July 16 | 2020
B.C. Forecasting Staggering $12.5 B Deficit - Due to COVID-19
The Province of British Columbia has released an economic and fiscal update for 2020-21 to provide a summary of COVID-19 investments to date, as well as a scenario of revenue and deficit projections. T his spending totals $6.26 billion in COVID-19 supports to date, including supplementary spending for BC's COVID-19 Action Plan supports, in addition to other tax and relief measures for people and businesses. As part of the COVID-19 Action Plan, $1.5 billion has been earmarked for economic recovery measures to be announced in September.
LAST CALL: B.C. Citizens Invited to Have Say on Recovery Expenditures
Now until Tuesday July 21st, you are invited to share your feedback as the province continues with its economic recovery progra m. The Province has provided a few ways you can share your ideas and priorities through the links below:
  • An online survey to provide answers to questions and give advice HERE.
  • Respond to the paper: Building BC's Recovery, Together. Responses can be submitted to recoveryideas@gov.bc.ca
Are you Up to Date with WorkSafeBC Guidelines/Requirements?
Across all industries, it is important to stay up to date on safety protocols as we navigate through re-opening and Phase 3. The most up-to-date information can be accessed on the  WorkSafeBC Website HERE.
Packaged Liquor in Restaurants & Bars gets Extension to October 31, 2020
The BC Government is extending the temporary authorization that permits food-primary and liquor-primary licensees to sell and deliver sealed, packaged liquor products alongside the purchase of a meal for off-site consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic. The authorization, originally set to expire July 15, 2020, will remain in place until Oct. 31, 2020.
Patio Extension Program Draws Record Numbers of Pedestrians to Bernard Ave.
With the City's Patio Extension Program now well under way, counters are seeing large increases of pedestrians to the area. In fact, the area has seen a 67.5% increase in pedestrian traffic over 2019, and it is believed that this is a result of the road closure to vehicles. The move was meant to help businesses be more sustainable while allowing for more room for people to safely adhere to social distancing protocols. If you are interesting in exploring something similar just contact the city for options and details.
Interior Savings Announces Community Relief Fund Grant Recipients
When the team at Interior Savings launched their Community Relief Fund, they didn't know what to expect. They were blown away by the 99 applications that they received, in addition to members investing in the Community Impact Term Deposit, which triggered a maximum contribution to grow the fund to $150,000 . These funds will make a difference in the community by providing 45 non-profit organizations grants from $1,500 to $7,000, to nourish and connect our communities by providing food assistance, technology, PPE and more.
TOTA & Industry Partners Launch Eco Efficiency Program
The Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association (TOTA) is working in partnership with FortisBC and GreenStep Solutions to improve operational efficiencies and reduce costs for tourism businesses within the Thompson Okanagan region.

The newly launched Eco Efficiency Program will connect industry with cost-saving measures in order to overcome the challenges of COVID-19. The program will provide complimentary Eco and Energy Efficiency Assessments that identify ways for tourism businesses to cut costs.
United Way & Local Partners Announce Sustainable Recovery Grant Recipients
On Monday, United Way Southern Interior BC (SIBC), alongside local partners, announced the recipients of a new grant stream designed to address the emerging and sustainability needs of charities due to COVID-19. The pandemic has significantly impacted the charitable sector and this funding stream will provide entrepreneurial coaching and support for charities, focused on building sustainability and resilience in four areas: operations, people, impact and revenue. The recipients will receive one-time grant funding for 6-12 months of customized coaching and support through Purppl’s Resilience & Recovery Program. 
Canadian Survey on Business Conditions: Current Impact of COVID-19 on Businesses
The second wave of the Canadian Survey on Business Conditions (CSBC), a joint effort with the Canadian Chamber of Commerce and Statistics Canada, was released yesterday, providing new insights into the longer-term impact of COVID-19 on Canadian businesses.

The second survey data shows businesses are adapting to a distinctly new, paradoxical phase of the pandemic, where businesses reopen because they can no longer afford to remain closed, but struggle to break even while paying for pre-COVID level costs with significantly reduced revenues.
Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) Extended Until December
Monday the Government of Canada announced its  intention to extend the CEWS program until December.   Further details are expected before the end of this week. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce suggests that while news of the extension is positive, a successful program update must also expand revenue eligibility and provide absolute clarity and consistency about the criteria for eligibility as too many businesses are still uncertain about their ability to qualify for the program.
5 Minutes for Business: Recovering our Workforce Through Inclusivity
In a span of a few months, our country went from one of the tightest job markets in recent history to record unemployment and reduced hours with an unprecedented rapidity. As we reopen across the country and move into recovery, we know that available jobs and the skills required will shift. So, what is the role of business in an inclusive recovery? Read the Canadian Chamber's blog to find out!
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