Assistance & Incentives

The municipalities of North Simcoe invest in the success of its business community by creating and funding programs aimed to assist new and existing businesses.

EDCNS also provides information on other provincial and federal programs currently available. For more information about assistance and incentives, please contact Sharon Vegh, Economic Development Director at 705.526.1371 x 114.

Local Resources

Local resources that offer assistance with start-ups, funding, human resources and almost anything else business related.

Canada’s business development bank and the only financial institution dedicated exclusively to entrepreneurs. Their mission is to help create and develop Canadian businesses through financing, venture capital and consulting services, with a focus on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Their vision is to accelerate entrepreneurs’ success. In fact, they are solely dedicated to Canadian entrepreneurs. They have a nationwide team helping more than 28,000 businesses reach their full potential.

Free bilingual employment services in Penetanguishene. Services include finding sustainable employment; assessment of skills, capabilities, interests and experience; job search strategies, including resume preparation; information about different careers and occupations, the local labour market, employment and training opportunities; on-the-job training and/or work experience and, in some cases, additional support to help maintain employment.

North Simcoe Community Futures Development Corporation (NSCFDC) is supported by the Government of Canada and is governed by a local volunteer Board of Directors. It is dedicated to helping small and medium businesses access services and capital, and enhancing the community’s economic and employment growth through community-based planning and economic development initiatives.

One-on-one services include an employment assessment, mentoring and coaching from an employment specialist, job matching and placement, possible financial incentives, job retention assistance and an intensive assisted job search and coaching program. Self-employment and re-training programs can also be accessed through our one-on-one services.

Municipal Resources

The municipalities of North Simcoe offer a number of programs for property owners and developers to help offset costs of improvements and conversions of heritage properties, core area properties and buildings.

Development Charge Exemptions
The Town of Midland provides the following exemptions from municipal development charges:
  • Buildings for industrial uses. The exemption is matched by the County of Simcoe.
  • Lands zoned Downtown Core Commercial – DC-F2 in the Town of Midland Zoning By-law for all residential and commercial development.
  • For all affordable housing developments by non-profit organizations.


Community Improvement Grants
The Town of Midland operates a Community Improvement Plan for the Downtown that includes three grant programs:
  • Façade Improvement Grants supplement the Downtown BIA program and are only available in the BIA area.
  • Building Renovation Grant provides incentives for the upgrading and rehabilitation of buildings in the Downtown.
  • Application Fees Grant provides assistance to owners with financing the cost of the planning process.

The Town of Penetanguishene offers a property tax rebate for eligible heritage properties. The Heritage Property Tax Rebate Program applies to the heritage portion of properties that are designated as having cultural heritage value or interest under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act (an individual property designation). Properties are designated under Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act and rated as having excellent, very good, or good heritage value.

Economic development incentives are delivered through the Township of Tay’s Zoning By-law and Development Changes By-law and through policy set by Council; for example:

  • Parking exemptions for small scale start-up businesses in our 3 village cores in Port McNicoll, Victoria Harbour and Waubaushene.
  • As of right permitted uses for Bed & Breakfasts and Home Occupations in residential zones.
  • Reduction of non-residential Township of Tay Development Charges in our 3 village cores and full exemption for industrial uses and farm buildings.
  • Heritage Tax Rebate.

As well, the Tay Shore Trail is a valuable recreation and tourism asset that Council continually promotes as an economic driver by integrating the Trail into land use policy and land use development decisions.

The Township Zoning By-law currently permits the following as of right in certain zones:
  • Home Occupation
  • Home Industry
They are defined in the by-law as:

HOME OCCUPATION Means the use of part of a dwelling unit for an occupation or business activity that results in a product or service and which is clearly secondary to the principal use of the dwelling unit.

HOME INDUSTRY Means a small-scale industrial use with no show/display room, such as a carpentry shop, a metal working shop, a machine shop, a welding shop, a tool and die shop or an electrical shop that provides services or wares to the rural community and which is an accessory use to an agricultural use or a single detached dwelling. For the purpose of this By-law, the repairing of motor vehicles, mobile homes, trailers, and/or boats are not a home industry.

Provincial Programs

Incentives and programs offered by the Government of Ontario.

FedDev Ontario delivers programming to help create, retain and grow businesses, cultivate partnerships and build strong communities. It supports a strong Ontario economy and position the region to compete globally.

The Ontario Investment Office offers an array of government incentive programs and services that can lower corporate taxes and help businesses save on labour costs, R&D, and expansion activities.

Food and beverage manufacturing companies with operations in Ontario are eligible for financial support through federal and provincial government programs. A variety of programs provide financial assistance for infrastructure, human capital and the development and commercialization of advanced technologies.

A number of tax credits and incentives are available to businesses in Ontario to help lower costs, hire/train workers, compete in the marketplace and support various sectors.

Innovation Programs

R&D and Innovation programs offered by various levels of government, not-for-profits, and other delivery agencies. Tax credits, grants and cost sharing may be available for your company’s research and development, innovation, and export needs.

If you are an ambitious company in need of growth funding, FedDev Ontario is accepting applications for funding to help accelerate the growth of firms and assist with the adoption of new, innovative technologies that support scale-up, productivity and the development of and entry into new markets to help companies become globally competitive.

Funding is available to:

  • Assist high-growth firms to scale-up and expand.
  • Support technology demonstration and the commercialization of new technologies.
  • Encourage the early adoption or adaptation of leading-edge technologies and processes to improve productivity.
  • Increase businesses’ capacity to grow through market diversification and entry into global markets.

The SMART Program will provide financial support directly to hundreds of companies embarking on productivity improvement initiatives, ranging from implementations of lean manufacturing and design, to process and quality improvement initiatives. Projects that increase energy efficiency and/or reduce environmental impacts are also eligible, as well as projects implementing best practices in information technology and automation.

SMART Program funding will focus on projects that can be completed within 4-6 months of notification. Funding per project is limited to $50,000, and a maximum of 50% of eligible project costs, which can include capital costs.

If you are a business or a not-for-profit organization focused on economic transformation in your community, FedDev Ontario is accepting applications for funding which aims to generate sustainable, inclusive growth and help small and rural communities in southern Ontario to fully participate in, and benefit from economic opportunities.

Funding is available to:

  • Enhance business attraction, investment, retention and employment opportunities in southern Ontario communities.
  • Develop and expand collaborative efforts that strengthen regional competitiveness.
  • Support regional businesses, hubs and communities with the goal of economic diversification, integration and transformation.

The Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) helps Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) meet technological challenges and builds innovation capacity. The IRAP portfolio of services has four main components:

  • Technology Expertise and Advisory Services
  • Financial Assistance for R & D activities
  • Networking
  • Partnerships

NRC IRAP provides funding to support research and development projects at various stages of the innovation cycle. In 2018‑2019, NRC IRAP was mandated to expand its support to include an increased funding threshold of up to $10 million for larger research and development projects. This increased funding support will make it easier for small and medium‑sized Canadian businesses to access the support they need to grow and expand their companies.

The New Exporters to Border States program is a practical, hands-on introduction to the basics of exporting to the United States. The two-day NEBS will provide firms with a solid understanding of the fundamentals of exporting to the United States. The wide-ranging program covers many export-related topics including identifying market opportunities, pricing, selecting agents and distributors, banking and legal considerations, immigration issues, export financing and insurance, customs procedures, warehousing and distribution and government support.

A 10% refundable tax credit for corporations that make expenditures on scientific research and experimental development (SR&ED) carried on in Ontario. The Maximum claim is $200,000 per taxation year.

If you are a not-for-profit organization looking for funding to increase the innovation capacity of the region, FedDev Ontario’s funding under this stream aims to create, grow and develop strong and inclusive regional ecosystems that support business growth and innovation, as well as the entrepreneurial environment necessary to foster more innovative regional economies and increase the competitiveness of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Funding is available to:

  • Grow and sustain strategic clusters and consortia that support businesses to scale up and commercialize innovative products, technologies and services.
  • Enhance the development and reach of business incubators, accelerators, and other organizations, which support entrepreneurs, start-ups and innovative companies with high-growth potential.
  • Support projects led by innovation-oriented organizations to increase and promote business productivity and global competiveness, and investment and talent attraction.

A federal tax incentive program to encourage Canadian businesses of all sizes and in all sectors to conduct research and development that will lead to new, improved, or technologically advanced products or processes. Claimants can apply for SR&ED investment tax credits for expenditures such as wages, materials, machinery, equipment, some overhead and SR&ED contracts.

The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) has launched a new $40-million program through its Empowering Innovation program. This program will support high-growth, innovative Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in rural and urban communities by offering loans of usually $150,000 to $500,000 to support all aspects of growth challenges facing them. The loans are intended to help finance:

  • Late stage commercialization;
  • New product or service development;
  • New applications or markets; or
  • Development or implementation of new processes or technologies.

The SOFII loan funds will act as a catalyst for increased investment in and support for innovation and will be one element in the emerging climate of support for these high-growth companies in Southern Ontario.

Training & Employment

Training, Employment and Human Resource programs available by various levels of government, not-for-profits and other agencies. Subsidies, grants, tax credits and counselling may be available to fit your company's training and employment needs.

The Apprenticeship Job Creation Tax Credit is a non-refundable tax credit in order to encourage employers to hire new apprentices in eligible trades. This measure will provide eligible employers with credit up to a maximum $2,000 per year per apprentice.

The Apprenticeship Training Tax Credit (ATTC) is a refundable tax credit available to employers who hire and train apprentices in certain skilled trades. The maximum credit available to employers is $5,000 per qualifying apprentice per taxation year.

Ontario’s workforce is our most valuable asset. As the economic environment evolves, so do the skills needs of employers. Experience shows that employer involvement in training improves business performance. Canada-Ontario Job Grant provides an opportunity for employers to invest in their workforce, with help from the government.  The Job Grant will provide direct financial support to individual employers who wish to purchase training for their employees. It will be available to small, medium and large businesses with a plan to deliver short-term training to existing and new employees.

Provides financial assistance and hiring support to innovative Canadian SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) to hire post-secondary graduates. The employer must be collaborating in the development of products and processes with commercial potential in conjunction with the National Research Council (NRC) and/or the Communications Research Centre (CRC) of Industry Canada.

Provides employers operating unincorporated businesses with a refundable tax credit for hiring post-secondary education students enrolled in a recognized co-operative education program.

As an employer, your workforce is your most valuable asset. If you operate a business in Ontario, we can help you attract and recruit the employees with the skills you need – from posting employment opportunities, helping to identify human resource skill requirements, and matching position and workplace requirements to a participants’ skills, capabilities, interests and experience.

Employers may be eligible for financial incentives to offset some of the costs of providing on-the-job training and work experience.

Free bilingual employment services in Penetanguishene. Services include finding sustainable employment; assessment of skills, capabilities, interests and experience; job search strategies, including resume preparation; information about different careers and occupations, the local labour market, employment and training opportunities; on-the-job training and/or work experience and, in some cases, additional support to help maintain employment.

Skills training and development is a critical component for supporting Métis people in achieving their career aspirations and advancing the interests of Métis communities across Ontario. In support of this goal, MNO provides a comprehensive suite of employment programs and services that include career counselling, employment readiness training, wage subsidies, apprenticeship support, mobility assistance, self-employment, youth initiatives and services for clients with disabilities. Programs and services are delivered through community-based service sites across the province.

A unique cost-shared internship program managed by MITACS Inc, a national research network, which connects companies, governments and community organizations with the vast research expertise in Canada’s universities, from applied sciences, engineering, social sciences, business, arts, life sciences and much more.

OCE delivers a comprehensive suite of programs designed to leverage the full capacity of Ontario’s innovation ecosystem. There are five key program areas: Industry-Academic R&D Collaboration, Commercialization and Demonstration, Campus Entrepreneurship, Transformative Technology Platforms and Greenhouse Gas Reduction.

One-on-one services include an employment assessment, mentoring and coaching from an employment specialist, job matching and placement, possible financial incentives, job retention assistance and an intensive assisted job search and coaching program. Self-employment and re-training programs can also be accessed through our one-on-one services.

Going Green

SaveOnEnergy for Commercial, Institutional and Industrial Businesses: these programs provide some of the most immediate ways to manage energy costs, creating lasting operational savings and reduce a facility’s draw on the electricity system.

The Energy Manager Program is the largest of its kind in North America, helping to save energy and drive Ontario’s competitiveness. If approved for the Energy Manager program, the IESO will provide an upfront payment of $40,000 annually upon the hiring of an energy manager, with an annual total funding cap of $150,000. The energy manager is required to meet certain pay-for-performance criteria, which includes achieving a minimum energy savings of 1,000 MWh per year, with $40 paid for every megawatt hour saved above 1,000 MWh.

The Energy Performance Program (EPP) rewards customers who are able to make behavioural and operational changes that support capital investment projects, enabling them to grow their energy savings over a number of years.

Three years of annual pay-for-performance incentives are available for multi-site and single-site facilities for applications approved by December 31, 2024.

Up to $1,000 off eligible equipment with lasting benefits. No paperwork and no waiting. Receive upfront discounts on your purchase and improve your businesses’ bottom line by reducing maintenance costs and receiving faster returns on your investments. Increase the reliability of your equipment by extending the life of your equipment and enjoy improved equipment features.

The Save on Energy Retrofit Program can help your business uncover opportunities for savings through energy-efficiency upgrades, no matter your size or sector. Overall, projects that are eligible under the Retrofit program are those that provide sustainable, measurable and verifiable reductions in peak electricity demand and electricity consumption.

Under this program, qualifying businesses can get up to $1,000 worth in energy-efficient lighting and equipment upgrades. Plus get access to further incentives. You’ll get easy and effortless energy-efficient upgrades that will go a long way toward reducing your electricity consumption and managing your monthly electricity costs.

Severn Sound Environmental Association

The Severn Sound Environmental Association (SSEA) is a Joint Municipal Services Board under the Municipal Act (Section 202). It was originally founded in 1997 as a partnership between federal, provincial and municipal partners to support the completion of the Severn Sound Remedial Action Plan (SSRAP) and to provide a local, community-based environmental office in the Severn Sound watershed. The SSEA provides continuing support to the federal and provincial agencies, but particularly to the local municipalities, to sustain environmental quality and to ensure continued protection through wise stewardship of Severn Sound and its tributaries. Our agreement partners include: eight municipalities (Midland, Penetanguishene, Tiny, Tay, Springwater, Oro-Medonte, Georgian Bay and Severn). We also work with many other partners to develop cost effective environmental projects in the Severn Sound area to the benefit of the entire community. The SSEA is also one of the local Source Protection Authorities in the area.

Contact the Severn Sound Environmental Association:
(705) 534-7283
[email protected]

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