OUTAOUAIS – The SADCs in Vallée-de-la-Gatineau, Pontiac and Papineau are receiving an additional $1.06 million through the second phase of the federal government’s Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF). Each will receive $352,059 to help businesses affected by the pandemic, but were ineligible for other government programs.
Pontiac MP William Amos made the announcement on November 5 via a ZOOM teleconference, with members of the SADCs
and Stéphane Lauzon, Argenteuil – La Petite-Nation MP, in attendance.
The results of the first phase of the RRRF were also unveiled. In the Outaouais from June 1 to August 31, $2,807,193 was given in loans to 105 businesses and 10 group projects. The Pontiac SADC received $1.1 million, which funded 23 loans (maximum $40,000 each) and 7 non-repayable grants totalling $91,791. If repaid by 2022, the loans are interest free and 25% doesn’t have to be repaid.
According to Rhonda Perry, Pontiac SADC director, the Pontiac branch used its entire budget for phase one and plans to do the same for the new funding, which must be awarded by March 1, 2021.
“In a context where the goal is sustainable regional economic recovery, SADCs and CAEs are positioned to be key players in mobilizing the Outaouais business community and enterprises. They’ve been able to help many SMEs overcome the crisis and operate in a new business environment,” said Amos, emphasizing the recycling effect the invested funds have.
“When a business repays the funds to the SADC, this money can then be reinvested to help other local businesses. The money will always remain in the area,” he added.
To conclude the meeting, Guillaume Saumur, owner of G&S Finition in
Ste-Thérèse-de-la-Gatineau, explained how the pandemic affected his interior
finishing business and how SADC funding helped his business survive. The
pandemic shut-down hit when he was two weeks from finishing a large
project, meaning payment was delayed, and he had already purchased the materials for his next large project. “The RRRF helped us at a time when we
needed cash to keep our business running. It gave us a big boost!” he said.
Businesses interested in obtaining funding can contact the Pontiac SADC for more information.