TABIA Requests Additional Funding for Toronto Businesses
On February 23 TABIA submitted the following letter to Premier Ford requesting additional funding for Toronto based businesses. Toronto businesses have remained in lockdown longer than any other jurisdiction in North America.
Dear Premier Ford,
The recent announcement around Toronto remaining under lockdown order for an additional two weeks was heartbreaking for many. TABIA and our members understand the growing concerns around COVID-19 variants and the impacts they may have, and that now is not the time to let our guard down. The reality is that Toronto main street businesses are drowning. One only needs to walk down Queen Street West, one of Toronto’s most vibrant strips, to find one in three storefronts sitting vacant. Simply, Toronto businesses need additional financial support from your government to make it through this in a way that a recovery is probable.
As you well know, Toronto is an expensive city to operate a business in. Our members face the highest commercial taxes, highest rents, and utility costs all while remaining in a lockdown since November, the longest of any other city or jurisdiction in North America. Toronto businesses who have applied and received their Main Street Support Grants are very appreciative, but a $10,000 cheque will go a lot further for a business operating in Simcoe-Muskoka for example as compared to the same type of business operating in Toronto.
TABIA requests your consideration and delivery of the following:
• The Main Street Support Grant funding model reflect a tiered approach as opposed to a blanket approach for all applicants.
• Consider business location, number of days closed, and profit loss as opposed to revenue loss when calculating funding amounts.
• Allow businesses who have previously applied to request additional funding or simply top up Toronto businesses under the new tiered approach that takes the above into account.
Thank you for your time and consideration of this request. TABIA looks forward to hearing your thoughts and an opportunity to discuss how we can assist in this monumental recovery effort without creating more red tape and financial challenges on Ontario businesses.