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Canadian Advocacy Update | Dec. 2, 2020

December 2, 2020

TIAC’s Advocacy Update

  • On November 25th, TIAC’s Acting CEO participated in the Tourism Roundtable Steering Committee planning meeting.
  • November 26th TIAC participated in Destination Canada’s NorthStar meeting.
  • On November 27th TIACs’ TIAC’s Acting CEO met with members of the Canadian Ski Council as well as the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada to discuss sector priorities.
  • On November 30th, TIAC participated in Fall Economic Stakeholder briefing calls and met with Senior Policy Advisor to the Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister to discuss the commitments outlined to the tourism sector.

Federal Fall Economic Statement

The Federal Government delivered its Fall Economic Statement on Monday, November 30th. The Hon. Chrystia Freeland, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, presented the document to the House.

TIAC was encouraged by the sector specific supports that were outlined, mainly the following points:

  1. Creating the Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program – a 100% government-backed credit availability loan program at low-interest rates for the hardest-hit businesses. 
  2. Increasing the maximum rate of the wage subsidy program to 75% for the next three periods or until March 13, 2021.
  3. Extending the current subsidy rates of the Government’s fixed cost relief program, Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy to March 13, 2021, to provide greater certainty to businesses.
  4. Providing $500 million in additional funding to the Regional Development Agencies to provide financing support to local businesses unable to access other federal financial assistance.
  5. Anticipated support for the air sector and festivals and events.

While it was encouraging to see these proposed commitments made in the House, there is much work to be done to ensure an effective roll out and strategic focus of these programs. TIAC will continue its advocacy efforts to ensure that these programs are delivered in a timely and effective manner. 

TIAC will continue to monitor developments on these supports, and will send out updates as they are available.  Please read our press statement on the Fall Economic Statement here.

Government Announcements 

  • Travel Restrictions Extended – Dec 21st 
  • Bill Blair, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, and the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, announced on November 29 that Canada will extend the Mandatory Isolation Order and temporary travel restrictions for all travelers seeking entry into Canada from a country other than the US, until January 21, 2021. Travel restrictions for US citizens and foreign nationals arriving from the US remain in place until December 21, 2020 and may be extended at that time.
  • Qualifying organizations can now apply directly for the new Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) program through the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). This means qualifying organizations can apply for the subsidy without the need to claim the assistance through their landlords.
  • Ontario is proposing a cap on delivery fees for restaurants
    • The Supporting Local Restaurants Act, 2020 would cap delivery fees at 15% and 20% inclusive of all fees. Applied only to restaurants where indoor dining is prohibited 
    • The General Regulation under the Travel Industry Act, 2002, has been amended to further reduce burden on travel agents and wholesalers (registrants)
      • The amendments came into force yesterday, December 1, 2020
      • You can find the regulatory changes on the e-laws website, found here: LINK
  • Quebec Gathering Holiday at Risk 
    • Quebec Premier François Legault warned Tuesday that the province’s plan to allow gatherings for four days around Christmas is at risk as the number of hospitalizations in the province reached their highest level since June.
  • British Columbia announces new cabinet 
    • Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport: Melanie Mark
  • Alberta Prepares Residents for Socially Distanced Holidays 
    • Dr. Deena Hinshaw, the province’s chief medical officer of health – “This is not going to be the year for in-person office parties,” she said. “This is not going to be the year for open houses, or large dinners with friends and extended family.”
    • City of Calgary has declared a local state of emergency
      • Will allow for Calgary to apply for additional restrictions in the future
      • LINK
    • City of Banff Announces New Restrictions 
      • Restaurants at maximum 50% capacity 
      • Masks required outdoors on Banff Ave and in downtown core 
      • LINK
  • Saskatchewan Announces new Restrictions effective November 27 – Including:
    • Limits to 4 per table at restaurants
      • Indoor public gathering limited to 30 people, no food for drink
      • Team sports activities suspended 
      • Gaming venues; limit 30 people for businesses with capacity of 150 – food and drink to be sectioned off as a separate service 
      • LINK
    • Saskatchewan Premier indicates possibility of holiday travel / gatherings 
      • Current restrictions end Dec 17th, If the new restrictions start to bring down the number of COVID-19 cases in the province, they might loosen the restrictions over the holidays. Currently Saskatchewan has the third-highest rate of cases per capita in Canada, behind only Manitoba and Alberta. 
      • LINK
  • Manitoba is increasing enforcement on Individuals and Businesses
    • Last week Manitoba issued 100 fines for Public Health Order Violation, 22 of those were to businesses. 
    • LINK
  • Nova Scotia Grant Program offers Support to Restaurants, Bars and Gyms 
    • Up to $5,000 to support businesses in the Halifax regional municipality, funded through the Nova Scotia COVID-19 Response Council. Applications open in the coming weeks to those who;
      • Have been closed by public health orders 
      • Experience revenue decrease of 30% in November 
      • Or expect to decrease by 30% in December
      • LINK
  • The Federal Government announced 19.3M in funding for Nunavut 
    • Support for Inuit communities and Inuit organizations in their response to the pandemic
    • The Nunavut two week lockdown ends today, but masks are mandatory in all communities where there are cases of COVID-19
  • The Federal Government announced $1.3M for the Northwest Territories 
    • Funded through the CAnNor’s program, funds will go to supporting Northern and Indigenous employment, training, entrepreneurship, capacity building and infrastructure development 
  • Federal and Yukon Government Announce $5.1M for funding ski infrastructure 
    • LINK
    • Yukon mandates masks are required in all public places
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