News, updates, and so much more…


Niagara Medical Officer of Health offers COVID-19 briefing


Government extends COVID-19 benefits and business supports

Today, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, the Honourable Chrystia Freeland, and the Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, announced the extension of COVID-19 support measures for Canadians and Canadian businesses in recognition that uneven economic reopening across regions and sectors means workers and businesses continue to need support. These extensions include:

  • Extending the eligibility period for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy and Lockdown Support until October 23, 2021, and increasing the rate of support employers and organizations can receive during the period between August 29 and September 25, 2021.
  • Extending the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB), the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB), and the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) until October 23, 2021.
  • Increasing the maximum number of weeks available for the CRB, by an additional 4 weeks, to a total of 54 weeks, at a rate of $300 per week, and ensuring it is available to those who have exhausted their employment insurance (EI) benefits.

For more information, click here.

Survey link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/F9K9YCM

Ontario unveils back-to-school plan for September. Here’s what you need to know

All students will be able to return to the classroom full time this September under the Ontario government’s highly anticipated back-to-school plan.

The 26-page plan says elementary students and secondary students will attend school in-person five days per week, for the first time in months.

Remote learning will remain an option for parents and students who don’t feel comfortable returning to the classroom.

Click here for more information.

Phone number: +1 905-380-4963
Email: vasb@angherfrrxref.pn

Federal government announces funding for the 2022 Canada Games in the Niagara region

Today, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage, announced an investment of up to $1.1 million for the 2022 Canada Summer Games Host Society in the Niagara region. This funding will help cover additional costs due to the postponement of the Games and impacts of COVID-19. The Games, which were originally planned for the summer of 2021, were rescheduled to August 6 to 21, 2022.

Click here for more information.

City of Welland
For Immediate Release
August 3, 2021
Revised: adds the correct link for election results
Where to find Ward 3 by-election results on voting day
Voting Day is Monday, August 9, 2021, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. During this time, the Clerk’s staff will process ballots that have been received.

Following the 8:00 p.m. closing of the polls, the election results will be posted on the City of Welland website at www.welland.ca/Elections/ElectionResults.asp
Additional Resources for voting, including a video on how to complete the Vote-By-Mail kit and Ballot Return Location operating hours, is available on our website at
Electors may contact the Clerk’s Office for further information by emailing ryrpgvba@jryynaq.pn or calling 905-735-1700, ext. 2153.
– 30 –
Tara Stephens
City Clerk
905-735-1700, ext. 2159



SAVE THE DATE! Free to attend! September 22, 2021, at 1:30 PM.


These virtual seminars are designed for business owners, operators, managers, supervisors, team leaders and feature expert guest speakers.  Our first topic is Managing Mental Health Challenges During Difficult Times.

Registration link: https://www.jobgym.com/virtual-programs/managing-mental-health/






The Ontario government is investing $10.5 million to prevent workplace illnesses and injuries by improving health and safety awareness and practices at up to 60,000 small businesses across the province over the next three years.

All small businesses with 6 to 19 employees are required to have a health and safety representative and can apply for this training. The Small Business Health and Safety Training Program will provide free online training to Health and Safety Representatives to keep workers safe in the retail, construction, health care, accommodation and food services, and other sectors.

The Ontario government will cover the $25 cost of registration for the eLearning training course for an appointed health and safety representative and will reimburse small businesses $150 towards the time that representative is away from work for training. READ MORE

About the Training Course: The Health and Safety Representative Basic Training course is an eLearning program that provides instruction on the powers, functions and duties of the workplace health and safety representative. Access the course.

Reimbursement: Small businesses with 6-19 employees who complete the training program from July 15, 2021 onwards are eligible for reimbursement. To be reimbursed, small businesses must be a registered business that operates in Ontario and provide proof that their appointed health and safety representative has completed the training course, in the form of the course completion certificate obtained from WSPS. Businesses can apply up to two times, with a second allowance permitted for staff turnover. Franchises of the same corporation with unique business numbers are also eligible for funding.

Here’s the link to the announcement, Free Health and Safety Training for Small Businesses

City of Welland
For Immediate Release
JULY 28, 2021
Welland, ON – Construction is well underway at the two new Welland Fire and Emergency Services Fire Stations. Fire Station #1, located at 400 East Main Street (former Atlas Steels property) and Fire Station #2, located at 636 King Street. 

Mayor Frank Campion had the opportunity to tour both Fire Station sites. He was joined by Councillors Bryan Green, Bonnie Fokkens, Claudette Richard, John Chiocchio, Adam Moote and Jim Larouche. Also attending the tour were Fire Chief Adam Eckhart along with Jason Mooney, Bill Katsiroumpas, Jaber Inyat and Adam Arsenault from the project management firm, Mettko.  

“This is an exciting time for the City of Welland as it makes a significant investment in community safety.” said Mayor Frank Campion. “Welland has an incredible and highly respected Fire and Emergency Services Department. This is an integral step in ensuring that Welland Fire and Emergency Services remains a leader in fire service.”

Fire Chief Adam Eckhart stated, “The new fire stations will improve public safety across the community and our first training center will provide incredible opportunities to enhance firefighting skills for years to come. WFES is excited to see their new facilities and humbly thank everyone who made this possible.”

METTKO is excited to have the opportunity to work closely with City of Welland’s Fire Chief and his team and to be part of the integrated team to design and construct the new environmentally sustainable fire stations as well new landmarks to the Welland community.”, stated Jason Mooney, Mettko Project Management.  

Construction is expected to be completed on both firehalls in the spring of 2022. For further information on Fire & Emergency Services, visit www.welland.ca
– 30 –
Adam Eckhart,
Fire Chief & Community Emergency Management Coordinator
905-735-1700 Ext. 2400
The Oak Centre Clubhouse is nothing short of amazing and has been ever since it was founded. A kind-hearted nurse named Betty Farrish helped to apply for funding in 1985 for a community mental health program in Welland to serve citizens dealing with mental illness. Not long after, funding was approved, and the Oak Centre turned from a dream to a reality. Making adjustments over the years helped to develop the Oak Centre Clubhouse that we know and love today.
Some might not fully understand what the Oak Centre does? The Oak Centre does not “treat” mental illnesses, they support their members who are living with mental illnesses, in fulfilling whatever their hearts desire. This could include employment, education, housing, increased social interaction, or simply just having a place to belong to.
Member Larry explains that some of these tasks like attending classes or working a new job can be scary for people with mental health concerns and that accomplishing something like this is truly monumental. The Oak Centre is prepared to help members every step of the way until they are comfortable enough to reach full independence. For example, the employment continuum at the Oak Centre looks like: transitional employment placements –> supported employment –> independent employment. Regarding education, members can rely on each other by getting tutoring from previously graduated members, or even bringing someone to class with them for support.
It should be mentioned that the Oak Centre values a work/play balance. They organize many fun outings together like camping, going out for dinner, to the zoo, Canada’s Wonderland, African Lion Safari, St. Jacob’s Market, the movies, and more! These activities are great opportunities to get out, be social and have some fun! Though, nothing is mandatory!
The Oak Centre is also involved with a multitude of organizations to provide a variety of resources to their members. Another program at the Oak Centre is the “meal a day – for a dollar” program, providing healthy meals to their members for only $1. There is also the evening/weekend program – serving dinner on Wednesdays (4pm-7:30pm) and lunch on Saturdays (11am-2:30pm).
Besides the work and play, what is the Oak Centre’s mission? Their philosophy is to see people from a holistic perspective, their focus is on the strength of their members despite the barriers that they may face. The Oak Centre gives people a chance to reclaim their power. Members with lived experience have a resiliency to them and have the ability to overcome many things. It’s important to give the members faith and opportunities because sometimes the system can make them feel discouraged. At the Oak Centre, members make decisions for themselves, they have responsibilities and feel empowered. Members feel freedom in everything, like going on a grocery run, making lunch, giving tours, or even sitting on the board of directors, like Larry, who has been a member for 26 years, on the board for 13 years and is now the Vice President!
Everyone at the Oak Centre is equal, all opinions are valued, and everyone is respected. All work at the Centre is done by members, whether there are working in Clerical, or the Garden Café, you can choose what interests you the most, no job is too small!
What is your favourite thing about the Oak Centre?
Dee – The opportunities, the respect and the hope. It’s just fun! We are always laughing here! We all have genuine, authentic friendships with each other.
Ru – The richness of the people, being able to know people who are so resilient and seeing their recovery. It’s a beautiful miracle.
Sylvie – Seeing everyone as equal and building real relationships. Getting to be a part of people’s lives through the good and the bad.
Larry – Believing in the program, and the philosophy. The friendships that are made and just being able to sit and have conversations with fellow members all the time.
A big thanks to the Oak Centre Clubhouse and its members for providing such a fun, welcoming environment to Welland community members dealing with mental illness. Your work does not go unnoticed!
Governmental Financial Support and Resources

Tax Alert: Bill C-208 represents a significant positive change to support family business succession in Canada

Bill C-208 provides for the intergenerational transfer of certain family businesses to receive the same tax treatment as businesses sold to a third party.

There is a tight window in which businesses can act, which is prior to November 1, 2021. Businesses contemplating their succession plan – specifically an intergenerational transfer – should reach out to their MNP Advisor as soon as possible to learn more.

Read our detailed summary for an overview and our recommendations for what to do next. 

Learn More
Best regards,

Alexis Higginbotham
Executive Director
60 East Main Street
Welland, ON
L3B 3X4
Copyright © 2018, Welland Downtown Business Improvement Area, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
195 East Main Street Unit 4C
Welland, Ontario

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