Retail Council of Canada (RCC) has always maintained that store closures would be ongoing as long as the onus remained on landlords to apply for rent relief. Today’s long-awaited announced by the federal government regarding a newly minted Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) program is welcome news in that the aid will now go directly to the businesses that need it.
As RCC has always emphasized, the inability to pay rent is not a problem that is limited to small and mid-sized business. Although not mentioned in today’s announcement, we understand that the CERS program will extend to a greater range of rental settings and to companies of greater size levels than was previously the case. We also understand that the former limitation to enterprises with under $20 million of annual revenue will be dropped and that a new cap will be imposed. Finally, we expect to see eligibility expanded to include locations with up to $75,000 of gross monthly rent.
These are all critical issues for our members and points that we have been making to the federal government throughout the past many months. We look forward to the development and explanation of the program promised for next week.
Karl Littler, Senior Vice President, Retail Council of Canada
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About Retail Council of Canada
Retail is Canada’s largest employer with 2.1 million Canadians working in our industry. The sector annually generates over $76 billion in wages and employee benefits. Core retail sales (excluding vehicles and gasoline) were $377 billion in 2018. Retail Council of Canada (RCC) members represent more than two thirds of retail sales in the country. RCC is a not-for-profit, industry-funded association that represents small, medium and large retail businesses in every community across the country. As the Voice of Retail™ in Canada, we proudly represent more than 45,000 storefronts in all retail formats, including department, grocery, specialty, discount, independent retailers and onliwe ne merchants. www.RetailCouncil.org