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April 22, 2021

Your CFA Update on COVID-19



CFA Win!!! Franchise fees will be eligible under changes to the Canada Small Business Finance Program

In Monday’s budget the federal government announced changes to Canada Small Business Finance Program that will allow franchise fees to be financed along with increases in the maximum loan amount and the create of a working capital loan product. This is a big win for franchised businesses across Canada.

Don't Miss Game-changing and Critical Information for You and Your Franchisees About Changes in Government Support Programs!

With the recent changes from the Federal budget to government support programs for businesses, this session will contain important information on what the new programs are, what is available for franchised businesses, and how to apply for these additional sources of government funding! Content in this session will include:
  • Tips and resources to extend your cash runway;
  • Canada Small Business Finance Program (CSBFP) changes to allow franchise fees to be included in CSBFP loans;
  • CEWS & CERS program extensions; and
  • NEW Hiring and Training incentive programs and funding amounts.

As franchisors, there has never been a more important time to support your franchisees than now through the knowledge shared in this session. Register for a Corporate Group Pass to grant all your franchisees FREE ACCESS to Franchisee Day.


Canada pledges to slash greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40% by 2030

At an international climate summit convened by U.S. President Joe Biden, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged today that Canada would aggressively curb greenhouse gas emissions over the next decade.

Trudeau said Canada will reduce emissions by 40 to 45 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 — a target much lower than the one first pitched by the former Conservative government and agreed to by former environment minister Catherine McKenna at the Paris climate talks in 2015.

Canada has long maintained it would slash emissions by 30 per cent by 2030. In real terms, that would mean lowering GHG emissions from 732 megatonnes to 513 megatonnes.

Canada produced 730 megatonnes of carbon dioxide emissions in 2019, an increase of one megatonne — or 0.2 per cent — over 2018.

The government department found emissions are down just 1.1 per cent compared to that 2005 baseline of 732 megatonnes, but the report suggests Canada is making progress.

The Liberal government did not release a new plan today to explain how it intends to get to that 40 per cent reduction.

At the same meeting, the Biden administration vowed to cut U.S. emissions by 50 to 52 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 — doubling former president Barack Obama's pledge for the same time period.

"This is the decade we must make decisions that will avoid the worst consequences of the climate crisis," Biden said.

The U.S. emissions cuts are expected to come from power plants, automobiles and other sectors across the economy, but the White House did not set individual targets for those industries.

Rogers to provide refunds for Monday’s outages

On Monday evening, Rogers announced that they will be offering affected customers a credit equivalent to the daily wireless service fee. The credit will be applied to a May bill automatically and no action is required customers.

More information is available here.

CFA's Relaunch, Reset & Recover

Customize your learning experience based on your specific situation with focused education segmented by size and sector to equip yourself and your team with successful strategies to find future success! Register now.

Bank of Canada sees 2022 rate hike, tapers bond-buying program

The Bank of Canada is scaling back its massive asset purchase program known as quantitative easing, while also while signalling higher interest rates — and bigger variable mortgage payments — might be coming sooner than previously expected.

"Effective the week of April 26, weekly net purchases of Government of Canada bonds will be adjusted to a target of $3 billion," said the Bank of Canada in a release. "This adjustment to the amount of incremental stimulus being added each week reflects the progress made in the economic recovery."

The overnight rate stays at 0.25 per cent. But Canada's central bank is forecasting its inflation target will be reached earlier than 2023, as it previously said. "As slack is absorbed, inflation should return to 2 per cent on a sustained basis some time in the second half of 2022."

Optimism about the economy and a higher loonie

The Bank of Canada is also more upbeat about the economy and is now forecasting real GDP growth of 6.5 per cent in 2021. "The Bank of Canada has made a drastic U-turn in the space of three months from being extremely cautious to being extremely upbeat," said Benjamin Reitzes, director, Canadian rates & macro strategist, at BMO.

"While there's still some ways to go until we get a move on rates, the Bank has taken the first step toward exiting QE, in what is clearly a more hawkish statement than markets anticipated. We'll be actively reviewing our forecasts on the back of the BoC's shift."

The Bank of Canada's upbeat tone also pushed the loonie higher. "The Canadian dollar spiked more than 120 basis points after the announcement, breaking through a number of key technical and psychological levels as traders revised expectations upward." 

"Of course, by signalling that policy is poised to tighten, the Bank risks putting sustained upward pressure on the exchange rate," said Karl Schamotta, chief market strategist at Cambridge Global Payments.

Alberta workers will be given 3 hours of paid leave to get vaccinated

Workers in Alberta will be allowed three hours of paid leave to get vaccinated against COVID-19 thanks to changes to employment standards that took effect Wednesday night. 

The government introduced and passed the legislation on Wednesday to amend the Employment Standards Act.

Regina city council sets timeline leading to ban on single-use plastic bags by 2022

In a report to the operations and services committee, city administration plans to begin educating the public about the ban near the end of 2021, with the ban itself in place in early 2022. It was supposed to start in August, 2020, but delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Grocery store, restaurant workers in Manitoba's COVID-19 hot spots eligible for vaccines as of Friday

People working in Manitoba restaurants, grocery stores, and schools are among front-line workers in high-risk communities who will be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine starting Friday. 

New details about the plan to extend eligibility to anyone over 18 living in certain geographic areas with high rates of transmission or serious illness, as well as people working in certain front-line jobs in those areas, were released Wednesday.

The list of workers who will get priority access include people who work:

  • At a school.
  • As a child-care or daycare provider.
  • In a food processing facility, including as a food inspector.
  • As a public health inspector or workplace safety and health officer.
  • At a grocery store, convenience store or retail gas location.
  • Anywhere that serves or provides food, including restaurants, food banks and soup kitchens.

As was the case when health-care workers became eligible, staff booking appointments and administering vaccines will ask for such proof of employment, such as workplace ID and letters from employers, but in some cases will simply ask people to assert that they work in an eligible workplace.

As more vaccines become available, other categories of workers may be added to the list.

Ontario Government suggests paid sick days are coming

As has been the case each day this week, question period at the legislature was dominated by the issue of paid sick leave for workers who fall ill with COVID-19 or are forced to isolate due to cases in the workplace.

Health Minister Christine Elliott suggested yesterday that a provincially-run paid sick leave program was being considered as the province's health-care system inches closer to a breaking point.

Today, in response to questions from opposition MPPs, Calandra said that the province will make "additional enhancements" to the currently available federal program in the coming days. That came after the government denied unanimous consent for a motion from the Liberal caucus that would have seen immediate passage of Bill 247 to provided workers with 10 paid sick days right away.

Premier Doug Ford and his cabinet had declined to implement paid sick leave, saying the province didn't want to duplicate the Canada recovery sickness benefit (CRSB) from Ottawa — that it would be "double dipping" and unfair to taxpayers.

The province's messaging on paid sick leave has changed markedly as the third wave worsens, with cabinet members pointing to gaps in the CRSB that have, they now say, long needed to be fixed. 

Calandra said more details about the province's plan are "imminent," but that cabinet wants to "get it right" before moving forward.

Halifax area to enter 4-week lockdown

Strict restrictions are being implemented in the Halifax Regional Municipality and some surrounding communities as the region grapples with high numbers of daily new cases of COVID-19. The province reported 38 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, the highest daily case count in the province in a year, and a number only surpassed during the worst early days of the pandemic.

Premier Iain Rankin announced a four-week lockdown for the Halifax Regional Municipality and communities of Hubbards, Milford, Lantz, Elmsdale, Enfield, South Uniacke, Ecum Secum and Trafalgar.

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COVID-19's impact on the world is creating waves across all sectors and industries.

Every member of the CFA community is dealing with an issue that is affecting the world, our industries, our communities, our businesses, and our people.

We would like to hear from you if you have any topics, issues or questions to navigate turbulent times in order to support you further: 


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