More businesses to be eligible for recovery grant
The B.C. government today announced it has enhanced the Small and Medium-Sized Business Recovery Grant program.
The move was made to make it easier for businesses to qualify and has increased support for those in the hard-hit tourism sector, stated a Ministry of Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation.
Adjustments made to the Small and Medium-Sized Business Recovery Grant program include a streamlined application process and simplified criteria. For example, the criteria has been expanded from a minimum revenue drop of 50% to a drop of 30%. This change will allow more businesses to be eligible.
Additionally, the previous three-year operation requirement has been reduced to 18 months. This means businesses only need to have been in operation nine months before the pandemic to apply for the grant.
Businesses impacted by the pandemic will be eligible to receive a grant up to $30,000. The grant for the tourism sector has been increased, meaning those hardest-hit businesses in the tourism sector will be eligible for a grant up to $45,000.
Businesses impacted by the pandemic will be eligible to receive between $10,000 and $30,000 in a non-repayable grant.
The additional amount available to tourism-related businesses has been increased up to $15,000. This amount is available on top of the base grant, for a total of up to $45,000.
“We know that small businesses are struggling as they contend with the challenges of operating during a global health pandemic,” said Ravi Kahlon, B.C.’s Minister of Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation. “While many businesses have benefited from our government’s supports and programs, we wanted to do more. As part of our government’s commitment to an economic recovery for all British Columbians, we developed the recovery grant program for businesses. We recently engaged stakeholders, listened to their ideas and responded quickly to adjust this program. Now, more businesses can access this much-needed funding.”
The changes to the Small and Medium-Sized Business Recovery Grant program were made in consultation with industry associations and business groups that represent the small and medium-sized business community.
“B.C. restaurants need the support of government to get through the significant impacts of COVID-19 on our industry,” said Ian Tostenson, president and CEO, BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association. “Helping business owners pivot and get through this tough time is essential. We are grateful for the revisions to the grant program and the support it offers to businesses facing financial pressures.”
The revised application process and eligibility criteria are now in place. Small- and medium-sized businesses are encouraged to apply online.