Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Monday, June 29, 2020, that the federal government will extend its flagship rent-relief program for entrepreneurs by a month, as the original three-month eligibility window comes to a close on July 1.
Despite the gradual reopening of Canada’s provincial economies, most small businesses have yet to fully re-open as they take precautions for the safety of staff and customers, further straining their ability to pay bills. The extension through July is expected to relieve pressure as entrepreneurs adjust to reopening.
Small businesses across Canada were among the first to see revenue collapse amid economic shutdown measures in March, and they struggled to pay many bills, the biggest of which was often rent. The federal government took nearly six weeks to announce the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program in late April. It gives entrepreneurs 75-per-cent relief towards their rent costs for April, May and June. Applications opened in late May.
Tenants are eligible for CECRA if they pay less than $50,000 in rent, have less than $20-million in gross annual revenue and have seen at least a 70-per-cent drop in revenue from the pandemic.