Feds extend coronavirus rent relief program for businesses

OTTAWA — The government announced on Friday that the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program has been extended once again, and will now cover a portion of August’s rent for businesses that qualify.

To get the rent assistance, businesses will not have to prove a 70 per cent decline in sales for July or August, but will have to show a 70 per cent revenue shortfall that qualified them for CECRA in April, May and June.

Read more: Coronavirus: Trudeau announces plans for end of CERB, transition to EI

The program’s low adoption rate was previously criticized by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, which cited the onus on landlords and stringent requirements.

But on Friday, the government said that thousands of new applications are being regularly submitted, “demonstrating a strong interest in CECRA from property owners and small business tenants.”

Story continues below advertisement

About $613 million has been paid out to 63,000 tenants as of Thursday, the government said.

© 2020 The Canadian Press