Barrie city council has approved $75,000 in funding for a one-year pilot partnership with Georgian College that is aimed at delivering economic recovery programs to businesses and entrepreneurs amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This partnership will help prepare Barrie’s economy long-term in a time of national and global uncertainty,” Stephannie Schlichter, Barrie’s economic and creative development director, said in a statement.
“The funding will activate programs and resources that will directly support businesses, building on the existing economic recovery work we’ve completed already in response to the pandemic.”
Officials say the partnership between the city and Georgian College will support companies by streamlining processes with “advanced technology” and by helping them increase revenues by “identifying and developing new markets and opportunities.”
The programs will also help businesses source skilled workers through co-op placements.
“In addition to feeding the ongoing economic development strategy, this new funding will amplify the impact of the city’s previous investments in the college in support of preparing the future workforce to meet employer demand,” Jamie Doran, Georgian College’s executive director of research, innovation and entrepreneurship, said in a statement.
“Georgian is committed to helping the city deliver its COVID-19 recovery plan to ensure the continued strength of the Barrie community.”
During the one-year pilot partnership, the City of Barrie will assess how it’s affected businesses and will provide future recommendations for a second year of funding.
The programs and resources will be rolled out in 2021.
The $75,000 in funding is in addition to $25,000 that Georgian will be receiving from the city’s existing economic and creative development budget.