We're committed to helping your business navigate the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.
During the COVID-19 crisis, we at Kingston EcDev are making sure your business has the support you need to get through this uncertain and challenging time.
We will provide you with expert advice and ensure that you have all of the latest information on government announcements and available support.
During this time, we will be suspending site visits and the scheduling of in-house consultations. But we welcome businesses to reach out to our team with requests for information or support.
This page has a list of resources and relief programming available for your business during this crisis. We will continue to update the page as more information becomes available.
The Ontario government announced the retailers, seasonal businesses and health and community service providers who will be permitted to open or expand their services on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., provided that the general trend on health indicators continues to improve as part of the first stage of the government's reopening framework. The workplaces opening as part this stage are well-positioned to put workplace safety measures in place and get more people back to work, while not overburdening public transit and other services.
The government also announced additional seasonal services and activities will be permitted to open as early as Saturday May 16, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., in time for the Victoria Day long weekend, as key public health indicators continue to show progress.
Local COVID-19 Information
Mayor Bryan Paterson declared a State of Emergency for Kingston on March 26, 2020 to help contain the spread of COVID-19. This decision aligns with steps the Province of Ontario has taken in response to the pandemic.
The Ontario Government extends the state of emergency. This closure will be in effect until June 30, 2020 with the exemption to some businesses. Current emergency orders include allowing frontline care providers to redeploy staff where they are needed most, enabling public health units to redeploy or hire staff to support case management and contact tracing, limiting long-term care and retirement home staff to working at one home, and preventing unfair pricing of necessary goods.
The province has launched a toll-free line 1-888-444-3659 to provide support to Ontario businesses who have questions about the province's recent emergency order to close at-risk workplaces following recommendations by Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health.
The following guidance document has been developed through consultation and review of industry best practices, available health and safety resources and input from various industry professionals. Based on the lack of a formal regulated document at this time, the process for re-occupancy of commercial, community and public spaces outlined herein should be used as a resource and basic framework to assist businesses and organizations as they plan for the varied stages of reopening.
Each document offers health and safety tips and good practices, for both employers and workers, specific to each industry or sector. Organizations and businesses can adopt this guidance to protect their workers and prevent the spread of infections.
Ontario is planning for the next phase of responding to the coronavirus (COVID‑19) outbreak – reopening the province.
As a first step, they have developed a framework to guide the approach. This framework outlines the method and principles will be used to reopen businesses, services and public spaces to responsibly lead Ontario’s economy back to a strong position.
The guidance that Public Health have been providing throughout the COVID-19 pandemic stands:
• Practise physical distancing.
• Practise routine infection prevention measures.
• Increase the frequency of environmental cleaning.
• Consider alternative ways to work.
• Stay home when you’re sick.
The purpose of this document is to assist with the minimization of COVID-19 transmission in non-health care workplaces. However, this document may not be applicable to all non-health care workplaces (e.g., congregate living settings). Appropriate preventative measures should be put in place which account for the specific hazards and risks of exposure that may be present in a workplace setting.
Before your business reopens, review sector-specific guidelines to identify personal protective equipment (PPE) and supplies to keep your employees and customers safe. Supplies are in high demand and the needs of frontline health care workers and first responders will continue to be prioritized.
Informed by lessons learned from those operating during the pandemic so far, this document provides best practices that your operation can implement to comply with requirements from government in the following areas:
- Physical Distancing
- Cleaning and Sanitation
- Health and Personal Hygiene
A list of suppliers and contractors that will help you with obtaining proper supplies for a safe reopening.
The Government of Ontario is reopening our businesses, workplaces, services, and public spaces, following the provincial Framework for Reopening. Learn what businesses and workplaces are now open and what ones remain closed.
This presentation is based on information available as of May 20, 2020. The COVID 19 situation and information is ever changing, please ensure you are keeping up to date with current best practices.
The Ontario Restaurant Hotel and Motel Association (ORHMA) has been working closely with industry leaders, government agencies, technology experts, legal advisors and key supply partners. Together, we have developed DineSafe, a catalogue of best practices to help guide your safe and successful reopening.
Hosted by the Labour and Employment Department, this webinar discusses the implications of reopening businesses and returning to work during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Recalling employees
- Human Rights Considerations for Employers
- The Occupational Health and Safety Act During a Pandemic
- Potential Issues in Returning Your Employees to Work
City of Kingston Property Tax Relief
Recognizing the financial hardship that some property owners are experiencing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the City is deferring the 2020 final property tax billing, which would normally be due on the last business day of June.
Staff is also looking at opportunities for tax relief strategies to help alleviate some of the financial pressures that property owners may be facing due to the pandemic.
Any questions about this update can be directed to the City’s taxation department at [email protected] or 613-546-0000.
Utilities Kingston Relief
Utilities Kingston customers can call 613-546-1181, extension 2278 to discuss extended bill payment options and financial assistance programs.
Hydro One Pandemic Relief Fun
Hydro One customers can contact are eligible for Pandemic Relief Fund and get assistance at 1-88-664-9376.
WSIB Workplace Insurance Relief
All employers covered by the WSIB's workplace insurance are automatically eligible for the provisions of the relief package and can defer premium reporting and payments until August 31, 2020. Businesses are not be required to opt in to receive this benefit. Additionally, the WSIB will cease interest accrual on all outstanding premium payments. They will not charge penalties during this six-month deferral period. There will be no negative consequences for businesses who defer premium reporting and payments. The WSIB will continue to fully cover workers at eligible workplaces.
Ontario Emergency Assistance Program
On April 9, 2020, the Government of Ontario announced that they are providing $52 million to support individuals and families in financial crisis through social assistance. This funding will support those who are not able to access federal assistance to cover needs such as food costs, rent, medicine and other essential services during this time. Individuals can easily apply online for assistance
Work-Sharing (WS) is an adjustment program designed to help employers and employees avoid layoffs when there is a temporary reduction in the normal level of business activity that is beyond the control of the employer. The measure provides income support to employees eligible for Employment Insurance benefits who work a temporarily reduced work week while their employer recovers.
Ontario Provides Urgent Relief for Small Businesses and Landlords
The Ontario government is partnering with the federal government to provide urgent relief for small businesses and landlords affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. The province is committing $241 million through the new Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program (OCECRA). The total amount of provincial-federal relief that would be provided is more than $900 million, helping to ensure small businesses are ready to reopen their doors when the emergency measures are lifted.
FedDev will be offering interest free loans for SMEs that have not been able to access other resources. No security, no payments required until December 31, 2022. All applications will be completed online. CFDCs will be offering the same option 1 product in rural communities that are serviced by the Community Futures Program. Businesses can only apply to one stream.
Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy Program
The Federal Government will give 75% wage subsidy of an individual’s first $58,700 of earnings for qualifying businesses up to a maximum of $847 per week, back-dated to March 15, 2020 for up to 3 months. This will help businesses to keep and return workers to the payroll. The new Canada Emergency Business Account will provide interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits, to help cover their operating costs during a period where their revenues have been temporarily reduced.
Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)
The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) is taxable benefit would provide $2,000 a month for up to four months for workers who lose their income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The CERB would be a simpler and more accessible combination of the previously announced Emergency Care Benefit and Emergency Support Benefit.
Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP)
The program will further support financing in the private sector through the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and Export Development Canada (EDC). Under this program, BDC and EDC will enhance their cooperation with private sector lenders to coordinate financing and credit insurance solutions for Canadian businesses. This will allow BDC and EDC to provide more than $10 billion of additional support to businesses.
NRC IRAP Innovation Assistance Program
On April 17, 2020, the Government of Canada announced $250 million in funding for the Innovation Assistance Program (IAP) to assist Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
IRAP IAP provides a wage subsidy to eligible employers for up to 12 weeks.
SMEs pursuing technology-driven innovation who have been unable to secure funding under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) are eligible and can apply for financial assistance under IRAP IAP.
The government is providing an Ontario Tools Grant of $2.5 million in 2020-21 and $7.5 million in 2021-22 and ongoing. This will help new eligible apprentices purchase the equipment they need to start their careers.
Regional Relief and Recovery Fund
The new Regional Relief and Recovery Fund, delivered by Canada’s regional development agencies, which will provide:
- $675 million in financing support to small- and medium-sized businesses.
- $287 million to support rural businesses and communities, including by providing them with much-needed access to capital through the Community Futures Program.
As one of Canada’s six regional development agencies, FedDev Ontario will be delivering the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund in southern Ontario.
Canada Emergency Business Account
To ensure that small businesses have access to the capital they need to see them through the current challenges, the Government of Canada has launched the new Canada Emergency Business Account, which has been implemented by eligible financial institutions in cooperation with Export Development Canada (EDC).
Looking to grow your business globally? Apply online for up to $75,000 in CanExport SMEs funding to cover up to 75% of your international market development activities. Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) may choose up to (5) export markets to target, where your company has no or minimal business.
Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) for small businesses provides much needed relief for small businesses experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19. It offers forgivable loans to eligible commercial property owners so that they can reduce the rent owed by their impacted small business tenants by at least 75% for the months of April, May and June, 2020.
Find COVID-19 support, programs and services for your business using a tool from the Federal Government for a business owners based on details specific to your business and what assistance you are looking for. It will customize the resources they would have available to you.
The hotline is a national, bilingual service operated by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. As of today, small business owners with pressing financial needs can call 1-866-989-1080 (toll-free) seven days a week, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (ET).
Resources for Canadian Businesses: COVID-19
The government of Canada has set up numerous programs to assist businesses with various challenges faced during the Covid-19 pandemic such as avoiding layoffs and rehiring employees, access to credit, deferred payments, support for self-employed individuals, indigenous businesses, supporting financial stability etc. These include various programs such as Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS), Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP), Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) and more.
Canada's COVID-19 Economic Response Plan
The Government of Canada is taking immediate, significant and decisive action to support Canadians and businesses facing hardship as a result of the global COVID-19 outbreak. This includes support for qualifying businesses, individuals and industries.
Regional Development Agencies (RDA) Support for SME
If you are a tourism operator or small- or medium- sized business or organization and have received RDA funding and COVID-19 is affecting your operations, you are encouraged to contact your local RDA office. Your local RDA office can review your situation and provide guidance.
Find COVID-19 Related Support for Businesse
Qualifying businesses can get access to funding, advice and expertise, tax credits, loans and capital investments, partnering and collaboration, wage subsidies and other programs and services to help support your business.
The Government of Ontario, in partnership with Ontario's health and safety associations, has developed more than 60 guidelines in response to COVID-19. These sector-specific measures will help employers prepare their workplaces so they can be reopened safely and ensure workers, customers and the general public are protected.
By following the proper health and safety guidelines these businesses will be permitted to begin operations on Monday, May 4 at 12:01 a.m.:
- Garden centres and nurseries with curbside pick-up and delivery only;
- Lawn care and landscaping;
- Additional essential construction projects that include:
- shipping and logistics;
- broadband, telecommunications, and digital infrastructure;
- any other project that supports the improved delivery of goods and services;
- municipal projects;
- colleges and universities;
- child care centres;
- schools; and
- site preparation, excavation, and servicing for institutional, commercial, industrial and residential development;
- Automatic and self-serve car washes;
- Auto dealerships, open by appointment only;
- Golf courses may prepare their courses for the upcoming season, but not open to the public; and
- Marinas may also begin preparations for the recreational boating season by servicing boats and other watercraft and placing boats in the water, but not open to the public. Boats and watercraft must be secured to a dock in the marina until public access is allowed.
Managing the Impact on Global Supply Chains (Webinar)
Watch to learn:
- How EDC is monitoring the impact of the virus and its effect on global supply chains
- How the virus outbreak will impact the global economy and which countries will be most affected
- How to protect your company against the risk of not getting paid if your suppliers or customers don’t pay
- How to get more working capital from your ban
Resources for Creative Arts
Many arts events scheduled to take place in the upcoming months have been cancelled, and most arts venues will be closed for an indeterminate length of time. The KAC understands how stressful this situation can be for artists and organizers. The KAC will continue to work with artists, arts organizations and venues to provide support and information throughout this time.
Canadian Exporters Impacted by COVID-19
These are challenging times for Canadian companies. Export Development Canada (EDC), along with government and partners, stands ready to support you. As Canada’s international risk experts, that’s why we’re here: to offer expert advice as well as insurance and financial support, in both good times and bad.
Resources for Foodservice Operators
The health and safety of everyone we serve are always mission critical for the restaurant industry. This is just as true now as it was before the emergence of COVID-19. Restaurants Canada is closely monitoring developments related to COVID-19 to ensure that our industry has all necessary information associated with this evolving public health situation.
Resources for Retailers
Rent relief for independent retailers: The government announced a new Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program for small business. The government announced it will help small businesses pay their rent for April, May, and June. The assistance is being rolled out in collaboration with the provinces and territories as it’s within their jurisdictions.
Resources for Manufacturers & Exporters
CME is in contact with federal officials who are overseeing the response to the coronavirus. We will work to share additional available information and welcome your concerns and input.
Resources for the Forestry and Steel & Aluminum Sector
The Government of Canada has put in place Work-Sharing (WS) temporary special measures for employers affected by the downturn in business for the forestry and steel and aluminum sectors.
These measures extend the duration of Work-Sharing agreements by an additional 38 weeks, for a total of 76 weeks. The mandatory waiting period has also been waived so that employers with a recently expired agreement may immediately apply for a new agreement, without waiting between applications and ease Recovery Plan requirements for the duration of the WS agreement.
Manufacturing Health & Safety Guidelines
From donating supplies and materials to rapidly changing production to help in any way they can, manufacturers are strongly stepping up to the plate in the face of the current global state.
See how manufacturers are offering a helping hand to combat COVID-19.
At challenging times like these, the ability to tap into the power of music to express ourselves and connect with others is more important than ever. The health and safety of our global Music Together family of parents, children, licensees, teachers, and staff is of the upmost importance to us. We have taken several steps to help the music-making continue even though we can’t physically gather in our classrooms right now.
Retail Council of Canada is excited to be launching our #ShopSmart campaign that explains the precautions and guidelines grocery and drugstore shoppers should follow during the COVID-19 pandemic to keep customers, retail employees and communities across Canada safe.
NGen Manufacturing Funding
NGen will invest at least $50 million in Supercluster funding to support companies as they rapidly respond to the COVID-19 crisis by building a Canadian supply of essential equipment, products and therapeutics.
Support Local 613
SUPPORT LOCAL 613 is an initiative to help support local and regional small businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19.
Selling to new and current customers remains the only way a business survives and since COVID-19 began the selling arena has changed. Within a matter of a few days, face to face interaction were gone and working and selling remotely became the new norm.
Employment and Social Development Canada Programs
Information and updates about coronavirus in the workplace, in the Service Canada Centres and how it affects ESDC programs such as EI.
Pandemic Preparedness for Business
Supported by the Government of Canada, the Canadian Business Resilience Network is executing a coordinated, business-led, inclusive campaign with the overarching goals of mitigating the impact of the pandemic on our economy, our communities and our citizens and positioning the business community to help drive Canada’s economic recovery.
MaRS Startup Toolkit
This collection brings together a set of tools and tactics startups can use to prepare, plan and respond to the 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Benefit Information for Employees
This website has been adapted from information compiled and published freely by Dr. Jennifer Robson, Associate Professor of Political Management at Carleton University
Emergency Response Benefit
The Government of Canada continues to take action to help Canadians and businesses facing hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. Learn more about the latest measures at Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan.
Support for Individuals
Learn more about Canada’s actions to help Canadians and businesses facing hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Friends Feeding Friends
COVID-19 has created a lot of uncertainty for businesses with many having to lay off staff, alter how they operate, or shut down. During this extraordinary time we must rally around our Kingston businesses, their employees, and families.
Employers, employees and essential service workers
List of steps you as an employer or employee must take in the workplace to reduce the spread of COVID-19, as well what to do regarding work-related travel.
Prepare your COVID-19 Contingency Plan
Employers should be aware of new changes and considerations that they may face as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak
Tax Deadline Delay
Canada has announced new financial and tax measures in response to COVID-19.
CFIB Small Business Help Centre
During the COVID-19 crisis, our primary concern at CFIB is making sure you have the support you need to get through this uncertain and challenging time.
Leading Successfully in Turbulent Times
In turbulent times, how can boards, senior management and risk managers safeguard the business and discover opportunities amid a crisis?
Small Business Centre COVID-19 Resources
In order to keep our businesses informed about the ongoing changes with the COVID-19 virus, we are posting links to help and support services as they become available.
Updating Your Google Business Information
If your business is affected by COVID-19, update your Google My Business profile to provide the most accurate information to your customers.
Kingston Police Business Safety Tips
Safety measures and tips to help keep your business safe and secure.
Support for Entrepreneurs Impacted by the Coronavirus
Here are options for accessing credit as well as additional resources to support you through to a more stable time.
Business Continuity Plan and Templates for Entrepreneurs
While some companies have developed contingency plans, most have not. This lack of preparedness not only threatens the viability of sectors in Canada but, as in the case of manufacturing, it also jeopardizes the delivery of critical goods that depend on complex supply chain systems. Creating and maintaining a business continuity plan helps ensure that your business has the resources and information needed to deal with an emergency.
Launch your organization into the future of digital procurement. Join the bids&tenders platform as a buyer or supplier and see how we can improve your process.
Biddingo.com is an online portal that connects suppliers providing various goods and services to buyers from the Provincial, Municipal, Education, Crown Corporation, Housing, Construction and Healthcare sectors and Private companies from across Canada.
Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) information for Canadians including links to disease updates, travel advice, how to be prepared, symptoms, prevention, risk, Canada’s response, current case numbers, answers to questions and links to printable resources.
The 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Learn how the Ministry of Health is helping to keep Ontarians safe during the 2019 Novel Coronavirus outbreak. Find out how to protect yourself and how to recognize symptoms.
Ontario COVID-19 Updates
Find out about Ontario's response to COVID-19 (coronavirus) and what you need to do.
Canada’s Response to COVID-19
High-level view of Government of Canada's response to the COVID-19 pandemic including: economic and financial support, travel advisories, at Canadian borders, support for Canadians abroad, collaboration, for clinical trial sponsors and drug and medical device supply monitoring.
Ontario Self-Assessment Tool
Take this self-assessment if you think you were exposed to COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) or have symptoms. You’ll get information on what to do next. You can also take it on behalf of someone else.
Ontario Together: help fight coronavirus
Find out about Ontario's response to COVID-19 (coronavirus) and what you need to do.
- Equipment & supplies
- Hand-sewn masks
- Audio/video equipment
In support of the Government of Canada’s whole-of-government response to Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), we are asking suppliers about their ability to provide products and services.
If I am offering online sales or take out/delivery how can I get the message out that I’m open?
I really want to move to more online sales but have no idea where to start, can I get help with this?
There are many ways to sell your products and service online. Strategies for how to get started will vary based on your industry and products. The best way to get started is to start, however that looks for your business. We’ve listed some resources to help get you started on our Go Digital page.
I think I have an idea to help with the fight against COVID or a new support mechanism for local businesses. Where do I take this?
Contact one of our Business Development Officers for a walk-through available R&D support and to connect with community organizations and contacts.
Business Development Officer
Business Development Officer
Business Development Officer
I could really use some extra eyes on my financial forecasting for my business future. Where can I get help?
Our Small Business Advisors are available to help you with financial overviews. Please contact Norman to set up a meeting.
Small Business Advisor
I’m looking to connect with like mind entrepreneurs to discuss the current cleat and do some virtual networking, how do I connect with other businesses?
We have a vast network of business contacts in the region, we would be more than happy to connect you with others who come from varying backgrounds and length of time in business. Our small business advisors would be happy to help connect you and even set up virtual meeting’s in the near future.
I am a solopreneur, what funding is available for me to apply to?
If you have received an income of at least $5,000 in 2019, you are eligible to apply to the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB). If you are not eligible for CERB, you may be qualified for the Ontario Emergency Assistance.
If you're having a problem accessing these funds, contact:
MP Gerretsen’s Office
613 542 3243
I do not need financial support now, should I still apply to the Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP)?
If you anticipate that you might need financial support, it will not hurt to apply to BCAP. There is also a $10,000 forgiveness if you repay $30,000 before December 31, 2022.
Contact your financial institution directly for support.
What programs are available to hire students?
The Career Ready Program: is a project funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Student Work Placement Program (SWPP) and is administered by TECHNATION. Briefly, this project seeks to address the talent gap in the tech sector by developing Work Integrated Learning (WIL) initiatives, and many other projects by covering up to 70% of gross wages for Canadian companies and scale-ups that leverage student talent during the COVID 19 pandemic.
For SMEs, MITACS is boosting their Accelerate Program funding to 75% of a project’s cost from 50%.
The Government of Canada has announced $263 million in funding to the Canada Summer Jobs Program to help Canada’s small businesses that depend on the employment of young Canadians.
I am a business owner, what programs are available to help with commercial rent?
Businesses are encouraged to speak to their landlords to apply for the Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program (OCECRA).
If you have questions or concerns contact:
MPP Arthur's Office
613 547 2385
I’m a sole proprietor and only have a personal chequing account. Can I still apply to Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA)?
Unfortunately, no you cannot. Only business clients who have a business account and have been a registered operation on or prior to March 1, 2020, are eligible for the Canada Emergency Business Account. Sole proprietors may be able to gain financial support from another program, such as the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB). With this program, individuals who have lost their income due to COVID-19 and are unable to apply for EI may be qualified to receive $2000 a month for up to 4 months. In order to qualify for this benefit, you may need to show that you have had to stop working because of COVID-19. Your income has to be a minimum of $5,000 in 2019 or in the 12 months before the date that you apply, and you believe that you won't be generating any income for at least 14 consecutive days over the initial 4-week time frame.