiscal 2022 with deflation in fuel prices. Non-fuel locations saw growth throughout the year.”

Chambers specified that “The Canora Deli lead the increases at the Canora Food Store with half a year of very strong fried chicken sales. The team continues to supply our members with high quality product and has been the top sales location in CRS (Co-operative Retailing System) east zone multiple weeks.”

Chambers went on to highlight items of interest from the other operating locations.

At the Canora C-Store, work has begun with Federated Co-operatives Facilities, Design and Development to get drawings to convert the building south of the C-Store to a carwash facility. In Buchanan, work was done to refresh the look of the pumps and replace the diesel pump with a high-speed pump.

In Sturgis, sales continue to be strong having seen real growth throughout the entire site. The “The Board of Directors has approved a set of drawings for the new store in Sturgis and we are currently working with the design team to have a set of blueprints created for the new facility,” continued Chambers. “Once finalized, we will be moving to the tender process and will begin construction of the new site.”

The Preeceville location continues to see growth as well. Chambers noted, “With the strong harvest that we experienced last year we sold our entire stock of grain bins, which is a first and added half a million dollars in sales to the location.”

In addition, the team in Preeceville has added major appliances as a product line.

“We have a selection of fridges, freezers, dishwashers, stoves and washer-dryer sets on hand from various manufacturers so our members can get what they need right away without having to travel to the city,” concluded Chambers.

Board chair report

The final report of the evening was presented by Board Chair, Lyle Olson. Lyle introduced the members of the Board of Directors that were present at the meeting and highlighted the Board’s responsibilities. He covered similar information as previous reports but also reported the allocation rates of 3.5 per cent for petroleum and propane products, 2.0 per cent on food, 2.0 per cent on hardware, lumber and agro, and 0.5 per cent on Liquor. 

Olson advised that a 30 per cent general repayment was approved by the Board of Directors. “Members should expect to see equity statements and general repayment cheques being distributed the week after the May long weekend in conjunction with barbecue events in each community.”

Olson noted that the Board had done a lot of work on updating the policy manual for the Co-operative as there were many policies that were outdated or needed to be updated for the new electronic age.

The other focus of his presentation was on investments into assets that have been made during the year.

“We have purchased a heavy duty F350 truck and trailer unit to facilitate deliveries from the Home Centre and the Board has approved the installation of a new venting system in the Canora Deli so you can once again smell the fresh bakery rather than just fried chicken,” said Olson. “Gateway Co-op has made donations amounting to over $43,000 to local organizations throughout the 2023 fiscal year.”

Olson thanked management and staff for the great effort to serve members and thanked the members for their continued support and patronage.


The podium was then turned over to Brad Chambers to complete the election of delegates. The Canora District had four positions up for election since there was no election during the last annual meeting or the special meeting held in November. Elections for the four delegates were completed with Alfonse Tratch and Terry Zavislak being elected for three-year terms, Pat Popoff was elected for a two-year term, and Holly Masters for a one-year term. The fifth member of the Canora Delegate body is Tammy Bobyk. The evening concluded with a draw for a $500 gift card.

The Preeceville and Sturgis District Meetings were held at the Sturgis & District Hall on Wednesday evening. The reports presented were the same as those in Canora the previous evening. The Preeceville Delegate election was for one three-year term, but since there were no nominations, the position was left vacant. The Preeceville Delegates are: Duane Karcha, Robert Lebo, Michelle Bednarz, and Lyle Olson.

Elections for Sturgis Delegates resulted in Carla Keller and Janet Melnick returning to the delegate body by acclimation. The other three delegates in Sturgis are: Chad Rose, Kim McLeod and Perry Keller. The evening concluded with draws for one $500 gift card per district.

The final meeting was held Thursday evening in Buchanan. The election of delegates saw Trish Shewchuk acclaimed to the delegate body as returning member and Heather Wiebe was acclaimed as a new member to the delegate body. The remaining delegates in Buchanan are Eric Sorestad, Derk Vander Voort, and Tammy Senholt. A draw for a $500 gift card concluded the evening.