Prime Minister announces partnerships with provinces and territories to deliver the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance for small businesses
Small businesses across the country are the backbone of our communities, and they are now facing significant challenges. That is why the Government of Canada and provincial and territorial partners are taking strong, immediate, and effective action to protect Canadians and businesses from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are introducing significant measures to support them and ensure they have the resources to make it through these difficult times.
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today announced that the federal government has reached an agreement in principle with all provinces and territories to implement the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) for small businesses. This program will lower rent by 75% for small businesses that have been affected by COVID-19.
The government is also providing further details on the program:
· The program will provide forgivable loans to qualifying commercial property owners to cover 50 per cent of three monthly rent payments that are payable by eligible small business tenants who are experiencing financial hardship during April, May, and June.
· The loans will be forgiven if the mortgaged property owner agrees to reduce the eligible small business tenants’ rent by at least 75 per cent for the three corresponding months under a rent forgiveness agreement, which will include a term not to evict the tenant while the agreement is in place. The small business tenant would cover the remainder, up to 25 per cent of the rent.
· Impacted small business tenants are businesses paying less than $50,000 per month in rent and who have temporarily ceased operations or have experienced at least a 70 per cent drop in pre-COVID-19 revenues. This support will also be available to non-profit and charitable organizations.
“We recognize commercial rents are a major cost for our small businesses and they need support now to make it through the COVID-19 crisis. We’ll need our small, local businesses to be there when we get to the other side of this pandemic and the new Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program will help make that possible.”- Terry Sheehan, MP
Today’s announcement is part of the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, which is addressing the challenges facing Canadians and their employers during this time of global uncertainty. The government continues to assess and respond to the impacts of COVID-19, and stands ready to take additional actions as needed to stabilize the economy and mitigate the impacts of the pandemic.
“We are pleased to see that the Federal Government is bringing forward a critical program like rent relief. Rent obligations have been a major point anxiety for businesses and this program aims to alleviate this. The business community and Chamber network continues to work across the country with great Federal MPs like Terry Sheehan, MPs that are strong business advocates and leaders of their community. These types of measures are not only critical to ensuring the quick recovery of our economy but most importantly ensuring the health and wellbeing of our businesses and their employees and families.” – Rory Ring, CEO, SSMCOC