The Alberta government has boosted its COVID-19 business benefit to $30,000, up from $20,000, to help small and medium-sized businesses that have been most affected by the pandemic and ongoing health restrictions.
In a separate statement February 19, Alberta Health Minister Tyler Shandro said the next phase of Alberta's staged reopening plan could start as soon as March 1, and includes the potential easing of restrictions on banquet halls, indoor fitness and retail outlets.
The additional $10,000 grants can be used to offset costs associated with COVID-19, like purchasing personal protective equipment, paying bills or hiring staff.
Businesses that can demonstrate a revenue reduction of 60 per cent or more will be eligible to receive 15 per cent of their monthly revenue, up to a maximum of $10,000.
The Enhanced COVID-19 Business Benefit is intended to provide additional support in cases where federal programs fall short. Businesses are required to report the total amount of provincial and federal support received, to ensure no more than 80 per cent of revenue is covered.
Eligible businesses can apply for funding until March 31, and money received under the program does not need to be repaid, according to a government release.
Lynda Armstrong, executive director of the North Edmonton Gymnastic Club, where the government announcement was made, said she welcomed the enhanced funding.
“Government support and grants are vital to ensuring gyms, gymnastics clubs, small businesses and non-profits can reopen safely,” Armstrong said.