Cornwall Small Business Grants: 16 Best Funding Programs for Cornwall, Ontario Entrepreneurs

Located smack in-between Ottawa and Montreal, the city of Cornwall has a strategic location and some interesting incentives for small businesses.

In this complete guide to Cornwall business grants, we cover grants, loans, and other financial incentives for Cornish (?) entrepreneurs.

City of Cornwall Mandate

The City of Cornwall’s mission is to provide services that enable a financially, socially and environmentally sustainable community which will care and provide for the needs and values of its residents.

The City’s vision is to be recognized as a welcoming and healthy community with a strong municipal government providing effective services and infrastructure.

City of Cornwall Priorities

The City of Cornwall’s priorities include:

  • Developing waterfront through ownership, partnerships for business, recreational opportunities,
  • Attracting, enhancing workforce that meets demands of local employers,
  • Growing quality of housing stock, including affordable housing,
  • Economic development and pursuing diverse population growth of 50,000, and
  • Being leaders in sustainability and climate change impact.

You can learn about City of Cornwall’s priorities by reading its 2019-22 Strategic Plan.

What Can Cornwall Small Business Grants Be Used For?

Cornwall small business grants can be used to pay for many aspects of starting or running a business. Here are some of the uses that are covered by programs in our grants database:

  • Covering the costs of building construction or upgrades, including its interior and facade
  • Covering the costs of site remediation and/or redevelopment of brownfield sites
  • Expanding a business in Cornwall
  • Training or upskilling your employees
  • Feasibility studies

See the section below with a complete list of grants available for Cornwall small businesses.

Am I Eligible for a Cornwall Small Business Grant? Common Eligibility Criteria

Two of the most common questions we get asked at Ontario Business Grants are “Am I eligible?” and “How do I qualify?”.

We analyzed the Cornwall small business grants in our grants database, and these are the most common qualifications we identified:

  • Be developers that made interior or facade improvements to buildings in the central core, or “Heart of the City”
  • Be developers that perform environmental site assessment and/or redevelop brownfield sites
  • Be developers looking to remove and dispose of non-hazardous material at the City landfill site
  • Be small and medium–sized businesses who contribute to the creation and/or maintenance of long-term employment
  • Be looking to undertake a project related to innovation, digital economy, or trade

Note: these are just the most common eligibility criteria – there are many grants with different requirements.

Best Cornwall Small Business Grants, Loans & More

While there are lots of good programs available, below we highlight some of the best grants, loans & more for Cornwall small businesses:

Best Government Grants for Cornwall Small Businesses

City of Cornwall – Brownfield Program: Environmental Site Assessment

The Environmental Site Assessment assistance is provided to specify the extent of contamination through partial funding of an Environmental Site Assessment (Phase 2 or 3).

City of Cornwall – Brownfield Program: Project Feasibility Study

The Project Feasibility Study program provides assistance to determine the feasibility of the project.

City of Cornwall – Heart of the City Program: Discretionary Municipal Tipping Fees Grant

The Discretionary Municipal Tipping Fees Grant provides developers a reduction in the cost of dumping nonhazardous waste at the municipal landfill site.

City of Cornwall – Heart of the City Program: Project Design Study Grant

The Project Design Study Grant provides landowners funding for 50% of the cost of such things as feasibility studies or concept drawings to a maximum of $7,500.

City of Cornwall – Heart of the City Program: Facade Improvement/ Sign Grant

The Facade Improvement/ Sign Grant assists with improvements to a building facade or for new signage. Funding is based on 50% of the costs to a maximum of $10,000 for facade work and $2,000 for new signage.


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    City of Cornwall – Heart of the City Program: Rehabilitation Tax Increment Grant Program

    Through this program, a land owner is reimbursed part or all of the increase in municipal taxes paid as a result of improvements made to a building.

    Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) – Save on Energy – Retrofit Program

    Get even more money to make your business more energy efficient and save you money with this program from IESO’s Save on Energy.

    This one has 2 options: the prescriptive track and the comprehensive track. The prescriptive is your best bet for quick projects and upgrades such as improved lighting, though the minimum incentive amount is $500. The comprehensive track is a better fit for larger, more comprehensive projects with lots of components. This one will get you an incentive of up to 50% of project costs.

    Chances are you qualify since most buildings are eligible: commercial, industrial, food services, agricultural, and more.

    Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) – Save on Energy – Energy Performance Program

    Sign up to continually improve your energy usage and you could be rewarded for it with this program.

    As long as you’re not an industrial or manufacturing business, you could receive a pay-for-performance financial incentive, plus a modelling incentive of $1,500 for each enrolled building, up to a maximum of $15,000 for 10 approved buildings.

    You get to choose which improvements and investments to make to achieve your improved energy efficiency, and your payments end up equal to 20% of the annual baseline electricity consumption of your building(s).

    Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) – Save on Energy – Small Business Program

    The Save on Energy Small Business program is designed to help small businesses across Ontario make equipment improvements to reduce their energy consumption, at no cost. Leveraging the success of the former Small Business Lighting program, this new and improved program offers small businesses direct-install incentives on an expanded range of equipment – both lighting and non-lighting.

    Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) – Save on Energy – Industrial Energy Efficiency Program (IEEP)

    IESO’s Save on Energy Industrial Energy Efficiency Program (IEEP) supports industrial customers across Ontario in improving their industrial processes and implementing system optimization projects. The program offers organizations up to $5 million in financial incentives for each large, complex industrial energy-efficiency project accepted into the program.

    Best Municipal Government Loans for Cornwall Small Businesses

    City of Cornwall – Heart of the City Program: Building Restoration & Improvement Program

    The Building Restoration & Improvement Program provides landowners loans, either forgivable or interest free, to help with interior improvements to buildings for 50% of the total cost to a maximum of $30,000.

    City of Cornwall – Heart of the City Program: Parking and Landscape Enhancement Program

    The Parking and Landscape Enhancement Program comprises of interest-free loans repayable over a maximum 10 year term. Funding applies to projects which may include development or enhancement of parking, landscaping or the provision of related amenities such as seating. A project may also include the creation of a parking lot funded jointly by more than one property owner, and in relation to either a single parcel of land or multiple parcels.

    Best Non-Profit Loans for Cornwall Small Businesses

    Fondation Franco-Ontarienne – Micro-credit Funds

    With support from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario and in partnership with the Prescott-Russell Community Development Corporation (SDCPR), the Franco-Ontarian Foundation (Foundation) supports Francophone entrepreneurs girls from Southern Ontario (Windsor to Hawkesbury). The Micro-credit program provides borrowers with repayable financial assistance, offered in the form of loans.

    Best Rebates for Cornwall Small Businesses

    City of Cornwall – Brownfield Program: Rehabilitation Tax Increment Grant

    The Rehabilitation Tax Increment grant reimburses (or rebates) the developer an annual grant equivalent to all or part of the municipal portion of the tax increase, to recover the cost of remediation. The developer pays the full cost of redevelopment as well as the annual increase in property tax.

    City of Cornwall – Brownfield Program: Municipal Planning / Development Fees Rebate

    The Municipal Planning / Development Fees Rebate program is designed to assist developers by rebating up to 100% of municipal planning and development fees.

    City of Cornwall Contacts

    Cornwall City Hall:

    City of Cornwall
    360 Pitt Street
    Cornwall, ON
    K6J 3P9

    Phone: 613-930-2787

    Cornwall Economic Development
    Choose Cornwall
    100 Water St E
    Cornwall, ON
    K6H 6G4

    Phone: (613) 933-0074

    City of Cornwall Social Media:


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