Premier Doug Ford says Ontario’s share of rent relief for businesses will amount to 240-million dollars.  The province is partnering with the federal government for the Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program.  The total amount of government support will be 900-million representing a 75-percent rent reduction that will see landlords and tenants cover a quarter of rent payments.

“The vast majority of Ontario’s small businesses and landlords are struggling during this extraordinary public health emergency,” said Premier Ford. “That’s why we are doing everything we can to support them through these tough economic times, so they can hit the ground running when we are in a position to open up the provincial economy. I want to thank the federal government for partnering with us to help our small businesses and commercial landlords. I look forward to working together to also provide much-needed support to residential renters ahead of May 1.”

Ford also said he will be speaking to the Prime Minister today to develop a residential rent relief program.  Evictions have been frozen for those that cannot pay rent, so they will not lose their homes, but he says more needs to be done for people who have lost their jobs and are struggling but he urged people who are still working to continue to pay rent, “if you are working and have an income if you are able too, you must pay rent.”

Ford also says early next week the province will unveil its plan to reopen the economy but cautions it will be a gradual reopening.

Ford says he feels as “healthy as a horse”.  He says it is not about his family, “it is about the 78,000 families with relatives in long-term care homes, people who have lost their jobs and are worried about paying bills and paying rent…that is what I worry about 24/7.”