Updates for the weeks of December 21 and December 28, 2020
Newfoundland and Labrador:
The provincial government announced $3 million in funding to help post-secondary students secure work terms.
Funded through the Workforce Development Agreement, the one-time wage subsidy will cover up to 75 percent of a co-op student’s hourly wage up to a maximum of $8,000 per student work term. Employers of any size will be eligible for the wage subsidy.
Employers and students seeking more information are encouraged to contact co-op placement offices at Memorial University, College of the North Atlantic, and respective private training institutions.
The provincial government will help community halls with operating costs as part of the ongoing response to COVID-19.
The COVID-19 Operational Support Program for Community Halls will provide grants of up to $2,500 to assist community halls with expenses such as heat, electricity and insurance to ensure they can continue to operate.
The provincial government is making it easier for families and businesses to pay their energy bills with the COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program (CEAP).
Residential customers can receive up to $750 to help cover their electricity bill,and an additional $750 for their natural gas bill. Small businesses can receive up to $1500 for each.
In addition, as of January 1, 2021, electricity prices will be set at the off-peak rate of 8.5 cents per kilowatt-hour for all time-of-use and tiered customers, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This change is in effect for 28 days.
The off-peak price will automatically be applied to bills of all residential, small business, and farm customers who pay regulated rates.
Affected staff will receive an allowance for each disruption to their normal work schedule or location that is associated with a reassignment or redeployment to any of the identified “priority” health care settings. All agreements are in place for the duration of the pandemic response.
Applications are now being accepted for the Strong Recovery Adaptation Rebate (SRAR) and will be accepted through March 31, 2021.
This rebate program assists small businesses by reimbursing incremental investments they have made to adapt their business models as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, including changing the use of square footage, installing physical infrastructure to comply with COVID-19 mitigation guidelines, or upgrading technology such as websites to enhance e-commerce.
The provincial government has enhanced the Small and Medium-Sized Business Recovery Grant program to make it easier for businesses to qualify, and has increased support for those in the tourism sector.
Adjustments include a streamlined application process and simplified criteria.
Affected businesses will be eligible to receive a grant up to $30,000. The grant for the tourism sector has been increased, meaning those businesses will be eligible for up to $45,000.