Support for BIZ Members. You're receiving this as a member or contact. Should you change your mind, the opportunity to unsubscribe or update you email address is offered in the footer of every eNews. Images not displaying below? Access this online.

Downtown Winnipeg BIZ: Memo - The latest information for BIZ Members

Dear Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Member,

Downtown Winnipeg BIZ is continuing to advocate for supports and programs that we know can help BIZ members through the pandemic. In addition to our advocacy efforts, we’re hoping to make the programs and supports available a little easier to navigate by sharing relevant information with you and helping to guide you through some of the processes.

City extends deferrals on property and business taxes until Nov. 30

City council passed a motion to give business owners more leeway to pay their taxes by extending the tax deferral period. Those who haven’t paid property and business taxes won’t be penalized for doing so until at least November 30.

We’re advocating for a better program to help with rent relief

We’ve been hearing from BIZ members that some businesses continue to struggle with making their fixed payments. While some business owners have benefitted from the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program, others have not qualified because of the restrictive criteria. In August, we sent a letter to show our support for changing the CECRA program so more businesses can get the help they need. These suggestions were:

  • That the program be amended to allow tenants to apply for CECRA directly instead of relying on landlords to participate.

  • To change the requirement that businesses must have experienced at least a 70% decline in pre-COVID-19 revenues to 55% so more small businesses are eligible to apply.

You may be eligible for both federal and provincial wage subsidy programs

NEW! Provincial wage subsidy program has expanded
The Province has expanded its Back to Work subsidy program that encourages employers to bring back laid-off employees or make new hires. The expanded program will allow employers to receive a subsidy for another 10 full or part-time employees, which doubles the previous amount of subsidized employees to 20 and doubles the financial support as well. Learn more about the Back to Work program.

NEW! Federal wage subsidy program launches calculator and expands program
The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) is also available to cover part of your employee wages, retroactive to March 15. The Government of Canada has launched an online calculator that can help you determine how much subsidy you may receive.

In addition to the calculator, several changes are being introduced to the program, including expanded eligibility criteria, a sliding revenue-decline test to determine the subsidy amount, and a top-up subsidy for the most impacted employers. Visit the Government of Canada website to learn more.

Downtown business openwithcare sign in window.

Take the #OpenwithCare pledge

Last week, we launched the #OpenwithCare campaign designed to help downtown businesses demonstrate their commitment to keeping downtown healthy, safe and open. The campaign is designed to give customers confidence that your business, and all of downtown, is following guidelines outlined by the Province, and putting employee and customer health first.

To further instill confidence in the safety of your business, take the pledge to show your commitment to following the Province’s health guidelines. Businesses who have taken the #OpenwithCare pledge will be listed on our website.

Easy-to-find federal government COVID-19 resources

The Government of Canada has created a new resource that makes it easier to find the answers about COID-19 supports and how they can help your business during these challenging times. By answering a few questions about your business at, you will receive a tailored list of supports, plus discover hundreds of other federal, provincial, and territorial programs and services designed to support Canadian businesses.

Vantage Studios can help with your print needs

If you’re looking for print items for advertising, promotion or other needs, your fellow Downtown Winnipeg BIZ member, Vantage can help. The folks at Vantage are offering downtown businesses reduced rates. For more information, contact:

6 Feet Office program can help with office set-up

Fellow Downtown Winnipeg BIZ member Cushman & Wakefield is offering assessments to Manitoba companies to provide advice on how to implement the 6 Feet Office principles, a set of guidelines to help with physical distancing and other safety measures, into their spaces at no cost. We’ve shared this program with the large employers as a resource to help them work towards bringing downtown workers back safely. If you’re interested in learning more about the program, please contact

As always, please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions:

Thank you,

Kate Fenske
Chief Executive Officer
Downtown Winnipeg BIZ