The province has secured an agreement with the federal government to ensure that Nova Scotia’s concerns with the Canada Job Grant are addressed.
Premier Stephen McNeil spoke with federal Employment and Social Development Minister Jason Kenney earlier today, Feb.
“I communicated to Mr. Kenney that the Canada Job Grant must work better for Nova Scotians,” said Premier McNeil. “The program must be affordable for our small businesses and must protect employment support for our most vulnerable citizens.”
The current Canada Job Grant program requires employers to contribute funding upfront. Many businesses in the province have said they will not be able to participate under this arrangement.
The province is also concerned that if investment targets required from businesses are not reached, program funding could be clawed back.
“Nova Scotia cannot afford to spend money that then gets clawed back,” said Premier McNeil. “This issue must be addressed in our discussions with the federal government.”
The premier said there are still many unanswered questions.
“I know this uncertainty is hard on the people who deliver and benefit from these valuable programs,” said Premier McNeil. “What we have achieved today is more time and an opportunity to make the Canada Job Grant better for Nova Scotians.”
The provinces and territories have been working together to recommend changes to the proposed federal Canada Job Grant and protect funding for labour market programs to support vulnerable workers since the program was announced in the 2013 federal budget.