Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced on May 15 that the Government of Canada will extend the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) by an additional 12 weeks to August 29, 2020.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on Canadians in all communities and in all sectors of the economy,” Minister Morneau said in a statement. “We have been listening to concerns raised by employers of all kinds, and we know that extending the duration of the wage subsidy and broadening eligibility will help more workers and will better position Canada for economic recovery. This will allow more businesses and organizations to retain or rehire employees in order to be better positioned when the economy rebounds.”
The Government will consult with key business and labour representatives over the next month on potential adjustments to the program to incent jobs and growth, including the 30 per cent revenue decline threshold.
Minister Morneau also announced the approval of regulations to extend eligibility for the CEWS, including:
- Partnerships that are up to 50-per-cent owned by non-eligible members;
- Indigenous government-owned corporations that are carrying on a business, as well as partnerships where the partners are Indigenous governments and eligible employers;
- Registered Canadian Amateur Athletic Associations;
- Registered Journalism Organizations; and
- Non-public colleges and schools, including institutions that offer specialized services, such as arts schools, driving schools, language schools or flight schools.
The Government also intends to propose legislative amendments to ensure that the CEWS continues to meet its objectives in the following regards:
- Provide flexibility for employers of existing employees who were not regularly employed in early 2020, such as seasonal employees;
- Ensure that the CEWS applies appropriately to corporations formed on the amalgamation of two predecessor corporations and
- Better align the treatment of trusts and corporations for the purpose of determining CEWS eligibility.
According to the Government of Canada’s website, more information regarding the CEWS extension will be available soon.