July 16, 2020, Premier Doug Ford and Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Ernie Hardeman, announced additional support for Ontario farmers by expanding the Agriculture Risk Management Program one year earlier than planned.
In addition to this afternoon’s announcement, Premier Ford reacted to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s announcement of $19 billion in COVID-19 relief funding for Canada’s provinces and municipalities.
Premier Ford and Minister Hardeman were joined by Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development, Monte McNaughton, and Rick Nicholls, Member of Provincial Parliament for Chatham-Kent—Leamington.
Earlier today, the Ontario government extended emergency orders in force under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act until July 29, 2020.
Expansion of Agriculture Risk Management Program
This afternoon, Premier Ford and Minister Hardeman announced that the Ontario government is expanding the Agriculture Risk Management Program one year earlier than planned, in recognition of the impacts of COVID-19 on the agricultural sector.
Beginning this year, the government will be providing an additional $50 million every year to this program, for a total of $150 million annually. This funding will support farmers with unforeseen challenges beyond their control, such as fluctuating market prices, extreme weather events, and disease.
Reaction to Federal COVID-19 Relief Funding Announcement
In addition to this afternoon’s announcement, Premier Ford reacted to the Prime Minister’s announcement of $19 billion in COVID-19 relief funding for Canada’s provinces and municipalities, $7 billion of which will go to Ontario. This funding will support municipalities, transit systems, and health care systems, and will enable the expansion of testing, contact tracing, personal protective equipment (PPE) stockpiles and support for mental health and addictions.
Premier Ford thanked Prime Minister Trudeau, Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, and Chair of the Council of the Federation Premier Scott Moe for their leadership.
Extension of Emergency Orders
This morning, the Ontario government extended most emergency orders currently in force under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Actuntil July 29, 2020. Keeping the emergency orders in place will continue to provide the government with the necessary flexibility to protect vulnerable populations while implementing a gradual approach to reopening the province.