Parliament may need to be recalled again to approve wage subsidy program
With a limited number of Members of Parliament on hand and spread out, Minister of Finance Bill Morneau responds to a question after tabling the governments COVID19 financial measures bill in the House of Commons Wednesday March 25, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
The Canadian Press
Published Wednesday, April 1, 2020 5:17AM EDT
OTTAWA - Canadians are supposed to get more details today of the federal government's massive emergency wage subsidy program -- a day later than promised.
Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Small Business Minister Mary Ng were to have held a news conference Tuesday to fill in the details of the program -- including the multibillion-dollar price tag -- but that was cancelled.
The pair, along with Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains, are expected to try again today to explain the program, aimed at saving jobs in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic that has shuttered businesses across the country.
A government official says the delay was simply a matter of trying to iron out all the fine print in a huge program that, in normal circumstances, would have taken months to put together.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak publicly on the matter, acknowledged that the government is also trying to sort out whether it will need to recall Parliament again to approve legislation to authorize the wage subsidy program.
Parliament, which has been adjourned since mid-March as part of the nationwide effort to curb the spread of the deadly COVID-19, was recalled briefly last week to approve a $107-billion emergency aid package.