INFORMATION PROVIDED BY ALBERTA GOVERNMENT
As announced earlier this month, the Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant program has been reopened for a new payment to businesses affected by the April 2021 public health orders. Eligible organizations can now apply for this additional COVID relief funding. https://www.alberta.ca/sme-relaunch-grant.aspx
The Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant (SMERG) offers financial assistance to Alberta businesses, cooperatives and non-profit organizations with fewer than 500 employees that have faced restrictions or closures due to COVID-related public health orders, and have experienced revenue losses of at least 30 per cent. Hotels, taxis and ride-sharing services are also now eligible for this payment.
Eligible organizations will receive a payment of up to $10,000, which follows the previous intake that provided up to $20,000. Funds can be used to:
- Cover costs of items that help prevent the spread of COVID-19, such as personal protective equipment and cleaning supplies.
- Pay rent, employee wages or replace inventory.
- Help businesses expand their online presence or e-commerce opportunities so that they can continue to serve customers.
Application intake for the program is open until May 31 with a budget of $350 million.
Alberta’s government is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic by protecting lives and livelihoods with precise measures to bend the curve, sustain small businesses and protect Alberta’s health-care system.
- Application intake for the Small and Medium Enterprise Launch Spring 2021 Payment opens April 23.
- Organizations that did not apply under the previous run of SMERG will not be able to apply for the prior payments – only the new $10,000 payment.
- Applications received before the previous program closure on March 31 will continue to be processed.
- Money received under SMERG does not need to be repaid.
- Small and medium enterprises are an important part of Alberta’s economy, accounting for more than 99 per cent of all businesses and nearly 55 per cent of all employment.
- As of April 22, Alberta’s government has provided more than $527 million to more than 40,400 small businesses through the Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant.
- Alberta’s government has provided billions of dollars in supports to job creators since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, including:
- Deferring corporate income tax collection for six months, providing $1.5 billion in relief.
- Deferring education property taxes and freezing the rate at 2019 levels.
- Deferring WCB premiums and paying 50 per cent of them for small and medium businesses, saving them $350 million.
- Providing a 90-day deferral for utility payments last spring.
- Banning commercial evictions, rent increases and late fees for commercial tenants.
- Additional supports for businesses are available through the federal government.
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