New funds available for businesses left out of federal programs
Local businesses that were unable to access existing federal COVID-19 relief measures can now apply for funding under a new Government of Canada initiative, the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF).
“The COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult and challenging for our businesses, residents and communities. At the county level we are investigating options to support our local businesses and their employees and we’re pleased that our local businesses impacted by the pandemic have another funding stream available to them to help alleviate pressures and financial burdens. Government at all levels are here to support our businesses and communities to ensure the best economic, health and social recovery possible,” said County of Simcoe Warden George Cornell.
With $962 million announced nationally and $252 million marked for Southern Ontario alone, the RRRF will support Simcoe County small and medium sized businesses that do not qualify for or have not been able to receive funding from current Government of Canada COVID-19 relief measures.
In order to provide targeted assistance to the small towns and communities in the County of Simcoe, local CFDCs will administer the funding and focus on assisting “main street” businesses, such as retail shops, restaurants, corner stores, and businesses of strategic importance to our communities, with interest-free loans up to $40,000. Support is available to businesses operated by sole-proprietors, corporations and partnerships.
Staff at the local Community Futures offices are available to walk people through the application process. Please visit the County of Simcoe’s Economic Development website for more information on eligibility and the nearest office.
Should a business be interested in a loan of $40,000 or more and meet the eligibility criteria outlined on FedDev Ontario’s website, it may wish to apply to FedDev Ontario.
Through the County of Simcoe’s Phase 2 COVID-19 Business Impact Survey, 56 per cent of respondents indicated that Financial Grants/Cash Flow/ Emergency Funds are what they need the most, at this uncertain time, from government.
The COVID-19 Business Survey 2.0 ran from April 24 to May 8 and received 481 responses from local businesses.
The survey results for Phase 1 are now available online and can be viewed at edo.simcoe.ca/Pages/COVID-19-Business-Survey.aspx
After analyzing feedback, the County of Simcoe and area partners have incorporated updates into their action plan that contains numerous initiatives under six categories, including: financial support; business outreach; support and resources; workforce alignment; economic development network collaboration and research; business promotion; and potential broader economic stimulus.