COVID-19 Update
(March 19, 2020)
Yesterday, the federal government announced new measures being introduced to support businesses through the COVID-19 situation. The statement contains some pertinent information for our members.

The Canadian Chamber has prepared the following points that are of utmost importance to small businesses:

  • Allowing all businesses to defer, until after August 31, 2020, the payment of any income tax amounts that become owing on or after today and before September 2020.
  • The Canada Revenue Agency will not contact any small or medium Canada business to initiate any post assessment GST/HST or Income Tax audits for the next four weeks. For the vast majority of businesses, the Canada Revenue Agency will temporarily suspend audit interaction with taxpayers and representatives.
  • To support small businesses that are facing revenue losses and to help prevent lay-offs, the government is proposing to provide eligible small employers a temporary wage subsidy for a period of three months. The subsidy will be equal to 10% of remuneration paid during that period, up to a maximum subsidy of $1,375 per employee and $25,000 per employer.
  • Increasing the credit available to small, medium, and large Canadian businesses. As announced on March 13, a new Business Credit Availability Program will provide more than $10 billion of additional support to businesses experiencing cash flow challenges through the Business Development Bank of Canada and Export Development Canada.
  • Provide flexibility on the Canada Account limit, to allow the government to provide additional support to Canadian businesses, when deemed to be in the national interest, to deal with exceptional circumstances.

Small and medium-sized Canadian businesses should explore these measures with their existing business service partners. More information on such support programs will be available through the Canadian Chamber network, the Business Development Bank of Canada and Export Development Canada in the coming days.

Enterprise Canada has put together a summary of the measures announced, and when they are scheduled to take effect.

WE NEED YOUR FEEDBACK: We continue to actively gather feedback from our member businesses and organizations, and will compile our results to share (anonymously) with both chamber umbrella organizations (like the Ontario and Canadian Chambers of Commerce) and local government representatives. **Please take this short survey and let us know what your business is experiencing, and what help and supports you need.

The Grimsby DIA has arranged a webinar on Marketing Through the COVID-19 Crisis with marketing expert Dave Farrow. Dave sees the self-imposed isolation as an opportunity to maximize on your communication channels now that people have significantly more time to be at home, go on social media, and watch television. “The one silver lining for business is that this is an unprecedented opportunity to reach out to a captive audience,” said Dave. He will share tips and strategies for small businesses to stay profitable during this unprecedented time. The webinar will take place on Friday, March 20 at 8:30 am ( Click here for the direct link; Meeting ID: 241 729 6212). Thank you to the Town of Grimsby and the DIA team for extending the webinar invitation to all businesses in West Niagara, free of charge!

We remain committed to providing accurate, verified, and relevant information to our members, and the business community. Please visit our website for links to additional resources, and don't hesitate to contact us.
We would like to reiterate that social distancing is of critical importance for your own safety, for those who are most vulnerable to the virus, and for our healthcare system. We understand that social distancing will impact business, but as your Chamber, we are committed to supporting our members through this uncertain time. Please take a moment to complete the survey to ensure that we are supporting you in meaningful ways for your business!

We're all in this together!

- Grimsby & District Chamber of Commerce Staff and Board of Directors