General News

January 19, 2022

City of Burlington and Team Burlington Calling for the Federal and Provincial Governments to Support the Survival of Small Businesses During Modified Step 2 of the Roadmap to Reopen.

Burlington, Ont. – January 19th, 2022 – On January 14th, 2022, Team Burlington (Burlington Economic Development, Burlington Chamber of Commerce, Tourism Burlington, Burlington Downtown Business Association, and Aldershot Village BIA) and the City of Burlington, with guidance from the Burlington Economic Recovery Network (BERN) sent a letter to Premier Ford asking for additional support for businesses affected by the recent Ontario public health restrictions.  

When the Province of Ontario entered Modified Step 2 of the Roadmap to Reopen on January 5, 2022, the restrictions forced many small businesses to either close their doors or significantly decrease their capacity until January 26, 2022.  These closures and corresponding drop in revenues will exacerbate the issues that all main street businesses are facing to survive the long-term impacts of COVID-19.  With over half of Burlington’s businesses taking on more debt due to COVID-19 at levels that they may not be able to sustain, immediate cash infusions are needed to ensure their survival.  

In addition, many of Burlington’s essential employers who support our critical supply chain infrastructure are struggling with how to create a safe work environment with a lack of access to both Rapid and PCR testing.  These employers are not able to pivot their workforces to remote work as they produce the essential products that Ontarians need to survive.    

At the January 11, 2022, Burlington City Council meeting, the resolution (link) was passed, in partnership with the Burlington Economic Recovery Network (BERN) and Team Burlington, calling on the Provincial government to:  

  • Extend the Small Business Support Grant for a third round targeted towards all businesses whose revenues are directly and/or indirectly impacted by current public health restrictions. Eligibility should include businesses previously eligible for the Ontario Tourism and Travel Small Business Support Grant and businesses losing revenue as a result of restrictions affecting their clients (e.g. food service suppliers).   
  • Work with the Federal government to increase rental subsidies provided under the newly expanded Local Lockdown Program similar to the enhanced Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program for businesses directly or indirectly impacted by public health restrictions.   
  • Immediately open the recently announced portal which would allow businesses to access rebates for property taxes and utilities, accompanied by rapid disbursements for eligible business expenses.   
  • Expand access to Rapid Antigen tests and PCR testing, with priority given to Ontarians unable to work from home, both to limit unnecessary isolation time and allow workers to demonstrate eligibility for paid sick days and other supports.   
  • Work with financial institutions and the Federal government to forgive loans for businesses most severely impacted by public health restrictions.   
  • Offer an additional grant to businesses required to implement the government’s enhanced vaccine certification protocols and to cover increased pandemic-related expenses for PPE, improved ventilation, etc.   

Read the full Advocacy Letter online here.  

Media Contact

Andie Weese

Burlington Economic Development

Economic Development Officer – Marketing and Communications

Andie.Weese@burlington.ca

Media Contact

Andie Weese

Burlington Economic Development

Economic Development Officer – Marketing and Communications

Andie.Weese@burlington.ca

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