CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY
Thank you, Prime Minister.
Yesterday afternoon, our government introduced legislation to put in place new support measures to help businesses get through the second wave of the coronavirus. So they can keep serving their customers, keep employees on the payroll, and get through to the other side.
First, the new Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy, which will provide direct and easy-to-access rent and mortgage interest support to tenants and property owners until June 2021. The new rent subsidy will support businesses, charities, and non-profits that have suffered a revenue drop by providing support up to a maximum of 65 per cent of eligible expenses until December 19, 2020. Our legislation will allow for retroactive claims to September 27.
Second, the new Lockdown Support, which will provide an additional 25 per cent through the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy for qualifying businesses that are subject to a lockdown and must shut their doors – or significantly restrict their activities under a public health order. Combined, this will mean that hard-hit businesses subject to a lockdown can receive rent support of up to 90 per cent. As much of our country fights a second wave of the coronavirus, this support is especially important to our businesses and to our economy.
Third, the extension of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy until June 2021, which will continue to protect jobs by helping employers keep employees on the payroll and rehire their workers. The wage subsidy will remain at the current rate of up to 65 per cent of eligible wages until December 19, 2020.
To have a strong, sustainable recovery, we need to do the right thing now from a public health perspective. Look around the world – too many jurisdictions, hoping the pandemic was beaten, rushed to open up. The result was the virus spread faster, the money that was pumped into stimulus was wasted, and the economy was hit harder than it should have been.
Our business support measures are designed to support the difficult work of our public health officials and the agonizing decisions they must make. If our public health officials believe limited lockdowns are the best way for us to fight the coronavirus, the federal government will step in with additional support for affected businesses, to help communities do the right thing and stay safe – and, of course, to help the affected businesses get through to the other side.
This is the right thing to do. And it is the economically smart thing to. I hope all parliamentarians will support swift passage of this important legislation.