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Midland council to take a look at rent relief for small business tenants

Also on the docket, a possible extension of free parking in the downtown and a time-capsule project related to the Big Dig
The Town of Midland administrative building. File photo.

The Town of Midland is looking at a three-month rent-reduction agreement with its small business tenants.

Under the rules of the agreement set out by staff, the town would reduce rent by 75% for April, May, and June. Furthermore, if rent for this period has already been paid or if rent is paid in an annual lump sum, a credit will be issued towards future rent payments.

Olympia  Sports,  Askennonia  Senior  Centre, and the Snack Shack are three town tenants in the North Simcoe Sports and Recreation Centre. All three closed down when the town shuttered the facility because of the pandemic. Rastin and Associates and Tony's Restaurant are the other two tenants that have expressed concerns around rent payment due to decreased revenues.

As the town is not eligible to participate in the Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program program, staff are recommending that the town itself provide rent relief to the affected tenants. For tenants identified in the report, this would be a total cost of $16,168 to the town, while the tenants will still be responsible for 25% of the rent, in the total amount of $5,389.

Meanwhile, Scott Campbell, of Grounded Coffee Company, has written a letter to council on behalf of the Midland BIA to ask that the town continue with its 'no parking enforcement offer' within the downtown. 

Also up on the agenda (available online) is the King Street rejuvenation time-capsule project.

Staff is recommending that a jury of citizens be created to determine what items will be placed in the time capsule. The sealed time-capsule container is to be buried next spring in a location not yet specified. A plaque will be posted and unveiled upon the project's completion.

Residents can visit the Engaging Midland website, between June and Labour Day, to suggest items for possible inclusion. Residents without internet access will be able to mail in a letter with their suggestions. Items to be included must meet listed criteria around size, archival stability and relevance.