Nova Scotia restaurateurs, barkeepers and personal service business operators cam claim a property tax rebate if they’ve experienced COVID-19-related revenue loss and business disruptions. A newly announced $7-million provincial fund is expected to compensate up to 3,300 small commercial ratepayers who can choose between a one-time payout of $1,000 or 50 per cent of the fees they’ve submitted for the final six months of the 2020-21 tax year.
“The rebate may be based on property taxes, but is designed to be used by business owners to support any aspect of their business, including hiring staff or paying down debt, paying utilities or ordering supplies,” advises Nova Scotia Premier Iain Rankin.
Eligible businesses include dine-in restaurants, drinking establishments, gyms and fitness facilities, hair and nail salons, barbershops, spas and body art services. Additionally, they must have previously received funds through Nova Scotia’s Small Business Impact Grant program or sustained at least a 30 per cent year-over-year drop in revenue in the period from April 30, 2020 to January 31, 2021 or have launched their businesses since January 1, 2020. An application portal is promised for mid-March.
“The property tax rebate will assist operators, who are in survival mode, and represents a step forward in the recovery process,” acknowledges Gordon Stewart, executive director of the Restaurant Association of Nova Scotia (RANS).