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MPP Smith encourages business owners to apply for $10-$20,000 support grant

MPP Todd Smith

Todd Smith, MPP for Bay of Quinte, encourages businesses negatively impacted through the COVID-19 pandemic to apply for the new Ontario Small Business Support Grant.

The grant, first announced last month, provides a minimum of $10,000 to a maximum of $20,000 to eligible small businesses who have had to restrict operations due to a province-wide shutdown enacted to stop the rise of COVID-19 cases that could threaten health-care system capacity.

“We’ve asked our business owners to make sacrifices in the interest of protecting the public’s health and safety during the global pandemic,” said Smith. “Our government must do what it can to support these businesses through this challenging time. I’m pleased to see the portal is now open at ontario.ca/covidsupport and I encourage small business owners to visit, learn about the funding available, and apply.”

Small businesses who have been required to close or significantly restrict their services under the current province-wide shutdown will be able to apply for a one-time grant. They will be able to determine the best use of the funding, whether it be used to pay for employee wages, rent, inventory, or promotions and logistics.

Eligible small businesses include those that:
Were required to close or significantly restrict services due to the province-wide shutdown imposed across the province as of 12:01 a.m. Dec. 26.
Have fewer than 100 employees at the enterprise level.
Have experienced a minimum 20-per-cent revenue decline in April 2020 compared to April 2019. New businesses established since April 2019 will also be eligible if they meet other eligibility criteria.

Businesses that were required to close prior to the introduction of the province-wide shutdown and businesses currently permitted to open for in-person retailing with capacity restrictions will not be eligible.

Smith indicated businesses impacted by the province-wide shutdown are are also eligible for additional supports, including the government’s program to provide rebates to offset fixed costs such as property taxes and energy bills.

Ontario is also providing a range of free digital counselling and technical support through its Digital Main Street program (digitalmainstreet.ca) and a one-time grant for businesses in eligible sectors with fewer than 10 employees to offset unexpected personal protective equipment costs.

The new support for Ontario’s small businesses is part of the more than $13.5 billion allocated in supports for people and jobs outlined in the 2020 budget Ontario’s Action Plan: Protect, Support, and Recover (budget.ontario.ca).

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