WINNIPEG – Today, Mayor Brian Bowman announced the establishment of the Mayor’s COVID-19 Business Task Force to consider the COVID-19 related impacts being felt by our business community.

“As we continue to navigate increasingly unprecedented times, the effects of COVID-19 are placing extreme challenges on our local business community,” said Mayor Bowman. “I’m very concerned with the effect this is having on our businesses and that’s why I’ve created the Mayor’s COVID-19 Business Task Force.”

The Mayor’s COVID-19 Business Task Force has brought together business leaders along with Economic Development Winnipeg to discuss the impacts to our business community and possible measures to mitigate. The Mayor’s COVID-19 Business Task Force is comprised of leaders of small, medium and large-sized businesses from Winnipeg. The Task Force also welcomed Councillor John Orlikow, Chair of the Standing Policy Committee on Innovation and Economic Development and Dayna Spiring, President and CEO of Economic Development Winnipeg.

“In my time at Economic Development Winnipeg, I have been focused on solutions that create economic growth in our city but COVID-19 has created a much different problem to solve and we face tough challenges,” said Dayna Spiring, President and CEO of Economic Development Winnipeg.  “But, even now, Winnipeg businesses are looking at ways to change their business models to meet our rapidly changing reality and we want to be here to help. I’m happy to add my voice to this collaborative effort toward finding COVID-19 related solutions for business and helping to position our community for growth on the other side."

Topics for discussion during the first videoconference meeting today included immediate actions the City can take. The discussion built on the motion Councillor Gillingham and the Mayor brought forward last week at Council to task the public service with a review and possible implementation plan to defer property tax and business taxes. 

“I appreciated the feedback from business leaders today,” said Mayor Bowman. “Feedback from today’s collaborative discussion will be raised with provincial and federal governments.”

The Mayor’s COVID-19 Business Task Force will continue to meet via videoconference in the coming weeks.