John J. Kiru
Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas
As Covid – 19 continues to impact Kennedy Road business’s, the Ontario Government has outlined a number of initiatives and programs to help with support during this difficult time.
All programs and details for the current support programs can be accessed through the One-Window Portal to Small Business Supports at www.Ontario.ca/smallbusiness
Ontario’s Main Street Recovery Grant – This grant provides a one-time reimbursement of up to $1,000 for PPE costs for eligible small businesses with two to nine employees, in the retail, food and accommodation sectors, and other service sectors like repair and maintenance, personal and laundry services, to help them cover PPE costs.
Ontario’s Energy & Property Tax Rebates – Businesses that were required to shut down or significantly restrict services due to provincial public health measures (in areas with modified Stage 2 restrictions or categorized as control/red or lockdown/grey) can apply for rebates, provided in the form of grants, to cover municipal/education property taxes and energy costs (electricity/natural gas/propane/home heating oil).
Ontario’s COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program – a one time, on-bill credit to eligible small business and registered charity customers to help them catch up on their energy bills and resume regular payments. Small business and registered charity customers may be eligible for up to $850 in support towards their electricity bill if they primarily use electricity for heating, or up to $425 otherwise. Small business and registered charity customers could also be eligible for up to $425 in support towards their natural gas bill.
Ontario’s Digital Main Street Grant – provides Digital Transformation training and guidance and provides the opportunity for main street businesses to apply for a grant of up to $2,500 to help their business launch and expand online, supporting small business e-commerce growth.
Ontario’s Starter Company Plus Program – provides funding up to $5,000, one-on-one advice from a Small Business Advisor and 6 biweekly coaching sessions for businesses in their first 5 years in business. The program is accessed through the province’s 47 Small Business COVID-19 Recovery Network locations.
Through Ontario’s One-Window Portal to Small Business Supports at www.Ontario.ca/smallbusiness, businesses may also access:
- The Workplace PPE Supplier Directory, which provides businesses an up-to-date list of Ontario companies and business associations that are ready to supply personal protective equipment;
- Local advice through Ontario’s Small Business COVID-19 Recovery Network where small businesses can access tailored advice on local, provincial and federal programs;
- Sector-specific resources to help prevent COVID-19 in the workplace;
- Mental health and addictions supports;
- Government of Canada Small Business supports and resources;
- Free, tailored financial advice and online training to help businesses make informed financial decisions and navigate the unprecedented economic circumstances brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.