March 18 COVID-19 Update


As a result of the current COVID-19 situation, the Huntsville/Lake of Bays Chamber of Commerce will be sending you daily updates. We recognize that you are currently being bombarded with information from multiple sources. It is our goal to provide you with concise, up-to-date, daily information in a quick and easy to read format. Below are some important local links for continued updates.

Business Financial Assistance

The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) has been given $10 billion to loan to small businesses during the COVID-19 crisis. They have created a support webpage with links for small business loans, working capital loans and purchase order financing.

Federal Government

Today the Prime Minister announced an $82 billion aid package to provide financial assistance to both citizens and businesses. This support aims to help Canadians pay for rent and groceries and to help businesses continue to meet payroll and pay bills. Support for businesses will include income supports, wage subsidies and tax deferrals. 
Support for citizens includes:
  1. Temporarily boosting Canada Child Benefits payments
  2. New Emergency Care Benefit to provide income support to workers who have to stay home without access to sick leave
  3. Extending the tax filing deadline to June 1
  4. Allowing taxpayers to defer tax payments until after August 31
  5. A six-month, interest free reprieve on student loan payments
Current details indicate that most aid will begin to come available in April. Full details of the plan as released can be found in the Economic Response report, with an implementation chart found at the bottom of the page.
Also today, Canada and the United States have agreed to restrict non-essential travel across the border. While Canadians will be allowed to return to home, the border will be closed to future recreation and tourism purposes. Both nations are working to ensure that trade between our two nations will not be affected.
Here are some links to follow for information from our provincial government:

FedNor Update

FedNor has released an update today. The organization has provided the following links to resources to help businesses through current issues such as EI Work Sharing and business loans.
FedNor has also requested that businesses fill out their FedNor COVID-19 Impact Form, which will allow them to gain a better understanding of the current effects the situation is having on businesses and allow them to better respond to rapidly changing needs. Please send FedNor this form and any other concerns you might have at this address.

Let Us Help

We have created a web page with resources and updates, including a survey for you to fill out about the status of your own business. Please take the time to complete the survey, to enable us to share your updates with fellow members and the community. 
We also encourage you to provide us with insights about your current business status. Are you closed, open or do you have modified hours? Do you have changes in service or contact information you would like to share? Send us your updates to this email address: [email protected] or call us directly at 705-789-4771 and we will share your updates to the membership.

Further Resources

Canada’s Regional Development Agencies (RDA’s) are responsible for economic development and have issued an informative single-page document to help you understand their role and where you can reach out for assistance. You can contact FedNor for support for your business.

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has published the following guide to assist businesses in working through the changes COVID-19 will have on your business.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses has also published helpful resources for your business.

We know your businesses are already experiencing the devastating effect COVID-19 is having on local tourism. Our regional tourism organization, RTO-12, has published the following update and information.

Moving Forward

In this time we need to work together as much as possible to enable Huntsville and Lake of Bays to weather this situation and to position ourselves as the tourism leader once we are able to re-open our businesses and services to the public. If you have questions or need help finding the appropriate resources to assist you or your business, please reach out to us at the following address: [email protected]
From all of us at the Huntsville/Lake of Bays Chamber of Commerce team we urge you to stay safe and promise to do everything in our power to assist you in this difficult time.

Chamber of Commerce members can expect the best!

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