Businesses can now apply for the COVID-19 Closure Relief Grant, a new program the Province has fast-tracked to support B.C. businesses ordered to temporarily close their doors due to recent public-health measures.
Businesses that were ordered to fully close on Dec. 22, 2021, including bars, nightclubs and lounges that do not serve full meals, gyms, fitness and adult dance centres and event venues that can no longer hold events, can apply for relief grants of between $1,000 and $10,000. Funds from the program, which is expected to support more than 3,000 businesses, can help with expenses such as rent, employee wages, insurance, maintenance and utilities.
The total grant amount per business will be based on the number of employees and follows a formula similar to the previous Circuit Breaker Business Relief Grant that supported businesses in the spring of 2021. To apply for a grant, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/business-relief
This $10-million provincial program complements existing federal government programs, including the recently expanded Local Lockdown Program and the Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit.
The Local Lockdown Program provides wage and commercial rent support for businesses and other organizations, regardless of their sector, that have been affected by regional provincial health officer orders. This program is a way businesses, charities and non-profit organizations can be eligible for up to 75% of wage and rent support. The Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit provides $300 a week in income support to eligible workers who are directly affected by a COVID-19-related public health order and who have lost 50% or more of their income.
On Jan. 7, 2022, B.C.’s public health officer ordered all businesses to reactivate their COVID-19 safety plans to help keep employees and communities safe during the rapid spread of cases related to the COVID-19 Omicron variant.
- For more information on the COVID-19 Closure Relief Grant, including the application process and eligibility, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/business-relief
- For more information on COVID-19 safety plans, visit: https://worksafebc.com/covid-19
- For more information on B.C.’s COVID-19 recovery supports, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/economic-recovery/business-supports