In an effort to flatten the second COVID-19 wave across Ontario, Huron-Bruce MPP Lisa Thompson said the Ontario government is taking the necessary steps to protect Ontarians.
“I have spoken with our local medical officers of health as well as our municipal leaders. I appreciate their understanding and support for this action,” said Thompson. She added, “the shutdown is necessary in order to continue our unconditional support of our frontline workers and hospital network.”
Recognizing the province-wide shutdown will impact small businesses, the provincial government will continue to provide a variety of supports to employers facing challenges as a result of COVID-19. The government will now be providing even more support to small businesses (with fewer than 100 employees) that are required to close or severely restrict their operations due to the necessary province-wide shutdown.
“This support will help ensure they can continue serving their communities and employing people once COVID-19 has been eradicated,” Thompson said, noting the decision to shutdown was not made lightly. “I know, and this government knows, that small businesses across Huron-Bruce and across the province have been seriously hurt during these challenging times. That is why we have created the New Ontario small business support grant.”
The grant will provide a minimum of $10,000 and up to $20,000 to help small business owners during the pandemic.
Small businesses required to close or restrict services under the province-wide shutdown will be able to apply for this one-time grant. Each small business will be able to use the support in whatever way makes the most sense for their individual business. For example, some businesses will need support paying employee wages or rent, while others will need support maintaining their inventory.
Eligible small businesses include those that:
- Are required to close or significantly restrict services due to the province-wide shutdown being imposed across the province effective 12:01 a.m. on December 26
- Have fewer than 100 employees at the enterprise level
- Have experienced a minimum of 20 per cent revenue decline in April 2020 compared to April 2019.
Starting at $10,000 for all eligible businesses, the grant will provide businesses with dollar for dollar funding to a maximum of $20,000 to help cover decreased revenue expected as a result of the shutdown. The business must demonstrate they experienced a revenue decline of at least 20 per cent when comparing monthly revenue in April 2019 and April 2020. Thompson said this time period was selected because it reflects the impact of the public health measures in spring 2020, and as such provides a representation of the possible impact of these latest measures on small businesses.
For small businesses not in operation in April 2019 or April 2020, eligibility criteria will be announced in January 2021.