Hon. Steve Clark
Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing
College Park 17th Flr, 777 Bay St
Toronto, ON M7A 2J3
Dear Minister Clark,
I’m writing to you on behalf of small businesses in Scarborough-Guildwood who have been struggling to stay afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic to request an extension of the commercial eviction moratorium until federal rent assistance is implemented.
Since the pandemic hit Ontario in March, many business operations have been interrupted by waves of shutdowns, restrictions, and reduced consumer confidence. With the second wave of COVID-19 in full swing in Ontario, these problems persist.
Small businesses have been clear about what they need to get through the pandemic: rent relief. They are facing declining revenues but still have bills to pay. One small business restaurant owner in my riding expressed concern that without support they are unsure that they will make it through a second wave shutdown. We can’t afford to leave behind these small businesses that keep our main streets vibrant.
While we anticipate that improved rent relief is coming soon from the federal government – who have invested in 93% of the Government of Ontario’s COVID response – it will not come before your government’s commercial eviction moratorium which expires today.
I am calling on the Ontario government to extend the commercial eviction moratorium for businesses until we are through this pandemic and the federal government implements their new commercial rent supports. By doing so, you would keep Ontarians working by preventing small businesses from closing unnecessarily. I urge you and your government to do all you can without delay to assist small businesses to survive the economic constraints caused by the pandemic.
Thank you for your consideration of this request. I am available to discuss this with you further at your convenience.