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Here’s how coronavirus financial support compares by province

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Businesses have shut down, the economy is tanking, and people are out of work all across the country as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic — but we’ve all gotta eat, so the federal and provincial governments are offering some financial support to get their residents through these uncertain times.

However, some provinces seem to be a bit more generous than others.

We’ve decided to take a look at how Daily Hive’s four provinces compare when it comes to direct deposits from their provincial governments — sorry Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and the Maritimes; you’ll just have to keep your fingers crossed for a Daily Hive Winnipeg, Saskatoon, or St. John’s expansion sometime down the line.

All four of our provinces have implemented some version of tax, loan, and utility payment relief programs, so we’re going to focus on the cold hard cash that you can get from your government during the pandemic.

Federal Government

We should probably start with the big one. The Government of Canada has announced an aid package for those affected by coronavirus, and to be honest, the provincial supports are merely a bonus to the $2,000 a month for four months that Trudeau has pledged to those who need it.

The prime minister said that people who are covered include those who have lost their jobs, those who are sick, quarantined, or looking after someone who has COVID-19, as well as parents who have to stay home with children, and contract workers or those self-employed.

The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) allows applicants to receive $2,000 a month for the next four months for those who have lost their income during the coronavirus pandemic.

Additionally, the Government of Canada said “workers who are still employed, but are not receiving income because of disruptions to their work situation due to COVID-19, would also qualify for the CERB. This would help businesses keep their employees as they navigate these difficult times, while ensuring they preserve the ability to quickly resume operations as soon as it becomes possible.”

Trudeau said Canadians will get the funds “within 10 days of applying.”

(Note that the $2,000 a month from the feds is, in many cases, on top of the support provided by the provinces, as outlined below.)

Province of BC

BC Premier John Horgan has announced a $5 billion economic “action plan” that is being put in place to help support people and businesses in British Columbia as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

The plan dedicates $2.8 billion to help people and fund the services they need to weather the crisis.

The BC Emergency Benefit for Workers provides a tax-free $1,000 payment to British Columbians whose ability to work has been affected by the outbreak. The benefit is a one-time payment for British Columbians who receive federal Employment Insurance (EI), or the new federal Emergency Care Benefit or Emergency Support Benefit as a result of COVID-19 impacts.

This includes workers who have been laid off, who are sick or quarantined, parents with sick children, parents who stay at home from work while child care centres and schools are closed, and those caring for sick family members, such as an elderly parent. The workers can be EI-eligible and non-EI-eligible, such as the self-employed. The benefit will be paid to BC residents, in addition to their federal income supports.

Province of Alberta

The Province of Alberta is giving $50 million to its residents as emergency isolation support, and applications are now open.

That $50 million breaks down to a cool $1,146 in a one-time payment for eligible Albertans who, according to the Province of Alberta release, “have experienced total or significant loss of income as a result of having to self-isolate or care for a dependent who is self-isolating.”

The payment will go towards Albertans who have been diagnosed with coronavirus, are caring for someone who is self-isolating due to coronavirus, have been directed by health authorities to self-isolate, and are not receiving compensation from any other source.

The payment does not apply to those who weren’t working immediately before being directed to self-isolate, can work from home, aren’t experiencing a significant loss of income, are collecting other forms of income-support-like sick leave or EI benefits, reside outside of Alberta, or are staying home to care for someone who is home for a reason other than self-isolation.

Those who are eligible for the emergency support payment can submit an application through the Province of Alberta’s website.

Province of Ontario

Ontario announced $3.7 billion towards support for its residents and to protect jobs.

Along with a number of tax, utilities, and loan relief programs, thee investment includes a one-time payment of $200 per child up to 12 years of age to help families, and $250 for those with special needs, including children enrolled in private schools.

Province of Quebec

The Province of Quebec is committing $573 a week to people who don’t qualify for EI and who are self-isolating.

The weekly compensation is available for two to four weeks.

The program, known officially as Programme d’aide temporaire aux travailleurs (PATT COVID-19) is in association with The Red Cross.

PATT COVID-19 is available to Quebecers confirmed with the virus, to those who are showing symptoms, people who have been in contact with an infected person, and those who have returned from abroad.

The application form to sign up for financial compensation is available to fill out through the Quebec coronavirus website.

– With files from Ty Jadah, Eric Zimmer, and Yasmin Aboelsaud

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Finance

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman Reviews Progress Of COVID-19 Measures

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Nirmala Sitharaman Reviews Progress Of Atmanirbhar Bharat Initiatives

The government on Sunday released a progress report on the implementation of measures announced under its Atmanirbhar Bharat package after a review by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. In May, the government had announced fiscal and monetary support worth Rs 21 lakh crore to help the country battle the damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The finance and corporate ministries immediately started implementation of the announcements related to the economic package under the Atmanirbhar Bharat series of initiatives, an official release said.

Here are some of the key points on the progress reported so far: 

In a major relief to micro, small and medium enterprises, the Department of Expenditure has amended rules relating to global tenders, to ensure no global tender inquiry will be invited for tenders up to Rs 200 crore unless prior approval is obtained from Cabinet Secretariat. The government had earlier announced that global tenders will be disallowed in government procurement tenders up to Rs 200 crore.

In relief to contractors, various departments and ministries are implementing instructions to ensure central agencies like Railways, Road Transport and Highways and CPWD give an extension of up to six months for completion of contractual obligations.

The department issued a communication to all state governments for additional borrowing of 2 per cent (of projected gross state domestic product in 2020-21) subject to implementation of specific state-level reforms. The government had earlier announced its decision to increase borrowing limits of states from 3 per cent to 5 per cent for 2020-21 in view of the situation caused by the COVID-19 disease. The move will provide the states with extra resources worth Rs 4.28 lakh crore.

In a period of about one and half months, noticeable progress has been achieved in identifying units, sanctioning as well as disbursing of loans to MSMEs. The government had announced collateral-free automatic loans worth Rs 3 lakh crore for businesses and MSMEs.

Rs 45,000 crore Partial Credit Guarantee Scheme 2.0 for NBFCs

Banks have approved purchase of portfolio of Rs 14,000 crore and are currently in process of approval/negotiations for Rs 6,000 crore as on July 3.

Additional Emergency Working Capital Funding for farmers through NABARD

When kharif sowing is already on its full swing, Rs. 24,876.87 crore out of Rs. 30,000 crore has been disbursed as on July 6 out of this special facility.

Between April 8 and June 30, the Central Board of Direct taxes (CBDT) has issued refunds in more than 20.44 lakh cases amounting to more than Rs. 62,361 crore, and the remaining refunds are under process.

The Rs 30,000-crore Special Liquidity Scheme for non-banking financial companies, housing finance companies and microfinance institutions has been launched, following the Cabinet’s approval. The first application in this regard has received its approval and the remaining are also being considered, the government said.

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West Kelowna way behind in tax revenue collection – West Kelowna News

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City tax hole $11.5M

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a detrimental affect on businesses and residents across West Kelowna.

That is no more evident than the value of municipal taxes remitted by business and residential taxpayers by the July 2 deadline.

In a report for council, director of finance Warren Everton says in 2019, about 92 per cent of taxes were paid by the July deadline. Penalties would kick in if monies were not paid by then.

However, due to the pandemic, city council has eased off on penalties and taken other steps to ease the financial burden of taxpayers.

As a result of financial hardships endured, Everton says only 80 per cent of overall taxation has been paid to the municipality, leaving an $11.5 million shortfall.

Ten per cent penalties won’t kick in until Oct. 1.

Everton says there is presently a $9.36 million (81 per cent) shortfall in residential tax payments and $2.2 million (72 per cent) deficit in collection from business and other categories.

Despite the shortfall, Everton writes in his report the city remains on”solid financial ground” despite COVID-19.

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I won’t quit: Lebanese PM defiant as his critics blast financial chaos

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BEIRUT: Beleaguered Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab on Saturday defied a barrage of criticism to declare that his government alone ruled Lebanon and it was determined to implement reforms to resolve the financial crisis.

Diab dismissed as “fake news” reports that he was on the verge of resignation, and said: “Lebanon will not be under anyone’s control as long as I am in power.”

The prime minister spoke after UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet warned that Lebanon was enduring “the worst economic crisis in its history” and was “fast spiraling out of control.” 

She urged Diab’s government to initiate urgent reforms and respond to “the people’s essential needs, such as food, electricity, health, and education.”

Diab also faced harsh criticism from the American University of Beirut (AUB), where he was vice president and a professor before becoming prime minister.

BACKGROUND

UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet urged the Lebanese government to initiate urgent reforms and respond to ‘the people’s essential needs, such as food, health and education.’

AUB president Fadlo Khuri said Diab’s government was the worst in Lebanon’s history in its understanding of higher education.

“I have not seen any shred of competence in this government since its formation six months ago,” said.

“The government owes the AUB $150 million in medical bills,” Khuri said, and he urged Diab to “at least discuss with us a payment timeline.”

Lebanon’s financial plight is illustrated by its currency, the lira, which has lost 80 percent of its value. 

The black market  dollar exchange rate on Saturday was 7,500, compared with the official rate of 1,507.

Bailout talks with the International Monetary Fund were suspended in a dispute over government debt, but Diab insisted on Saturday: “We have turned the page … and started discussing the basic reforms required and the program that the IMF and Lebanon will agree upon, which will restore confidence and open the door to many projects.”

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