Indigenous tourism businesses are experiencing unique challenges in the face of COVID-19 pandemic. This is a list of up-to-date funding and programs available to support you and your business through the crisis.
Learn more about the programs available:
The Federal Government announced $306.8 million dollars to support Indigenous business in Canada. These funds will be administered through the National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association (NACCA) and the Aboriginal Financial Institutions throughout Canada. Please connect with the Aboriginal Financial Institution closest to you. The full list of Aboriginal Financial Institutions in BC is below.
Applications are now being processed. and your business could qualify for an interest-free loan of up to $40,000, with 75% repayable and a maximum of 25% available as a non-repayable contribution.
|Aboriginal Financial Institutions in BC|
|Aboriginal Business and Community Development Centre||Prince George|
|All Nations Trust Company (ANTCO)||Kamloops|
|Burns Lake Native Development Corporation (BLNDC)||Burns Lake|
|CFDC of Central Interior First Nations||Kamloops|
|Haida Gwaii Community Futures||Massett|
|Métis Financial Corporation of BC (MFCBC)||Surrey|
|Native Fishing Association (NFA)||West Vancouver|
|Nuu-chah-nulth Economic Development Corporation (NEDC)||Port Alberni|
|Stó:lō Community Futures Corporation (SCF)||Chilliwack|
|Tale’Awtxw Aboriginal Capital Corporation (TACC)||West Vancouver|
|Tribal Resources Investment Corporation (TRICORP)||Prince Rupert|
The Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) will provide $2,000 a month for up to four months for those who lose their income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
You are eligible if you are over 15 years old, and have lost your income because of COVID-19. You will have had employment or self-employment income of at least $5000 in 2019 or in the last 12 months prior to your application date.
Recent changes now support part-time and seasonal workers. You will be eligible for CERB if you earning $1000 a month or less, unable to work because seasonal jobs have not yet started or have exhausted their EI since January 1, 2020.
Applications are jointly processed by Service Canada and the Canada Revenue Agency. Once you apply, you will begin receive CERB payments within 10 days of application, as long as you have a CRA account and sign up for direct deposit. CERB will be available from March 15, 2020 until October 3, 2020 and can be backdated to March 15, 2020.
The CERB provides $500 a week for up to 16 weeks.
The B.C. Emergency Benefit for Workers will provide a tax-free, one time $1,000 payment for B.C. residents whose ability to work has been affected due to COVID-19. Applications are available on May 1, 2020.
Those who are not able to work, those who were laid off, those who are sick or need to stay home to care for their children or sick family members.
The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) is a 75% wage subsidy for employers for up to 12 weeks, retroactive to March 15, 2020. This program is meant to support businesses in keeping or re-hiring staff and support the return to normal operations after the crisis. Applications for this program is now open.
An eligible business has an existing business with business number and payroll program account with CRA as of March 18, 2020. You pay salary, wage, or other remuneration to employees.
Eligible employers would include individuals, taxable corporations, and partnerships consisting of eligible employers as well as non‑profit organizations and registered charities. It does include Indigenous community-owned businesses.
Businesses are required to show a 15% reduction of revenue for March 2020 and 30% for the following months. This reduction can be shown by either comparing monthly revenue loss to the same month in 2019, or comparing your revenue loss to the average revenue loss of January and February 2020.
You can start reducing remittances of federal, provincial, income tax in the first remittance period that includes remuneration paid between March 18, 2020 and June 20, 2020. Payments will be administered through the CRA, and will be processed between 3 and 6 weeks. Businesses will receive cheques within 10 days if have CRA account and direct deposit set up.
Eligible employers can apply through the CRA My Business Account portal. Employers will need to keep records demonstrating their reduction in arms length and remuneration to employees.
The subsidy will cover up to 75% of wages on the first $58,700 for each employee, up to a maximum of $847 a week. Ideally, employers are paying the remaining 25%, but this is not required.
If employers choose not to apply for subsidy, employer can request to transfer it to a future remittance or have it paid out at the end of 2020.
Those eligible for the CEWS, will be eligible for a 100% refund of EI and CPP employer-paid contributions. This will cover each week for employees that are on leave with pay and for an employer who are eligible to claim CEWS for those employees.
Please collect and remit contributions as usual and then claim back the employer portion of EI and CPP.
The 10% Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers is a three-month measure that will allow eligible employers to reduce the amount of payroll deductions required to be remitted to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
The subsidy is equal to 10% of the remuneration you pay from March 18, 2020 to June 19, 2020, up to $1,375 for each eligible employee to a maximum of $25,000 total per employer.
If you pay tax-exempt salary, wages, bonuses, or other remuneration to an eligible employee, you can still calculate the 10% Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers on remuneration paid from March 18, 2020 to June 19, 2020. At the end of the year, the CRA will pay the amount to you.
Work-Sharing (WS) is a program that helps employers and employees avoid layoffs when there is a temporary decrease in business activity beyond the control of the employer. The program provides EI benefits to eligible employees who agree to reduce their normal working hours and share the available work while their employer recovers. Work-Sharing is an agreement between employers, employees and the Government of Canada.
Effective March 15, 2020 to March 14, 2021, and not limited to one specific sector or industry, the Government of Canada is introducing temporary special measures. Extension of the maximum possible duration of an agreement from 38 weeks to 76 weeks
Accepting business who have been in business for only 1 year rather than 2, operate year-round, have at least 2 employees in the WS unit, be eligible to receive EI benefits, and agree to reduce their normal working hours by the same percentage and to share the available work.
The Employment Standards Act has been updated to provide new unpaid, job-protected leave for those unable to work due to personal illness, injury or specified reasons relating to COVID-19, including up to three days of unpaid, job-protected leave for employees who can’t work due to personal illness or injury.
The Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) will provide interest-free loans to small businesses and not-for-profits to those businesses affected by COVID-19. It is available through Canada and major financial institutions.
Up to $40,000, interest free for two years with $10,000 forgiven if certain conditions met.
Business will be required to show they have been impacted by COVID-19, have been financially viable beforehand and have had $20,000 to $1.5 million in total payroll in 2019. No guarantee needed.
The federal government has recently expanded the eligibilty requirements to those small businesses who have less than $20,000 in payroll. It would require your small business to have
Through Business Development Canada, the SME Loan and Guarantee Program is for operating credit and cash flow. This loan is for of up to $6.25 million to existing clients, with 80 per cent guaranteed by EDC. It is now available through your financial institution.
The Co-Lending Program for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises is a co-lending program for operational cash flow requirements, which could include interest payments on existing debt.
The program is designed in three segments to target support to different business sizes.
Loans would be interest-only for the first 12 months, with a 10-year repayment period.
The Unity Bridge Loan offered by Vancity is aimed at supporting self-employed persons impacted by COVID-19. This term loan will be offered to those who’ve been self-employed for more than two years and who have an existing business with payroll under $20,000.
Individuals with no payroll are also eligible for a loan up to $10,000, available interest free for the first six months with no payment required during the first six months either.
Small and medium-sized businesses who operate in rural, or non-metropolitan areas that are not eligible for the Canadian Emergency Business Account (CEBA) do have access to the Community Futures Emergency Loan Program. Businesses can apply for an interest-free loan for up to $40,000 dollars.
If 75% of loan is repaid by December 31, 2022, the remainder of the loan is forgiven. There are no pre-payment penalties and it includes a blended principal and interest payments beginning January 1, 2023 and loans must be repaid by December 31, 2025
To learn more, connect with your local Community Futures.
The Regional Relief and Recovery Fund through Western Economic Diversification is available to those who are not able to access the Community Futures Emergency Loan. Sole proprietorship and non-profits are not eligible for the RRRF.
There are two streams of applications available, for under $40,000 and over $40,000.