The program will provide forgivable loans to eligible commercial property owners experiencing potential rent shortfalls because their small business tenants have been heavily impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
The loans will cover 50 per cent of three monthly rent payments that are payable by eligible small business tenants who are experiencing financial hardship during April, May, and June.
To receive the forgivable loan, property owners will be required to reduce the rental costs of small business tenants for April to June 2020 by at least 75 per cent and commit to a moratorium on evictions for three months. The small business tenant would cover the remainder, up to 25 per cent of the rent.
Impacted small business tenants are businesses paying less than $50,000 per month in rent and who have temporarily ceased operations or have experienced at least a 70 per cent drop in pre-COVID-19 revenues.
Ontario's Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark has also issued a letter to Canada's Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Ahmed Hussen encouraging the federal government to explore a rental relief program for residential tenants.