Niagara receives $2 million in direct federal support for tourism sector
Niagara Economic Development has secured and awarded $2 million in direct funding from The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) to support Niagara’s tourism industry in its recovery from COVID-19.
The funding provided 167 Niagara tourism-dependent businesses with up to $20,000 in non-repayable contributions to support costs associated with adapting and eventually reopening, such as space renovations and retrofits, purchase of equipment and fixtures, personal protective equipment, and support for technology and digitization.
- The funding supports costs to equip businesses to meet Public Health guidelines and protocols, including:
- Purchase of PPE and cleaning supplies for workers
- Accommodation of social distancing (expansion of restaurant patio space, pick-up windows or curbside pick-ups for retailers, secondary entry/exit to allow physical distancing, and equipment to extend the outdoor dining season
- Implementation of technology and digital tools to allow tourism operators to enable processes like virtual queues and timed entry ticketing
The program is being delivered in partnership with Niagara’s Economic Rapid Response Team, and is estimated to help maintain 325 jobs.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, Niagara’s Economic Development community has been working across municipal borders to aid and support the many Niagara businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Earlier this Spring, Niagara Economic Development launched a new online business directory that allows Niagara businesses to identify and connect with both customers and local supply chain partners to increase their visibility, lower costs, and speed up production, all right within Niagara.
"Our tourism operators are critical contributors to Niagara’s economy, and while they have been hit especially hard by this pandemic, they have also shown remarkable resiliency and innovation. On behalf of Regional Council, I would like to thank FedDev Ontario for this direct financial support, which will go a long way in helping the many small, medium and large tourism operators across Niagara continue to weather this storm and keep Niagara on the path to economic prosperity." ~ Regional Chair Jim Bradley
"As we look towards a hopeful exit from the pandemic, Niagara’s tourism industry is poised and ready to recover and thrive again, and Niagara’s economic development community is committed to supporting them throughout that process. This funding will open up doors for many of those businesses to find new and creative ways to do business in the coming years" ~ George Spezza, Director, Niagara Economic Development