Tories ask Liberals for plan for extra help for tourism and hospitality sectors

OTTAWA — The Opposition Conservatives are calling on the Trudeau Liberals to come up with a plan specifically to help the nation’s restaurant, hospitality and tourism sectors.

Many of them were either among the first to close due to public health concerns related to COVID-19, or have seen dramatic declines in business as consumer spending drops.

A handful of Conservative critics say in a statement this morning that the government must give these businesses the tools to open their doors again.

The party also says such a plan would help businesses retain workers through the pandemic, especially in areas with historically high unemployment.

Among the ideas being proposed are temporarily allowing owner-operators to qualify for the federal wage subsidy program as well as refunding a year’s worth of GST remittances to small businesses.

A report last week by the parliamentary budget officer estimated that refunding federal sales tax to small businesses would cost Ottawa’s coffers about $12.9 billion.

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