MPP Mike Mantha (Algoma-Manitoulin), the NDP’s critic for Tourism said during question period today that the government needs to stem the damage to northern Ontario tourism during the pandemic by including businesses in COVID-funding programs.
“Ontario’s tourism industry is suffering, they are frustrated and crying out for help,” said Mantha. “In my riding of Algoma-Manitoulin, many outfitters such as Michele and Tom Watson at Kaby Lodge, have lost over 90 per cent of their clientele due to the border restrictions."
Mantha says taking on further debt is not an option for tourist outfitters or many others within the tourism sector.
“Premier, the bleeding continues while this government stands by and does nothing. Businesses are dying, and so is Ontario’s tourism."
He wants emergency programs expanded to ensure that all Ontario tourism-based businesses are included.
That includes immediate grants that have greater eligibility under the Ontario Small Business Support Grant
"Too many businesses are not qualifying for help under the province’s current criteria, and funding is far too limited," Mantha contends.