Federation of Ontario Public Libraries

COVID-19 Update
Government of Canada actions on COVID-19
April 17, 2020
Good afternoon,
The federal government announced over $3.2 billion in new support for specific sectors of the economy impacted by the pandemic. Here are the details:
  • For the oil & gas sector, the federal government is investing $1.7 billion to clean up orphan and abandoned oil wells in Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia. The PM said that in Alberta alone, this will create 5200 jobs. In Alberta, a portion of this funding will go to the Orphan Well Association.
  • The government is providing $750 million in repayable contributions, including $75 million for offshore producers, to reduce methane emissions. Combined with the orphan and abandoned wells measures, this will create 10,000 jobs. The PM said the government is responding to industry concerns that the methane regulations would be a challenge to meet, so instead of backing off of the requirements, they are lending funds to meet these targets while keeping people at work.
  • The federal government is also creating a new credit facility for small to mid-sized oil & gas companies through BDC and EDC.
  • The Prime Minister announced a new program for small businesses, providing $962 million to nearly double the budgets of regional development agencies and the Community Futures Network. These funds will benefit local businesses that don’t qualify for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy or Canada Emergency Business Account loans.
  • To help over 1000 strategic start-ups maintain 10,000 jobs, $272 million will be made available to Futurpreneur Canada and the National Research Council’s Industrial Research Assistance Program. Applications for these funds will be open early next week.
  • $500 million is being provided to Heritage Canada to create an emergency support fund for the arts, culture & sports sectors. These funds will help with wage support and cash flow to support artists, creators and sports organizations if they are experiencing financial hardship, and will be administered with the help of partners like the Canada Council for the Arts.
  • The government is working with opposition members to resume sittings of Parliament on a weekly basis, presumably with a reduced quorum. The House of Commons is currently scheduled to resume on Monday, so an agreement must be reached by then.
  • 125 members of the Canadian Armed Forces with healthcare training will arrive in Quebec this afternoon to assist in long-term care homes which have been hard hit by the pandemic.
  • The PM confirmed that a coordinated reopening of the economy on a regional basis was discussed with the Premiers last night. Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said the government needs to be careful, deliberate and thoughtful about next steps, recognizing the sacrifices of all Canadians and the high price that has been paid, in order to ensure that these efforts have not been wasted.
Our federal team is standing by to answer your questions:
Sheamus Murphy
613 323 7607
Bridget Howe
613 797 8058
Ben Parsons
613 323 5226