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"If people could stay here for two or three years and be sponsored by companies based on their performance I'd say that could be a great benefit for Canadian companies."
Brown said his department had recently dealt with an immigration case that meant a lot to Whistler-Blackcomb.
"We rarely go through the effort (of sponsoring) for an individual because the process is so rigorous," he said.
"You have to show that you've performed a rigorous nation-wide recruiting search, which includes showing the newspaper clippings, to prove you're not displacing Canadian workers.
"Then you have to show that you've put training programs in place so you can train people for that job, so the application process can become uneconomical unless you're part of a really rare skill set.
"We thought we had a really strong case in our IT section recently because the guy had basically set up a new program for us and he was the only one who knew all about it, but it (the application) was rejected."
Another concern for local businesses is the expected labour shortages leading up to the 2010 Olympics.
Brown said Whistler-Blackcomb was well placed to cope with the onslaught of people and competitors during the Olympics but he admitted it was hard watching staff leave every year.
"These aren't just workers, they're our friends that you get to know and many of them are a great fit culturally, so it's a real drag, frankly, when they have to leave," he said.
Paul Giroux from Immigration Canada said people could avoid having to leave by studying the information on the immigration Canada Web site at www.cic.gc.ca .
"Most people can't apply for permanent residence from within Canada but there are some exceptions to that rule so that's why the best way to find out is to look at the Web site," Giroux said.
With regards to costs, Giroux said an application for a permanent visa costs around $1,600.
"For a permanent residence visa, it's $550 for the principle application and. then it's $50 for the permanent resident card," he said.
"The other cost is for the acquisition of your permanent resident status and that costs $975, but this can also be waived in exceptional circumstances.
"I would say that applying to be a permanent resident is a great option for most people because you get all the same rights as every other Canadian except you don't get a passport and you don't vote."
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