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Oakville Mayor calls for support of Restaurant Industry

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Oakville Mayor calls for support of Restaurant Industry
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Rob Burton

Rob Burton

Rob Burton is the mayor of Oakville, Ontario. He was elected as Mayor in 2006, and re-elected for a fourth term in 2018. Mr. Burton is best known in the business community as the creator of YTV. He has a Master of Science degree in Journalism from Columbia University.

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Dear Prime Minister Trudeau and Premier Ford:

Thank you for the strong work your governments have done to address the COVID-19 crisis.

In addition to our own municipal revenue crisis which threatens our ability to maintain the services our residents and businesses and you depend on us to provide, the foodservice industry is in even more dire straits across Ontario. With little to no revenue, restaurant operators will be unable to pay rent and other fixed costs, forcing them to permanently close their doors before recovery can even begin.

We are encouraged by word that the provincial Premiers and Prime Minister are meeting and discussing options to address the need for up to three months of rent relief for small businesses that have been hardest hit by the crisis.

We mayors believe the Federal and Provincial governments can assist businesses to address the spectre of impending rent with the following essential steps:

  • An immediate moratorium on commercial evictions
  • A program of direct rent subsidies to businesses equivalent to the business’s sales volume reduction
  • Measures to continue throughout the recovery period to allow business to ramp back up

As these measures have been for the greater public good, Government should compel landlords and banks to share the cost of the emergency measures. They should not be borne solely by the lessee.

Premier, you have been very clear in your public statement that you are aware of the crisis the cities and our businesses are facing. When we move into the recovery phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ontario will need every business, large and small, available to pull together, and cities able to provide essential municipal services that support the Province, its businesses, and Ontario’s residents.

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