As the business community adjusts to the impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak in Canada, the federal government has announced a number of support programs to assist companies and their employees through the difficult economic times.
The announced measures aim to help Canadian businesses – including HVAC/R and plumbing companies and their supply chain partners – protect the jobs that Canadians depend on, while being able to still pay the company’s bills.
Included in the business-focused programs is a new Canada Emergency Business Account, which will provide funding to eligible financial institutions so that they can provide interest-free loans in the form of lines of credit of up to $40,000 to businesses with payrolls of less than $1 million. A quarter of this loan will be eligible for complete forgiveness, but full program details have yet to be revealed.
Also available through Canadian financial institutions is a co-lending program where eligible businesses may obtain incremental credit amounts of up to $6.25 million.
In addition to the loan programs, the government has also announced an increase of its wage subsidy program for qualifying businesses. Originally introduced as a 10 per cent subsidy up to a maximum of $1,375 per employee and $25,000 per employer, the federal government has now committed to a 75 per cent subsidy for up to 3 months on the first $58,700 earned, retroactive to March 15, 2020. Official details of this program are still pending, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has stated that it will be available to any business with at least a 30 per cent revenue decrease because of COVID-19. How that 30 per cent is determined is still to be disclosed.
Earlier announcements also of interest to business owners include the deferral of GST and HST payments, to June, and an extension of the maximum duration of the Work-Sharing program, from 38 weeks to 76 weeks. Work-Sharing is an adjustment program designed to help employers and employees avoid layoffs when there is a temporary reduction in the normal level of business activity that is beyond the control of the employer. The measure provides income support to employees eligible for Employment Insurance benefits who work a temporarily reduced work week while their employer recovers.
For more information about the loan programs, contact your bank or other financial institution. More information about the federal government’s programs for business can be access here.
Source : Mechanical Business