Today the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance announced that the government intends to extend the current rate structures for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) until June 5, 2021. Further, given that we are approaching a full year of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government has announced that applicants would be able to continue to use a pre-pandemic 2019 reference month, effective for the upcoming periods from March 14 to June 5, 2021.
This is a big win for our sector and has been HAC’s top advocacy priority in recent months. We are pleased that Government has listened to our concerns and has extended these critical federal support programs during a time in which it is needed most.
The specific details of today’s announcement are as follows:
- The maximum base wage subsidy rate for active employees would remain at 40 per cent, and the maximum top-up wage subsidy rate for employers most adversely impacted by the pandemic would remain at 35 per cent. As such, the maximum combined wage subsidy rate would remain at 75 per cent.
- The maximum rent subsidy rate would remain at 65 per cent.
- Lockdown Support would remain at 25 per cent and continue to be provided in addition to the rent subsidy, providing eligible hard hit businesses with rent support of up to 90 per cent.
- To ensure that the wage subsidy for furloughed employees remains aligned with benefits available under Employment Insurance (EI), and that workers are provided with equitable treatment between the two programs, the weekly wage subsidy for a furloughed employee, from March 14 to June 5, 2021, would remain the same and continue to be the lesser of:
- the amount of eligible remuneration paid in respect of the week; and
- the greater of:
- $500; and
- 55 per cent of pre-crisis remuneration for the employee, up to a maximum subsidy amount of $595.
- Hoteliers would also continue to be entitled to claim under the wage subsidy their portion of contributions in respect of the Canada Pension Plan, EI, the Quebec Pension Plan and the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan for furloughed employees.
Effective for the upcoming periods from March 14 to June 5, 2021, hoteliers would be able to use a pre-pandemic 2019 reference month to compare current revenue losses
HAC is pleased to have achieved extended federal support for our sector and will continue to keep you informed on further developments.