The city wants CafeTO to be permanent

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Reports to the executive committee next week recommend making a pandemic relief program for struggling Toronto restaurants a permanent fixture on city streets.

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Launched last year to allow closed restaurants to have the ability to serve a limited number of customers on sidewalk patios and in parking lanes, city staff recommends that CafeTO become a permanent program for diners. eligible restaurants and that fees to establish such patios are eliminated next year.

“CafeTO has been one of our most successful pandemic relief programs,” Mayor John Tory said during a news conference Wednesday morning.

“It has had a positive impact on our city, it has had a positive impact on the hospitality companies that call Toronto home, and that’s because we made the decision, simple as it may seem, to turn parking spaces into very patios. necessary ”.

A second report before the committee lays the groundwork for establishing a new class of taxes for small businesses in the city, beginning in 2022.

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The report recommends applying a 15% property tax reduction for small businesses that are currently in the business tax class, funded by a 0.85% property tax increase for business businesses that do not They meet the requirements of the new rating, making the film revenue neutral. the city.

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The report says the measure would benefit about 25,000 small businesses in the city, or 60% of the city’s commercial properties.

Criteria for qualifying include having assessed values ​​below $ 1 million (that cap increases to $ 7 million for businesses in the city center, waterfront of ‘designated growth cetnns’, and they exist in lots of less than 7500 square feet).

Both reports must be approved at the executive committee meeting next Wednesday before going to the city council for final approval.

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On twitter: @bryanpassifiume

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