EMERGENCY: Alberta has declared a Public Health Emergency to protect the health care system from COVID-19. Indoor social gatherings are the top source of transmission. All indoor social gatherings have now been banned. This ban will be enforced with $1,000 fines. Learn more
New business restrictions
Effective Nov. 27, new restrictions apply to businesses in all communities on the enhanced list (purple areas), including restrictions on in-person services, capacity limits and masking requirements. Find out if your business is affected.
If your business is open, you must continue following all current general and sector-specific public health guidance.
Businesses must take steps to protect employees and customers:
- conduct a hazard assessment to identify existing and potential hazards related to COVID-19
- understand the basic requirements of occupational health and safety (OHS) laws
- aid physical separation through barriers (Plexiglas), signage, floor markings and traffic flow controls to limit people in a space
- practice good hygiene and thorough cleaning and disinfecting using Health Canada approved hard-surface disinfectants and hand sanitizers for use against COVID-19 (search products by DIN number)
- use personal protective equipment and wear it properly:
Personal protective equipment
Connect to PPE suppliers using the websites below. The government is not responsible for products or prices offered on these sites.
Alberta-based businesses that manufacture PPE can find out how to help at Alberta Bits and Pieces.
To reduce the risk of COVID-19 among staff and customers, businesses should follow general and sector-specific guidance documents and implement measures to comply with public health requirements.
Restricted and non-restricted services
The list of businesses and sectors currently permitted to or restricted from providing services at locations accessible to the public.
The Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant offers up to $5,000 in funding for eligible small- and medium-sized businesses, cooperatives and non-profits to offset a portion of their relaunch costs.
Businesses and non-profits can use these funds as they see fit, including implementing measures to minimize the risk of virus transmission such as physical barriers, purchasing personal protective equipment and disinfecting supplies, paying rent and employee wages, replacing inventory and more.
Application intake is now open. Businesses operating in areas where enhanced public health measures have been implemented will be eligible to apply for a second payment through this program. More information will be provided once available. Additional program details including eligibility criteria and how to apply can be found on the program webpage.
Protecting commercial tenants
The Commercial Tenancies Protection Act ensures eligible commercial tenants will not face rent increases or be evicted for non-payment of rent due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The measures help address shortfalls in the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program and give eligible business owners peace of mind as they reopen and help with Alberta's economic recovery.
Education property tax deferral
Education property tax rates were frozen at last year’s level – reversing the 3.4% population and inflation increase added in Budget 2020.
Collection of non-residential education property tax for businesses was deferred for 6 months to September 30, or a deferral of both municipal and education property tax for a shorter time that is of equivalent benefit.
- Municipalities were expected to set education property tax rates as they normally would, but defer collection.
- Commercial landlords are encouraged to pass savings on to their tenants through reduced or deferred payments to help employers pay their employees and stay in business.
- Taxpayers can contact their municipality directly for information on their municipality’s approach to education property tax deferral or to discuss a payment schedule to pay these deferred taxes.
Tourism levy abatement
Hotels and other lodging providers are permitted to keep tourism levy amounts collected between March 1 and December 31, 2020. Providers that have already remitted amounts collected after March 1, 2020 are entitled to a refund.
Utility payment deferral
Residential, farm and small commercial customers can defer electricity and natural gas bill payments until June 18, 2020 to ensure no one will be cut off, regardless of the service provider.
This program is available to Albertans who are experiencing financial hardship as a direct result of COVID-19, such as those who have lost their employment or had to leave work to take care of an ill family member.
Call your utility provider directly to arrange for deferral on all payments until June 18, 2020.
WCB premium payment deferrals
Small, medium and large private sector employers can defer WCB premium payments until 2021.
- For small and medium businesses, the government will cover 50% of the 2020 premium when it is due in 2021 – saving businesses $350 million.
- Large employers will have their 2020 WCB premium payments deferred until 2021, at which time their premiums will be due.
Employers who have already paid WCB premiums in 2020 are eligible for a rebate or credit.
Federal government programs
The federal government offers a range of programs to support businesses, including:
- Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)
- Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy
- Canada Emergency Business Account
- Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS)
Have a question?
If you have questions that are not addressed on this page, please contact the Biz Connect team.