Published on : Tuesday, April 7, 2020
The tourism officials in Osoyooos warned that the COVID-19 pandemic could mean the huge loss of millions of dollars in tourism revenue. Destination Osoyoos said in a letter to town council, with the closure of all leisure and business travel, Osoyoos stands to lose in excess of $6 million in revenue during the March to June period alone.
Destination Osoyoos also said many local businesses like hotels and accommodations don’t have sufficient cash reserves to pay fixed costs such as rent and utilities, and that some travel & tourism operators do not qualify for federal and provincial programmes.
To help local businesses remain solvent, the organization is asking council to defer property tax increases to 2021.
It’s also suggesting council delay property tax payments until the fall and introduce flexible payment options.
Streamline the regulation or permitting process to allow businesses to launch, re-open or potentially expand operations in future, was another suggestion given to council.
Destination Osoyoos also wants to see council advocate for the needs of small businesses, especially in the tourism and hospitality industry.