Ontario Construction News staff writer
A new short-term Northern Ontario Recovery Program (NORP) will help businesses adapt to COVID-19 public health guidelines and protect employees and customers.
“As the province continues to respond to the ongoing challenge of the global pandemic, our government will continue to support our business owners, entrepreneurs and workers,” said Greg Rickford, minister of energy, northern development and mines.
Companies can apply to NORP for assistance with projects that help them adjust to the impacts of COVID-19, such as, but not limited to:
- Building renovations and new constructions
- Customer and employee safety installations
- Equipment purchases, including personal protective equipment (PPE)
- Marketing for new business initiatives
- Restructuring of business operations
Applications are open until Dec. 31, with the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) administering the new program.
Rickford also announced plans for a new and improved NOHFC program to be launched in January 2021 to support more projects in rural northern communities. The program will target existing and emerging market opportunities, provide work opportunities for Indigenous people and address the skilled labour shortage in the north.
The NOHFC promotes economic prosperity across Northern Ontario by providing financial assistance to projects – big and small, rural and urban – that stimulate recovery, growth, job creation and skilled workforce development.
Since June 2018, the NOHFC has invested more than $193 million in 1,386 projects in Northern Ontario, leveraging more than $748 million in investment and creating or sustaining 3,912 jobs.