Bancroft BIA has thrown its support behind the Ontario BIA Association’s (OBIAA) plan to help get local businesses back on their feet.
The OBIAA wants the federal and provincial governments to create a Rapid Responsible Recovery plan that will help local businesses move forward from the pandemic. These steps include things like reintroducing staged capacity limits for indoor settings and patios rather than the current sector-by-sector approach, increased vaccine and rapid COVID testing rollouts, and getting the support of law enforcement to help businesses uphold provincial mandates. They also want increased investment into things like infrastructure, and Digital Main Street services that will help businesses get online. They also want to create a mental health and addiction strategy to deal with ongoing issues beyond the pandemic, like the opioid crisis. Bancroft BIA Executive Officer Jody Yantha says the organization supports all the steps put forward and believes it will rebuild both small businesses and main street economies.
Executive director of the OBIAA Kay Mathews says while the efforts to keep businesses afloat during the pandemic were welcome, she says that both levels of government will have to be paid back eventually. Some small businesses will find themselves on different footing than others, as not all businesses received the same level of support during the pandemic. She says small businesses across the province are integral to the functioning of communities, like supporting sponsorships for local initiatives, helping beautify towns and running festivals and community events. Mathews says BIA’s like the one in Bancroft are essential for strong communities, and if these recovery steps are implemented, main street businesses will be poised to bounce back from the Pandemic.