December 4, 2020
The City of Spruce Grove
ECONOMIC & BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT NEWS
Keeping you informed!
Our Economic & Business Development Department's newsletter keeps you informed about new development, new business, and other interesting happenings in our City. We make every effort to update our COVID-19 Resource Page and ensure that the information is current and relevant.

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ALBERTA'S RELAUNCH STRATEGY: STAGE 2
A STATE OF PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY

On November 24th, the Alberta Government declared a Public Health Emergency in efforts to protect the health care system from COVID-19. This will be in place for 3 weeks and re-evaluated in mid-December. More information can be found at www.alberta.ca/enhanced-public-health-measures.aspx.
Our business community has been significantly impacted by the most recent measures implemented by the Province of Alberta. The City of Spruce Grove has compiled relevant information as well as COVID-19 FAQs for businesses.
NEW DEVELOPMENTS

New developments in Spruce Grove will be featured in each newsletter.
💡 ⚡ FORTIS ALBERTA 🏦
FortisAlberta is constructing their new facility at 60 Mica Link in Spruce Grove. This 21,000SF building is being developed on a 4.75AC site with construction expected to be complete by end of February 2021. 
 
FortisAlberta has been operating out of their Spruce Grove Diamond Avenue location for over 50 years. Their new Mica Link development will replace their existing location with 40 employees relocating to this new Fortis-owned facility. These employees include Power Line Technicians who are dispatched to trouble calls and maintenance requirements in the area, Metering and Safety Technicians, Designers & Engineers, Forestry Personnel, and Office Professionals.
 
FortisAlberta delivers safe and reliable electricity to more than half a million customers, and serves over 240 communities with 124,000km of distribution power lines across Alberta.
COVID-19 SUPPORT PROGRAMS
NEW: Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) - This program provides commercial rent and mortgage support to qualifying organizations affected by the pandemic. The lockdown support allows organizations affected by the mandatory public health order to receive an additional 25% of support. Qualifying renters and property owners will receive payment without requiring the participation of landlords.

NEW: Innovation Employment Grant - To promote investment and diversification, Alberta is expecting to launch this grant on January 1, 2021 as part of Alberta's Recovery Plan. Companies can receive up to 20% towards qualifying research and development expenditures. The grant will be phased out for firms with between $10M and $50M in taxable capital and will provide benefits on up to $4M in annual R&D spending.

➡ Changes to the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) - The application process is closed. Eligible individuals will transition to one of the following:

  • Employment Insurance (EI) - Individuals have transitioned from CERB to EI to provide support to those who remain unable to work while introducing a new suite of temporary and taxable recovery benefits.

  • Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) - Individuals not eligible for EI, can apply for income support through the CRB program. Individuals can receive $1,000 for a 2-week period and may apply up to 13 periods between September 27, 2020 - September 25, 2021.

EXPANDED: Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) - The CEBA application program has been expanded from $40,000 to $60,000. In addition to the $40,000 interest-free loan, businesses and non-profits impacted by COVID-19 will now be able to access an additional interest-free loan of up to $20,000. Applicants have until March 31st, 2021 to apply.

EXPANDED: Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) - This program has been extended to June 2021. Applications for claim period 9 are now open, where the maximum subsidy rate remains at 65% (40% base rate + 25% top-up). Businesses can use the new top-up calculation or the previous 3-month average drop, depending on what works in their favor. The application deadline is January 31, 2021 or 180 days after the end of the claim period.

EXTENDED: Work Sharing Program - This program has been extended from 38 weeks to 76 weeks for employers. The mandatory cooling off period has been waived, and eligible employers may immediately enter into a new agreement. Eligibility has been expanded to include businesses who have been in business for 1 year and staff who are essential to recovery.

EXPANDED: Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) - The RRRF has expanded to provide additional interest-free repayable funding of up to $1,000,000 for more Western small and medium-sized businesses.

Alberta has committed up to $200M in funding for the program, which provides a one-time payment to organizations that saw a 40% revenue reduction in April or May 2020 due to the pandemic. Amounts are calculated based on 15% of eligible pre-COVID-19 monthly revenue up to a maximum of $5,000 per business, cooperative, or non-profit organization. Applications will be open until March 31, 2021 unless otherwise communicated, and will be implemented in the following phases:

  • CLOSED - Phase 1: Any company that met the 40% threshold was able to apply for the grant on November 23rd.

  • UPCOMING - Phase 2: Companies will be able to apply for a second round of funding. More details will become available in the coming weeks.
SUPPORT LOCAL
The Greater Parkland Regional Chamber of Commerce's #KeepTheCheerHere highlights the importance of shopping locally by allowing small business owners to express their thoughts when their products or services get purchased.
Welcome to our new Spruce Grove businesses!
Dani + Madi is a new clothing boutique that carries casual wear, athleisure wear, dresses, jumpers, footwear, purses, jewelry, and other accessories.
Pretty Little Industries has expanded to include their new store, So Pretty, which now offers soaps and lotions. Be sure to check them out at Century Crossing!
Thank you to our existing businesses!
Raggs to Riches continues to connect the past to the present by offering vintage items, antiques, and giftware.
Gifts and Gadgets offers high quality kitchen and giftware items that reflect on the locations history and personality.
OTHER NEWS

Bill 48: The Red Tape Reduction Implementation Act - Alberta will impose changes, making it easier for businesses to operate while saving job creators time and money. This bill proposes 12 changes across 8 ministries that will speed up approvals and reduce wait times.

Spruce Grove Building Permit Summaries Year to Date - The City of Spruce Grove has released its latest permit activity reports for November 2020.
To learn more about economic and business development in Spruce Grove, visit our website at InvestSpruceGrove.ca. If you have any questions, please email a team member at Invest@SpruceGrove.org.

Thank you for your engagement.
Together, we play an important role in keeping our community healthy and safe.

From our team to yours,
Dave, Karla, Jamie-Lynn, & Anika
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