Prime Minister Trudeau combines federal aid packages into one

Parliament Hill

The government is also planning to provide financial support to journalists and media organizations to help them continue reporting on the pandemic.

The House of Commons approved the government's $82 billion aid program package as new EI claims hit 1 million as confirmed by Prime Minister Trudeau.

He also mentioned that Ottawa has already processed 143,000 EI claims as people are moved from other departments to get the work done.

The Canadian Cattlemen's Association's executive vice-president Dennis Laycraft says the industry has been working with Agriculture Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to ensure meat-packing plants remain open.

The House of Commons was recalled for Tuesday but didn't pass the bill until almost 6 a.m. Wednesday after lengthy negotiations among the governing Liberals and opposition parties about the extent of extraordinary spending powers the government was requesting.

The government backed down on most of those measures eventually, though Conservative Sen.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business called the new benefit a "significant step forward", but said it didn't change the need to increase the 10 per cent wage subsidy to 75 per cent or higher as many business and labour groups have requested.

As a way of dealing with the growing number of people applying for employment insurance, the federal government has shifted workers to boost the teams processing applications by 13,000 people. The credit, which is not available to broadcasters, is retroactive to salaries that were paid starting on January 1, 2019.

The Government's COVID-19 Economic Response Plan provides direct support to Canadian workers and businesses, plus $55 billion through tax deferrals, to help meet the cash needs of Canadian businesses and households, and to help stabilize the economy.

An online portal to apply will be set up through the government of Canada's website.

The announcement follows the closure of numerous publications by one large newspaper chain in Atlantic Canada, resulting in hundreds of layoffs. "I mean it went away overnight with cancellations and businesses shuttered".

Bill C13, the emergency stimulus legislation, has elicited controversy after it was revealed that the governing Liberal Party sought to include provisions that would have granted Trudeau and his cabinet sweeping new powers to spend, borrow and tax without parliamentary approval for the next 21 months.

SaltWire wasn't the only newspaper group to lay off staff this week.



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