Thousands of small businesses in British Columbia will see their monthly rent reduced by at least 75 per cent, thanks to the new federal-provincial Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program (CECRA).
Launching in mid-May 2020, the CECRA will see B.C. small businesses receive a total of over $300 million in federal-provincial relief, with B.C. contributing an estimated $80 million.
The 75 per cent reduction in monthly rent for small businesses affected by COVID-19 will be achieved by providing forgivable loans to cover 50% of the rent payments for eligible small business tenants for April, May and June.
The loans will be forgiven if the landlord reduces the tenant’s monthly rent by at least 75 per cent. The commercial tenant would be responsible for covering 25 per cent, the property owner 25 per cent, while the federal and provincial governments share the remaining 50 per cent.
The CECRA will be administered by the federal government through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.