Guidelines for 2021 Agricultural & Horticultural Support and Recovery Funding Initiative under the Grassroots Growth Program established under Minister's Order 0007/2019 as amended

2021 Agricultural & Horticultural Support and Recovery Funding Initiative

Overview

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) will be providing funding to eligible Ontario Agricultural and Horticultural Societies (Societies). This funding is meant to help protect and support these Societies through the next phase of COVID-19 economic recovery.

This Initiative features two funding streams:

  1. Base Support Funding: Eligible Agricultural and Horticultural Societies, respectively, will receive a one time payment to support their continued delivery of agricultural and horticultural education across Ontario.
  2. Hardship Funding for Agricultural Societies: Provides eligible Agricultural Societies with funding, based on reported gate receipts from 2019, in order to cover operating losses and expenses related to building capacity for operating through COVID-19.

1. Base Support Funding

Eligibility

  • The Society is currently incorporated under the Agricultural and Horticultural Organizations Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. A.9 (Act).

Payment

  • This one-time payment will be automatically issued to all eligible societies by March 31, 2021.
  • In order to receive payment eligible Societies must confirm their Transfer Payment Ontario (TPON) registration information is up to date, including the Society's legal name and contact information.

2. Hardship Funding for Agricultural Societies

Eligibility

  • The Agricultural Society is currently incorporated under the Agricultural and Horticultural Organizations Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. A.9 (Act) and reported its gate receipts to the ministry in 2019.
  • The Agricultural Society completed and submitted an attestation document to OMAFRA by February 8, 2021 confirming the following:
    • That the "Hardship Funding for Agricultural Societies" can be used to cover operating losses due to fixed costs and for expenses related to building capacity for operating through COVID-19, including:
      • Membership fees to their association;
      • Mortgage/rent;
      • Utilities;
      • Wages;
      • Insurance;
      • Prepaid expenses of holding events, fairs and exhibitions that were not refundable such as deposits for entertainment, equipment rental, printing, advertising; and
      • Building and grounds maintenance (excludes costs for new capital items such as land, buildings and/or equipment).
      • Building organizational capacity to continue operating during and after the COVID-19, including:
        • Purchase of Personal Protective Equipment;
        • Development of digital platforms for delivering events online;
        • Office equipment purchases, i.e. computers, software; and
        • Event equipment purchases or rentals, i.e. party tents, equipment to promote social distancing.
    • The previously reported value of the gate receipts the Society earned in 2019 (if the total gate receipts earned by the Society in 2019 is different than what was previously reported to OMAFRA the Society must provide documentation to substantiate the new value as well as an explanation for the previous reporting error).
    • If the Society received support funding from any other source outside of OMAFRA in 2020; and if so, that details regarding the source(s) and value of this additional funding can be provided if requested.
    • That the Society is registered in Transfer Payment Ontario (TPON) and ensure that the Society's information is up-to-date in TPON (e.g. the Society's legal name and contact information).

Attestation Requirements and Payment

In order to receive the payment Agricultural Societies must:

  • Complete and submit the attestation document OMAFRA emailed to the Agricultural Society's representative by February 8, 2021 along with any required supporting documentation.
  • In order to receive payment eligible Agricultural Societies must confirm their Transfer Payment Ontario (TPON) registration information is up to date, including the Society's legal name and contact information.
  • This one-time payment will be issued by March 31, 2021 to all eligible Agricultural Societies that have met the attestation requirements.

Terms and Conditions

In addition to the above, the authorized signing officer for the Society (hereafter referred to as "the Society") must acknowledge and agree to the following on behalf of the Society:

  • The Society have read, understand, and agree to abide by all requirements of the 2021 Agricultural & Horticultural Support and Recovery Funding Initiative.
  • The information provided in the attestation submitted is complete and accurate, to the best of the Society's knowledge, belief and understanding.
  • The Society shall retain all records relating to any payments made with 2021 Grant Payments for Eligible Agricultural and Horticultural Societies including, all invoices and proof of payment for at least seven (7) years from the date on which payment was received.
  • If it is determined the Society has received a payment the Society was not eligible to receive, through administrative error or otherwise, the Society will repay any and all payments that the Society was not eligible to receive as well as any surplus funding.
  • To comply with audits by Ontario or Ontario program administrator (if any), upon notice and during normal business hours, to verify eligibility and to evaluate compliance with the requirements of the 2020 Grant Payments for Eligible Agricultural and Horticultural Societies, which may include allowing for the copying of records, removal of copied records and taking pictures or other recordings.
  • In the event of a conflict between anything set out in the Guidelines and the Minister's Order, the Minister's Order will prevail.

Contact Information

  • For more information, contact the Agricultural Information Contact Centre by Email at: ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca; or toll free by phone at: 1-877-424-1300.

For more information:
Toll Free: 1-877-424-1300
E-mail: ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca