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Recognition for National Volunteer Week
Medicine Hat Food Bank
"A number of our trusted volunteers were also some of the population that was most vulnerable to COVID-19. We would like to acknowledge the large amount of seniors who volunteer in our community as a way to keep connected and stay engaged and vital. We know that COVID-19 has been so very hard on you and on those organizations who relied on your generosity and time." - Medicine Hat and District Food Bank
Big Brothers Big Sisters
Big Brothers and Big Sisters is committed to providing every child in Medicine Hat who needs a mentor, a mentor. How has this worked during the COVID-19 pandemic? The organization and it’s volunteer mentors have got creative and found new ways to connect to keep supporting the littles in Medicine Hat and District with the support they need to reach their full potential. Watch how they're continuing to mentor during COVID-19
PPE Medicine Hat
PPE Medicine Hat is a community led initiative to source and distribute necessary PPE to our local community’s non healthcare essential front line staff. They have received some amazing donations from local (and non-local) businesses and community stakeholders.They also joined forces with a local sewing group who have sewn over 2000 masks for these organizations and other frontline essential staff in our community. Thank you for continuing to support our essential workers!
Our Board
Thank you to our Board of Directors for the selfless time they dedicate to our organization, contributing leadership and strategy to our direction and giving of their time and expertise to not only our organization, but also to our members during COVID-19. Help us thank and recognize them for all they do for our community!
Your Weekly Tune Up
Information For Business
Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy Opens
The CRA will open the application process for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy on April 27, 2020 and claims will be subject to verification by the CRA. The CRA will begin to release funds for approved applications on May 5, so make sure you are ready:
  1. Sign up for My Business Account or Represent a Client – Employers will be able to apply through these portals. You can watch this video for instructions on registering for My Business Account.
  2. Register for Direct Deposit for your payroll account (RP) – Employers who are not registered for direct deposit will receive their CEWS payment by cheque and additional time will be required for mail delivery. 
  3. Calculate your CEWS eligibility – The CEWS webpage includes a calculator function that guides employers through a step-by-step calculation of the CEWS and enables employers to determine the subsidy amount they can expect to claim based on the information that they enter into the calculator.
  4. If you are expecting a payment of $25 million or more, you will have to get your payment through the large value transfer system (LVTS). To do this, you have to be enrolled in direct deposit on your payroll account and be registered for the LVTS. If you are not already set up for LVTS, begin the registration process.
  5. Apply for the CEWS now – Applications are available through My Business AccountRepresent a Client, and through the CRA’s web form (with your web access code).
5 Steps for Business During COVID-19

Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance
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.

The program will provide forgivable loans to qualifying commercial property owners to cover 50 percent 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 that qualify
  • 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.
The program is anticipated to be running by mid-May and will be administered by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) . Further details on CECRA will be shared in the near future once final terms and conditions are available.

We understand that there are gaps with the CECRA and are working with the larger Chamber network and government to address the issues with this program.
Information For Individuals
Support For Students And Recent Graduates
The Government of Canada announced a series of programs directed toward students and recent graduates, including the newly proposed Canada Emergency Student Benefit (which still requires legislative approval). This benefit would provide $1,250 per month for eligible students or $1,750 per month for eligible students with dependents or disabilities . This benefit would be available from May to August 2020.
There are other measures announced for students and graduates. Read more .
Keep up with the latest
We know that right now it can be overwhelming with the amount of new information coming out each day. We've got you covered with our Chamber Daily COVID-19 Updates. All levels of government, all relevant info, all in one place every weeknight. We also have quick summary videos you can watch at the top of each post.
Information For Community
Support for COVID-19 Research and Vaccine Development
The Prime Minister announced more than $1 billion in support of a national medical research strategy to fight COVID-19 that includes vaccine development, the production of treatments, and tracking of the virus. This new funding builds on the $275 million investment for coronavirus research and medical countermeasures announced in March. The Government of Canada will invest in new medical countermeasures to better understand COVID-19, and develop the infrastructure needed to fight the virus here in Canada.  Read more
Advocacy in Action
Wins
  • Tax deferrals and flexibility on remittance payments
  • Wage subsidies
  • Access to credit and capital
  • Rental and lease supports
  • Additional income support options versus just deferrals and loans
  • Expansion of lay-off rules
  • Defining essential businesses, including agriculture, along with guidelines for essential businesses and non-essential businesses
  • Provision for corporations to quality for the wage subsidies
  • Expansion of the Canada Emergency Bank Account
  • Work options/opportunities and supports for students
Ongoing
  • Assistance in financing remote work options
  • Postponing government regulations and consultations not relevant to COVID-19
  • Utilizing the carbon levy program to provide a benefit back to businesses
  • Defining reasonable and realistic pay back options for those who use deferrals
  • Inclusion of dividends (T5 income) as an eligible payroll calculation
  • Consideration for the payment to contractors as potential eligible payroll expense
  • Expansion of the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program to provide greater support to tenants, particularly those where the property owner does not have a mortgage on the property
Helpful Webinars
WTF: What To Feel When Stressors Collide.

April 29, 2020
Leadership Communications .

How to get through the crisis with an online strategy
April 30,2020
See our Pandemic Training Calendar for more
More Resources
Support Local
Our Support Local page is a way to connect businesses, who are still operating, to their community. Send your hours of operation and promotions to membership@medicinehatchamber.com.
Every business owner and employee can join for supports and information. We will be providing daily live speaker presentations at 7:30 am each weekday morning with business tips and news.

Stay At Home Gala
Community Foundation presents the Stay at Home Gala across Southeast Alberta. A one-of-a-kind Stay at Home Gala will be hosted online across Southeast Alberta, May 2nd at 5:30 pm . The virtual gala will join hundreds of Canadians across the country and will host all the familiar elements of a gala: optional dinner (delivered to your door), game-changing speakers, silent auction, and much more. Register and learn more
Driving Business Forward
Our business community has shown their ability to adapt and to come up with new and innovative approaches to delivering and conducting business during COVID-19. Every year our Leading Edge Award recognizes a business/organization that has developed a process, product or service that is original, innovative and is directly contributing to profitability and/or market share through the development (or application) of better or more effective products, processes, services, or technologies.
We are grateful for our award sponsor Terralta Inc. who were on the leading edge by investing in renewable energy in the early 2000’s before the idea of sustainable energy was popular in Southern Alberta. ENMAX has joined them in their sponsorship and is committed to helping Terralta Inc. deliver their services.
Do you know of a company that is forward thinking and leading edge? Nominate them today!
All nominations are also forwarded to the Alberta Chamber's Business Awards of Distinction. Click here to see this year's finalists including Greg's Drugs Ltd, QinetiQ Target Systems Canada, Mavericks Baseball Club, Being Human Services, and LimeLitez Dance Academy representing Medicine Hat!
Sparking Conversation
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