The Canadian Press/Nathan Denette

COVID-19 roundup: Commercial landlords still aren’t taking Ottawa’s money

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It’s day 115 since Canada’s 100th coronavirus case. The number of cases is 105,026 as of publication time, up 255 since yesterday—a 16.9 per cent decrease from the seven-day prior average of 307 new cases. At its peak on May 3, the seven-day average was 1,603 new cases a day. 

Nearly 5,500 patients in 39 countries have been recruited into the World Health Organization’s clinical trial testing drugs that can treat COVID-19; results are expected within two weeks. 

“An utter failure”: The federal government’s business rent relief program continues to see low uptake, despite policymakers’ repeated calls for landlords to apply for the aid and eviction moratoriums in some provinces. 

As of Monday, property owners had received approval for $194 million in funding on behalf of over 25,600 tenants through the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA), according to figures Finance Canada provided The Logic. That accounts for just five to six per cent of the 400,000 to 500,000 firms the Canadian Federation of Independent Business estimates meet the eligibility criteria. “It’s an utter failure,” Michael Smith, an organizer of the Save Small Business lobby, told The Logic.

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