Earlier this month, federal Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland announced the end of broad-based support programs intended to support businesses through the economic turbulence of the pandemic. This includes the wage subsidy, rent subsidy and Lockdown Support programs. In addition, the government announced the following changes:
- Extend the Canada Recovery Hiring Program until May 7, 2022, for eligible employers with current revenue losses above 10 per cent and increase the subsidy rate to 50 per cent. The extension would help businesses continue to hire back workers and to create the additional jobs Canada needs for a full recovery.
- Deliver targeted support to businesses that are still facing significant pandemic-related challenges. Support would be available through two streams:
- Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program, which would provide support through the wage and rent subsidy programs, to hotels, tour operators, travel agencies, and restaurants, with a subsidy rate of up to 75 per cent.
- Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program, which would provide support through the wage and rent subsidy programs, would support other businesses that have faced deep losses, with a subsidy rate of up to 50 per cent.
- Applicants for these programs will use a new “two-key” eligibility system whereby they will need to demonstrate significant revenue losses over the course of 12 months of the pandemic, as well as revenue losses in the current month.
- Businesses that face temporary new local lockdowns will be eligible for up to the maximum amount of the wage and rent subsidy programs, during the local lockdown, regardless of losses over the course of the pandemic.
- These programs will be available until May 7, 2022, with the proposed subsidy rates available through to March 13, 2022. From March 13, 2022, to May 7, 2022, the subsidy rates will decrease by half.
For more information on these changes and how they affect your business, please visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2021/10/targeting-covid-19-support-measures.html.