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Coronavirus News Updates

A Supplement to the Municipal World Daily

To help our clients and partners in their efforts to  #FlattenTheCurve across Canada, Municipal World is curating this special #COVID19 news update page. The response to the outbreak is rolling out differently across the country, as appropriate for local circumstances, so our team is working to collect those items most relevant to local governments, including changes related to conferences and events. Also, you can listen to our special podcast episode on the coronavirus and the impact on communities. Check back for updates as they are posted.

Coronavirus Municipal Conference Updates

Last updated: May 27 at 2 p.m.

May 27

Tory reiterates support for NHL playing games without fans in Toronto
Mayor John Tory is continuing to pitch Toronto as a potential location for Stanley Cup playoff games, noting that it would “be good for the psychology of the city.” Read more…


City of Grande Prairie enforces physical distancing on public transit
The City of Grande Prairie is taking steps to maintain the two-metre physical distancing standard on public transportation. Read more…


Kawartha Lakes layoffs, facility closures help to offset revenue loss
The City of Kawartha Lakes is dealing with a projected revenue hit of approximately $3.2 million in 2020 directly from the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Vancouver’s restart plan a work in progress
Vancouver residents can play golf and walk dogs in off-leash parks, but the city is still developing strategies to further the restart plan it announced at a city council meeting. Read more…


Barrie Colts owners seek rent relief from city
Horsepower Sports and Entertainment hopes to delay payment to the City of Barrie for 60 days, and to reduce what they pay the city for use of arena. Read more…


Businesses planning a cautious return to downtown Regina offices
The slow road to reopening means some downtown Regina businesses are looking further into the future before returning to normal. Read more…


Sudbury offers boost to help outdoor shops, patios prepare to open
The City of Greater Sudbury will waive permit fees associated with use of storefronts for sidewalk sales and related uses. The city will also waive fees for patios and sidewalk cafes. Read more…


Northwest Territories extends emergency provisions for another two weeks
The Government of the Northwest Territories is extending its public health emergency and state of emergency for another two weeks. Read more…


Welland layoffs results in lack of maintenance on city properties
Tall grass and dandelions in mid-bloom cover city parks across Welland, a result of a lack of maintenance due to staff layoffs because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Brunswick News to close community newspaper offices across province
Community newspapers across New Brunswick are losing their offices after a decision shared with staff this week by Brunswick News Inc. Read more…


Burnaby unveils five-stage reopening plan for city facilities
The City of Burnaby has set out a five-stage program for reopening as the province works to get back to business – though it won’t be business as usual. Read more…


City announces first phase of limited Winnipeg library reopenings
Winnipeg’s mayor says the city will be partially reopening three libraries with the downtown Millennium Library and two branches allowing users to pick up held items. Read more…


City of Yellowknife hoping for federal bailout as lost revenue takes toll
The City of Yellowknife is keeping its “fingers crossed” that Ottawa will remain in a generous mood when it comes time to fill major revenue losses incurred during the COVID-19 crisis. Read more….


London Transit struggling after virus causes fare revenue, riders to vanish 
London’s public transit system is facing a potentially crippling financial crisis after a precipitous drop in ridership brought on by the coronavirus pandemic has led to an estimated $7.2 million shortfall for June. Read more…


Edmonton approves $12.7 million city hall grounds renewal project
Renovations outside Edmonton City Hall will go ahead despite pleas from some councillors to delay the project as the city struggles financially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Saint John cruise season sees more cancellations
It was supposed to be a banner year for cruise ship tourism in Saint John, but the COVID-19 pandemic continues to chip away at the anticipated numbers. Read more…


“Don’t be like Toronto”: City asks Calgarians to avoid crowded parks
Some of Calgary’s best-known parks and pathways have been “hot spots” for crowding, and the city is asking Calgarians to look elsewhere to enjoy warm weather. Read more…


City of Saskatoon warns residents about COVID-19 study scam
The City of Saskatoon says residents are being asked to participate in a fake online COVID-19 study. Read more…


May 26

Yellowknife reaches out to restaurants, stores for creative reopening plans
The City of Yellowknife is reaching out to restaurant and store owners with creative reopening ideas while also outlining its own approach to pandemic recovery. Read more…


City of St. John’s easing restrictions in municipal parks
The City of St. John’s is lifting its “walk through only” restriction in all municipal parks, while also reminding the public physical distancing must be maintained. Read more…


City looks for outside help in dealing with outstanding property tax
The City of North Battleford is attempting to recover $4 million in outstanding municipal property taxes. Read more…


More transit fare enforcement coming as Calgary’s financial gap grows
The City of Calgary is eyeing a return to front-door boarding on buses this summer alongside plans to step up fare enforcement in June. Read more…


Regina mayor supports potential CFL hub city idea if conditions met
Mayor Michael Fougere said he is supportive of Regina being a hub city for the Canadian Football League as long as the province’s chief medical officer approves any plan put forth. Read more…


COVID-19 affects City of Powell River finances
City of Powell River councillors were provided a snapshot of the effects of COVID-19 on municipal finances. Read more…


Edmonton city council debates infrastructure spending
With the City of Edmonton’s ongoing financial struggles, councillors are debating whether infrastructure spending should continue as planned. Watch more…


London takes advantage of COVID-19 depressed interest rates
As financial markets struggle under the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s a bright spot for London taxpayers. Read more…


Saint John reopening plan asks sports groups for help
Organized sports groups will be expected to help out as part of a plan to restore city operations in Saint John after the easing of some COVID-19 restrictions. Read more…


Montreal’s reopening increases COVID-19 risks for homeless, says Indigenous coalition
A coalition of Montreal Indigenous groups says it’s much too early to ease up on pandemic restrictions while homeless First Nations, Inuit, and Métis remain at high risk of contracting COVID-19. Read more…


BC Ferries to resume service between Nanaimo and Vancouver at half capacity
BC Ferries is set to resume service between West Vancouver and Nanaimo after COVID-19 forced the route’s suspension in early April. Read more….


Handwashing stations added to porta-potties installed at Halifax Central Library
Halifax installed two portable toilets, with handwashing stations to come, just behind the public library to support those in need of public washrooms during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Windsor council continues push to create lane for cyclists, pedestrians
Windsor council wants staff to determine whether an environmental assessment is needed before agreeing to close a lane of traffic on a section of Wyandotte Street East to make way for cyclists and other active uses. Read more…


Summer Bash drive-in movie night returns to Regina with physical distancing
The Summer Bash tradition is back in Regina, but this time adjusting to allow families to enjoy popular movies from the comfort of their cars while physically distancing due to COVID-19. Read more…


Brantford to consider extension of financial relief measures for residents
To help people struggling financially during the COVID-19 pandemic, Brantford will consider extending forgiveness of late payment fees and interest charges on taxes, water services, and other accounts. Read more…


Montreal, Laval public transit agencies hand out free masks amid COVID-19
As the region slowly reopens, public transit authorities and local officials in Montreal and Laval are handing out thousands of free masks to commuters in a bid to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Why urban planners were not surprised by Toronto’s packed public park
Urban planners across the country weren’t surprised with the images they saw Saturday of a packed public park in a central Toronto neighbourhood. Read more…


Iveson: Big budget cuts, property tax increases a possibility without funding
As the COVID-19 crisis drags on, Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson said the city’s financial situation is dire. Read more…


May 25

PM Trudeau seeking plan for 10 days of paid sick leave
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the federal government will be moving forward on talks with the provinces and territories on ensuring that every worker in Canada can access 10 days of paid sick leave a year. Read more…


Brampton asks all city employees to be tested for COVID-19
The City of Brampton is asking all municipal employees to get tested for COVID-19 by their local health unit. Read more…


Halifax to widen main streets to help pedestrians, businesses as economy opens
Atlantic Canada’s largest city is planning some changes to help people get around in anticipation of plans around reopening Nova Scotia’s economy. Read more…


City of Welland opens boat launches, trails, skate/dog parks
The City of Welland is re-opening some public spaces, including trails, dog and skate parks while reminding residents to keep a physical distance of two metres. Read more…


City of Vernon spent $26 million in 2019 on staff payroll
The City of Vernon has disclosed its council and staff payroll for 2019, showing over $26 million in total payments for the last calendar year. Read more…


City accelerating plan to add more bike lanes to Toronto streets amid pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted the city to look at speeding up the plan to add additional cycling infrastructure to Toronto streets. Read more…


Saskatoon aims to use $15 million from province to cover deficit
Saskatoon’s top financial manager wants to use emergency infrastructure cash from the provincial government to help plug the pandemic-sized hole in the city’s budget. Read more…


Windsor council considers measures to curb large park gatherings
New measures to prevent large gatherings at Windsor’s parks and trails during the COVID-19 pandemic are up for consideration. Read more…


Moncton, Saint John, Fredericton chambers partner on back to business guide
A reopening guide for the business community – worked on by the Moncton, Saint John, and Fredericton chambers of commerce – is receiving praise for its guidance during COVID-19. Read more…


Who will save Ontario’s municipalities?
The COVID-19 pandemic has put governments across this country to the test. And, for the most part, the machinery of government has responded admirably to the crisis. Read more…


Cities are on the COVID-19 front lines, but they’re running out of money fast
The federal government’s list of financial aid announcements is yet to include help for municipalities, which are in trouble as their revenue streams – think property taxes and service fees – have dried right up. Read more…


Vancouverites already drink in parks, so why not make it legal: councillors
Vancouver council will consider loosening up restrictions that currently ban drinking alcohol in parks, on beaches, and in other public spaces. Read more…


Edmonton ponders cutting licence fees, offering new grant for businesses
Edmonton businesses could be getting more relief from the impacts of COVID-19 as city council considers slashing licence fees and establishing a new recovery grant program. Read more….


City exploring options after Kitchener summer camps cancelled
The City of Kitchener has officially cancelled its 2020 summer camps. Staff are instead exploring alternatives that follow physical distancing and social gathering guidelines. Read more…


Boeing to reduce Winnipeg workforce by 400
Boeing says it plans to cut 400 positions at its Winnipeg facilities due to the impact of COVID-19. The company says reductions will come from voluntary and involuntary layoffs and normal attrition. Read more…


Thunder Bay mayor seeks expansion of pop-up patio program
Thunder Bay Mayor Bill Mauro will ask staff to look at expanding the city’s popular pop-up patio program, which allows restaurants to set up temporary outdoor patios during the summer months. Read more…


Surrey considers spending $500,000 on new police force during pandemic
Despite struggling with the COVID-19 pandemic, Surrey City Council will consider upgrading security measures for the new police force. Read more…


Saint John debates closing streets to vehicles, but experts say it works
As business and political leaders debate the benefits of closing down some Saint John streets to vehicles, a pair of urban planners argue the benefits are already proven in communities around the world. Read more…


Powell River city council to continue weekly meetings
City of Powell River council is content with the meeting schedule initiated with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Quebec deploys 1,000 COVID-19 prevention workers across the province
The Quebec government will be deploying more than 1,000 prevention officers across the province to help limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Read more…


May 24

Indigenous organizations in Montreal call for a delay in reopening the city
A status report published by eight organizations in Montreal that serve the city’s Indigenous community says it’s too soon for reopening as the city. Read more…


“Selfish and dangerous:” Officials disappointed after thousands crowd Toronto park
City officials in Toronto are condemning the “dangerous” behaviour of people who flooded a popular downtown park on Saturday, saying they could cause a surge in COVID-19 cases. Read more…


B.C. says no, again, on releasing COVID-19 numbers for cities or regional districts
B.C. health officials are holding firm on a policy not to share data on confirmed coronavirus cases for specific communities. Read more…


Head of Saint John’s largest food bank praises community’s generosity during pandemic
For the man who heads up Saint John’s largest food bank, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought some desperation, more innovation, a lot of generosity, and even a silver lining. Read more…


Moose Jaw to welcome Snowbirds home with huge hearts throughout the city
The Canadian Forces Snowbirds will be welcomed home on Monday with hearts so huge they can be seen from the sky. Read more…


“To me, Ottawa and Gatineau are one city:” Interprovincial life in a time of COVID-19
Living in one province and spending time in the other is a fact of life for every resident of the national capital region, but it is a reality complicated by COVID-19. Read more…


Calgary aims to reopen playgrounds by June 1
It’s already happening in communities outside of the city, but Calgary officials are hopeful kids will be able to be out in its parks and enjoying its playgrounds by June 1. Read more…


Task force to request Elliott Lake funding to aid local businesses
Council will consider a request from Elliot Lake’s Business Recovery Task Force to have the city provide funding to help local businesses recover from COVID-19. Read more…


City crews to provide free construction to help Port Coquitlam businesses create patios
City construction crews will soon be building furniture and patios so restaurants and breweries can expand outdoors in Port Coquitlam. Read more…


Halifax to resume collecting parking fees June 1
More than two months after waiving all parking fees Halifax is set to resume collecting fees on June 1. Read more…


May 23

No post-COVID-19 economy recovery without support for municipalities: Saab
Canada’s post-COVID-19 economy recovery must include significant federal and provincial support for financially hurting municipalities, says the incoming head of the largest advocacy group for local governments. Read more…


Toronto to contemplate “devastating” service cuts without federal, provincial funding
Toronto Mayor John Tory says city staff have been forced to contemplate “terrible and devastating” service cuts if other levels of governments don’t commit to funding. Read more…


Vancouver begins installing 12 kilometres of “slow streets” signs and barriers
Pedestrians, cyclists, people in wheelchairs and on scooters, and motorists are going to see something new along streets in Vancouver as the city has begun installing “slow streets” signs and barriers. Read more…


Edmonton proposing to avoid capital cuts despite declining revenue due to COVID-19
The City of Edmonton is proposing to largely stay the course on its capital budget even as it is facing a sharp decline in revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


More details on reopening of Winnipeg libraries, pools coming next week
People in Winnipeg hoping to take out a library book or do some laps in the public pool will have more details about when city services will start to reopen next week. Read more…


City of Kamloops to begin reopening facilities
The City of Kamloops will begin to reopen civic facilities beginning next week, but there is no word yet on reopening dates for recreational facilities, including the city’s gyms. Read more…


Transit has changed “potentially forever” in Hamilton, new COVID-19 document warns
A new city document about how Hamilton will recover from COVID-19 warns of potential drastic changes to public transit. Read more…


City of Powell River Council considers assistance for hospitality businesses
City of Powell River staff will consider measures to help restaurant and retail businesses with the loosening of regulations initiated with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


After COVID-19 pause, pay parking returns to Saskatoon
Saskatoon council is reinstating public pay parking requirements; a move the city says will help boost the economy. Read more…


Vernon city council considering patios in downtown parking spaces
The City of Vernon is toying with the idea to open up sidewalks and on street parking spaces to allow downtown businesses to use the area for patios and commercial use. Read more…


St. John’s bottle depots re-open, immediately swamped with refundables
Some green depots in St. John’s have been overwhelmed with cans and bottles as COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted and people look to recycle everything that piled up during quarantine. Read more…


Quebec’s museums, libraries and drive-ins can reopen May 29
As restrictions on gatherings, travel and other activities are being gradually eased, Quebecers missing a visit to the museum or night at the drive-in are in luck. Read more…


Burnaby urged to “quickly” approve new patios to “save” businesses
The Burnaby Business Recovery Task Force is encouraging the city to continue its work on permitting and licensing changes to allow restaurants to quickly set up patios. Read more…


May 22

Trudeau promises federal funds, workers to help provinces ramp up testing and tracing
Ottawa will fund provinces’ efforts to ramp up testing, tracing, and data-sharing on COVID-19, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says. Read more…


International Plowing Match and Rural Expo postponed until 2021
The 103rd edition of the International Plowing Match and Rural Expo scheduled for this October in the City of Kawartha Lakes has been postponed until 2021 due to the pandemic. Read more…


Downtown Montreal to take new form as city plans reopening
Visitors to Montreal’s downtown core will be able to notice a few changes in the coming days that aim to prepare the area for the city’s gradual pickup. Read more…


Toronto confirms 228 new cases as hundreds recover in hospital
Toronto is still seeing more than 200 new COVID-19 cases per day, city health officials say, with the confirmed death toll now at 732. Read more…


Winnipeg opens city-owned parks to groups of up to 50 amid coronavirus
Larger groups can now gather in city-owned parks in Winnipeg amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Vancouver, province seek to cultivate patio culture
Vancouver city council voted unanimous in favour of having staff “work directly with business operators to identify immediate patio seating options.” Read more…


Homeless flock to City of Barrie buses during pandemic
With transit being free in Barrie since March 20, and the local vulnerable population with few places to turn during the day, bus drivers have noticed an uptick in the homeless congregating on city buses. Read more…


Saint John eyes temporary street closures to help businesses
Saint John is exploring the idea of temporary street closure initiatives as a way to help with economic recovery. Read more…


Skate parks open as City of Nanaimo expands outdoor recreation options
Skateboard parks within the City of Nanaimo have officially re-opened, joining tennis and pickleball courts, along with other select outdoor rec options. Read more…


Calgary and Brooks can join rest of province in provincial relaunch
Calgary and Brooks will join the rest of the province by allowing bars, restaurants, hair salons, and barbershops to open on May 25. Read more…


Municipalities want more say on reopening plans during pandemic
After weeks of closures, the idea of a “regional reopening” during the COVID-19 pandemic is gaining support from officials across eastern Ontario. Read more…


Winnipeg finances less dire than predicted as city deals with pandemic
The City of Winnipeg is anticipating a $73 million shortfall due to the COVID-19 pandemic – but that’s an improvement over last month when the shortfall was projected to be $78 million. Read more…


Poll finds many in B.C. uncomfortable with reopening plans
Most British Columbians say the government is taking the right approach with its response to COVID-19, but less than half feel comfortable with its plans to reopen businesses and services, according to a new poll. Read more….


Clarington cancels all summer camps, suspends indoor facility permits
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Regional Municipality of Clarington say they’ve been forced to make the difficult decision to cancel all their summer camps. Read more…


Unsung city workers deliver municipal services during city closures
Ottawa’s emergency services and health-care workers rightfully receive public accolades during the public health crisis, but there’s plenty of unsung work by City of Ottawa front-line staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Calgary gives green light to e-scooters, but advises caution during COVID-19
Electric scooters will ride back into Calgary on Friday after the city delayed their planned return during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Some Saint John businesses reluctant to fully open, despite green light
Premier Blaine Higgs says it’s time for New Brunswickers to spend money in the province, but some Saint John business owners are taking a cautious approach to reopening. Read more…


Kenney on Edmonton as NHL hub city: “I think the decision is obvious”
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney says the Oilers’ facilities and the city’s health record dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic make Edmonton an ideal choice as a hub city for the NHL. Read more…


May 21

Montreal creates advisory committee to plan city’s reopening
Montreal has regrouped over a dozen players in Quebec’s economic sector to form an advisory committee devoted to planning the city’s reopening amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Belleville opening outdoor amenities
The City of Belleville is allowing the opening of a number of public amenities, including outdoor sports facilities and multi-use fields, off-leash dog areas, and outdoor picnic sites. Read more…


Council waives fees for patios, street closures to help COVID-battered businesses rebound
Windsor city council is waiving fees and speeding up approvals for outdoor patios and the takeover of city streets to help small businesses rebound from COVID-19. Read more…


City of Ottawa considering more street patios for dine-in customers
Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson he would be in favour of using more street space for patios as businesses try to crawl out of an economic slump. Read more…


Iqaluit city council supports critical infrastructure projects slated for summer
Iqaluit city councillors have approved a request to have more than a dozen critical infrastructure projects proceed this coming summer. Read more…


City of Prince Albert looks to invest in three new capital projects
Prince Albert city council appears to largely agree with administration’s spending priorities for a chunk of provincial post-COVID stimulus money. Read more…


Saint John firefighters oppose $1.36 million in cuts
The union representing Saint John firefighters says council’s plan to cut $1.36 million from the fire department will leave both firefighters and residents vulnerable. Read more…


Red Deer extends recreation closures, cancels summer programming amid COVID-19
The City of Red Deer has announced that city-owned recreation facilities will remain closed beyond June 30. Read more…


Coquitlam looks to hear from local businesses amid COVID-19 recovery
Coquitlam city staff have been reaching out to restaurants, shopkeepers, and industries to find out more about their pressing COVID-19 needs. Read more…


Property Tax Rebate Program will cost City of Brooks $310,000
Brooks city council has agreed to keep tax rates for residential and farmland properties at 2019 levels, which will result in a loss of almost $310,000. Read more…


Lethbridge city council votes to form new COVID-19 recovery committee
Lethbridge city council is set to form a new committee that will support city-wide recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Hamilton preparing for “new reality” as city edges closer to reopening services
The City of Hamilton is planning for a “new reality” as it maps out the staged reopening of city services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more….


City of Regina taking next steps in “holistic” strategy to fight crime
A report before Regina city council’s priorities and planning committee proposes a program to combat crime through preventing conditions that lead people to break the law. Read more…


Welland city hall assessing COVID-19 damage
The second update provided since municipal services and facilities were cancelled and closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic shows the City of Welland is staring down a projected 2020 deficit of $384,514. Read more…


East Coast cities considering street closures so restaurants can extend patios
P.E.I.’s bars and restaurants are expected to reopen at reduced capacity, so adding more patio space is being seen as a way to regain some of that lost capacity while maintaining physical distancing. Read more…


Why Winnipeg installed video cameras along active transportation routes
Winnipeggers may have noticed video cameras set up along active transportation routes in different areas of the city. Read more…


London’s direct COVID-19 costs add up to more than $1 million so far
From masks to laptops to cots for homeless Londoners, city hall racked up more than $1 million in emergency costs as the COVID-19 pandemic struck. Read more…

May 20

Public Health Agency of Canada now recommends wearing non-medical face masks
Canada’s chief public health officer is officially recommending Canadians wear non-medical face masks when maintaining a two-metre distance isn’t possible. Read more…


Paid parking is back, Hamilton asks transit riders to wear masks
With stores starting to open up again, the City of Hamilton has announced drivers will have to start paying to park their cars again. Read more…


City of Yellowknife playgrounds and outdoor recreation areas now open
Playgrounds and outdoor recreation areas are now open in the City of Yellowknife, but the city is reminding residents to follow all public health orders. Read more…


Kawartha Lakes library pickup services to resume with restrictions in June
There are 14 libraries in the City of Kawartha Lakes and all of them are currently closed to the public due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Playgrounds open again in St. Albert, but city asks residents to stay away
Two playgrounds in St. Albert reopened to the public, but the city is discouraging people from using them as the equipment will not be sanitized. Read more…


City parking fees will be reinstated in Saskatoon
Saskatoon council voted 10-1 in favour of restarting the pay parking program beginning Monday May 25 instead of June 1 which was the date proposed by city administration. Read more…


Ottawa reopens outdoor city sports courts, fields, and parks
The City of Ottawa has reopened its outdoor sports facilities and multi-use fields as part of the province’s first stage of pandemic recovery. Read more…


City to look at increasing patio space for Penticton restaurants
The City of Penticton is looking at ways to make it easier for restaurants to use sidewalk and patio space in order to assist a return to business. Read more…


Edmonton eases process for businesses to open outdoor retail spaces
Edmonton businesses no longer need to wait for city approval to open temporary patios, sidewalk cafes, or retail spaces outside their storefronts. Read more….


Vancouver rescinding emergency order to shut down restaurant table service
As B.C. works through the next stage of reopening the province, the City of Vancouver is rescinding the order issued two months ago that shut down all restaurant table service. Read more…


Fighting COVID-19 to cost Sudbury nearly $7 million, report indicates
Addressing and managing the COVID-19 crisis will have cost the City of Greater Sudbury nearly $7 million as of the end of next month. Read more…


Province to decide Friday whether Calgary, Brooks will move to relaunch
Premier Jason Kenney said that the government will announce this Friday whether the Calgary and Brooks regions will be going forward with the next phase of their relaunch process. Read more…


Orange tulips in Charlottetown commemorate Netherlands’ liberation
Orange tulips are popping up in beds around Charlottetown City Hall to mark the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Netherlands and commemorate the role Canada played in the Second World War. Read more…


Burnaby council eyes child-care centre for city, RCMP staff
A proposed city-owned child-care facility that would prioritize City of Burnaby and RCMP staff cleared one hurdle, as the city’s finance committee passed the proposal, which includes a $3.5-million investment from the city’s capital reserves. Read more…


City of Humboldt proceeding with summer capital projects
Despite concerns for the City of Humboldt having construction take place amid the COVID-19 pandemic, council has voted to carry on with capital projects that were in the city’s 2020 budget. Read more…


City of Toronto reopening off-leash dog areas
The City of Toronto has reopened its more than 70 off-leash dog areas, but those using the parks are still expected to practise physical distancing. Read more…


Laval, Quebec officials discuss re-launching city’s economy
Mayor Marc Demers says a teleconference meeting with city and provincial officials about re-starting Laval’s post-COVID-19 economy was a success and a sign the Quebec government is taking the issue seriously. Read more…


Hamilton looks for ways to keep bike sharing program spinning
The company that runs Hamilton’s SoBi bike share program says COVID-19 is forcing it to permanently shut down the service as of June 1, and some city councillors are vowing to find a way to keep the popular program alive. Read more…


Alberta, Edmonton working with Oilers to bring NHL playoffs to Rogers Place
The City of Edmonton and the Alberta government are working with the Edmonton Oilers to resume the NHL season at Rogers Place. Read more…


May 19

Canada-U.S. border to remain closed for another month as provinces slowly reopen
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on Tuesday the border between Canada and the U.S. will remain closed to non-essential travel for another 30 days. Read more…


Seventy cases of COVID-19 at French schools days after reopening
Just one week after a third of French schoolchildren went back to school in an easing of the coronavirus lockdown, there has been a worrying flareup of about 70 COVID-19 cases linked to schools. Read more…


Fort St. John City Hall open to the public
Fort St. John city hall will reopen for front counter services after the city closed access on March 30 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Hamiltonians enjoy golf courses, trails and parks as city relaxes COVID-19 restrictions
Locals enjoyed the outdoors during the Victoria Day weekend as the City of Hamilton and the province eased restrictions. Read more…


COVID-19 can’t keep Edmonton’s Capital City Clean Up down
Edmonton community leagues and business associations stepped in to spruce up the city over the May long weekend. Read more…


Winnipeg councillor proposes upgrades to city tracks as physical distancing continues
A Winnipeg councillor has investigated the city’s running and walking tracks and says he’s hopeful that work can be done to refurbish some of them. Read more…


Vancouver businesses grapple with new health protocols as reopening begins
As some British Columbia businesses prepare to reopen the province enters the second phase of its COVID-19 restart plan, others say they’re holding off. Read more…


Toronto agrees to physical distancing standards in shelters following lawsuit
The City of Toronto is taking steps to make sure some of the city’s most vulnerable people can physically distance to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Downtown restaurants in St. John’s may take their business to the streets
St. John’s is looking at options to allow restaurants downtown to expand their patios into public spaces this summer to make up for business lost during COVID-19. Read more…


Economic recovery task force asks City of Penticton to relax patio regulations
The City of Penticton’s economic recovery task force is looking to city council for support to relax patio regulations and remove permit costs amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Summerside’s “heart of hope” overlooks city amid COVID-19
Passersby will notice the landscape surrounding Summerside Electric has a glowing new addition that comes in the shape of a giant lighted heart. Read more…


Petition urges City of Kamloops to rename road after victim in Snowbirds crash
A Kamloops resident has started an online petition, urging the City of Kamloops to rename the road leading to Kamloops Airport after the RCAF Snowbirds pilot who died on Sunday when the plane she was in crashed shortly after taking off. Read more…


City of Kingston emphasizes need to get outside, just do it safely
The City of Kingston is asking the public to be patient while it takes a cautious approach to navigating the province’s reopening plans. Read more…


No significant drop in potholes in Winnipeg during COVID-19
There may be fewer cars tearing up city streets this spring due to COVID-19, but that doesn’t appear to have put much of a dent in Winnipeg’s annual battle with potholes. Read more…


Thousands of dollars in fines issued for breaking Ottawa’s COVID-19 rules
City of Ottawa bylaw officers issued roughly $100,000 in fines to people last month for allegedly violating park usage rules and other provincial emergency orders issued to stem COVID-19. Read more…


Montreal businesses, daycares given green light to open amid COVID-19
Quebec will allow some retail stores and businesses to reopen in the Greater Montreal area on May 25 as the province recorded its lowest number of deaths attributable to the novel coronavirus pandemic in over a month. Read more…


May 18

Cities grappling with COVID-19 costs call for federal, provincial co-operation for emergency aid
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Saturday he was “eager” to hear from the provinces on how the federal government can provide support for municipalities. Read more…


Kamloops mayor says city “shaken to its core” by CF Snowbird crash
Kamloops Mayor Ken Christian provided details about the city’s response after a CF Snowbird team jet crashed on Sunday, leaving at least one person dead. Christian said the crash has shaken the city “to its core.” Watch more…


City hopes to increase ferry service to Toronto Islands “soon,” mayor says
The city is not yet ready to ramp up ferry service to the Toronto Islands for the summer season but Mayor John Tory says he hopes that day is coming “soon.” Read more…


City of Saint John seeks service cuts to offset COVID-19 deficit
Some municipal services and programs will need to remain suspended for the rest of the year in order for Saint John to make up for a projected $5 million revenue shortfall caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Recovery plan helps Wetaskiwin businesses look to the future
As Wetaskiwin moves through the current COVID-19 pandemic, the city’s Economic Development office is building on its efforts to connect with businesses and support them through these unprecedented times. Read more…


City of Montreal extends state of emergency to May 21
The City of Montreal has extended its state of emergency for five more days – until May 21 – in order to give the city more power to enact special measures aimed at dealing with various COVID-19 related issues. Read more…


Safety paramount to reopening New Westminster parks and rec facilities
Community facilities and park features in the City of New Westminster will be phased in over the coming months with safety, staffing and financial considerations all playing a role in how soon that happens. Read more…


Winnipeg patios busy May long weekend despite COVID-19 restrictions
Winnipeg’s bar and restaurant patios were busy Sunday despite restrictions put in place due to COVID-19 as the weather warmed to seasonal averages. Read more…


Regina Public Library lays off 100 workers amid pandemic
The Regina Public Library has laid off 100 workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic. That is more than half its workforce. Read more…


“Guerilla gardeners” say they’re growing food for low-income neighbourhood
Volunteers calling themselves “guerilla gardeners” have taken over neglected lot in Prince George’s inner city to grow food for the neighborhood. Read more…


May 17

Health researcher hopes COVID-19 means new policies for Indigenous peoples
A health researcher studying COVID-19 as part of a national immunity task force hopes the pandemic elevates concern for persistent health issues, such as inadequate housing for Indigenous people. Read more…


Winnipeg garden centre closes due to disrespectful customers
A Winnipeg garden centre that reopened has decided to temporarily shut its doors again and stick to curbside delivery after shoppers were disrespectful to the store’s employees. Read more…


Montreal boroughs, cities, launch new social distancing measures
Montreal’s borough of LaSalle and the City of Pointe-Claire are making sure that people can enjoy the popular outdoor hot spots along the water while still keeping two meters apart. Read more…


Parking-to-patios plans being pursued in New Westminster
New Westminster staff are actively conducting technical reviews and developing potential design solutions for various parts of the city, including: locations in the Uptown where parking could be reallocated to mitigate narrow sidewalk segments. Read more…


City-owned playgrounds in Yellowknife are now open
City of Yellowknife-maintained playgrounds and outdoor recreation areas in Yellowknife are once again open. Read more…


As Toronto blocks off additional roads for ActiveTO, residents, drivers adjust to closures
The City of Toronto closed additional roads on Saturday morning as part of its ActiveTO plan, which police said resulted in road congestion  and mixed reaction from residents. Read more…


Unaffected by isolation, B.C. lighthouse keepers continue work
As British Columbia begins to reopen and reduce social distancing guidelines, life hasn’t changed much for the roughly 54 lighthouse keepers working across B.C.’s 27 manned lighthouses. Read more…


CFL stadium plans in Halifax are “dead” after COVID
The CFL is questioning whether it will continue to exist, let alone expand, which means the hopes for a team in Halifax are dwindling. Read more…


Mayor of Brooks urging residents to follow COVID-19 protocols this long weekend
s people head into the long weekend, the mayor of Brooks is asking residents not to let up on COVID-19 protocols this long weekend. Read more…


Canadian communities and businesses to feel the pain of cruise cancellations
Before COVID-19, the number of passengers to Atlantic Canada was forecasted to grow 14 percent to about one million in 2020. Read more…


May 16

New FCM initiative to support local affordable housing providers
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities is supporting local affordable housing providers to retrofit existing affordable housing, or build new, energy efficient units that emit lower GHG emissions. Read more…


Delay of mask shipment works out for city of Montreal
A holdup in the delivery of a Montreal order for KN95 masks is proving to be fortuitous as it has given the city time to change its order to disposable surgical masks. Read more…


Port Moody shuts down parking near popular Tri-City beach
The City of Port Moody is temporarily prohibiting shoulder parking in the area of Belcarra Regional Park after a busy Mother’s Day weekend which saw hundreds of people flock to White Pine beach. Read more…


Top City of Ottawa bureaucrat holds the key to opening a post-COVID capital
Ottawa’s medical officer of health Dr. Vera Etches has guided city hall during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, but when it comes to reopening, make no mistake: Steve Kanellakos holds the key to the city. Read more…


Big city mayors say Battle of Alberta unhelpful in economic future
The mayors of Edmonton and Calgary, Don Iveson, and Naheed Nenshi, say let’s put the gloves down and work together towards a better economic future for the province as a whole. Read more…


Downtown Vernon Association inviting people to city centre
As COVID-19 restrictions loosen, the Downtown Vernon Association is inviting people to rediscover the heart of the city. Read more…


City of Toronto cancels city-run summer camps amid COVID-19
The City of Toronto has cancelled all city-run summer camps and recreation programs, the mayor says. Refunds will be issued in the coming weeks. Read more…


Winnipeg expands online permit service for home renovation projects
The City of Winnipeg is expanding its online permit service to allow homeowners quicker access when applying for permits on a number of home renovation projects. Read more…


Corner Brook looking at what programs and services are safe to offer
The City of Corner Brook has already cancelled some activities for this summer, but it still faces a challenge in determining what programs and services will be safe to offer during the coming months. Watch more…


Oceans grocer in Brampton charged after city says it ignored multiple COVID-19 bylaw violation warnings
One of Oceans Fresh Food Market’s Brampton locations has been charged by the city for allegedly violating COVID-19 mitigation regulations in place since March. Read more…


May 15

PM says wage subsidy being extended to end of August
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the 75 percent federal wage subsidy program is being expanded by three months, to the end of August to assist employers as they look to reopen their businesses. Read more…


Ontario reports missed COVID-19 cases, day after reopening plan revealed
Ontario’s Health Minister Christine Elliott reported a “glitch” in the province’s COVID-19 reporting Friday, which caused some new cases to be missed in yesterday’s update. Read more…


Montreal temporarily converting nearly 200 kilometres of city streets to help confined residents get around
Montreal is transforming a few hundred kilometres of city streets into bicycle and pedestrian corridors to help residents get around amid COVID-19 pubic health rules. Read more…


This map shows where Vancouver residents can get free and low-cost food
As part of its ongoing response to COVID-19, the City of Vancouver is trying to make it easier for residents in need to find food. Read more…


Organic waste collection will “resume in June” City of Yellowknife says
According to a news release from the City of Yellowknife, Green Cart organic waste collection in the city will “resume in June.” Read more…


Kitchener’s municipal courses will wait at least another week before opening
Although golf courses in Ontario have been given the official go-ahead to open this weekend, Kitchener’s city-owned courses will wait at least another week before opening. Read more…


Richmond virtual hub created to boost economy
A website has been launched as a “hub” to help restart the Richmond economy and show the community how it can support local businesses. Read more…


St. John’s startup looking to 3D-print COVID-19 test swabs
A St. John’s-based startup is seeking Health Canada’s approval to begin supplying health-care facilities with 3D-printed nasal swabs for COVID-19 testing. Read more…


Nenshi optimistic about FCM’s pitch to get fiscal aid to municipalities
All three orders of government are going to have to sit down together to solve the financial challenges of Canadian municipalities, according to Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi. Read more…


Vancouver police chief slams city’s closed-door $3.5 million budget cut
Vancouver’s police chief has condemned the city’s decision to cut the force’s budget by $3.5 million, without public debate, to help offset the financial effects of the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


City of Guelph offering free gardening kits for children
The City of Guelph, through Our Food Future, is distributing 700 free home gardening kits to children and youth in Guelph and Wellington County. Read more….


Ontario’s Big City Mayors urge province, feds to provide relief for municipalities
Ontario’s big city mayors are calling on the federal and provincial governments to provide immediate financial support to municipalities as they face unprecedented economic challenges due to COVID-19. Read more…


All municipal beaches ordered closed in Grey-Bruce ahead of long weekend
All municipal beaches in Grey-Bruce have been ordered closed by the region’s medical officer of health just as the Victoria Day long weekend – normally considered the unofficial start of summer – is about to begin. Read more…


No conferences tough for City of Prince George
Until there’s a vaccine, treatments for COVID-19, or community immunity, B.C. will not be hosting rock concerts, conventions, or any other large gatherings, which is bad news for local governments like the City of Prince George. Read more…


Kingston expects $4 million deficit by summer’s end
The City of Kingston expects a $4 million budget deficit by the end of August due to lost revenue and increased costs related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Iqaluit city council amends capital budget
Iqaluit council has shaved $1 million off its capital budget so as to better reflect the needs of the city and the pandemic-related challenges facing the territory. Read more…


Maritime sports facilities still face bills with no revenue coming in
Some of the biggest and most expensive sports and recreation facilities in the Maritimes all have one thing in common these days: they’re all closed indefinitely. Read more…


May 14

Schools in greater Montreal area will be closed until September
Quebec Premier François Legault announced Montreal is too vulnerable to pandemic to allow schools to open before fall. Read more…


Mississauga mayor says the city is not yet ready to reopen quickly due to daily increases in COVID-19 cases
While the Ontario government is working to gradually reopen the province’s economy, Mississauga’s mayor says the province needs to understand that some denser cities need more time to flatten the curve. Read more…


City of Kamloops prepares for public hearings online
On June 2, the City of Kamloops  will host its first public hearing in the COVID-19 era, including dial-in and digital participation from the public. Read more…


Winnipeg mayor wants public aware of what COVID-19 restrictions city can enforce
Winnipeg’s mayor wants to clarify the roles and responsibilities of city workers in enforcing COVID-19 restrictions. Read more…


Burnaby has now cancelled all city summer events and programs
The City of Burnaby has cancelled all of its events and programs for the entire summer due to COVID-19. Read more…


Ottawa’s economy expected to weather pandemic better than other Canadian cities
Ottawa’s local economy is expected to weather the COVID-19 pandemic better than other major Canadian cities, according to a new report from the Conference Board of Canada. Read more…


“Real possibility” no cruise ships will come to Saint John this year
At a webinar on the local economy, participants were told there is a real possibility that there will not be a cruise ship season this year in Saint John due to COVID-19. Read more…


Nova Scotia municipal elections to go ahead in October as scheduled
The provincial government has told the Nova Scotia Federation of Municipalities that Nova Scotians will indeed be voting this year for candidates competing for spots on their local councils. Read more…


Yellowknife plans to reopen programs and facilities, asks for patience
The City of Yellowknife is planning to reopen programs, services, and facilities after the Northwest Territories government released its COVID-19 pandemic recovery plan. Read more…


Vancouver considers “slow streets” for 50 kilometres worth of roads
Like many dense cities across the world, Vancouver is trying to find ways that people can move around outside while respecting physical distancing guidelines put in place to combat the COVID-19 virus. Read more….


Mississauga releases framework for reopening the city
Emphasizing that the COVID-19 Recovery Framework is not a calendar, Mississauga council has been presented with a document that provides guidelines for staff to work with while developing the recovery plan. Read more…


New design for Quebec City tramway has wider sidewalks, more parks
Quebec City Mayor Regis Labeaume says changes to the city’s tramway project will help improve the quality of life in some of the city’s busiest neighbourhoods. Read more…


Alberta delays part of relaunch in Calgary, Brooks as rest of province reopens
Restaurants, hair salons, and churches in Calgary won’t be allowed to open with the rest of the province, after the Alberta government excluded the city from parts of its aggressive economic relaunch plan. Read more…


Grande Prairie may join class-action lawsuit against opioid manufacturers
Should the City of Grande Prairie be approved to act as a representative plaintiff, the city would represent those impacted by opioids at the community and municipal levels across Canada. Read more…


Toronto to ramp up roadwork while traffic is light due to pandemic
The City of Toronto plans to take advantage of light traffic on its roads during the pandemic by starting work on a number of construction projects in the next couple of weeks, Mayor John Tory says. Read more…


Edmonton extends state of emergency amid provincial relaunch
The City of Edmonton has extended its state of emergency for another week, in a move aimed to allow city officials more “flexibility” as the provincial relaunch begins Stage 1. Read more…


Ottawa council turns sour amid debate over closing streets during COVID-19
What started as a proposal to help councillors fund street closures in their wards to help residents practise physical distancing quickly escalated to a combative 70-minute debate at Ottawa city council. Read more…


Weekly green bin pickup this summer in Halifax region axed
The Halifax Regional Municipality has cancelled weekly green bin pickup in July, August, and September in an effort to cut costs over revenue lost to COVID-19. The move saves the municipality $1.1 million. Read more…


Rural property search surges in B.C. during pandemic
The COVID-19 curve has begun to flatten, but in British Columbia the demand for rural properties is expected to swell. Read more…


May 13

Cities may allow restaurants, pubs to stretch patios into public space
Cities including Winnipeg, Calgary, and Vancouver have brought in or are eyeing rules that would make it easier for restaurants to expand into public spaces such as roads and parking areas to allow for greater physical distancing by patrons. Read more…


Halifax libraries face temporary layoffs amid COVID-19-fuelled city budget cuts
Halifax Public Libraries is considering new ways to offer services as it faces a $1.1 million budget cut from the city due to a massive shortfall created by COVID-19. Read more…


Tory says Toronto can’t afford to further extend grace period for property taxes
With a grace period for property taxes and utilities set to end this week, Mayor John Tory says the City of Toronto simply cannot afford another extension. Read more….


City of Lethbridge will not be opening its facilities on May 14
The Alberta government identified May 14 as the potential start date for Phase 1 of the COVID-19 relaunch strategy, however the City of Lethbridge says many details about how municipalities fit into this strategy are still unanswered. Read more…


Saskatchewan transit union leaders backing call for $5 billion federal bailout
Two Saskatchewan transit union leaders are backing a call for the federal government to provide a $5billion bailout for transit agencies across Canada. Read more…


Canadian Rural Revitalization Foundation launches Rural Insights series
The Canadian Rural Revitalization Foundation has launched a new “Rural Insights” series in response to the unique impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic for rural Canada. Read more…


Ste-Anne’s mayor is worried Montrealers will flock to her city
With the COVID-19 pandemic still ravaging Montreal, Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue Mayor Paola Hawa is fearful thousands of Montrealers will flock to her city. Read more…


Looking to boost spirits, city declares first Neighbour Day
Thunder Bay council officially declared June 20 as Neighbour Day and while some councillors questioned launching the initiative in the midst of a pandemic, others said it will provide a badly-needed boost of positive energy for the city. Read more…


Fort St. John creating online portal for city services
Fort St. John staff are developing an online portal for residents to conduct business with the city and it could be up and running in four to six weeks. Read more…


Grande Prairie considering tax rebate for residents in 2020 due to COVID-19
Grande Prairie council originally decided on a 1.25 percent property tax increase during budget deliberations back in November, but are now looking at giving residents a tax rebate for the 2020 tax year instead. Read more…


More cities are closing roads to make room for pedestrians. Why not Hamilton?
Hamilton will not follow Toronto’s lead and close streets or traffic lanes to cars to make more outdoor space for walkers, joggers, and cyclists during a looming pandemic summer. Read more…


May 12

UNWTO releases COVID-19 technical assistance package for tourism recovery
With tourism among the hardest-hit of all sectors, The World Tourism Organization has identified three possible scenarios for the months ahead. Read more…


Seniors being sent one-time payment of up to $500: PM
Nearly two months into living in some form of isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, eligible seniors are set to receive a one-time tax-free payment of up to $500. Read more…


London’s PPE stockpile includes hundreds of thousands of masks, gloves: city official
As the province eyes a slow and gradual reopening from the shutdowns that have been imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, it appears London will be well prepared when that time comes. Read more…


Premier strongly urges Quebeckers to wear masks in public to “greatly reduce the contagion”
Premier Francois Legault is urging Quebeckers to wear a mask in public – not to protect themselves, but to protect others. Read more…


Summerside Lobster Carnival cancelled due to coronavirus
The city cancelled the 2020 Summerside Lobster Carnival one day after the P.E.I. Association of Exhibitions cancelled a number of festival events for the summer. Read more…


Lethbridge residents asked to “curb expectation” on May 14 provincial reopening date
As Alberta gets set for stage one of its COVID-19 relaunch strategy, the City of Lethbridge is urging caution for businesses and residents. Read more…


Brampton seeks community feedback for reopening of city’s economy
The City of Brampton is seeking community feedback on plans for reopening and recovering the city’s economy. Read more…


Calgary and Edmonton suffering, but there’s good news on the horizon
The coronavirus pandemic is all having a huge impact on the Canadian economy, but a new report says Calgary and Edmonton are hurting the most. Read more…


Manitoba not allowing “family bubbles”, not an easy decision: epidemiologist
As Manitobans adjust to loosened rules through the COVID-19 pandemic, the province has yet to include “family bubbles” in the reopening plans, despite other provinces allowing the practice. Read more…


Canadian National Exhibition cancelled for just second time in 142 years
For only the second time in its 142-year history, the Canadian National Exhibition – a summer favourite for Torontonians young and old – has announced the cancellation of this year’s event amid the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


Victoria mayor says city prepares to create open spaces for restaurant recovery
Victoria’s mayor says she wants to give the city’s restaurants, pubs, and retailers more space to reopen successfully with a plan that could expand outdoor patios to sidewalks, parking lots, and streets closed to traffic. Read more…


City approves more than $22 million for Calgary non-profits, partners
Millions in relief is headed to Calgary social agencies, city partners, community associations, sports groups, and taxi and limousine drivers. Read more….


Yellowknife council proceeds with property tax and fee increases
Yellowknife city councillors have considered, and rejected, delaying planned increases to property taxes and fees to relieve financial pressures associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Hamilton urged not to clear homeless encampments during COVID-19 pandemic
Physicians working with Hamilton’s homeless are urging the city not to clear out homeless encampments during the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more….


Edmonton approves new economic development entity
City council has unanimously approved the creation of a separate innovation entity to support entrepreneurs and Edmonton’s tech and knowledge economies. Read more…


Tourism Saskatoon asking for $150,000 for COVID-19 recovery
Tourism Saskatoon is asking city hall for a one-time marketing investment of $150,000 to help it adapt to a post-pandemic tourism landscape. Read more…


May 11

CMA Foundation commits $10 million to address vulnerable populations affected by COVID-19
The Canadian Medical Association Foundation is announcing a $10 million donation to address the needs of vulnerable populations affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Northern Saskatchewan leaders want COVID-19 checkpoint confusion sorted out
Leaders in northwestern Saskatchewan are asking the province to clear up confusion about checkpoints that are restricting travel in the region during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Orillia launches new initiative to ease parking for curbside pickups
The City of Orillia has launched a new Shop Local parking initiative to assist both businesses and customers carry out curbside pick-up starting today. Read more…


Calgary may allow more pop-up patios to aid business recovery
Calgary city council will discuss allowing more restaurants to temporarily spill out onto the sidewalk or the street outside their doors. Read more…


Resolutions intended to ease financial burden for Nelsonites passed by city
Nelson city council recently put forth 25 resolutions designed to provide support and relief to both individuals and businesses in the community in light of the negative economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Barrie landfill to reopen on Thursday
The City of Barrie will gradually reopen the landfill to the public starting later this week to allow residents to drop off garbage during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Quebec premier says Montrealers should not be isolated
Quebec Premier Francois Legault says the COVID-19 situation in Montreal remains fragile and a reopening of retail stores, schools and daycares in the city planned for May 25 could be further delayed. Read more…


Layoffs begin at Vancouver International as passenger volumes plummet
Cutbacks are officially underway at Vancouver International Airport as passenger volumes are expected to drop by as much as two-thirds over the next three years. Read more…


Expect ghost towns if small business evictions aren’t stopped: Guelph MPP
Guelph MPP Mike Schreiner says the city’s downtown, and those of many other municipalities, could be ghost towns when Ontario’s economy eventually opens back up unless small business evictions are ended. Read more…


Saskatchewan halts alcohol sales in northern community to control COVID-19
The Saskatchewan government has agreed to a request from a northern community to suspend alcohol sales to help control the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


An unusual urban boundary fight lands, virtually, at Ottawa city hall
The City of Ottawa will take the first step in deciding how much land, if any, should be pumped into the urban boundary, but there will be no protests outside city hall and the public galleries won’t be packed with upset residents. Read more….


Yellowknife memorial garden hopes to return to “spectacular glory”
The City of Yellowknife is hoping to make repairs to a local memorial garden this summer, after it has been the target of vandalism and has fallen into disrepair for a variety of reasons in recent years. Read more…


Ontario takes biggest step toward reopening as thousands head back to work 
Retail stores with a street entrance were allowed to reopen and thousands of people returned to work Monday morning marking Ontario’s most significant move to reopen the provincial economy. Read more…


Coquitlam to give financial break to developers amid COVID-19
The City of Coquitlam has approved a deferred payment measure to give developers extra time to pay a fee covering any infrastructure damages or upgrades surrounding a new building. Read more…


Police association calls for unity among Saint Johners
The president of the city’s police association is calling for Saint Johners to come together to help fix the city’s growing financial crisis. Read more…


Calgary malls prepare to reopen, retail industry forever changed from COVID-19
As some Calgary shopping malls prepare to open as early as this week, leadership across the retail industry have been planning and working on determining the best way to do so while ensuring the safety of customers, staff, and tenants. Read more…


Halifax to vote on $85 million in budget cuts in response to COVID-19
The Halifax Regional Municipality is proposing more than $85 million in cuts to the city’s 2020-21 budget in response to the financial impacts of COVID-19. Read more…


May 10

COVID-19 pandemic prompts urbanites to rethink “grand bargain” of dense city living
Some urban planner are predicting the current pandemic will change cities much the same way that infectious disease outbreaks influenced the development of urban centres in decades past. Read more…


Halifax’s recast COVID-19 budget is $85 million lighter
The permanent financial hit to Halifax from COVID-19 this year is projected to be $85.4 million, and some high-profile services and projects are being cut or delayed to close the budget gap. Read more…


Hundreds of fish harvesters gather to protest industry concerns amid COVID-19 pandemic
More than 200 fish harvesters stood side by side Saturday afternoon to protest a number of issues within the fishing industry – including safety concerns surrounding COVID-19. Read more…


Welland city hall inside workers “not happy” says CUPE
The City of Welland laid off 109 people due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A union representing outside workers said the cuts could have been deeper had members not agreed to certain terms. Read more…


City of North Vancouver starts reopening some of its outdoor facilities
The City of North Vancouver is joining other Metro Vancouver municipalities in slowly reopening some of its outdoor parks and recreation facilities. Read more…


City of Ottawa parks are open for use, but with restrictions
The city, in consultation with Ottawa Public Health, is advising that the limited use of some spaces in parks and beaches is now permitted. This does not include the use of sports fields and courts. Read more…


Grace period for on-street parking tickets in Montreal  ends Sunday at midnight
The city of Montreal says it will start giving out tickets as of midnight Sunday, May 10, to drivers who ignore no-parking signs related to street cleaning. Read more…


Surrey councillors urge people to soak up sun close to home
Despite summer-like weather and recent hints from the province that restrictions will soon ease, two Surrey councillors are urging people to find a way to soak up the sun close to home. Read more…


Here’s how Torontonians vulnerable to COVID-19 are celebrating Mother’s Day
With grey skies and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto’s forecast, Mother’s Day is set to be a much quieter day than usual for families across the Greater Toronto Area. Read more…


Work-from-home success changing Calgary office use assumptions, CEOs say
Work-from-home measures taken to control the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic are challenging long-held assumptions about how Canada’s oil and gas sector should provide and care for its office workers. Read more…


May 9

Heritage minister outlines distribution of $500 million of arts and culture COVID-19 support
Canada’s arts and culture organizations are getting a clearer picture of how the federal government plans to divide $500 million of COVID-19 support. Read more…


COVID-19 threatens the future of Calgary’s community associations
Community halls across Calgary have been sitting empty for nearly two months and some local associations are wondering whether they can survive the financial blow from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Regina braces for impact of likely Grey Cup cancellation
Regina Mayor Michael Fougere said a cancelled CFL season would have a significant financial impact not just on the Saskatchewan Roughriders, but on the entire city, with Regina scheduled to host the Grey Cup this November. Read more…


Vancouver city hall to offer “micro-weddings” in plaza amid pandemic
Because love can’t wait until the pandemic is over, Vancouver city hall is now offering up its plaza for physically distanced micro-weddings. Read more…


Islanders show and tell their pandemic creations
With time on their hands, many P.E.I. residents have tapped into their creative sides. Some people who are artistic had more time to create and try new things, while others discovered unknown potential as makers. Read more…


Toronto releases safety guidelines for businesses set to reopen
As some retail stores prepare to open their doors for the first time in months, Toronto’s mayor said he is asking these businesses to not offer “blowout” sales in an effort to limit overcrowding. Read more…


No extra tax relief for City of North Van businesses, council decides
Businesses operating in the City of North Vancouver won’t be getting any extra help on their 2020 municipal taxes that residents aren’t also getting. Read more…


Normal life is slowly returning in Hamilton, city says now it’s up to the public
Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger said it’s now up to the public to help the city move in the right direction by continuing to stay two metres apart from each other and being cautious. Read more…


City of Nanaimo reminding people to be safe around water as temperatures rise
The City of Nanaimo is reminding people to be prepared and safe around any body of water as warmer weather is starting to hit the region. Read more…


City of Greater Sudbury funds veggie gardens across wards
City council approved a one-time disbursement of funds that will enable Sudburians to cultivate their neighbourhoods while staying active during the COVID-19 lockdown. Read more…


May 8

Trudeau says wage subsidy program to be extended past June
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the government’s wage subsidy program for employers will be extended past June. Read more…


Toronto Mayor John Tory renews call for federal COVID-19 funding
Toronto’s mayor is renewing a call for more federal funding to help offset the financial losses experienced by the city due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Saskatchewan increases infrastructure investment by $2 billion to aid economic recovery
The Government of Saskatchewan announced a $2 billion increase in infrastructure investment over two years, to assist economic growth following damage done by COVID-19. Read more…


Hit to Greater Sudbury’s bottom line not too bad: CAO
While its response to COVID-19 is costing the City of Greater Sudbury about $380,000 every week, CAO Ed Archer said the municipality is in a relatively good position, compared to some other Ontario municipalities. Read more…


Edmonton outdoor pools likely closed for the summer, city manager says
Edmonton’s interim city manager said the city’s outdoor pools and spray parks will likely be closed for the entire summer. Read more…


Hamilton to reopen city parks, Waterfront Trail, but not golf courses
Hamilton is opening up a little more public space for residents who want to get outdoors and stretch their legs during the Mother’s Day weekend, amid the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Quebec economy will be able to recover from COVID-19 crisis: Moody’s
Even if the COVID-19 pandemic causes Quebec to go back to running deficit, this should not shake its credit rating in the short term, said one of the main credit rating agencies. Read more…


Manitoba announces $500 million for infrastructure as part of stimulus package
Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister announced a further $500 million aimed toward righting the province’s economic ship in light of COVID-19. The money will be directed to a variety of infrastructure projects. Read  more…


Google affiliate Sidewalk Labs abandons Toronto waterfront project
Sidewalk Labs has scrapped a controversial plan to develop a new multi-use neighbourhood along Toronto’s eastern waterfront, citing the “unprecedented economic uncertainty” brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


P.E.I.-New Brunswick pandemic bubble possible, but not yet
A system where Prince Edward Islanders and New Brunswickers would be allowed to travel freely across the Confederation Bridge could be put in place this summer, says P.E.I. Premier Dennis King. Read more…


City of Regina says golf courses will be ready to open May 15
The City of Regina says golf courses will be ready to open for the season on May 15, as part of the Re-Open Saskatchewan plan. Read more….


No reopen dates yet for Vancouver services in next phase of COVID-19 recovery
The City of Vancouver is taking a go-slow approach to reopening some services and facilities that were closed as a result of COVID-19. Read more…


Edmonton eases more COVID-19 measures; relaunch plans to come next week
Mayor Don Iveson said there will be many stops and starts to the City of Edmonton’s relaunch plan, saying more guidance is needed from the province on how to go about bringing back services safely. Read more…


Saint John council approves $10 million deficit reduction plan
Saint John council has approved its Sustainability Plan to address the $10 million deficit for 2021-2022. The plan includes a variety of cost-saving measures and ways to increase the city’s revenue. Read more…


School zone speed limits work, could be expanded, City of Winnipeg report says
A new City of Winnipeg report recommends expanding school zones and extending the limits to 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Read more…


Walkers, rejoice! City of St. John’s parks reopen for strolls on Monday
The caution tape is coming off city parks in St. John’s for people to walk through, but don’t get too excited – playgrounds remain closed due to COVID-19. Read more…


City of Barrie looking to convert parking spaces into outdoor patios
The City of Barrie is finding ways to help its over 400 restaurants once they are able to reopen by expanding outdoor patios. Read more…


Tour operators, lodge owners expect losses in “Fortress NWT” summer
Tourism operators and lodge owners in the Northwest Territories are bracing for a tough summer ahead with great uncertainty. Read more…


May 7

Feds giving provinces, territories up to $3 billion to boost essential workers’ wages
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the federal government, provinces and territories will spend $4 billion to increase the wages of essential workers in the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Some City of London office workers to begin emergency leave May 11
Office workers for the City of London will be placed on emergency leave next week in the latest step by the city to reduce a projected deficit of up to $33 million caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


St. John’s Regatta cancelled for 2020, for 1st time in 80 years
The Royal St. John’s Regatta Committee announced the event will be cancelled this summer as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Greyhound Canada suspending service as ridership plunges due to COVID-19
Greyhound Canada says it will suspend operations as of May 12 due to a sharp decline in ridership as a result of COVID-19. Read more…


Resiliency fund created for Rossland residents impacted by COVID-19 crisis
Rossland city council members have decided to establish a resiliency fund to help residents who have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


Reopening of schools, daycares and businesses in Montreal area delayed to May 25
The Quebec government has postponed the planned reopening of elementary schools, daycares as well as businesses in the Montreal area. They are now reopening May 25. Read more…


Edmonton’s Lauderdale fenced off-leash dog park reopens with new health measures
Edmonton’s largest fenced dog park reopened Thursday morning after being closed for more than a month to comply with COVID-19 physical distancing rules. Read more…


Work continues on Belleville’s new police headquarters amid COVID-19
Amid the worst global health crisis in more than a century work continues on Belleville Police Services’ new $26 million headquarters. Read more…


City of Regina pleased with provincial stimulus package announcement
The Government of Saskatchewan’s economic stimulus announcement was a welcome one by the City of Regina. Read more…


Number of COVID-19 deaths in Toronto tops 500 as city announces ActiveTO plan
More than 500 people have now died of COVID-19 in Toronto as officials announced a plan to create more space for pedestrians and cyclists on city streets. Read more…


Calgary’s public engagement work goes virtual during pandemic
All in-person public engagement in Calgary has been scrapped until at least August 31 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it’s been replaced with a variety of online and virtual platforms. Read more….


City of Melfort reminds residents distancing rules remain
The City of Melfort is encouraged to see a plan for the reopening of Saskatchewan, but says Phase 1 of the provincial efforts will have little impact in the city. Read more…


Quebec’s first COVID-19 daycare outbreak,16 infected north of Montreal
Quebec has now seen its first COVID-19 outbreak at a daycare – at a facility in Mascouche, in the Lanaudiere region just north of Montreal. Read more…


Industry pleased after truck tax vetoed by Saint John council
Despite the need to cut the city’s $10 million deficit by the end of 2020, a proposed tax on heavy trucks using Saint John roads was struck down by city council. Read more…


City of Ottawa opens up parks, but playgrounds and benches still off limits
The City of Ottawa is reopening green spaces within public parks, but playgrounds, swings, and even benches remain off limits as the COVID-19 crisis continues to impact daily lives. Read more…


Brooks mayor wary of reopening as city’s COVID-19 cases pass 1,000
Brooks, a southeast Alberta city with fewer than 15,000 residents, has now eclipsed 1,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases. Read more…


Could be another month before Winnipeg libraries reopen
It may be weeks before the City of Winnipeg’s libraries reopen, according to the chair of the city’s protection and community services committee. Read more…


London pleads for COVID-19 bailout, but senior governments point to each other
London’s desperate bid for a COVID-19 financial bailout faces a new hurdle – the federal and provincial governments disagree over who should pay. Read more…


Vancouver mayor, council encouraged by Horgan’s restart plan for economy
Mayor Kennedy Stewart and some of Vancouver’s city councillors say they were encouraged by Premier John Horgan’s announcement to begin reopening sectors of British Columbia’s economy in mid-May. Read more…


May 6

Ontario expands virtual mental health services during COVID-19
The Ontario government is expanding virtual mental health services to help thousands of Ontarians experiencing anxiety and depression, including frontline health care workers, during the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


Halifax to borrow COVID-19 cash from province: mayor
Halifax will likely be dipping into funds offered by the province through a loan program for municipalities needing assistance during COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto to open streets for pedestrians, cyclists
Toronto will soon open its streets to make more room for pedestrians and cyclists so they can get outside while maintaining a safe distance from each other. Read more…


Coquitlam’s mayor urging people to do a better job keeping parks, spaces clean
Coquitlam Mayor Richard Stewart says city staff continue to see more garbage strewn about, especially in parks and trails and sidewalks – and it’s more than they would normally see. Read more…


Planning for restoration of services underway in Greater Sudbury
City of Greater Sudbury council was provided with an update on May 5 on the impacts that COVID-19 has had to city services. Read more…


“Democratic safety valve” removed by new B.C. order
A B.C. ministerial order gives local governments significant power to pass bylaws in one sitting, a move observers say violates democratic principles. Read more…


City of Calgary sets tentative date to reopen municipal golf courses
Golfers in Calgary will soon have more options for hitting the links, as Mayor Naheed Nenshi said staff are working toward a tentative reopening date for some of the city’s golf courses. Read more…


Drug use in Saskatoon rises as city tries to contain COVID-19 virus
Saskatoon is the epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic in Saskatchewan, but drug use in the city is also on the rise since the crisis began. Watch more….


Kingston council get a first look at a draft plan to restart the local economy
Kingston city council has heard, in part, the initial report of the business response recovery plan – the blueprint that will guide the city toward economic recovery amid COVID-19. Read more…


As Halifax reopens more than 900 parks, sports courts will remain closed
Halifax is asking for residents to be patient as staff work to reopen more than 900 parks and 425 kilometres of trails in order to comply with Nova Scotia’s decision to relax coronavirus public safety measures. Read more…


COVID-19 cases in Montreal approaches 17,000 as deaths climb to 1,488
Montreal has reached 16,991 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 1,488 deaths, an increase of 385 cases and 78 deaths in 24 hours. Read more…


London city council approves extra relief measures amid pandemic
London city council has approved additional community relief measures to help Londoners with hardships brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Minister sides with suburbs in rejecting Saint John proposals for sharing
Local Government Minister Jeff Carr says Saint John has to make some tough decisions before the city’s neighbours will be ready to talk about sharing costs. Read more…


City of Ottawa getting closer to easing COVID-19 restrictions on green spaces
The Chair of Ottawa’s Board of Health says they’re still figuring out the details, but Ottawans could hear about new rules surrounding the public use of local parks in the coming days. Read more…


Reported crime down “almost right across the board,” say Yukon RCMP
Yukon RCMP say reported crime has been down significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic – but that’s not always a good thing. Read more…


Saskatchewan to announce $300 million in municipal infrastructure spending
Saskatchewan is set to announce a major economic stimulus package that includes more than $300 million in new infrastructure spending for municipalities. Read more…


May 5

“Initial” $252 million emergency aid package coming for farmers, food processors hit by COVID-19
The Liberal government unveiled a multimillion-dollar aid package aimed at helping farmers and food processors safely navigate the novel coronavirus pandemic — aid that far short of the $2.6 billion emergency fund requested by the Canadian Federation of Agriculture. Read more…


Canadians have racked up $5.8 million in coronavirus fines, report says
The number of Canadians who’ve received tickets or been charged as part of COVID-19 enforcement has topped 4,500, per a new report from Policing the Pandemic. Read more…


Montreal to transform city buses into mobile testing clinics
Montreal’s public transit buses will be transformed into mobile testing clinics as the city works to battle the spread of the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Online petition asks city to open more roadway lanes in Calgary for COVID-19 distancing
Project Calgary has launched a petition online to get more streets closed to traffic and opened to pedestrians during the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


Thunder Bay city council hopes to hold down monthly $1.5 million budget variance
City councillors in Thunder Bay discussed how to try and balance the books throughout 2020 due to revenue and spending changes from COVID-19. Read more…


Portage la Prairie playgrounds opening Friday, school facilities remain closed
The City of Portage la Prairie will be reopening its facilities to the public Friday as provincial regulations surrounding COVID-19 loosen. However, the School Division’s playground facilities will remain closed for the time being. Read more…


City of Guelph not banning drive-by birthdays but stresses rules must be followed
The City of Guelph has given a cautionary all-clear for drive-by birthday celebrations, provided they follow the rules on physical distancing and road safety. Read more…


Vernon mayor ready for recovery, cautious of second COVID-19 wave
Letter to B.C. government outlines City of Vernon’s activities and eagerness to return to normal. Read more…


Montreal not flattening the curve, city’s public health director says
With 355 new cases and 45 additional recorded deaths in the past 24 hours, Montreal’s battle with COVID-19 is far from won, and city officials are ramping up efforts to test anyone who is showing signs of infection. Read more….


Vancouver speaks out against racism during COVID-19 pandemic
With the celebration of Asian Heritage Month in Vancouver during the month of May, the city needs to acknowledge there have been increased incidents of hateful comments, vandalism, and violence targeted at people of Asian descent. Read more…


Orillia council rejects proposal to reduce taxes amid pandemic
Amid fears of future waves of the coronavirus, Orillia city council decided not to reduce taxes for the balance of 2020 and to make up to $1 million available to help spur an economic recovery over the next two years. Read more…


City of Richmond lays off 900 staff, redeploys another 50
Around 900 City of Richmond staff have been temporarily laid off and another 50 have been “redeployed” to cope with the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Medical officer says Toronto not yet in a place to ease public health measures
Toronto’s medical officer of health said the city is seeing some progress in its battle with COVID-19, but warned the numbers do not indicate it is at a stage where lifting of public health restrictions can begin. Read more…


City council votes to keep Saint John Energy
Even in the face of a potential $10 million deficit, city council voted overwhelmingly against the possibility of selling Saint John Energy. Read more…


Medicine Hat unveils $8.2 million pandemic support for residents, businesses
The City of Medicine Hat’s COVID-19 assistance package will support residents and businesses coping with and recovering from the economic impacts of the pandemic. Read more…


Gander looking into possibility of reviving relief distribution centre project
With January’s “snowmaggedon” and the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown highlighting how access to crucial supplies has been trying at times, Gander council is revisiting the idea of establishing a supply distribution centre. Read more…


May 4

Nunatsiavut students self-isolating before travelling to north coast of Labrador
Post-secondary students travelling back from Newfoundland or other provinces are returning to the north coast of Labrador now and the Nunatsiavut Government is asking them to self-isolate in Happy Valley-Goose Bay before coming home. Read more…


Sault Ste. Marie launches 55-plus telephone and video conference programming
Staying connected is what it is all about. Citizens aged 55-plus can now access senior services from the City of Sault Ste. Marie by telephone and video conference. Read more…


City manager shares update on Red Deer’s COVID-19 response
City Manager Allan Seabrooke updated residents on Monday regarding The City of Red Deer’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Quebec delays reopening of retail stores in Montreal by one week
Quebec Premier Francois Legault is pushing back until May 18 the reopening of Montreal shops initially planned for next week. Read more…


Toronto mayor says making appointments, planning ahead will be “new normal” as city slowly reopens
Mayor John Tory says when businesses do begin to reopen in Toronto, the “new normal” will likely involve more planning, including making reservations for everything from sitting on a patio to picking up clothing from a store. Read more…


PM Trudeau commits $850 million to global fight against COVID-19
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says that Canada is contributing $850 million to the global fight against COVID-19. Read more…


Edmonton community gardens ramp up for the season with news rules for green thumbs
Community gardens are digging in to launch for the season across Edmonton, even as local green thumbs negotiate a dizzying array of new rules dictated by COVID-19. Read more…


COVID-19 pushes Metro Vancouver home sales to lowest level since 1982
Metro Vancouver home sales in April were the lowest total for the month since 1982, according to new data from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver. Read more…


City of Barrie wants to keep you moving with virtual recreation activities
The City of Barrie has launched the “Together At Home” digital hub, which provides a variety of recreational activities and resources to keep residents and their families active while they’re maintaining physical distancing. Read more…


Will some city streets in Vancouver remain closed after the pandemic?
Changes made to Vancouver streets in order to encourage physical distancing during the pandemic have some wondering what streets will look like after the pandemic has run its course. Read more…


Toronto has filled more than 85,000 potholes this year  despite COVID-19
While much of Toronto has ground to a halt, the city continues to provide almost every service it always has due to the courage and dedication of its employees. Read more…


Alberta’s rapid COVID-19 tests set back after company recalls product
Alberta’s plan to have rapid testing deployed for COVID-19 in rural communities is on hold after Health Canada raised concerns about the testing product. Read more…


Rural internet issues put in sharper focus during pandemic
With workers and students at home, internet speeds in rural Ontario can’t keep up with the need. Read more…


Montreal permit counters reopen as construction begins
Permit counters across Montreal will be partially reopening by appointment following the Quebec government’s decision to reopen the province’s construction sector as of May 11. Read more…


May 3

“Double bubble” policies in N.L. forcing awkward talks, races to the grandparents
The so-called “double bubble” policy, which is aimed at minimizing social isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic, has become a minefield of potential for hurt feelings and household tension. Read more…


Worries over COVID-19 outbreaks in 23 First Nations
Federal officials say the next two weeks will be crucial in trying to determine the scope and severity of the spread of COVID-19 in First Nations communities. Read more…


Deserted city centres has meant a rise in vandalism and thefts
The absence of witnesses on the streets of deserted city centres around the world has had the effect of bringing vandals and thieves out of their confinement.  Read more…


Toronto permanently resuming yard waste pickup as garden centres get set to reopen
The City of Toronto has announced the permanent resumption of yard waste pickup just as garden centres and nurseries get set to reopen for curbside pickup. Read more…


What steps the City of Winnipeg is taking to reopen some services next week
Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman said city officials are working tirelessly to help support the province’s reopening plan. Read more…


As weather warms, City of Barrie warns safety measures still in effect
Officials with the City of Barrie have been working hard to try to plank the curve for COVID-19 over the past several weeks, but say the warmer temperatures are going to pose a challenge. Read more…


No property tax break expected for Coquitlam residents
Unlike their Tri-City neighbours, Coquitlam residents may not be getting a break on property taxes this year in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


N.W.T. families swap city life for living on the land during COVID-19
Off the highway down a ways through the bush still blanketed in snow and among a tall stand of birch trees, three generations of family are reconnecting with the land. Read more…


Casino closures in B.C. could hurt finances of cities, community groups
With casinos closed across B.C., municipalities and community groups could lose out on cash with less gaming revenue to share. Read more…


Montreal extends state of emergency, as over 600 more people have COVID-19
Unsurprisingly, the state of emergency was renewed until May 5 on the Island of Montreal, as the city continues to try to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


May 2

City of Winnipeg promises to fast-track temporary patio permit applications
The City of Winnipeg has unveiled details about how it plans to help restaurants open temporary patio spaces on sidewalks and street parking spaces. Read more…


Kelowna rally to “open our city” draws small crowd
Less than two dozen people showed up in Kelowna on Friday morning to protest ongoing lockdown measures in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Calgary officials clarify position on parks, playgrounds, sports, camps amid provincial relaunch plan
While Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced plans to reopen the province in stages, Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi said there are still options to explore if some of the activities can reopen. Read more…


COVID-19 could cost Thunder Bay over $5 million by end of May
The COVID-19 pandemic is projected to cost Thunder Bay’s municipal government over $5 million by the end of the month, a report from the city’s treasurer indicates. Read more…


Edmonton dog parks to allow off-leash pets again as city moves toward relaunch
Off-leash pets will once again be permitted in designated Edmonton dog parks, the city announced Friday in an update on how it will approach the province’s economic relaunch strategy. Read more…


Vancouver city staff unveil plan for housing woes made worse
Vancouver planning staff say the COVID-19 pandemic is laying bare problems with the city’s housing system, so they will be changing course with a plan they say will rapidly reduce homelessness. Read more…


City of Toronto cancelling all in-person Canada Day events due to coronavirus
The City of Toronto is cancelling all in-person Canada Day events in light of the coronavirus pandemic, saying it will attempt to celebrate the nation’s birthday on July 1 virtually instead. Read more…


P.E.I. health-care workers earn Charlottetown’s key to the city
Mayor Philip Brown presented Charlottetown’s highest honour, the Key to the City, to health-care workers during the Community Foundation of P.E.I.’s online gala May 1. Read more…


COVID-19 testing clinic opens in Montreal North, the city’s current hot spot
Montreal’s public health department opened a COVID-19 testing clinic Friday in Montreal North, one of several steps taken to address the infection rate in the borough, which has risen to become the highest in the city. Read more…


The City of Yellowknife says “limited reopening” of dump will happen Monday
The Solid Waste Facility in Yellowknife, closed to the public because of the COVID-19 pandemic, will have a “limited reopening” on Monday, May 4, for reduced hours. Read more…


May 1

City to deploy “physical distancing ambassador” after groups spotted gathering in Saskatoon parks
The City of Saskatoon says it will temporarily reassign recreation staff to serve as physical distancing “ambassadors” after reports of people gathering in ways that violate the province’s COVID-19 public health order. Read more…


City of Brandon to spend next week reopening outdoor recreational spaces, playgrounds
Playgrounds, outdoor fitness areas and recreational spaces in the City of Brandon will start reopening to the public next week. Read more…


Ottawa police launch three-month crackdown on lead-footed drivers
Ottawa police officers have launched a three-month campaign dubbed Operation Overwatch aimed at putting the brakes on drivers using roads as speedways amid light traffic during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Winnipeg taking steps to ensure food security amid pandemic
The City of Winnipeg announced it’s taking steps to ensure food security for its residents during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


COVID-induced deficit at Windsor city hall is $11 million and rising
The City of Windsor is facing a projected deficit of $11.15 million so far as COVID-19 wreaks financial havoc on city departments and dries up millions in dividends. Read more…


City of Kelowna slashes 2020 budget
The City of Kelowna is proposing a reduced tax increase this year in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis. That means the 2020 tax increase imposed on residents would be lowered from 4.15 percent to 2.05 percent. Read more…


City of London goes blue in honour of Doctors’ Day, health-care workers
Londoners are being invited to join the city in turning blue to recognize Doctors’ Day and to thank health-care workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Edmonton to issue hefty fines for running on river valley stairs in violation of physical distancing order
Edmonton bylaw officers are done giving warnings to residents running on river valley stairs and will start issuing tickets to the tune of at least $1,000. Read more…


City of Burlington bans large vehicle parades popularized during pandemic
The City of Burlington says it will not allow vehicle parades and processions of more than five vehicles to continue, saying they violate provincial emergency measures aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Winnipeg to resume some services amid COVID-19 as Manitoba moves to reopen
A day after provincial health officials unveiled plans to begin reopening Manitoba’s economy, with the first phase starting May 4, the City of Winnipeg announced it will begin resuming some city services. Read more…


Toronto council votes to extend Mayor Tory’s emergency powers
At its first-ever virtual meeting, Toronto city council voted to unanimously extend Mayor John Tory’s emergency powers, as well as the physical distancing bylaws that he enacted for the city. Read more…


Ottawa citizen transit to hold “informal” chat to replace cancelled city meetings
An Ottawa citizen transit commissioner has set up a video chat meant to replace public transit meetings that have been cancelled for three months during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


City of Red Deer pleased with province’s phased relaunch plan
The City of Red Deer says it is closely reviewing the provincial government’s plan for relaunching Alberta’s economy to determine how it applies to the community and local programs and services. Read more…


Nelson’s “plug the meter” campaign supports local business during COVID-19
To assist local business during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Nelson is redirecting parking meter revenue to a new Economic Stimulus Fund for the next four months. Read more…


Calgary facing $235 million deficit if pandemic continues through December
As several public health measures and large-scale closures to limit the spread of COVID-19 remain in effect, it could create a large financial gap for the City of Calgary, according to staff. Read more…


Halifax announces more service reductions for transit service
Halifax Transit has been designated by the Province of Nova Scotia an essential service, but even so, it will implement a further reduction in services to help minimize the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


April 30

Calgary, already bloodied, now requires more help than other cities
The City of Calgary, which was already scrambling for solutions to a multi-year economic slump, now faces an almost-impossible-to-grasp mountain of challenges due to COVID-19. Read more…


Summer festival cancellations piling up in the Maritimes
Summer festivals of all sizes all across the Maritimes have had to make the difficult decision to cancel their events amid the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


Ottawa mayor orders end to ban on window visits in city nursing homes
Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson says he’s ordered the people who run the city’s nursing homes to find a way to let family members visit residents through windows again. Read more…


Here’s how the City of Regina says businesses can avoid plumbing issues when the economy re-opens
The City of Regina says businesses can avoid plumbing issues by flushing their pipes when they re-open under the Saskatchewan government’s five-phase plan. Read more…


St. Catharines throws “party in place” for 144th birthday
It’s St. Catharines 144th birthday on Friday and everyone is invited to “party in place” with the city challenging residents and businesses to do something to celebrate from the safety of their homes and share what they did with others on social media. Read more…


City of Vancouver extends property tax deadline, ends free parking
Vancouver city council has voted to push back the deadline for property taxes this year and reinstate metered parking across most of the city. Read more…


Escaping the “city” during pandemic not recommended by Ontario health officials
There appears to be a growing divide between permanent and part-time residents in cottage country across Ontario as concerns mount regarding the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


City to launch increased testing in Montreal North on May 1
With Montreal North now the borough hardest hit by COVID-19, the city is ramping up testing capacity there starting Friday. Read more…


Lethbridge sister city donates surgical masks for local front line workers
One of Lethbridge’s sister cities, Anyang, China, has donated surgical masks to the city’s front line staff, including fire/EMS and Lethbridge Police officers. Read more…


IBM, City of Markham launch virtual agent for COVID-19 questions
IBM and the City of Markham are using the artificial intelligence-driven virtual agent “IBM Watson Assistant for Citizens” to offer 24-hour customer service for residents looking for COVID-19 information. Read more…


New Brunswick could allow municipalities to run deficits during COVID-19
New Brunswick is likely to allow municipalities to run deficits this year, according to Premier Blaine Higgs. Read more….


Nova Scotia’s municipal loan program a “first step,” but grants preferred
Nova Scotia’s municipalities, some of which are reeling financially because of the COVID-19 crisis, were thrown a lifeline with the launch of a provincial loan program. Read more…


Saskatchewan ombudsman finds fault with jails, care homes, municipalities
Saskatchewan’s ombudsman is warning about unfair discipline hearings in provincial jails and pricey medications in care homes, according to an annual report that once again faulted councillors for running afoul of conflict of interest rules. Read more…


City of Ottawa bans window visits at city-run long-term care homes
The City of Ottawa is cracking down on families visiting loved ones on the grounds of four city-run long-term care homes during the pandemic. Read more…


Rethink of city taxes needed in post-pandemic world, says Edmonton mayor
With COVID-19 walloping the finances of Canadian governments and citizens alike, Edmonton’s mayor is calling for a complete rethink of how municipalities are funded. Read more…


Brantford mayor asks city employees to consider wage freeze
Mayor Kevin Davis is asking city employees to consider a short-term wage freeze to help ease the financial pressure on the municipality as the coronavirus pandemic continues. Read more…


N.L. tells “come from aways” to stay away after pandemic rules flouted
Newfoundland and Labrador is clamping down on travel to the province after reports of tourists arriving by ferry to view icebergs amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 29

Ontario’s big city mayors join call for emergency municipal funding
The Large Urban Mayors’ Caucus of Ontario has joined the Federation of Canadian Municipalities in its request for emergency funding for municipalities from the Government of Canada. Read more…


Cuts are coming to city halls across B.C. Here’s what you need to know
Cuts are coming to city halls across B.C., with municipalities dipping into savings in order to make up for lost revenue from the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


Transit Windsor re-start expected to rack up losses for city hall
The imminent resumption of public transit service is expected to be a costly endeavour according to a report outlining COVID-19 related costs for the City of Windsor. Read more…


Montreal parking restrictions to take effect this week after city loosened rules
Parking restrictions in Montreal will once again be fully enforced starting on Friday after the city initially eased the rules that usually come into effect in April due to the novel coronavirus crisis. Read more…


Advocates push Ottawa to buy hotels as housing for city’s homeless during coronavirus pandemic
As many hotels across the nation’s capital sit empty, some are seeing an opportunity to both protect the city’s vulnerable populations during the coronavirus pandemic and address long-term homelessness concerns in Ottawa. Read more…


City of Prince George tailors downtown initiatives to meet emerging needs amidst pandemic
The City of Prince George is working with several of its partners on a number of initiatives during the COVID-19 pandemic aimed at improving safety, cleanliness, and inclusion for all residents, in the downtown. Read more…


Here’s what to expect from the City of Saskatoon in the coming months
City council’s decision to approve a package of financial measures and service reductions aimed at partially offsetting the cost of the coronavirus pandemic will affect not only city employees, but also everyone living in Saskatoon. Read more…


Edmonton requesting $300 million increase in borrowing limit 
The City of Edmonton is asking council to more than double its current borrowing limit to $500 million as a result of lower tax revenue expected in June. Read more…


Public donates close to 80,000 gloves, masks, shields to Windsor, Essex County
Close to 80,000 gloves and masks and thousands of litres of hand sanitizer have been collected by City of Windsor and Essex County municipal staff to help front line health care workers. Read more…


Montreal to continue delivery service for businesses during COVID-19 crisis
The City of Montreal announced it will continue to offer local businesses a delivery service during the COVID-19 pandemic that has resulted in a state of emergency in the city. Read more…


Calgary doles out first fines for breaking COVID-19 physical distancing rules
Calgary peace officers have written the first tickets for people “flagrantly ignoring social distancing orders” during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Toronto rolling out free internet to low-income, vulnerable residents
Mayor John Tory said the city will be installing temporary free internet access to some of Toronto’s most vulnerable residents as COVID-19 restrictions force more essential activities online. Read more…


Medicine Hat won’t restrict residents from leaving the city
Medicine Hat’s director of emergency management says that despite what he’s heard from some residents, officials won’t stop letting people leave the city. Read more…


Vancouver’s brief run of free parking is over
Vancouver council has decided that free parking across the city has run its course – with paid parking being reinstated this week, including at meters. Read more…


Social distancing means massive lineups at Winnipeg landfills, says city
Winnipeg’s solid waste manager says social distancing measures were a big reason behind massive lineups at city-run landfills and recycling facilities. Read more…


Saint John floats idea of heavy truck tax to repair beat-up roads
City hall is considering a new tax on transport trucks to help pay for beat-up roads in Saint John, but opponents say now is not the time to penalize a key player in supply chains. Read more…


April 28

Anti-Asian bias alive and well in Canada’s biggest cities, poll finds
One-in-five respondents in Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal said they do not believe it’s safe to sit next to an Asian or Chinese person on a bus if they’re not wearing a mask, according to new survey. Read more…


Ontario and Quebec have more than 80 percent of Canada’s COVID-19 cases, officials say
Federal health officials have reported that Ontario and Quebec represent more than 80 percent of all confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada. Read more…


As Quebec moves to reopen daycares and schools, Ford says Ontario will not put “children in harm’s way”
Premier Doug Ford said Ontario has chosen to take a different path than Quebec when it comes to reopening schools because he does not want to put “children in harm’s way.” Read more…


Lost casino revenues add to Thunder Bay’s financial woes
Lost revenue from the closure of the Gateway Casino is set to add to a growing list of financial challenges faced by Thunder Bay’s municipal government. Read more…


Dealing with deficit will not include further tax increases: City of Saskatoon
The City of Saskatoon said it will not rely on further tax increases to make up any deficit to the city’s budget due to the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


COVID-19 economic recovery task force to be formed for Peterborough city and county
City council unanimously approved a new post-pandemic economic recovery plan from Peterborough and the Kawarthas Economic Development. Read more…


City of Kelowna endorsed measures to assist taxpayers affected by COVID-19
It didn’t take long for Kelowna city council to endorse several temporary changes to tax and utility bill payments. Read more…


Plummeting business tourism costing cities hundreds of millions in lost revenues
The cancellation of business conferences and conventions across the country is costing cities hundreds of millions of dollars in lost revenue as the COVID-19 pandemic devastates the tourism industry. Read more…


City of Edmonton lays off nearly 900 workers amid COVID-19 budget shortfalls
In an effort to balance a challenging budget amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Edmonton issued two-week layoff notices to nearly 900 workers. Read more..


Toronto launches program to increase space for pedestrians at city “hot spots”
Toronto is launching a program to further promote physical distancing measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic at 100 “hot spots” across the city. Read more….


Food truck operators call on Winnipeg to waive fees, permit parking lot use
More than a dozen food truck operators have written Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman to ask the city to waive licensing fees and asking for special permission to set up shop in city-owned parking lots. Read more…


Spring litter cleanup by City of St. John’s will go ahead without volunteers
The COVID-19 pandemic means hundreds of community litter cleanups – a rite of spring for many volunteers – won’t happen this year in St. John’s. Read more…


More city of Vancouver job cuts off the table: union president
The president of CUPE 1004, which represents Vancouver’s outside workers, says he’s confident more job cuts are no longer going to be on the table. Read more…


City of Calgary to support front-line workers with ribbon campaign
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Calgary city councillors are looking to support the work done by essential service staff and front-line workers with a commemorative ribbon campaign. Read more…


Yellowknife lukewarm to some chamber of commerce recommendations
While in full support of recommendations the city’s chamber of commerce has made to the territorial and federal governments during COVID-19, Yellowknife councillors are less enthusiastic about some measures aimed at the city. Read more…


April 27

Thousands apply for wage subsidy PM says, as businesses await go-ahead to gradually reopen
Within hours of the major wage subsidy program launching Monday morning, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says approximately 10,000 businesses had already applied. Read more…


Canadian Urban Institute Examines Role of Libraries in Light of COVID-19
The COVID-19 crisis is forcing workplaces, governments, and city institutions to adapt digitally—and public libraries are no exception. Read more…


Ford “won’t set hard dates” for reopening, saying Ontario must see drop in new COVID-19 cases first
Ontario must see a “consistent two-to-four week decrease in the number of new daily COVID-19 cases” before the government can start loosening restrictions and begin reopening the economy. Read more…


Canadian researchers part of global effort to develop COVID-19 vaccine
A recent $28-million funding boost from the federal and provincial government to enhance its COVID-19 research capacity to test antivirals, drugs, and therapeutics has been helping fast-track that research even more. Read more…


PM Trudeau says COVID-19 will change life in Canada for “years”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says that “normal” is a “long way off” for all Canadians – and that some differences implemented as a result of lessons learned during this pandemic will last for “years.” Read more…


Quebec to reopen schools next month
Quebec Premier Francois Legault is announcing elementary schools and daycares outside the greater Montreal area will reopen on May 11. Read more…


Edmonton city council debates 2020 budget adjustment as $163 million shortfall looms
The city’s latest estimate predicts the pandemic will leave a $163.7-million hole in its 2020 operating budget. Read more…


Winnipeg group wants to end homelessness once and for all
A Winnipeg group is hoping to create positive change from the COVID-19 pandemic – ending homelessness once and for all. Read more…


Regina reducing mosquito control program to save money
While social distancing restrictions prohibit crowds of people from gathering outside, swarms of mosquitoes may become unwelcome guests in backyards this summer as the City of Regina scales back on its pest control program to save money. Read more…


Metro Vancouver reports big drop in garbage during pandemic
Metro Vancouver says commercial waste in the region has declined by as much as 25 percent since COVID-19 struck. Read more…


City of Greater Sudbury offers online resources for learning and fun
As physical distancing becomes more important than ever to flatten the curve of COVID-19 in our community, the City of Greater Sudbury has created new online resources for individuals and families. Read more…


COVID-19 takes bite out of budgets for P.E.I. cities, towns
COVID-19 has meant a loss of revenue as well as changes to staffing for P.E.I.’s two cities and some towns as well. Read more…


Tsuut’ina Nation institutes curfew fines as Calgary COVID-19 cases rise
Tsuut’ina First Nation has yet to see its first case of COVID-19, but with nearly 3,000 cases in neighbouring Calgary, the reserve is on high alert. Read more…


Owen Sound expecting impact from COVID-19 pandemic to hit $1 million
Owen Sound officials say the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to deliver a roughly $1 million hit to the city’s operating budget. Read more…


April 26

N.W.T. newspaper publisher back in print after COVID-19 hiatus
Some local northern newspapers are back in print. Northern News Services Ltd. stopped producing print editions of its newspapers a month ago due to concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


B.C. enacts order to move tent city residents into hotels amid COVID-19 pandemic
B.C. is enacting a public safety order to move homeless people living in tent city encampments into hotels in Vancouver and Victoria during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Montreal community gardens hope for May openings
While Ontario’s community gardens got permission to reopen on Saturday, many Quebecers with green thumbs are still wondering when they’ll be able to put them to use. Read more…


Tory calls charter challenge over shelters “disappointing”‘ says Toronto’s efforts to relocate homeless have been “epic”
Toronto Mayor John Tory says that a legal challenge by a group of organizations that support the homeless is “disappointing” given the “epic” efforts that the city is taking to limit the spread of COVID-19 within shelters. Read more…


City of Red Deer notifies 150 more employees of temporary lay-offs
The City of Red Deer says approximately 150 staff members were issued temporary work interruption notices, including 78 to permanent full-time employees. Read more…


City of Ottawa-run childcare centres reopen after negative COVID-19 tests
The City of Ottawa says two of its emergency childcare centres will reopen after being forced to close as a precaution when staffers became ill. Read more…


City of Prince George golf courses open for business
Emerging from a long winter and a COVID-19 cloud of uncertainty, northern B.C. golfers are getting back into the swing of things as the course opened for the season at Prince George Golf and Curling Club. Read more…


City of Thunder Bay navigates “wild west of procurement” to secure PPE
The City of Thunder Bay says it has enough personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect frontline workers from COVID-19 – for now, at least. Read more…


Richmond considers borrowing up to $36.5 million
The City of Richmond might borrow up to $36.5 million to cover revenue shortfalls because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Moose Jaw still operating with essential services
Even city facilities are closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic, City Manager Jim Puffalt said there are still emergency and essential services working in the community. Read more…


April 25

Here’s how quickly cities across Canada are burning through cash
A look at how local governments from coast-to-coast are struggling with COVID-19 economics. Read more…


Montreal-area business owners anxious to get back to work
After putting the province on hold for six weeks, Quebec Premier François Legault says it’s time to get things moving again. Read more…


City of Thunder Bay readies COVID-19 aid for local non-profits
The City of Thunder Bay will look to buttress local emergency food and shelter efforts with funding for local non-profits responding to the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


So far, City of Kamloops is weathering pandemic’s economic storm
The City of Kamloops has not had to dip into $12.4 million worth of reserves in response to financial pain brought on by the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


City of Windsor urged to close streets, share lanes with pedestrians
With the public under strict doctor’s orders to maintain physical distancing during the war on COVID-19, some are urging Windsor to create more outdoor elbow space for its citizens. Read more…


City of Saskatoon facing up to $42.9 million deficit in 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Saskatoon says it’s facing up to a $42.9 million deficit, depending when restrictions are lifted in Saskatchewan. Read more…


Hamilton city staff to begin framework for relaxing coronavirus restrictions
Mayor Fred Eisenberger says city staff are “turning” their minds to the relaxing of current emergency orders that have shut down much of Hamilton amid the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


City-run summer camps cancelled in Calgary due to COVID-19 risk
The City of Calgary announced Friday that all summer camps run by the city will be cancelled for 2020. Watch more…


City of Kenora temporarily lays off some staff due to COVID-19 pandemic
According to Mayor Dan Reynard, approximately 20 to 25 City of Kenora employees volunteered to be laid off temporarily as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues. Read more…


Charlottetown residents reminded to practise physical distancing
The City of Charlottetown is reminding the public to continue to heed public health orders and recommendations as the nicer spring weather draws more people outside. Read more…


April 24

Trudeau announces rent relief of 75 percent for small businesses affected by coronavirus
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced agreements have been reached with all provinces and territories to lower rent by 75 percent for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic for April, May and June. Read more…


Toronto launches recovery and rebuild office amid COVID-19 pandemic
Toronto Mayor John has announced the launch of its recovery and rebuild office, which will guide the city back to normalcy following the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Homeless Calgarians worried about COVID-19 in shelters
There are a number of homeless shelters in Calgary but some people still opt to stay outdoors, even when the temperature dips. Read more…


Winnipeg further expands active transportation routes through coronavirus
The City of Winnipeg is adding more temporary bicycle and active transportation routes across the city through the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Differing COVID-19 orders a challenge for boundary city of Lloydminster
As the mayor of Lloydminster, which straddles the Alberta-Saskatchewan boundary, Gerald Aalbers has dealt with some unique situations. Now, he says, the city is in the middle of one of it biggest challenges yet as it navigates the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Dawson Creek braces for millions in shortfall
Dawson Creek CAO Blair Lekstrom outlined a grim financial picture to council with a late tax penalty deadline moved to October – the city could be millions short. Read more…


Second City of Ottawa daycare closed over possible COVID-19 infection
For the second day in a row, a City of Ottawa child care facility has been shut down because of novel coronavirus fears. Read more…


Tent-city deaths illustrate how crises are taking toll on Victoria’s homeless
The deaths of two homeless men sheltering in a tent city at Victoria’s Topaz Park have devastated staff, outreach workers, and residents. Read more…


Edmonton to vote on amendments to 2020 budget amid COVID-19 shortfall
If suggested amendments to Edmonton’s 2020 budget go ahead, property owners could be paying less in property taxes than they did last year. Read more…


Humboldt’s mayor pleased with reopening plan; city hall to reopen May 4
Humboldt’s mayor is hailing the Province of Saskatchewan’s reopening plan as great news, but added that the city’s citizens can’t become complacent and asked them to continue to respect physical distancing. Read more…


City of Thunder Bay declares State of Emergency
Mayor Bill Mauro has declared a State of Emergency for the City of Thunder Bay, effective until further notice, in response to the threat of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Penticton votes for 60-day bill deferment, tax relief
The City of Penticton has adopted COVID-19 financial relief steps for its citizens, including property tax deferment and lower utility bills. Read more…


Vancouver community spirit shines amidst COVID-19 response
In the darkness of the COVID-19 pandemic, Vancouver’s community spirit is shining through as businesses and residents have stepped up to help those most in need. Read more…


Tourism operators in holding pattern because of cruise ship uncertainty
There is still a lot of uncertainty for P.E.I. tourism operators that rely on the business generated by the thousands of visitors that arrive each year on cruise ships. Read more…


Details of $306 million assistance for Indigenous businesses in the works
The federal government is working out the specifics of its $306.8 million funding package for small and medium-sized Indigenous businesses across Canada. Read more…


April 23

Municipalities asking Ottawa for billions in emergency funding
With communities across the country facing the possibility of austerity measures, further layoffs, and potential tax increases, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities is calling on Ottawa to provide upward of $15 billion in emergency funding. Read more…


City of Kawartha Lakes eyes “soft re-opening” of some outdoor services on May 12
All City of Kawartha Lakes municipal amenities and boat launches remain closed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. But it may not be that way come May 12. Read more…


Summerside shows love to essential workers with lighted heart over city
The City of Summerside electrical department has put up a lighted heart of thanks and hope, saying it “is a way to link the community together during these unprecedented times.” Read more…


Port Moody cuts casual and temporary workers
Union says cuts cause by COVID-19 pandemic affect some of the City of Port Moody’s “most precarious employees.” Read more…


Winnipeg to close six more streets for safer walking, biking
The City of Winnipeg is looking to expand its street closures to make space for people who want to get outside as the weather warms without fighting vehicle traffic. Read more…


City of Prince Albert looking to province for guidance on summer activities
Prince Albert’s Mayor says the city is waiting on the provincial government before making decisions on what summer activities can proceed. Read more…


City of Waterloo launches online programs to make best of time at home
An online program to keep residents active, connected, and creative while at home during the COVID-19 pandemic has been launched by the City of Waterloo. Read more…


Residents of Saskatoon’s inner city face unique challenges during pandemic
Housing and health services top list of concerns for residents of Saskatoon’s inner city. Read more…


Winnipeggers throwing away more trash amid coronavirus, according to the city
According to numbers from the city, Winnipeg’s landfills saw an increase of more than 1,400 metric tons of trash trucked to the dump in March. Read more…


City of Edmonton expands state of emergency; bans garage sales
The City of Edmonton has expanded the state of emergency for another seven days and announced new restrictions, that include banning garage sales, to further prevent the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto to start gathering race-based data connected to COVID-19
Toronto Public Health will now be collecting race-based data connected to COVID-19, a practice its provincial counterparts aren’t doing. Read more….


City of Richmond warns of scam demanding payment by wire service
The City of Richmond is warning of an increase in scams and phishing emails – likely due to the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


Mississauga turns cherry blossoms viewing into a virtual experience
The City of Mississauga’s beautiful cherry blossoms in Kariya Park are expected to be in full bloom in the coming weeks and while residents won’t be able to visit in person, they can admire them from the city’s new blossom webcam. Read more…


Saint John wants province to levy regional road toll to help balance the books
Saint John is looking beyond its borders to help solve its approximately $10-million deficit and put the city on the right financial track. Read more…


City of Kingston says COVID-19 response has cost $750,000 to date
Kingston isn’t immune to feeling the financial pressures that COVID-19 has placed on many cities around the world, taking a $750,000 hit to its bottom line. Read more…


Kelowna mayor says city in good financial shape
Kelowna’s mayor says the city is in better shape financially than many others in British Columbia as local governments navigate the uncertainty of COVID-19. Read more…


Calgary looks to help businesses modify operations amid COVID-19 pandemic
As COVID-19 continues to change the way businesses in Calgary operate, the city is looking to help create new opportunities for workers in the community. Read more…


Swift Current reduces road repair projects in 2020 due to COVID-19
The City of Swift Current had budgeted $4.1 million for road repairs in 2020, but that was reduced by $1.5 million due to complications related to COVID-19. Read more…


April 22

Winnipeg Transit reduces service, lays off more than 250 staff
Facing a 72 percent reduction in ridership, Winnipeg Transit will reduce bus service and lay off 253 full- and part-time drivers because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the city announced Wednesday. Read more…


City of Ottawa emergency team moving to recovery mode in COVID-19 pandemic
Ottawa City manager Steve Kanellakos told council Wednesday that the city’s emergency management centre has moved from a response posture to a recovery posture in the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Red Deer offering COVID-19 updates via text, e-mail
Red Deerians can now sign-up for text and email updates about The City of Red deer’s municipal response to COVID-19 through its Notify Red Deer program. Read more…


Ottawa announces $9 billion aid package for students amid coronavirus pandemic
Ottawa has announced a $9 billion funding package for students whose education and job prospects have been disrupted by COVID-19. Watch more…


City of London bracing for $33 million budget blow from COVID-19 – at least
London city hall is expecting COVID-19 to wallop its bottom line, predicting losses of up to $33 million by summer’s end, new figures released Wednesday show. Read more…


Emergency rooms across Quebec are incapable of seeing all patients, study finds
Emergency rooms across Quebec struggle to see all patients who show up, but some are better at it than others, according to the Montreal Economic Institute. Read more…


City of Hamilton has laid 86 charges over alleged violations of provincial orders
A total of 86 charges have been laid by municipal law enforcement in Hamilton, Ont., against businesses and individuals over alleged violations of provincial orders during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


COVID-19 “tidal wave” still threatens Alberta, Hinshaw cautions in latest update
Albertans anxious to return to their jobs and some semblance of normal life should think of the novel coronavirus as a tidal wave that might have swept away thousands of lives if not for the sacrifices already made, says the province’s Chief Medical Officer of Health. Read more…


Thunder Bay not contemplating vacation cancellations due to COVID-19
The City of Thunder Bay has no current plan to cancel employee vacations in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Provinces mull whether to follow B.C.’s lead, allow cities to run deficits
Provinces across Canada are pondering whether cities should be allowed to have more leeway in how they handle cash-flow deficits this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Hotels for homeless people could tackle two crises at once: advocates
Since there is already a housing and homelessness crisis in many parts of the country, advocates say funds to fight the spread of COVID-19 could be used to keep people housed long after the pandemic has ended. Read more…


As Earth Day turns 50, COVID-19 offers valuable warning
Those battling environmental degradation and climate destabilization are pointing to the global community’s dramatic response to the novel coronavirus as offering valuable lessons on the way forward. Read more….


New pandemic plan unveiled at North Battleford city hall
In presenting North Battleford’s Planning Committee with the new Joint Municipality Pandemic Plan, Fire Chief Lindsay Holm said it would “serve the city for many years to come.” Read more…


EORN issues to tackle cellular dead zones across eastern Ontario
Eastern Ontario is one step closer to improved cellular services that will help rural communities take part in the digital economy, create jobs, and improve public safety. Read more…


Toronto groups threaten legal action over “deplorable” shelter conditions
A coalition of public-interest organizations is threatening to file legal proceedings against the City of Toronto unless more “urgent action” is taken to protect people experiencing homelessness amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Weyburn reminds trails are open, but stay distanced
Andrew Crowe, Director of Leisure Services with the City of Weyburn, is telling the public they can go for a walk, or a bike ride, or go for a run, but they have to remain socially distanced while doing so. Read more…


City of Grande Prairie mulling no tax increase
The City of Grande Prairie is considering a zero percent tax increase in order to provide financial relief to residents during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Indigenous people in big cities feel excluded from federal COVID-19 relief
The National Association of Friendship Centres says that urban Indigenous people are being left behind in federal government assistance programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Wuhan embraces Yangtze River as virus-hit city reopens
The reopening of the ferry service on the Yangtze was an important symbolic step in official efforts to get business and daily life in this central Chinese city of 11 million people back to normal. Read more…


April 21

How long will COVID-19 affect our lives? Here’s what 500+ mayors and councillors think
Researchers surveyed more than 500 mayors and councillors across Canada in early April and if there’s one thing most could agree on, it’s that we’re months and months away from things returning to normal. Read more…


Pandemic causes drop in electricity demand across the province: Manitoba Hydro
Manitoba Hydro said it has seen about a six percent reduction in the daily peak electricity demand, adding this is due to the many businesses and downtown offices that are temporarily closed due to COVID-19. Read more…


“It’s not business as usual”: Thunder Bay council debates role during pandemic
It’s clearly not business as usual at Thunder Bay city hall because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has left city council debating just how much normal business can be accomplished in the coming weeks and months. Read more…


City of Winnipeg could be losing $12 million monthly due to COVID-19: report
The City of Winnipeg says it could be losing as much as $12 million a month due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


Kawartha Lakes starting to look at recovery from coronavirus pandemic
The mayor of the City of Kawartha Lakes says he’s asking the province if some non-essential businesses can return to doing “behind the scenes” work before being allowed to fully open again. Read more…


Medicine Hat mayor commends residents, hints at generous municipal relief package
Medicine Hat Mayor Ted Clugston said he is proud to be mayor of a city right now where, “the vast majority of citizens, residents have been very diligent in understanding and following the rules.” Read more…


COVID-19 hitting Ottawa’s nursing homes hard
Ottawa Public Health is sharing more details about the devastating toll COVID-19 is taking on the city’s hospitals and long-term care homes. Read more…


Charlottetown mayor says people heeding physical distancing rules in parks, neighbourhoods
Charlottetown Mayor Philip Brown says people are heeding the province’s message when it comes to physically distancing in the city’s parks and neighbourhoods. Read more…


Cities’ budget crisis may force a rejig of their revenues
Many cities face a massive budget crunch as the COVID-19 pandemic leaves its mark, a reality that experts say could erode services or force municipalities to demand new sources of funding. Read more…


Calgary to expand road closures as weather warms up
To ease the congestion in popular parks the City of Calgary plans to close more sections of roadway to allow people more room for physical distancing. Read more…


Toronto staff set to be re-deployed to COVID-19 response, or put on leave
Mayor John Tory says the city has reached a deal with the unions representing city staff that will see thousands of municipal workers redeployed to Toronto’s COVID-19 emergency response, or put on leave. Read more….


Financial plan in limbo as Nanaimo weighs immediate COVID-19 relief 
Nanaimo council faces a difficult decision as councillors weigh immediate COVID-19 relief versus future protections. Read more…


City of Ottawa distributing millions for homelessness programs
The City of Ottawa is using and distributing $11.4 million from upper-levels of government to boost homelessness programs during the COVID-19 pandemic after people in the shelter system have tested positive for the virus. Read more…


Pandemic pushes rural internet speeds to the breaking point
Notoriously slow already, rural internet has struggled with increased demand during the pandemic – and that isn’t likely to change any time soon. Read more…


Saint John sets sights on long-term financial sustainability
The long-term financial sustainability plan Saint John’s city manager presented to council involves dozens of recommendations to close a $10-million budget shortfall by the end of the year. Read more…


Brampton announces Backyard Garden Program in response to COVID-19
The City of Brampton has launched the Backyard Garden Program, a new eco-friendly initiative to help support food security in the city, and encourage residents to get active at home during the COVID-19 emergency. Read more…


Pandemic not slowing tide of inner-city drug use: Winnipeg Bear Clan
The world may have changed around it, but for Winnipeg’s Bear Clan Patrol, it’s business as usual, even during a pandemic. Read more…


Timmins city hall provides platform for youths’ voices to be heard
Timmins Mayor George Pirie is asking youths to share their thoughts, messages,
and feelings on this COVID-19 pandemic situation in hopes of spreading positivity throughout the community. Read more…


Montreal looks for “winning conditions” to restart economy, keep everyone safe
With a COVID-19 vaccine likely more than a year away, Mayor Valérie Plante and business leaders across the city are looking at how Montreal can restart its economic engine. Read more…


UNWTO leads call for firm action by governments to support tourism recovery
The Global Tourism Crisis Committee has united behind the World Tourism Organization’s rallying cry for governments to “go beyond words” to safeguard the millions of jobs under threat as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 20

Eventual reopening of Toronto likely to be “phased in over period of months:” Tory
The eventual reopening of Toronto will likely be “phased in over a period of months” and may not even get underway for some time yet, warns Mayor John Tory. Read more…


Northwest Territories economy in a battle for survival amid COVID-19 pandemic
Businesses in the Northwest Territories are struggling as they wait for more support from federal and territorial governments. Read more…


Manitoba’s state of emergency extended; testing to widen
The Province of Manitoba is extending the current state of emergency for another 30 days and has expanded testing starting Monday. Read more…


Coliseum Inn will temporarily house vulnerable Edmontonians through COVID-19
A 98-unit hotel will be converted into a temporary shelter for Edmonton’s vulnerable amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Vancouver’s tech supercluster commits $60 million to COVID-19 fight
With a vaccine against COVID-19 is months — if not at least a year — away, one Vancouver-based initiative is tapping artificial intelligence to repurpose available drugs that could potentially treat pandemic patients. Read more…


Cities are facing a coronavirus fiscal crisis
Canada’s cities are under intense fiscal strain from COVID-19 and Ottawa and the provinces will soon need to act. Read more…


Kingston could be first city in Ontario to ease COVID-19 restrictions
In what could be a first step in returning to normal since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Kingston is looking at scaling back emergency restrictions. Read more…


With new rules in place, residential construction resumes in Quebec
Residential construction and renovation projects that had been scheduled to be finished by July 31 can resume today in Quebec. Read more…


How coronavirus could change our cities forever. Or not.
The COVID-19 pandemic has cast a spotlight on the nature of how we design our homes, offices, and cities. What does a city look like after it’s been changed by a year of social distancing? Hear more…


City of Armstrong staff challenged to amend budget
Armstrong council has requested staff look at the approved 2020 budget and, in the wake of COVID-19, see if they can take a proposed 2.5 percent tax increase and come back with no increases. Read more…


Back to business for Winnipeg’s city hall
Councillors will be in separate locations and delegations will appear remotely by video conference as the city of Winnipeg kick starts its day-to-day business. Read more….


Ridership down 85 percent on Regina buses
According to the City of Regina, transit ridership is down about 85 percent compared to pre-pandemic levels. The city says it stands to lose $650,000 to $700,000 a month at the fare-box. Read more…


Kelowna considering borrowing up to $150 million to cover late taxes
Kelowna city council will consider borrowing up to $150 million in the short term to cover the late payment of taxes during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Humboldt adjusting business directory to reflect changes during COVID-19
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the provincial orders being placed on many businesses, the City of Humboldt has made a couple changes to its online business directory. Read more…


New Brunswick cities call for help to keep buses running in pandemic
New Brunswick’s cities are calling for provincial and federal support to keep four municipal transit systems operating, something the province’s premier says is being examined. Read more…


April 19

Pandemic reveals importance of food security, say northern growers
A Northwest Territories farming advocate says the COVID-19 pandemic is highlighting just how important growing food locally is – especially in the North. Read more…


Behind-the-scenes planning for Toronto’s reopening a “sign of hope:” Tory
Residents should view the work taking places behind the scenes to plan for the eventual reopening of Toronto as a “sign of hope” even if they will have to wait a little longer for a return to normalcy, Mayor John Tory says. Read more…


City of Moose Jaw contest asks how you are “Coping with COVID-19”
The City of Moose Jaw is holding a contest through their smartphone app asking people to submit pictures of what’s making them happy during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Vancouver Pride 2020 cancelled due to COVID-19
The Vancouver Pride Society announced Pride 2020 has been cancelled, but in a letter to the community, organizer say “Pride can’t be cancelled. It is a feeling, not a physical space”. Read more…


More than 400 Nova Scotia restaurants could close due to COVID-19
Going into the coronavirus pandemic, there were about 3,000 restaurants in the province. But when Nova Scotia emerges on the other side, that number could be drastically different. Read more…


New York COVID-19 deaths drop below 550 for first time since April 1
New York’s daily toll of coronavirus deaths hit its lowest point in more than two weeks, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo warned Saturday that the state isn’t ready to ease up on shutdowns of schools, businesses and gatherings. Read more…


City of Brooks Mayor braces residents to prepare for more COVID-19 cases
Taking to Facebook Live Saturday morning, Brooks Mayor Barry Morishita told residents to prepare for additional COVID-19 cases. Read more…


State of Emergency impact on Greater Sudbury programming, trail and fire use
The City of Greater Sudbury would like to remind residents of the changes to leisure and fitness programming as well as trail and open-air fire use under the municipal State of Emergency. Read more…


Volunteers needed to provide advice to Delta City Hall
The City of Delta is looking for volunteers to serve on a variety of advisory committees that provide advice to council on various issues affecting the community. Read more…


Richmond automates 20 crosswalks to reduce COVID-19 spread
The City of Richmond has automated 20 high-use pedestrian crosswalks in an effort to further reduce the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


April 18

Coronavirus could cost City of Toronto at least $1.5 billion, mayor says
Mayor John Tory says the coronavirus pandemic could cost the City of Toronto between $1.5 and $2.76 billion, depending on the duration of public health and government measures. Read more…


Vancouver city councillors agree to 10 percent pay cut during pandemic
Most Vancouver city councillors say they will follow Mayor Kennedy Stewart’s lead and take a 10 percent pay cut to help achieve some savings in the city’s operating budget. Read more…


Winnipeg’s spring cleanup to start next week, city launches website for updates on work
As Winnipeg’s annual spring cleanup kicks off next week, the city has launched a new website to help Winnipeggers keep up with progress and stay out of the way of cleanup crews. Read more…


Hamilton’s 1,200 part-time city employees now on hiatus, leaf and yard waste collection to resume
It’s not officially being called a layoff, but Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger says the scheduling of 1,200 non-essential, part-time employees is being discontinued until further notice. Read more…


City of Victoria calls on province to commandeer hotel rooms for homeless
The City of Victoria is urging the province to requisition hotel and motel rooms to house homeless people during the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


City of Gatineau announces second round of layoffs due to COVID-19 pandemic
More than 160 municipal employees are being temporarily laid off as the City of Gatineau announces a second round of staffing reductions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Moose Jaw to establish $15 million line of credit
The City of Moose Jaw is looking to establish a $15 million line of credit. Historically, the city used the return on high-quality bonds in place of a line of credit to the tune of about $10 million. Read more…


North Bay Transit losing about $17,000 a week
North Bay Transit is facing an approximately $17,000 weekly shortfall as a result of measures taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Armstrong extends deadline for utility bills in response to COVID-19
The City of Armstrong has issued extended the due date for utility bills until June 1, in response to COVID-19. The city has also implemented a new online payment process. Read more…


City of Windsor “in the hole” $4 million per month
Mayor Drew Dilkens said Friday the City of Windsor is “probably $4 million a month in the hole” due to the rising costs and sinking revenues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 17

B.C. first province to give cities more leeway to run deficits 
British Columbia has become the first province to allow cities to run deficits – something that is prohibited across the country – as a way of coping with massive budget holes created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New Brunswick municipalities hoping for aid as pandemic takes economic toll
New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs says he’ll meet with the province’s municipalities to discuss the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Saskatchewan State Of Emergency extended two weeks
The province of Saskatchewan announced on April 15 that it was extending the provincial state of emergency by a further two weeks due to COVID-19. Read more….


Security issues mean Edmonton Transit riders losing hours of night service 
The City of Edmonton is reducing night transit service in response to security issues involving non-destination riders amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Barrie extends lockdown until summer, bans yard sales
The City of Barrie has extended the closure and cancellations of its community centres, events, theatre shows, and sports field bookings until June 30. Read more…


Steinbach’s Summer In The City officially cancelled
Steinbach’s annual Summer in the City festival has officially been cancelled in light of ongoing COVID-19 concerns. Read more…


City of Windsor is offering grant money to help struggling artists
The City of Windsor is offering enhanced funding worth $60,000 to support local artists affected by COVID-19. Read more…


Vancouver mayor to take 10 percent pay cut during pandemic
Mayor Kennedy Stewart said he will ask city council to approve a 10 percent cut to his $178, 265 salary to help cover the loss in pandemic-related revenues. Read more…


Toronto’s City Hall Live music series goes virtual
With public events on hold due to the COVID-19 crisis, the City of Toronto has partnered with Unison Benevolent Fund to continue its City Hall Live music series – albeit virtually on Facebook live. Read more…


Calgary projects $400 million in revenue losses without financial support
The City of Calgary says it’s losing between $10 million and $15 million each week as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The total could climb to more than $400 million over the next six months. Read more…


April 16

More time needed before U.S., Canada border can open: PM Trudeau
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says there is still a “significant amount of time” before Canada would begin looking at lifting border restrictions with the U.S. Read more…


Regina approves plan to make up projected $20.7 million shortfall
Regina city council has approved a plan to make up for a $20.7-million shortfall projected by the end of September due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City needs a federal bailout, Mayor says
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called on President Trump to “bailout” Trump’s “hometown” from the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The city expects a $7.4 billion budget hit in the next 15 months. Read more…


City of Toronto to continue yard waste collection until May 1
The City of Toronto says it will continue yard waste collection from April 20 to May 1 to accommodate residents. The start of seasonal yard waste collection was suspended in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Vernon offers grants, extension on property taxes
The City of Vernon is offering relief on tax payments as the COVID-19 pandemic grips the economy. Measures include a one-time grant program to be available for all municipal tax payers Read more…


City of Ottawa to decide by end of April whether summer events will go on
Mayor Jim Watson says he’ll be meeting with the city’s special events team and Ottawa Public Health before the end of the month to determine whether summer festivals will continue as the COVID-19 pandemic rages. Read more…


Disposable wipes and paper towel don’t go down the toilet: City of Winnipeg
The City of Winnipeg says they’ve noticed more disposable wipes plugging pumps at the sewage treatment plants. They say even the wipes that say flushable can cause blockages and overwhelm the sewer system. Read more…


City of Toronto unveils donation portal for local pandemic relief efforts
The City of Toronto has launched a new portal for those who want to assist with local coronavirus pandemic relief efforts. Read more…


Regina to use reserve funds to balance books amid COVID-19 struggles
Regina city council will be taking $400,000 out of its reserve fund to make up for the loss of revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Delta calls for reopening of regional parks
The City of Delta is calling on Metro Vancouver to reopen a pair of regional parks within the city’s borders, now that the Easter long weekend has passed. Read more…


Guelph getting lots of calls from public with COVID-related complaints
The City of Guelph is getting 20 to 30 calls a day from the public with complaints about people breaking rules related to COVID-19. Read more…


City of Montreal says its finances sound enough to face coronavirus crisis
The City of Montreal says it is financially prepared to face the potential impact the novel coronavirus crisis will have on its economy. Read more…


Cities need help to survive COVID-19 financial impact: Vancouver mayor
Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart wants to know if economic relief is on its way as cities deal with the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New estimates suggest COVID-19 could cost Edmonton up to $260 million
In a “worst-case scenario,” if the novel coronavirus pandemic continues into December, it could cost the City of Edmonton close to $260 million. Read more…


City unable to confirm go-ahead for community gardens
With municipalities across Canada declaring the cancellation of community gardens this year, some may be wondering what will be happening in Weyburn. Read more…


Halifax to lay off 1,480 employees after deferring tax collection until June
The Halifax Regional Municipality will lay off 1,480 casual, temporary, and seasonal workers as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


How many people are still coming into the Northwest Territories?
Designed to combat COVID-19, the Northwest Territories has placed unprecedented restrictions on the way in which people enter the territory. Read more…


April 15

Bank of Canada expects economic activity to slow by as much as 30 percent from end of 2019
Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz says the COVID-19 pandemic has hit Canada’s economy hard, adding widespread lockdowns, layoffs, and other drastic measures will have a dramatic impact on nation’s economy in the months ahead. Read more…


City of Winnipeg says no tickets given out yet for COVID-19 rule-breakers in city parks, public spaces
The City of Winnipeg says no fines were doled out for COVID-19 public health order violations over the Easter weekend. There were, however, 12 verbal warnings about social distancing issued. Read more…


City of North Battleford prepared for financial and health impacts of COVID-19
The switch to virtual city council meetings was the most visible evidence yet of the impact the pandemic has had on North Battleford City Hall. But other impacts have been felt elsewhere. Read more…


Home sales fell 14 percent in March as COVID-19 settled in
Home sales fell by 14 percent in March as COVID-19 lockdowns slowed the market to a crawl, the Canadian Real Estate Association says. Read more…


City of Hamilton to host virtual town hall on coronavirus
Hamilton residents who have questions about the new coronavirus disease, COVID-19, will have a chance to get some answers Wednesday night. Read more…


New York City’s COVID-19 death toll soars as “probable” fatalities get counted
The official death toll from the coronavirus soared in New York City on Tuesday after health authorities began including people who probably had COVID-19, but died without ever being tested. Read more…


Grande Prairie cancels recreational programs and bookings through end of May
The City of Grande Prairie has cancelled all recreational programs and bookings up to May 31st, due to the novel coronavirus. Read more…


City of Saskatoon resists call to shut down some roads to allow cyclists, pedestrians to spread out
The City of Saskatoon says it will not be closing down streets to traffic in order to avoid congestion along city walking paths. Read more…


Red Deer city council votes to extend property tax deadline; some city facilities closed until July
Red Deer city council voted Tuesday to approve, in principle, pushing back the deadline for homeowners to pay property taxes for 90 days. Read more…


City of Brockville braces for financial hit
Like municipalities across the country, Brockville has had to lay off staff and is bracing for a massive financial blow from COVID-19. Read more…


Homebuilding slows down in Canada due to COVID-19: TD economist
Figures released by TD Bank’s research arm indicate that Canadian housing starts declined 7.3 percent in March 2020 compared to February. Read more…


Moncton keeping trails and parks open, but with strict rules
There’s no shortage of visitors to Moncton’s major parks. Parking lots are full and so are the trails, but new signage indicate it’s now one-way only. Read more…


COVID-19 makes disposal difficult, but there is help for hoarders
Spring cleaning is a tradition for many people. Disposal, however, is a challenge this spring because many local municipalities have cancelled or postponed their annual large garbage pick-up due to the COVID-19 situation. Read more…


Alberta aims to limit human-caused wildfires during the COVID-19 pandemic
Wildfire season and the COVID-19 pandemic are projected to peak at the same time. The province is taking steps to reduce the number of human-caused wildfires, including new fire bans and hiring 200 extra firefighters. Read more…


Ontario extends Declaration of Emergency to continue fight against COVID-19
The Ontario government is extending the Declaration of Emergency under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act for a further 28 days. Read more…


City of Prince George opens washrooms for marginalized community members
Many businesses in downtown Prince George have closed their doors due to the COVID-19 pandemic, leaving marginalized individuals who call downtown home with less options for washrooms and vulnerable to poor hygiene. Read more…


Toronto mayor says city not yet at a “crisis” point with PPE supply
Mayor John Tory says Toronto is not at a “crisis” point with respect to its stockpile of personal protective equipment, despite new projections suggesting that it could run out of some things as soon as next week in a worst case scenario. Read more…


Virtual yoga and body sculpt classes offered free from the City of Surrey
Online exercise videos are gaining in popularity as normally active people look for ways to work out while keeping their distance, and less physical people look for something to do to keep busy. Read more…


City of Thompson reviving mothballed community development corporation 
City council has voted in favour of reviving the Thompson community development corporation, which has lain dormant since mid-2016, when Thompson Unlimited’s general manager and board resigned. Read more…


April 14

Canada is still weeks away from easing pandemic restrictions and restarting economy, Trudeau says
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said today there will be a phased-in approach to reopening Canada’s economy as the COVID-19 crisis subsides — but it will be weeks still before business and school shutdowns begin to ease off. Read more…


Toronto opens COVID-19 recovery site for homeless amid news of 30 cases in shelter system
A temporary recovery site for members of Toronto’s homeless community who contract COVID-19 will open today as the city ramps up its efforts to limit the spread of the virus within its shelter system. Read more…


Pandemic forces City of Swift Current to alter 2020 capital plan
The City of Swift Current has announced that a revision has been made to projects included in its 2020 Capital Plan due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions on gatherings put in place. Read more…


City of Guelph to look at borrowing $100 million, defer property taxes to end of July
The City of Guelph is looking at borrowing up to $100 million to help cover operating expenses for the current fiscal year. It is also looking at further deferring property tax payments until the end of July without penalty. Read more…


City of Montreal renews state of emergency until April 18
The City of Montreal is renewing its state of emergency again, this time until Saturday, April 18, amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Northwest Territories amends eviction rules to let tenants defer rent in pandemic
New regulations shared online by NWT MLAs will make it easier for renters to stay in their homes during the Covid-19 pandemic, even if they can’t pay their rent. Read more…


City of Kawartha Lakes issues more than 200 layoff notices, delays summer hiring
In the City of Kawartha Lakes, which relies heavily on seasonal tourism, layoff notices have been handed out to more than 200 part-time, temporary, contract and seasonal staff. Read more…


City of Moose Jaw reopening operating budget to help business owners
Moose Jaw council has decided to reopen the operating budget to find savings to all along to citizens struggles financially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Ottawa bans long-term care staff from working at multiple homes
The City of Ottawa is banning staff at its four long-term care homes from working at more than one facility. The policy is aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Do Saskatoon cyclists need more space amid COVID-19?
Cyclists in Saskatoon are calling on the city to open up more space for people and bikes, claiming there isn’t enough room on city sidewalks to walk or ride while social distancing occurs amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Niagara Falls helping businesses through pandemic
The City of Niagara Falls has created an Open for Business directory on its website to support those that remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more….


Grande Prairie launches free indoor gardening project for residents
The City of Grande Prairie has launched a new program offering free supplies for residents to start their own indoor garden. Read more…


Mayor says planning is underway on how Toronto could eventually be reopened
Mayor John Tory says planning is underway on how Toronto could eventually be reopened, even as MPP’s meet at Queen’s Park to extend an emergency order requiring the closure of non-essential businesses for another 28 days. Read more…


Port Coquitlam Mayor says city finances solid despite pandemic
Port Coquitlam Mayor Brad West says the city is “in a strong position” to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, but admits his concerns are with local businesses. Read more…


City of Waterloo cancels, delays events up to June 30
The City of Waterloo, in collaboration with other local municipalities and organizers of large events on municipal property, has agreed to reschedule, delay, or cancel events up to June 30. Read more…


City of Kelowna asks residents to shift their mindset as cycling season begins
As recreational traffic involving cyclists and pedestrians increases, the City of Kelowna is asking residents to shift their mindset and share the road. Read more…


Liquor sales helping P.E.I. restaurants stay sustainable during pandemic
The P.E.I. Liquor Control Commission announced restaurants that have a Package Sales Licence can sell unopened liquor to customers that order a meal for take out. Read more…


April 13

Cities face massive financial shortfalls because of COVID. How can they cope when they can’t run deficits?
While some cities have begun laying off workers by the thousands, that won’t be enough to compensate for the budgetary shortfalls, say mayors and councillors. Read more…


City of Vancouver at risk of bankruptcy, says mayor
The City of Vancouver is at risk of going bankrupt, says the mayor, citing a recent poll showing more than half of property owners are not expecting to pay full property taxes this year as COVID-19 financial woes take hold. Read more…


Montreal will begin cleaning its streets and filling potholes
City of Montreal crews will begin cleaning streets and filling potholes. The street-cleaning and pothole-filling operations will be conducted while respecting the COVID-19 orders and directives issued by Montreal’s public health department. Read more…


Alberta chipping in up to $2 million to support charities during COVID-19
Alberta charities responding to the COVID-19 crisis say newly-announced support from the province will further help vulnerable people with food, shelter and mental health supports. Read more…


City of Toronto figures suggest people may be getting physical distancing message
The city’s enforcement team hit 48 people in Toronto with tickets for failing to properly practise physical distancing on Saturday. However, figures released by the city suggest that all the tough talk about physical distancing may be paying off. Read more…


City of Wetaskiwin builds resiliency plan for local economy
The City of Wetaskiwin’s economic development department – in partnership with the Leduc Regional Chamber of Commerce – is exploring how to best support business resilience in the days and months ahead.  Read more…


Saskatoon Cycles makes “urgent appeal” to open up roads to cyclists, pedestrians
Saskatoon Cycles has published an open letter asking the City of Saskatoon to open up more road space to cyclists and pedestrians. Read more…


A guide to COVID-19 scams and how to protect yourself
The global pandemic has trapped most people inside their homes. Which means, sadly, people have never been riper targets for scammers and fraudsters looking to profit off the community’s collective misery. Read more…


As COVID-19 ravages Nova Scotia’s hospitality industry, some establishments helping people in need
Despite dire times for Nova Scotia’s hospitality industry, some establishments are switching gears during the COVID-19 pandemic to help community groups that provide help to clients in need. Read more…


Quebec wants to ready businesses for “new world” of protectionism that will follow pandemic
When the Quebec government shut down non-essential business activity in the province last month to deal with the deadly coronavirus, it promised to help kick-start the economy again once the danger had passed. Read more…


April 12

Online teaching resources out of reach for many rural New Brunswick families
Educators continue to work with New Brunswick families without internet to figure out how to support at-home learning. Read more…


Winnipeg’s city ambassadors to patrol parks for people breaking COVID-19 procedures
Starting Saturday, City of Winnipeg ambassadors will be deployed in city-owned public spaces to provide information on COVID-19 and the measures being implemented by Manitoba Health. Read more…


Border city Lloydminster adapts to differing responses amid pandemic
Sitting between two provinces, Lloydminster has had to adapt quickly as Alberta and Saskatchewan enacted a recent flurry of COVID-19 health orders throughout March with varying degrees of severity. Read more…


Ministerial order allows Quebec to loan school board staff to health network
With the COVID-19 crisis putting pressure on Quebec’s health network, the province’s school boards could be forced to loan staff to ease the pressure. Read more…


Hamilton’s biggest arena transforms into a homeless shelter as city COVID-19 cases climb to 232
Hamilton’s biggest hockey rink transformed into a pandemic homeless shelter Saturday as the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the city climbed to 232. Read more…


City of Coquitlam temporarily lays off 800 workers
The city of Coquitlam has announced it has cut roughly 800 auxiliary employees as it looks to make operational savings in the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


City of Kingston places new restrictions on yard waste drop-off
As part of its Stay Safe, Stay Home protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Kingston is asking residents to curtail non-essential trips to the Kingston Area Recycling Centre to drop off yard waste until after emergency measures are lifted. Read more…


Long-haul truckers now getting some “relief” while on the road
Truckers who haul between Canada and the U.S. are finding it easier to locate food and washrooms while performing their long haul duties. Read more…


Concerns raised about COVID-19 quarantine rules for migrant workers
Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves-Francois Blanchet is raising concern about temporary foreign workers arriving in Canada to work on farms, saying he believes the quarantine rules for these workers are inadequate. Read more…


House of Commons passes $73 billion wage subsidy bill
The House of Commons has approved a massive $73-billion wage subsidy program aimed at helping businesses and workers survive the economic ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 11

Canadian cities burn through cash, call on Ottawa for help
Some Canadian mayors are warning that their ability to continue providing public services is being impeded and they need financial support from higher levels of government. Read more…


Wage subsidy bill expected to pass as party leaders speak before Parliament reconvenes
The federal government’s wage subsidy legislation is expected to pass today inside the House of Commons after days of negotiations between the government and opposition parties. Read more…


B.C. cities are scrambling to pay for pandemic costs as they lose millions in revenue
Cities across Metro Vancouver are scrambling to find a way to make up for lost revenue and pay for essential services in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City schools closed for rest of year amid pandemic
New York City’s 1.1 million-pupil public school system will be closed for the rest of the school year as the city struggles to contain the coronavirus outbreak, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Saturday. Read more…


City of Saskatoon to offer voluntary temporary layoff plan to employees
The City of Saskatoon is rolling out a voluntary temporary layoff program and a redeployment strategy for a number of employees in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Vancouver golf clubhouses to feed needy during pandemic
Two Vancouver golf courses are providing thousands of meals over Easter weekend to residents of city-run housing projects to help the needy follow public health advice and stay inside. Read more…


Remote delegations allowed at upcoming emergency meeting of Guelph council
Guelph held its first online emergency meeting on March 23. While there were no delegates at that time, online public delegations will be allowed at an emergency meeting of Guelph City Council on April 16. Read more…


Richmond city revenues dropping amid COVID-19 crisis
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on business is obvious in the streets of Richmond with many sectors paralyzed, but the crisis is also taking a toll on municipal revenues. Read more…


RCMP, Reed Deer city officials raise concerns about recent uptick in drivers speeding
The director of the City of Red Deer’s emergency operations centre says both the city and Red Deer RCMP are taking action to respond to recent concerns about drivers speeding in the community. Read more…


Halifax Transit implements new COVID-19 safety measures
Halifax Transit has adopted some new measures for the holiday weekend to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 after the Nova Scotia Health Authority warned of recent potential exposures to the virus on three bus routes. Read more…


April 10

Obama says “biggest mistake” mayors can make in coronavirus pandemic is to misinform the public
As the number of coronavirus cases kept climbing worldwide Thursday, former president Barack Obama offered some simple advice for mayors and local leaders battling outbreaks in cities across the globe: “Speak the truth.” Read more…


Modelling shows New Brunswick could have between 550 and 1,750 COVID-19-related deaths
New Brunswick’s COVID-19 projection models estimate there could be between 550 and 1,750 deaths in the province during the course of the pandemic. Read more…


As Montreal surpasses 5,000 COVID-19 cases, city’s blue-collar workers return to the job
As Montreal registers 5,262 COVID-19 cases and a total of 91 deaths, the city’s blue-collar workers are returning to work on a gradual basis. Read more…


City of Ottawa still patching potholes, maintaining parks with smaller crews for physical distancing
As the City of Ottawa tackles the COVID-19 pandemic along with the spring freshet, potholes are still being patched and parks maintained with smaller crews to allow workers to physically distance from one another. Read more…


City of Lethbridge extends State of Local Emergency for 90 days
It may not be needed for the entirety of the 90 day period, but do not expect the City of Lethbridge’s State of Local Emergency to end right away. Read more…


No property tax increase for Victoria homeowners, city announces
Victoria homeowners are getting a break on their property taxes this year as the city announced Thursday there will be a zero percent increase in taxes on commercial and residential properties in 2020. People will also have more time to pay them. Read more…


“This will be a real test to our community,” city ready to close parks if necessary
Interim city manager Adam Laughlin warned the City of Edmonton could take more stringent steps to ensure people are following the province’s public health orders to curb COVID-19 depending on how residents behave over the Easter weekend. Read more…


Mayor’s group lays out blueprint for London to survive, recover from COVID-19 shutdown
Two task forces struck by London Mayor Ed Holder to respond the economic and social damage caused by COVID-19 have released an initial reporting outlining 32 ways to survive the shutdown and help a recovery. Read more…


City of Kamloops taking extra steps to promote physical distancing
The City of Kamloops is introducing new measures to help people successfully physical distance, including closing the ring road on McArthur Island to vehicle traffic while allowing it to remain open to pedestrians and cyclists. Read more…


City of Toronto announces mental health supports during coronavirus pandemic
The City of Toronto is teaming up with several mental health service providers to help people who are struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 9

No return to “normality” until coronavirus vaccine is available, Trudeau says
Canadians won’t be able to return to life as they knew it before the novel coronavirus pandemic until a vaccine is available, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday. Read more…


New York City hires laborers to bury dead in potter’s field amid coronavirus surge
New York City officials have hired contract laborers to bury the dead in its potter’s field on Hart Island as the city’s daily death rate from the coronavirus epidemic has reached grim new records in each of the last three days. Read more…


Premier Doug Ford urges city residents to stay out of cottage country on Easter weekend
Premier Doug Ford has made another plea to residents living in Ontario’s urban centres to stay away from cottage country during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


City of Regina looking at redirecting capital funding, reserves to operations
With revenue down significantly due to COVID-19, the City of Regina is considering using money set aside for capital projects and even dipping into reserve funds to support operations and the continuation of essential services. Read more…


More recyclables headed to Edmonton landfills due to reduction in sorting staff
More plastic and paper are winding up in Edmonton landfills due to reduced processing capacity at the city’s sorting facility. Read more…


City of Brantford lays off hundreds of workers
The City of Brantford announced 380 employees were given records of employment Wednesday and most of them placed on job-protected unpaid emergency leave. Read more…


Dwindling revenues likely point to staff layoffs in Halifax
With “material changes” to the Halifax Regional Municipality’s budget to about the tune of $5 million a month, CAO Jacques Dube cautioned the municipality’s 3,300 employees could be at risk of job loss. Read more…


More Saskatoon staff laid off, two diagnosed with COVID-19
Two City of Saskatoon employees have been diagnosed with COVID-19 while around 300 have been laid off and hundreds more could see their jobs change or temporarily disappear as the city prepares for at least several more weeks of restrictions aimed at halting the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Charlottetown mayor says city working to upgrade trail system in times of physical distancing
The City of Charlottetown is working to upgrade its trail system to give people room to get some fresh air amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Edmonton adjusts roads, pedestrian call buttons to promote physical distancing
The City of Edmonton is changing pedestrian crossings and converting some roads into shared use between pedestrians and vehicles, in hopes of spreading people out to promote better physical distancing. Read more….


Giant Canadian Flag set to fly at Ottawa city hall to express solidarity
To show the City of Ottawa’s solidarity in Canada’s fight against COVID-19, council passed a motion to display a large Canadian flag from the roof of city hall. Read more…


“The unsealing of Wuhan” brings cheers and new surveillance
For many, a new kind of hardship is just beginning as they enter an invasive surveillance regime with doubts about whether the virus has actually been contained. Read more…


Urgent Animal Care Fund launched to support pets during COVID-19 crisis
The Ontario SPCA and Humane Society has set up an Urgent Animal Care Fund with other SPCAs and humane societies in Ontario to help animal organizations care for animals and support pet owners during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City sees more deaths from coronavirus than 9/11
New York City faced one of its darkest days with the death toll from the coronavirus surging past 4,000 – more than the number killed on 9/11. Read more..


City of Saint John closes pedways to promote physical distancing
The City of Saint John has closed a series of pedways in the city’s downtown core as it attempts to promote physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Surrey’s new pandemic shelter highlights desperation of homeless people
City of Surrey, Fraser Health, and BC Housing coordinated to open the North Surrey Recreation Centre one week after police intervened on squatters seeking shelter from COVID-19. Read more…


Orillia establishes COVID-19 Economic Recovery Task Force
The City of Orillia has formed an Economic Recovery Task Force to work with local businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic and to plan and develop measures to help the local economy recover moving forward. Read more…


Rural counties to receive 200,000 pieces of PPE from Bruce Power
The Western Ontario Wardens’ Caucus (WOWC) will be receiving 200,000 pieces of personal protective equipment (PPE) from Bruce Power to be dispersed to front-line community workers in the fight against COVID-19. Read more…


City of Vancouver asks province for $200 million in emergency funding
The City of Vancouver asked the provincial government on Wednesday for $200 million in emergency funding to help maintain essential services and continue to support vulnerable residents during the pandemic. Read more…


April 8

City of Ottawa faces nine-figure revenue hit because of COVID-19 restrictions
The City of Ottawa is staring at a $273-million revenue void if the physical distancing rules of the COVID-19 pandemic last for the rest of 2020, council heard Wednesday during a meeting. Read more…


City of Burnaby will lay off staff due to COVID-19
The City of Burnaby will be laying off some of its staff due to COVID-19, despite early efforts to keep employees in their paid positions. Read more…


City of Leduc to lower tax rate to zero, remove penalties to end of year
The City of Leduc has implemented several measures to take some financial pressure off of residents and businesses while utilizing reserves to make up for budgetary impacts. Read more…


Orillia, local business experts form Economic Recovery Task Force
The City of Orillia has formed an Economic Recovery Task Force to work with local businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic and to plan and develop measures to help the local economy recover moving forward. Read more…


Traffic volumes down in Winnipeg amid pandemic
Traffic is down about 40 per cent on Winnipeg roads as people are encouraged to stay home amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the city. Read more…


Enmax boosts annual dividend to help City of Calgary
After declaring a $48-million annual dividend for its sole shareholder, the City of Calgary, Enmax’s board decided to declare a further special dividend of $6 million. Read more…


Iqaluit city council approves funds for COVID-19 homelessness response
Iqaluit city councillors have approved the allocation of $351,200 to three local organizations helping with the city’s ongoing COVID-19 homelessness response. Read more…


City of Saint John closes pedways to promote physical distancing during COVID-19 pandemic
Saint John has closed a series of pedways in the city’s downtown core as it attempts to promote physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Edmonton bolsters Capital City Clean Up after influx of tossed gloves and masks
COVID-19 has led to more people taking wearing masks and gloves, but those items are now covering parking lots. As a result, the City of Edmonton is providing clean-up kits to grocery stores and pharmacies as part of an expanded Capital City Clean Up program. Read more…


Stay home today, #TravelTomorrow
#TravelTomorrow has become the common thread that runs through the World Tourism Organization’s response to the current crisis, highlighting the enduring values of tourism. Read more…


Coronavirus throttles B.C. city hall revenue streams
Staff numbers at B.C.’s city halls have been shrinking during the COVID-19 pandemic, and a lengthy economic decline will force local policy-makers to decide how to employ financial reserves to stave off deeper cuts. Read more….


Prince Albert mayor declares first electronic council meeting a success
For the first time since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, Prince Albert’s elected municipal officials met via teleconference for a regular council meeting. Read more…


Victoria considers lowering property taxes due to COVID-19
Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps says the city is considering lowering property taxes this year to provide financial relief for residents due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Feds asked to cover overruns on projects
Cities and construction groups are asking the Trudeau Liberals to relax the rules for expected cost overruns from infrastructure projects facing delays from the COVID-19 pandemic – or add more cash to help them deal with it. Read more…


Greater Saint John suspends recycling because of worker safety concerns
Waste collection has become more complicated in the era of COVID-19, with worker safety becoming a serious concern. One of the changes in the Greater Saint John Region is the indefinite closure of the blue recycling bins. Read more…


Yukon agents placed at B.C. and N.W.T. boundaries to limit spread of COVID-19
Yukon says it has placed enforcement officers at its boundaries and at the Whitehorse airport to get details of travellers’ self-isolation plans, their contact information, and to look for any symptoms of COVID-19. Read more…


Owen Sound received most feedback on boat launch closures, council hears
Of all the closures announced by the City of Owen Sound to help stop the spread of COVID-19, officials say the closure that has generated the most controversy so far was the decision to shutter Owen Sound’s boat launches. Read more…


City of Kamloops fighting through a financial crisis
The City of Kamloops needs to come up with $3.7 million in savings to balance its budget, in the event the pandemic continues to the end of June. That number jumps to $6.2 million, should the crisis continue through the end of September. Read more…


City of Grande Prairie council opens $35 million line of credit
Grande Prairie council approved a borrowing bylaw to open a revolving $35 million line of credit for the city’s operating budget in response to COVID-19. Read more…


Influx of non-residents chasing gas, smokes, pot putting First Nations at risk
Despite directives to stay home, non-residents stocking up on gasoline, cigarettes, and cannabis continue to flood First Nation communities in Ontario and Quebec, putting already vulnerable people at greater risk of a COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


April 7

Canada working to produce up to 30,000 ventilators domestically: Trudeau
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says his government is teaming up with a handful of Canadian companies to produce up to 30,000 ventilators — a critical piece of equipment in the battle against COVID-19. Read more…


Why B.C. is flattening the COVID-19 curve while numbers in central Canada surge
The COVID-19 outbreak is currently more severe in Canada’s two largest provinces than it is in British Columbia. That’s not opinion; it’s fact. Read more…


“A lot of pain.” New York has biggest one-day jump in virus deaths
New York state recorded 731 new coronavirus deaths, marking its biggest single-day jump, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday. The state’s death toll since the beginning of the outbreak last month grew to 5,489. Read more…


City of Ottawa’s COVID-19 cases nearly triple in a week
The City of Ottawa has now surpassed 400 confirmed COVID-19 cases. Public health officials announced Tuesday the city has 403 confirmed cases, up from 144 last Tuesday. Read more…


Winnipeg expands active transportation route schedule to help with physical distancing 
The City of Winnipeg is expanding its annual bicycle and active transportation route schedule in order to help with physical distancing requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Premier Kenney predicts 25 percent unemployment in Alberta due to COVID-19
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has a grim prediction for workers in his province. He says there may well be 25 percent unemployment as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Kitchener lays off 842 workers
The City of Kitchener has put 842 workers on what’s called temporary Declared Emergency Leave. That means they will stay on the record as employees of the city and will return to their jobs once the city opens for business. Read more…


City of Portage la Prairie encourages use of e-services during COVID-19
The City of Portage la Prairie wants to inform you of a few services during COVID-19 – including plenty of phone-based and online services. Read more…


Shelter space opened across B.C. for homeless to self isolate
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, shelter space is being temporarily opened at hotels, motels, and community centres across British Columbia, for those without housing who need to self isolate. Read more…


Durham municipalities look for financial assist from province over coronavirus hit
Ajax, Clarington, Pickering, and Whitby are asking for provincial and federal support for local businesses and individuals hammered by job losses and shutdowns imposed by physical distancing demands caused by the pandemic. Read more…


Cities grapple over whether to give more room to pedestrians to spread out
Battles are brewing in some cities over use of increasingly limited public space, as local governments struggle with whether to give more room for pedestrians to spread out. Read more….


City of Ottawa putting more than 4,000 employees on emergency leave
As the City of Ottawa extends its closure of public facilities and suspension of non-essential services, activities, and programs, it’s putting more than 4,000 of its part-time employees on a job-protected legislated leave of absence. Read more…


COVID-19 prompts borrowing request by City of New Westminster
New Westminster is taking steps to borrow up to $15 million in case it needs more cash to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic – but there’s no guarantee it will be able to get the cash. Read more…


Edmonton issues more than 300 warnings after dog parks, playgrounds closed
The City of Edmonton announced more than 300 warnings were issued over the last week to people at dog parks and using playground equipment amid the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak. Read more…


City of Regina postpones National Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations
City of Regina events are looking at being postponed or axed in the coming months to limit and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Among the planned events affected by the virus is National Indigenous Peoples Day. Read more…


New York City considers temporary mass graves as the death toll rises
As New York City’s fatalities from the new coronavirus increase and threaten to overwhelm the city’s capacity to handle the dead, officials have begun to consider resorting to temporary burial sites. Read more…


Leduc announces measures to help those hurting financially over COVID-19
Three weeks after Leduc declared a local state of emergency, the city announced new measures it says are aimed at helping those in the community facing financial troubles because of COVID-19. Read more…


Swamped community programs in Windsor welcome city worker relief
The provision of fresh recruits in the form of redeployed city hall workers will be a godsend to organizations in Windsor coping with rising demand from people confined to their homes and fewer volunteers available to help. Read more…


Medicine Hat council talks rezoning, bylaws but nothing on COVID-19
Medicine Hat city council moved to close its meetings to in-person public access while opening it up to an online setting in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Aside from that, Monday’s council meeting was fairly routine. Read more…


Halifax Partnership will lead city through COVID-19 economic crisis
The Halifax Regional Council has put the Halifax Partnership – a public-private partnership created to foster economic development – in charge of leading the city’s post-COVID-19 economic recovery. Read more…


City of Ottawa accused of going too far to enforce physical distancing rules
The Canadian Civil Liberties Association has criticized the City of Ottawa for overzealous ticketing to reinforce physical distancing rules, following a weekend blitz. Read more…


April 6

Canada’s top doctor says non-medical masks can help stop the spread of COVID-19
Dr. Theresa Tam, the top doctor at the Public Health Agency of Canada, said today that Canadians can use non-medical masks in tandem with social distancing measures to limit the transmission of the deadly virus when out grocery shopping or at a pharmacy. Read more…


In Canada’s north, authorities worry about fleeing city-dwellers spreading coronavirus
Information about COVID-19 can distort people’s estimation of the risk the virus poses to them, leading to both good and bad behaviour. Read more…


City of Toronto receives 141 complaints about gatherings, unsafe behaviour in parks
The City of Toronto says there were still some persistent problem areas at city parks during an enforcement blitz over the weekend amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Tri-Cities feeling financial impact of pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic is having an impact on revenues and costs in the Tri-Cities. But the municipalities have yet to announce any layoffs. Read more…


City of London cuts 800 jobs as COVID-19 keeps programs shut down
As the City of London continues to deal with the fallout from the spread of COVID-19, around 1,100 temporary and casual employees are left wondering about the future of their jobs. Read more…


One-way shopping aisles introduced at some Edmonton grocery stores
In light of COVID-19, Safeway stores are taking additional physical distancing measures—including limiting the number of shoppers in stores, telling customers not to handle food they don’t buy and introducing one-way aisles to limit customer contact. Read more…


“Many will die unless” people follow pandemic rules, City of Elliot Lake warns
City of Elliot Lake declares state of emergency over the weekend; anyone disregarding social distancing orders could be fined up to $100,000. Read more…


Calgary aims to reduce economic impact of COVID-19
The City of Calgary is exploring what funds it can make available, in reserves or investment money, to potentially mitigate the financial fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Windsor inside workers agree to redeployment, layoffs for idled city hall staff
Hundreds of idled Windsor city hall staff are expected to be redeployed for needed community projects in the coming days, after CUPE Local 543 leadership signed a memorandum of agreement on Sunday. Read more…


Winnipeg closes underground concourse, downtown skywalk amid COVID-19
The City of Winnipeg has shut the doors to the entire downtown overhead walkway system, along with the underground concourse at Portage and Main, until further notice as a health precaution due to COVID-19. Read more…


London tightens rules on bridges, sidewalks to promote social distancing
City hall is making changes to how pedestrians use London’s sidewalks, roads, and parks during the coronavirus pandemic, as the province releases stark numbers on COVID-19’s potential death toll. Read more…


City of Kamloops adjustments continue as pandemic keeps going
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, so do adjustments from City of Kamloops staff. At the same time, bylaw officers are stepping up foot patrols in city parks along with the downtown core. Read more…


Torontonians seem to be getting the “stay at home” message, Mayor Tory says
“That evidence is truer today than it was yesterday, and I think people are beginning to get the message,” Mayor John Tory said after the first day of a city-wide enforcement blitz. Read more…


Surrey should delay its police transition due to outbreak, city councillor says
Surrey city councillor Linda Annis was against the transition to a municipal police force before the COVID-19 outbreak. Now, she’s even more concerned. Read more…


Quebec sugar shacks reeling after “catastrophic” COVID-19 closures
While the pandemic has left few businesses untouched, the timing has been particularly cruel for Quebec’s several hundred commercial sugar shacks. Read more…


Ontario hospitals ban health-care workers from criss-crossing borders to work
A massive surge in COVID-19 cases in Michigan is prompting Ontario border cities to confront difficult questions about how to reduce the spread of disease in hundreds of Canadian health-care professionals who work in the United States. Read more…


Nunavut using natural “social distancing” to its advantage
Nunavut has managed to turn its northern isolation and lack of connecting roads into a successful defence against the deadly novel coronavirus that has killed thousands of people around the world. Read more…


Vancouver mayor counting on governments to help city re-hire 1,500 workers
Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart says he’s counting on funding relief from other levels of government, which heavily depend on work done by civic employees, to help the city re-hire 1,500 workers laid off because of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Timmins to deploy bylaw officers at grocery stores
Timmins residents who persist in treating shopping excursions like social outings amid the COVID-19 outbreak may find themselves paying for more than just the cost of their groceries. Read more…


Calgary organizations staring down $376 million shortfall due to COVID-19
A city document estimates that it would cost approximately $376 million to cover the costs for various sectors in Calgary, including affordable housing, homeless shelters, and civic partners. Read more…


Charlottetown, Stratford, P.E.I. won’t turn off taps during COVID-19
Residents of Charlottetown and Stratford can rest assured they will not have their water disconnected for failing to pay their bill on time during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Kitchener mayor “angry” after city, police halt forbidden basketball game 
Kitchener mayor Berry Vrbanovic is “angry” after a group of people were caught playing basketball at McLennan Park on Saturday despite restrictions put into place due to the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


April 5

Cities “bleeding” cash because of COVID-19 could be next financial domino to fall for federal government
Most municipalities in Canada are required to run balanced budgets, which means unlike other governments they can’t simply borrow through this crisis. Read more…


Coquitlam aims to help businesses hurt by pandemic
Owners of the more than 7,000 businesses in Coquitlam are being encouraged to contact the city’s economic development office. Read more…


Toronto police enforcing city bylaws, provincial orders to stop COVID-19 spread
Toronto police say they are prepared to issue fines of up to $1,000 to people who violate a new physical distancing city bylaw. Read more…


Halifax staff “working harder than ever,” no layoffs planned: Deputy Mayor
Halifax Regional Municipality Deputy Mayor Lisa Blackburn says many employees are working from home during COVID-19, but that doesn’t mean work isn’t getting done. Read more…


City of London takes more action to keep pedestrians apart
The City of London is taking more steps in in an effort to enhance physical distancing measures on sidewalks, roads and in parks. Read more…


Richmond to vote on reducing credit card service fee for online property tax, utility payments
Richmond city council will consider reducing credit card service fees to encourage online payments in light of current physical distancing and health guidelines. Read more…


City takes further steps to make waste collection safer during COVID-19 pandemic
While Greater Sudbury’s waste collection crews continue to provide a vital service to the community, the city is taking additional steps to limit the potential spread of the COVID-19 virus. Read more…


Vancouver city staff will patrol parks for physical distancing
The Vancouver park board is bringing back staff who were working as recreation programmers to patrol parks and beaches to remind people to maintain physical distance. Read more…


Fort Saskatchewan continues to maintain services despite facility closures
Despite the recent closures to facilities, Fort Saskatchewan City Manager Troy Flemming is  emphasizing that city services are being maintained. Read more…


People who live in Ontario’s “cottage country” want big city dwellers to stay home
Locals living in Ontario’s lakeside towns say big-city day-trippers and cottagers are still making regular visits to their communities despite authorities urging them to stay home to stop the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


April 4

Cities lead the charge on the coronavirus front lines: U of T expert
The rapid spread of COVID-19 has upended lives and livelihoods. In cities around the world, the repercussions of scaling back as a result of physical distancing measures have had exceptionally damaging impacts. And at the same time, observers marvel at the ways in which urban life continues. Read more…


All city-organized public events in Calgary cancelled up to June 30
Festivals, public gatherings, and events in Calgary up until June 30 are cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, city hall announced Friday. Read more…


Winnipeg declares local state of emergency due to COVID-19, passes tax-relief plan
Winnipeg city council declared a local state of emergency on Friday, as council also voted 15 to 1 in favour of a tax-relief package for businesses and property owners. Read more…


Saskatchewan cities join Saskatoon mayor in criticizing province’s pandemic response
The mayors of Saskatchewan’s largest cities are echoing Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark’s criticism of the provincial government’s efforts to protect homeless people during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Toronto could see up to 3,000 COVID-19 deaths, city facing $65 million cost each week: officials
Toronto could see anywhere from 600 to 3,000 deaths by the end of the COVID-19 pandemic based on projections unveiled by the provincial government Friday, the city’s medical officer of health says. Read more…


City of Yellowknife changing garbage collection as residential waste increases
The City of Yellowknife is changing how it collects garbage as the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase in residential and household waste. Read more…


Quebec City police respond 100 times a day to people not respecting COVID-19 restrictions
Quebec City Police officers have intervened 900 times since the start of the COVID-19 crisis when people did not comply with public health guidelines. Read more…


City of Humboldt taking action to ensure essential services
To ensure it provides essential services throughout the pandemic, the City of Humboldt has divided public works staff into two crews that avoid interacting with each other. That way, if somebody develops COVID-19 on one of the crews and they have to self-isolate, there’s still another crew working. Read more…


City of Edmonton forces laid-off workers to “choose between a rock and a hard place”
Last Monday, the City of Edmonton temporarily let go 1,600 city recreation centre staff . On Thursday, the city sent out an e-mail offering some workers a different job. Employees were not told what the job was, but they had to make a decision by 6 p.m. that same day. Read more…


City council to consider closing meetings to public during pandemic
Prince George city council will consider major changes to the way it conducts business during the COVID-19 pandemic as the B.C. Emergency Program Act, issued on March 26, authorizes city councils to hold meetings by teleconference, accelerate the passage of bylaws, and hold meetings without the public in attendance. Read more…


April 3

City of Kelowna to webcast council meetings starting Monday
In conjunction with recent system upgrades in chambers, cameras have been installed to allow for webcasting of Kelowna public council meetings and hearings. Read more…


Brantford trails, parks still open but public asked to maintain physical distancing
Brantford Mayor Kevin Davis said “walking, jogging or taking your dog for a walk” are still permitted in city parks and trails, provided people are following physical distancing requirements and staying at least two metres away from one another. Read more…


Tri-City firefighters will now only respond to most serious medical calls
Fire departments across the Tri-Cities (Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam) will be scaling back their responses to medical calls after the province dropped them from the BC Ambulance call triaging system for all but the most serious medical emergencies. Read more…


City of Ottawa prepared to fine citizens who disregard COVID-19 restrictions
Ottawa bylaw officers have issued dozens of verbal warnings, but are moving into “the charging phase” and are prepared to start charging residents who openly disregard the province’s COVID-19-related emergency orders. Read more…


Winnipeg city council report shows losses in millions because of COVID-19
The City of Winnipeg could be more than $73 million in the red if the COVID-19 health crisis reaches to the end of July, but Mayor Brian Bowman is so far holding back on measures to cut staff or services. Read more…


City of Barrie sets up hotline to report COVID-19 rule-breakers
The City of Barrie has set up a dedicated COVID-19 Enforcement Line for the public to report instances of non-compliance with the COVID-19 emergency orders. Read more…


Vancouver lays off 1,500 city workers due to COVID-19
The City of Vancouver has temporarily laid off 1,500 workers – mostly from theatres, recreation and community centres, and libraries – but they will continue to be paid for 42 days and will have their benefits extended for three months. Read more…


Winnipeg staff, school workers reinventing themselves to stave off layoffs 
While government and school workers are losing their jobs nationwide, in Winnipeg, city employees are turning the phrase “other duties as assigned” into a mantra. Read more…


City of Prince George suspends parking time limits downtown, near hospital
The City of Prince George announced it will not be enforcing time limits related to parking in the downtown and near the hospital due to COVID-19. Read more….


Windsor makes sandbags available for at-risk waterfront properties
The City of Windsor says that while there is no imminent threat at this time, water levels are high enough to warrant concern and preparations. Read more…


Document details grim impact of COVID-19 on Calgary non-profits, social services
The City of Calgary could need nearly $400 million over the next year to protect social services and non-profit organizations, according to an internal document prepared by city staff to plan for the COVID-19 emergency. Read more…


City of Toronto bylaw officers start crackdown
Accompanied in some cases by police officers, City of Toronto bylaw officers are being dispatched to hot spots where people have been seen using facilities closed to the public under emergency orders to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City increasing transit security, shuttle service to aid homeless Edmontonians
The City of Edmonton is boosting supports for vulnerable residents after rising concerns of “disruptive behaviour” on the transit system. Read more…


City of Surrey lays off more than 2,000 employees
Surrey is the latest city to confirm massive layoffs of municipal workers due to the COVID-19 pandemic –1,900 of those laid off are auxillary workers without permanent, full-time jobs. Read more…


April 2

Calls mount for Ottawa to release projections on COVID-19 spread
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said the country may have to endure the COVID-19 pandemic for months to come, but his government has so far refused to release internal projections of just how deadly the virus could be and when the caseload might peak. Read more…


B.C. city halls are shrinking but some have bigger reserves to fall on
British Columbia’s city halls are contracting during the early onset of the COVID-19 pandemic response, and a lengthy economic decline will force local policy makers to decide how to employ financial reserves to stave off much greater attrition. Read more…


Charlottetown increases spending to aid post-pandemic economic recovery
The City of Charlottetown is planning more spending on infrastructure in the hopes of boosting the economy following the COVID-19 pandemic. The increased spending necessitated changes to the already passed capital budget. Read more…


COVID-19 scofflaws in Hamilton told to “knock it off”
“Knock it off” is the message from the city to troublemakers that have Hamilton bylaw officers bylaw “running ragged” trying to keep up as the Steel City focuses the bulk of its resources on fighting the potentially deadly virus. Read more…


Edmonton taking steps to address problems caused by homeless people on buses, LRT trains
The City of Edmonton says it is taking steps to address the growing problem of homeless people spending hours riding buses and LRT trains during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of London moving homeless into motels to combat spread of COIVD-19
The City of London has rented 100 motel rooms to help house the municipality’s vulnerable population during the COVID-19 pandemic. The city is working with London InterCommunity Health to get people assessed and tested as needed. Read more…


Saskatoon calling on province to act now to help city’s homeless
The Government of Saskatchewan needs to act faster to help Saskatoon’s homeless and vulnerable populations amid COVID-19, according to the city. Read more…


Jump in overdose deaths in Vancouver highlight two health emergencies: city
A recent spike of overdose deaths in Vancouver is an important reminder there are two ongoing public health emergencies, the city says as the province grapples with the rollout of a safe supply of drugs for users. Read more…


Complaints pour into London’s COVID-19 tip line, city hall responds by phone
In just five days, Londoners have lodged 1,250 complaints about people and businesses not following provincial COVID-19 orders. Read more…


Saskatchewan First Nation joins call for closing liquor stores during pandemic
The Chief and Council of Montreal Lake Cree Nation want the province to ban the sale of liquor to stop the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Nova Scotia municipalities adopt new building inspection rules during pandemic
Municipalities across Nova Scotia have adopted new protocols for building inspections during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Laid off City of Regina workers navigating new COVID-19 reality
With all of the city’s recreational facilities and programming temporarily shut down, City Manager Chris Holden said the hours just weren’t there to justify keeping casual employees on. Read more…


City of Lethbridge urges against gas hoarding during COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Lethbridge’s chief fire marshal had a stern message for anyone opting to take advantage of low gas prices by filling up more than just their vehicle. Read more…


Cargo ship denied entry to Port of Halifax over COVID-19 fears
A Halifax-bound vessel has been denied entry to the Port of Halifax by the Public Health Agency of Canada as some crew members displayed symptoms that resemble COVID-19. Read more…


Richmond Hill okays “boldest” move to extend relief measures to January 1
In what several councillors described as the “boldest move” the city could make, Richmond Hill residents who are enduring financial difficulties due to the COVID-19 pandemic may delay their tax payments until January 1. Read more…


Bootleggers are an old N.W.T. problem, Covid-19 is a new worry
Indigenous leaders across the Northwest Territories are imploring bootleggers to stop, worried they may bring Covid-19 into small communities alongside drugs and alcohol. Read more…


North Stormont council offers dial-in council meeting
North Stormont council has been looking into live-streaming their meetings. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, council has decided to expedite this initiative by holding a virtual meeting that will be available to the public via telephone. Read more…


City of North Vancouver warns of tight COVID-era budgets
City of North Vancouver council is making some 11th hour changes to its 2020 budget, realizing the COVID-19 pandemic is going to have a major hit on the city’s coffers. Read more…


April 1

Trudeau wants to recall MPs to back massive coronavirus aid package
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Wednesday he wanted to recall Parliament so legislators could approve a massive aid package he called “the biggest economic measures of our lifetimes”. Read more…


Shuttered Montreal hospital may be re-opened to in-patients, other makeshift facilities in works
Quebec’s health ministry says it is considering using Montreal’s Hotel Dieu to treat non-COVID in-patients, if a surge in people suffering from the new coronavirus strains resources at the city’s other hospitals. Read more…


Ottawa bylaw officers investigate pandemic beefs about birthdays, joggers and open businesses
Ottawa bylaw officers have responded to complaints about birthday bashes and joggers as people drop a dime on potential delinquents in this new era of physical distancing. Read more…


No live broadcasts of Port Coquitlam council meetings
Port Coquitlam city council meetings will have a different look for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis. But, unlike in Coquitlam, the meetings won’t be webcast live; rather, they’ll be recorded and posted online within two days. Read more…


City of Brampton to provide rent relief for small businesses and city tenants amid COVID-19 outbreak
The City of Brampton announced that the city will defer rent payments for non-profits and small for-profit tenants for a period of three months. Read more…


City of Toronto cancels events through June 30, including Pride Parade
The City of Toronto has cancelled all city-led major events, festivals, conferences, and cultural programs through June 30 amid the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


One P.E.I. town is finding unique ways to celebrate 25 years
As the Town of Stratford turns 25 on Wednesday, April 1, the community celebration that was being planned is on hold due to COVID-19, but that won’t stop residents from celebrating in other ways. Read more…


London continues some in-person meetings, but should they?
A small number of in-person meetings continue to take place at London city hall, and while distancing measures are in place, some are asking if in-person meetings are necessary at all. Read more….


Trail RCMP addresses COVID-19 concerns, including service delivery, frauds
Trail top cop Sgt. Mike Wicentowich has detailed a variety of ways COVID-19 is impacting local policing, including new frauds the virus has inspired. Read more…


Saskatoon plans to roll out “adjusted staffing plan” for next three months
The City of Saskatoon is expected to roll out an “adjusted staffing plan” it expects will be in place for at least three months as it works to maintain essential services while the pandemic sweeps through the province. Read more…


Brampton to enforce physical distancing with large fines
The City of Brampton will impose fines of between $500 and $100,000 for those not adhering to physical distancing guidelines. Read more…


Winnipeg to open four active transportation routes for pedestrians, cyclists
The City of Winnipeg is opening up its annual active transportation routes for pedestrians and cyclists earlier than normal, though the routes will be monitored to ensure Winnipeggers are practising physical distancing. Read more…


Hamilton closures extend to end of May as confirmed COVID-19 cases climb
The City of Hamilton’s closures will extend to May 25 as new COVID-19 cases continue to appear and cast doubt on how much longer it will take for life to return to normal. Read more…


Vancouver city council unanimously approves 2020 cultural grants
After weeks in crisis mode, Vancouver arts groups say announcements this week offer some hope for staying afloat through COVID-19 shutdowns. Read more…


Surge in transit concerns City of Timmins officials
The city is urging residents to be mindful that the free Timmins Transit service is intended for “essential travel only, meaning those requiring the service to get to and from work, or to secure essential goods and services.” Read more…


Edmonton working to get more showers for EXPO Centre COVID-19 facility
The City of Edmonton has set up a facility to support vulnerable people through the COVID-19 crisis. Staff are now pushing to get more shower facilities for those who use the services. Read more…


March 31

Canadian companies now manufacturing ventilators, surgical masks
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced that companies across the country are now producing medical supplies, including hundreds of ventilators, as part of Canada’s battle to increase desperately needed equipment in the fight against COVID-19. Read more…


Windsor council to make “gut-wrenching” choice on paying city staff who are not working amid pandemic
Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens says a tough decision will need to be made with regards to paying city workers who are currently not working during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Lethbridge lays off more than 200 staff members
The City of Lethbridge is providing details on staff layoffs related to COVID-19. A total of 248 staff have been laid off: 244 casual positions and four permanent part-time roles. Read more…


Toronto converts hotel into COVID-19 recovery centre for people experiencing homelessness
In what the chair of Toronto’s Board of Health is calling a first in Canada, the city has converted a 200-room hotel into a COVID-19 recovery centre for people experiencing homelessness. Read more…


Crews doing the job differently, but municipal services continue to operate in Charlottetown, Summerside
Public works crews in Charlottetown and Summerside are doing their best to stay on top of work that needs to be done, all while doing it safely. Read more…


City of Barrie offers three extra garbage bag tags per household during pandemic
With more people working from home or waiting out the COVID-19 pandemic before they can head back to work, the city offering up three extra bag tags per household to handle the expected increase in garbage. Read more…


Ontario shutters playgrounds, beaches as emergency order extended
The Ontario government is ordering the closure of all communal or shared, public, or private outdoor recreational amenities across the province in order to help stem the transmission of COVID-19. Read more…


COVID-19 costs to City of Edmonton likely upward of $112 million
Through a lack of revenue and increased expenses, the City of Edmonton could be out $112.3 million if the current situation lasts until mid-September. Read more…


City of Kelowna preparing to slash 2020 budget amid coronavirus pandemic
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Kelowna anticipates revenues will plummet in 2020 and not support plans to run the city with $148 million this year. Read more….


Calgary temporarily lays off part-time, casual workers during pandemic
Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi said “somewhere south” of 10 percent of the city’s workforce of about 13,000 part-time or casual staff will be laid off. Read more…


City wants to share kids’ Medicine Hat artwork
In a video posted to the City of Medicine Hat’s YouTube page, Mayor Ted Clugston asks schoolkids to draw or paint their favourite part of the city. He then wants parents to submit a photo of it through the city’s Facebook page. Read more…


“Staggering”: New York virus death toll rises above 1,200
A Navy hospital ship with 1,000 beds arrived Monday in New York City as the number of deaths in the state from the coronavirus outbreak climbed quickly. Read more…


Mayor warns of $5,000 fines for people who gather at Toronto parks
Toronto Mayor John Tory said “time is up” for people who continue to congregate at city parks, warning that fines ranging from $750 to $5,000 will start being doled out with regularity until they “get the message.” Read more…


Halifax police warn those who ignore COVID-19 rules will face consequences 
Halifax’s chief of police says some people are taking unnecessary risks during the COVID-19 pandemic. Chief Dan Kinsella said, by now, everybody should be aware of state of emergency restrictions. Read more…


City of Ottawa opens up donations process for commercial-grade PPE
The City of Ottawa is looking for donations of commercial-grade personal protective equipment to protect first responders and front-line workers. Read more…


City of Richmond defers utility bill to June due to COVID-19
The City of Richmond has announced the 2020 Flat Rate Utility Bill due date has been extended from March 31 to June 30 due to COVID-19. Read more…


March 30

Justin Trudeau reveals wage subsidy for businesses that see 30 percent or more drop in revenue
Any business that has seen a drop of 30 percent or more in revenue because of the fallout of COVID-19 will be eligible for federal wage subsidies of 75 per cent to help keep workers on the payroll. Read more…


City of London snitch line receives hundreds of calls and emails
The City of London’s COVID-19 “snitch line,” a way for people to report businesses and residents not following advisories put in place to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, received nearly 800 emails and phone calls over the weekend. Read more…


Winnipeg charities, non-profits face financial strain from COVID-19
The local charity and non-profit agencies that serve Winnipeg’s most vulnerable populations and lowest income residents are feeling the impact of the financial uncertainty during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Several employees at Toronto Public Health headquarters test positive for COVID-19
Employees have been told to self-isolate from Toronto Public Health headquarters in the city’s downtown core after several workers tested positive for coronavirus. Read more…


Saskatchewan airports adjusts to fewer travellers during pandemic
Airlines are making significant cuts to the number of flights at Saskatchewan airports. There are fewer people travelling as residents heed advice to self isolate. Read more…


University of Ottawa dorm to house 65 people at risk of contracting coronavirus
About 65 people from Ottawa families at-risk of contracting the novel coronavirus are moving into a University of Ottawa residence downtown, after the school said it agreed to a request from the City of Ottawa to house them. Read more…


Canada Post resumes St. John’s service in wake of 5 positive tests for COVID-19
Canada Post workers are urging people in the St. John’s area to give them their space as they get back to work Monday morning, after five employees tested positive for COVID-19. Read more…


Residents encouraged to take part in #BellevilleCares initiative
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the new reality, the City of Belleville kicked off the #BellevilleCares initiative in which the city is calling on residents to share some of the wonderful acts of kindness they have seen in the community recently. Read more…


Canada preparing makeshift hospitals as COVID-19 pandemic stretches capacity
Provincial and municipal leaders in Canada are following examples in Europe and the U.S. by commandeering vast spaces normally reserved for conferences or sporting events to house the thousands of patients sickened by COVID-19. Read more…


More fines, more patrols as Montreal police ramp up public health enforcement 
Montreal police will begin handing out fines to people and businesses who disobey public health directives aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto acquires hotels, rental buildings for homeless in response to COVID-19
The City of Toronto has acquired hotels and residential buildings as part of its “integrated homelessness response to COVID-19.” Read more…


Calgary blocks traffic lanes to help pathway users maintain separation
Fans of Calgary’s decision to block off some traffic lanes to give pedestrians and cyclists extra room for social distancing hope other cities will follow suit. Read more…


Coquitlam wants residents to show their hearts for health care workers
Coquitlam wants residents to download a printable heart from the city website to adorn a window in their homes and cheer on health care workers at 7 p.m. daily. Read more…


City of Mississauga holds a Tele Town Hall amidst COVID-19 concerns
Joined by Mayor Bonnie Crombie, the City of Mississauga organized a virtual town hall to cover pressing questions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Nature takes back world’s empty city streets
As humans retreat into their homes as more and more countries go under coronavirus lockdown, wild animals are slipping cover to explore the empty streets of some of our biggest cities. Read more…


Saskatoon police highlight uplifting signs around city
The Saskatoon Police Service shared a few photos of uplifting signs patrol officers have found around the city. The photos were shared by the service to its Facebook page on Sunday. Read more…


City of Red Deer asks residents to help protect the pipes
City of Red Deer residents are reminded that disposable wipes are not flushable and should be disposed of in Black Carts to avoid costly blockages in the wastewater treatment system. Read more…


March 29

151 new COVID-19 cases in Ontario as province cracks down on price gouging, large gatherings
Ontario is cracking down on price gouging for essential hygiene and medical supplies, and pushing to limit gatherings to five people or fewer, as part of ongoing efforts to handle the COVID-19 outbreak across the province. Read more…


Coquitlam cancels May events, waiting on Canada Day and other summer happenings
Both Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam are taking a wait-and-see approach to events scheduled for after May and say they will heed advice from health authorities. Read more..


City of Hamilton helping local businesses shift to an online market
The City of Hamilton has launched a new website that houses many of the Steel City’s favourite neighbourhood spots under one roof so Hamiltonians can continue to support small vendors and restaurants. Read more…


City to help Winnipeg Harvest during virus
Amid the COVID-19 outbreak, Winnipeg Harvest has become busier and is in need of more volunteers. Mayor Brian Bowman announced Saturday that the city will be stepping up to help the organization sort food and stock hampers. Read more…


City of Montreal to provide more resources for homeless
Montreal is stepping up its measurers to help the homeless cope with the coronavirus. They include the opening of five outdoor day centres, expanded shelter room for men and women, and temporary public toilet facilities. Read more…


North Bay making changes to garbage and blue box pickup
In a social media post, the City of North Bay is asking residents to bag all garbage before placing into a garbage container. The city is asking for no loose garbage for the safety of its waste and blue box collection drivers. Read more…


First case of COVID-19 in Nunavik confirmed
Health authorities in the Nunavik region of northern Quebec have confirmed a case of the coronavirus known as COVID-19. Read more…


City of Richmond launches COVID-19 website
The City of Richmond just launched a COVID-19 website to let residents know what city services are closed and what are still functioning. Read more…


Police rack up nine more stunt driving offences on barren city streets
Ottawa police traffic officers continued their attack on speeders Saturdays, as drivers took advantage of light traffic conditions to put the pedal to the metal. City police issued 15 tickets for stunt driving over the past week. Read more…


Whitehorse businesses move to phone and online sales amid COVID-19 precautions
Many small businesses in Whitehorse are laying off staff, reducing hours and locking their front doors, but that doesn’t mean they’re shutting up shop completely. Read more…


March 28

London unveils “snitch line” for COVID-19 rule violations
City of London officials have set up new ways for residents to report businesses and individuals who aren’t following the rules around COVID-19. Read more…


Police boost patrols as Montreal declares state of emergency
Police are stepping up patrols across Montreal to make sure non-essential businesses stay closed and no public gatherings take place as the city declared a state of emergency on Friday. Read more…


Six Nations building barricades to block outsiders amid COVID-19
The Six Nations of the Grand River Elected Council plans to build and install barricades to block people who aren’t part of the community from entering its territory and spreading COVID-19. Read more…


City of Kawartha Lakes now has 27 COVID-19 cases
Ontario’s largest outbreak is at Pinecrest Nursing Home in Bobcaygeon; City of Kawartha Lakes closes playgrounds. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the City of Kawartha Lakes has risen to 27. Read more…


City of Burnaby employee tests positive for COVID-19
A City of Burnaby employee has tested positive for COVID-19, and another staff member who was in contact with the affected employee has been told to undergo self-assessment. Read more…


City launches online COVID-19 resources for Mississauga businesses
The City of Mississauga’s Economic Development Office has launched a new dedicated online resource for the business community in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Vancouver suspends business licence of downtown Tim Hortons after repeated COVID-19 bylaw noncompliance
The City of Vancouver announced Friday afternoon (March 27) that it has suspended the business licence of a downtown Tim Hortons restaurant because of noncompliance with the city’s State of Emergency bylaw to combat the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


March 27

Government boosts wage subsidy to 75 percent for small, medium businesses
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced more help for small and medium-sized businesses to keep employees on the payroll during the COVID-19 crisis, including a 75 percent wage subsidy and guaranteed interest-free loans. Read more…


New pop-up shelters coming for Halifax amid COVID-19 spread
An organizer with the Out of the Cold shelter in Halifax says the province has authorized the creation of two new pop-up shelters with a third one expected to open next week. They will allow for physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Legault promises every Quebec worker at least $2,000 monthly through COVID-19 crisis
Quebec Premier François Legault has promised that no one who is working now and earning minimum wage will take home less than $2,000 monthly. Read more…


City of Ottawa closes off-leash dog parks, park equipment due to COVID-19
The City of Ottawa has closed off-leash dog parks and playground equipment to the public during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


B.C. assumes power to take over supply chains amid COVID-19
British Columbia has dramatically stepped up its use of emergency powers, giving itself the authority to take over supply chains for delivering essential goods and services throughout the province. Read more…


City of Regina lays off 80 percent of casual staff amid COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Regina has issued layoff notices to 360 casual employees and is postponing the recall of 500 seasonal employees as confirmed COVID-19 cases grow. Read more…


City to relax construction traffic restrictions on major roads
Traffic volumes are lower because of the COVID-19 pandemic and contractors have asked the City of Ottawa to relax work restrictions on arterial and major collector roadways during peak periods. Read more…


Vancouver opening two emergency facilities inside community centres
The City of Vancouver is opening two emergency response centres inside community centres in order to create more space for homeless residents to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Montreal, Quebec City transit agencies reduce services as ridership plummets
With ridership dwindling due to COVID-19, the public transit agencies in Montreal and Quebec City will strategically reduce services starting March 30. Read more…


Recent uptick in speeding on Edmonton roads concerns mayor 
As Edmontonians are being asked to stay home amid an ongoing coronavirus pandemic, city officials say they have seen a spike in drivers speeding. Read more…


Metro Vancouver cities identifying facilities for makeshift hospitals
The province is calling on British Columbia’s cities to offer possible venues for potential expansion of critical medical and logistical infrastructure. Read more…


Stay out of the city’s west end, director of public health warns Montrealers
Quebec’s director of public health is urging Montrealers and everyone else to stay out of the city’s west end, where the number of COVID-19 cases is growing. Read more…


New Brunswick cultural workforce looks to make up lost income
New Brunswick’s arts and culture workforce contribute around $550 million to the province’s GDP, but now that workforce is among those getting hit hardest by the widespread social distancing and other public health measures. Read more..


Is the City of North Bay muzzling employees?
City hall is either taking restrictive measures to stop the flow of information getting out to the public, or can’t get their message straight with its own workers. Read more…


Charlottetown outreach centre moves amid “stressful” COVID-19 situation
The Community Outreach Centre located at 211 Euston St. in Charlottetown has temporarily relocated to Birchwood Intermediate School just a few blocks away in order to adhere to public health recommendations like social distancing. Read more…


New Westminster council ponders the new COVID-19 normal
How not to let city priorities fall by the wayside and how to continue with public engagement are two of the issues facing New Westminster city council in the face of the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


March 26

British Columbia takes over emergency response from cities
In an escalation of its response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the provincial government announced it has invoked the Emergency Program Act to take over emergency response from municipalities across British Columbia, give civic bylaw officers the ability to enforce orders from health authorities, and take control of supply chains. Read more…


Canadians targeted by scams taking advantage of COVID-19 fears
Canadians should be vigilant for text scams amid the coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday during a press briefing outside his Ottawa home. Read more…


City of Kingston declares State of Emergency in response to COVID-19
Mayor Bryan Paterson declared a State of Emergency for Kingston to help contain the spread of COVID-19. This decision aligns with steps the Province of Ontario has taken in response to the pandemic. Read more…


Woman arrested for the second time after allegedly not self-isolating
Police say a woman in Newfoundland has been arrested for a second time for allegedly refusing to stay inside after arriving from outside the province, contravening public health measures put in place to combat COVID-19. Read more…


City of Sault Ste. Marie identifying business challenges, looking for solutions, during COVID-19
More than 160 participants tapped in to the City of Sault Ste. Marie’s business teleconference Thursday to learn about programs and services that may be available to help them keep afloat during the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


COVID-19: London-area man in his 20s hospitalized as case count rises
A London-area man in his 20s is in hospital after testing positive for COVID-19, as new cases in Ontario soar by 170 in a single day. Read more…


City of Saskatoon closes pedestrian bridge in response to COVID-19
The City of Saskatoon closed the CP Rail Pedestrian bridge – which spans the South Saskatchewan River from Spadina Crescent to the city’s university area – amid concern the bridge is not wide enough to maintain proper physical distancing. Read more…


Trudeau says banks, credit card companies asked to lower interest rates
The federal government is asking banks and credit-card companies to lower interest rates on Canadians struggling financially because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City’s Work in Belleville program still working
A city-created program aimed at connecting employers and potential employees continues to work despite the current economic challenges. Read more…


Guelph mayor doesn’t feel it’s necessary to declare state of emergency right now
As of Wednesday, roughly 80 of Ontario’s 444 municipalities having declared a state of emergency. However, Mayor Cam Guthrie says at this point there is no need to for the City of Guelph to do the same. Read more…


City encourages Ottawans to buy local during coronavirus pandemic with new campaign
In a new campaign launched Thursday, the City of Ottawa is encouraging residents to support local businesses and take action to help keep them afloat amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Ontario municipalities worry about going in the red as COVID-19 drains coffers
A group representing Ontario’s municipalities is asking the province to commit enough cash to keep cities from going into debt amid concerns that COVID-19 will throw them into a fiscal hole so deep they can’t climb out. Read more…


City of Ottawa braces for shrinking revenues, workforce as coronavirus spreads
The City of Ottawa is exploring how to limit its spending and perhaps shrink its operations to only essential services as the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak threatens its finances, workforce, and ability to rally resources. Read more…


As N.W.T. news outlet suspends print, will northerners stay informed online?
Northern News Services Limited announced the company is suspending print copies and focusing its online output until the COVID-19 crisis is under control. Read more…


Thunder Bay ceases all non-essential services “until further notice”
The City of Thunder Bay announced it will be ceasing all non-essential services and employees have been instructed to stay home. Essential services such as emergency, water, wastewater, and transit will continue. Read more…


City of Regina updates lunch program and makes inspection changes
The City of Regina makes changes to the lunch program and how building inspections will be done to ensure the health of residents during COVID-19. Read more…


City of Guelph closes public waste drop-off to residents
The City of Guelph announced that due to an increase in traffic to waste drop off sites, and in order to help everyone maintain a safe physical distance of two metres, they’re suspending the service. Read more…


Frizzell seeks president’s seat at FCM
Prince George Coun. Garth Frizzell has put his nomination forward for the presidency of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. Read more…


Kamloops, province working to enable virtual council meetings
The City of Kamloops is working with the British Columbia government to speed up the process to allow for virtual council meetings. The city’s procedural bylaw currently does not allow for electronic meetings. Read more…


City of Toronto closing all park amenities and playgrounds
Toronto is closing all city-owned playgrounds and other park amenities effective immediately as part of efforts to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


Mapleton water, wastewater project draws fire from CUPE
Mapleton Township’s plan to outsource construction and operation of municipal water and wastewater infrastructure has drawn fire from a national public workers union. Read more…


Stay away from playgrounds for now, City of Greater Sudbury advises
The City of Greater Sudbury announced that for the time being, it is strongly discouraging the use of playgrounds, as equipment is not sanitized or maintained during the off-season. Read more…


Newfoundland issues stark warning as COVID-19 cases nearly double overnight
The number of COVID-19 patients in Newfoundland and Labrador has nearly doubled overnight, with 32 new cases announced on Wednesday. Read more…


March 25

Emergency COVID-19 bill that ups $27 billion in direct support to $52 billion gets royal assent
An emergency federal bill to give the government billions of dollars to spend to help anxious workers, families and employers cope with COVID-19 is now law. Read more…


Residential landlords face mounting calls for rent relief as COVID-19 results in layoffs, income loss
Residential landlords are facing mounting pressure to ease or defer rental charges as the COVID-19 pandemic results in widespread layoffs and loss of income, leading some tenants to consider withholding payments as part of a “rent strike” due to start next month. Read more…


No state of emergency declaration in Winnipeg, mayor says during COVID-19 response update
There is no need for the City of Winnipeg to declare a local state of emergency right now, the city’s mayor and emergency operations manager said during an update on Winnipeg’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Coronavirus is reshaping the way we get around cities
The rising need for social distancing has been changing how we get around cities – and whether we get around at all. Read more…


Small and medium-sized Quebec hardware stores to remain open during COVID-19 pandemic
While many merchants are forced to close their doors until mid-April, the Quebec government said small and medium-sized hardware stores may remain open following concerns expressed by the association that represents them. Read more…


“Playing it safe”: City of Guelph extends closure of all facilities to April 30
Based on the Ontario government’s declaration of an emergency, and advice from Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health, the City of Guelph is extending the closure of all City facilities to April 30 to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Newfoundland woman arrested for refusing to self isolate after talking to police
The arrest of a Newfoundland woman for refusing to stay home after she returned from a trip outside the province is raising questions about the extent to which law enforcement agencies can limit basic freedoms to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Ottawa declares state of emergency over coronavirus
Mayor Jim Watson has declared a state of emergency in Ottawa in response to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Toronto rolling out major initiatives to help homeless people, vulnerable renters affected by COVID-19
The City of Toronto is taking steps to help prevent homeless people from contracting COVID-19 and help those who have been infected, including opening nine new shelters and setting up Canada’s first dedicated isolation and recovery sites. Read more…


How Regina city councillors are coping and caring for residents amid COVID-19
The background sounds of city council are normally limited to papers shuffling, residents conversing quietly and the shifting of bodies as a room full of people rise to greet the mayor entering council chambers, signalling the beginning of a meeting. In a COVID-19 world the sounds and the view are very different. Read more…


Montreal shelters’ concerns heightened after homeless man tests positive for COVID-19
A first reported case of COVID-19 within Montreal’s homeless community has prompted concern and questions among those who care for the city’s most vulnerable. Read more…


Canadians are panic-buying marijuana: Could coronavirus cause another shortage?
Marijuana sales hit an unprecedented bump recently, as U.S. consumers stocked up on cannabis goods like it was toilet paper or hand sanitizer. Data now shows Canadian cannabis stores experience a similar coronavirus-related spike in sales, in some provinces. Read more…


Kingston aims to open second temporary homeless shelter during COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Kingston confirms it’s working to open a second temporary shelter for the homeless during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City to close streets, ban contact sports in parks to halt coronavirus
New York City will begin closing streets to traffic and ban close contact sports in city parks to help combat the coronavirus, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Wednesday. Read more…


City of Vaughan closing all park facilities, including playgrounds
The City of Vaughan will close all facilities within its parks, including playgrounds, as it works to limit the spread of COVID-19 within the community. Read more…


Government, opposition reach deal on COVID-19 emergency aid bill
The COVID-19 Emergency Response Act passed after significant delays caused by opposition to the Liberals’ attempt to grant broad spending and taxing powers to cabinet without parliamentary oversight. Read more…


London council waives interest and penalties on unpaid taxes for 60 days
Londoners will not be charged any late penalties or interest fees for unpaid property tax bills due at the end of March for two more months as the City of London tries to help lessen the financial burden brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City police to enforce public health order in Moose Jaw
The Moose Jaw Police Service will be checking local bars, nightclubs, and lounges in the coming days to make sure they are closed. Read more…


Municipal councils grapple with ways to be transparent during COVID-19
With social distancing rules in place, councils in Nova Scotia are grappling with ways to hold online meetings while still being transparent with the public. Read more…


Edmonton closes playgrounds, service counters amid COVID-19
Effective immediately, the City of Edmonton is closing all playgrounds as the city continues to navigate the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


City of Hamilton, waste collectors find common ground
The City of Hamilton and the outside workers unit of CUPE 5167 have resolved the health and safety concerns that prompted waste collectors to participate in a one-day work refusal on Monday. Read more…


Is your business closed? OPP have tips to keep your property safe
The OPP are offering tips to anyone who has had to shutter their business either due to provincial order or for social distancing purposes. Read more…


All-volunteer cyber civil defence brigade assembles to fight COVID-19 hackers
Civil defence used to involve air raid wardens, ambulance drivers, and rescue teams. These days, it means taking the fight online – against hackers and cyber criminals looking to take down or ransom critical infrastructure. Read more…


City of Fort St. John declares State of Local Emergency
The City of Fort St. John has declared a State of Local Emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although this declaration provides the city with nine additional powers, it doesn’t mean that they will use all or any of them. Read more…


Saskatoon lays off temporary staff, closes playgrounds amid COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Saskatoon is laying off 126 casual staff members, including lifeguards, cashiers, activity leaders, and recreational employees amid growing fear about the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Kingston city council to move to remote format for future meetings
Kingston council met in a virtual meeting format for the first time on Tuesday and it will likely be via videoconferencing that the councillors will assemble for meetings for the foreseeable future. Read more…


Winnipeg keeping parks open for now, adding physical distancing signage
The City of Winnipeg won’t be closing parks or play structures, but says it’s taking action to get the message out about proper usage during the pandemic. Read more…


Quebec City has laid off 2,000 employees due to the COVID-19 health crisis
Due to the COVID-19 health crisis and following directives from the Quebec government, Quebec City has laid off 2,000 employees. Read more…


March 24

Trudeau rules out phone-based surveillance for now
The federal government isn’t looking at using location data from Canadians’ phones to track cases of the novel coronavirus, but isn’t ruling it out in the future, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday. Read more…


Bombardier furloughs 12,400 workers, halts plane and rail production in Canada
Bombardier Inc. is temporarily halting production at its Canadian plants, sending 12,400 employees on unpaid leave as the plane maker suspends its 2020 financial forecast due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Saskatchewan chief medical health officer cautions about public outdoor spaces for most self-isolating
Saskatchewan has mandated 14-day isolation for travellers, anyone in close contact with COVID-19 patients. However, there seems to be some confusion about what self-isolation means and what people are allowed to do. Read more…


Kitchener offers economic relief for businesses, residents amid coronavirus pandemic
Kitchener city council has approved measures designed to provide some financial relief for area residents and local businesses due to the new coronavirus pandemic, which has shut down much of the city. Read more…


The “measure of last resort”: What is the Emergencies Act and what does it do?
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the provincial and territorial leaders spoke about the possibility of invoking the federal Emergencies Act as the COVID-19 pandemic spreads — legislation that empowers Ottawa to do just about anything it thinks is necessary to cope with the crisis. Read more…


Alberta won’t “tolerate” returning snowbirds who don’t self-isolate immediately
Snowbirds who are returning to Alberta from the U.S. must follow self-isolation rules or else the government will enforce them, Premier Jason Kenney said Monday. Read more…


Canada’s farm industry reacts to Prime Minister’s pledge to aid
With global concern rising in the Agri-food industry, some Saskatchewan farmers breathed a sigh of relief when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced financial aid is imminent during uncertain times as Covid-19 spreads. Read more…


Kitchener offers economic relief for businesses, residents amid coronavirus pandemic
Kitchener city council has approved measures designed to provide some financial relief for area residents and local businesses due to the new coronavirus pandemic, which has shut down much of the city. Read more…


City of St. John’s closes all parks
The City of St. John’s closed all city parks and other outdoor spaces in response to the COVID-19 crisis, to promote social distancing and limit the spread of the pandemic. Read more…


Peterborough city, county declare state of emergency amid coronavirus pandemic
The City of Peterborough and Peterborough County have declared states of emergency amid the coronavirus pandemic. Both municipalities said the declaration may provide access to provincial funding for actions related to the emergency and relief, should funding become available. Read more…


Ontario closing at-risk businesses; releases list of essential workplaces
Due to the evolving COVID-19 situation, the Ontario government is ordering at-risk workplaces to close-down. The list of essential workplaces has now been released. Read more...


Never underestimate the resilience of a city
Cities are uniquely vulnerable in a crisis like this, but – let’s not forget – they are also uniquely resilient. Read more…


Vancouver increases fines to $50,000 for biz breaching state of emergency
Businesses who violate the City of Vancouver’s State of Emergency bylaw by failing to comply with social distancing orders during the COVID-19 pandemic could be fined as much as $50,000. Read more…


Moose Jaw to waive transit and paratransit fees
The City of Moose Jaw will be making a number of changes to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, including waiving ridership fees for city transit and paratransit services. Read more…


Mississauga declares state of emergency
The City of Mississauga has declared a State of Emergency due to the rapid spread of COVID-19. The declaration gives the city options to protect the health and safety of Mississauga’s residents. Read more…


Prince Albert council passes two new emergency measures
Prince Albert council passes two new emergency measures to help deal with the COVID-19 outbreak. However, four others died on the meeting floor and a fifth was cut short after too many councillors left during the meeting. Read more…


City of Victoria to allow temporary shelters during outbreak
Mayor Lisa Helps confirmed the City of Victoria will allow people without homes to set up temporary shelters at Beacon Hill and Topaz parks in a move aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Windsor, emergency shelters shift services for homeless amid COVID-19
The City of Windsor announced shelters would implement heightened screening and cleaning protocols, and adopt social distancing measures such as increased distance between beds and staggered eating times. Read more…


Saint John council rejects freezing wages of city workers
Saint John council defeated a motion to freeze the wages of city workers for four years. Council also reject a motion to cut the mayor’s salary by $10,000 and the compensation of the deputy mayor and each councillor by 10 percent. Read more…


Toronto gathering cellphone location data in bid to slow spread of COVID-19
The City of Toronto is obtaining cellphone data from wireless carriers to help it identify where people have assembled in groups as part of its attempts to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Yellowknife waives late fees for property tax bills
Homeowners who can’t pay their interim property tax by the end of March won’t be charged late payment fees, according to the City of Yellowknife. Read more…


Town of Orangeville announces relief measures
Following the Town of Orangeville’s emergency declaration on March 20, a special meeting was held to waive all fees and interest related to the late payment of property taxes – on all tax classes – for a three-month period. Read more…


March 23

Ontario to close all non-essential businesses, as province confirms 78 new COVID-19 cases
Ontario Premier Doug Ford is ordering all non-essential stores and services to close starting Tuesday at 11:59 p.m. in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Winnipeg biotech company says COVID-19 treatment nearing production
A Winnipeg company is working on a way to treat those who have become ill with COVID-19. Emergent Biosolutions is developing experimental treatments for the illness caused by the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Vancouver seeks big fines, stricter measures as locals ignore social distancing rules
Despite the grim scenes playing out in areas of the world hardest-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, health professionals and government officials are growing increasingly frustrated by those who just don’t seem to understand the severity of the situation. Read more…


Ontario announces $200 million for vulnerable populations
The Ontario government has announced $200 million in new money aimed at protecting Ontario’s most vulnerable populations as part of the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


COVID-19 won’t stop London city council’s meeting. But it will make it dramatically different
London city council will go ahead, officials say, with its regular meeting schedule, and be held in council chambers at 300 Dufferin Ave. as usual. However, there will be some stark changes in format. Read more…


More First Nations lock down borders, declare their own states of emergency to keep COVID-19 out
More First Nations in Manitoba are locking down entry points to their communities and declaring their own states of emergency as the COVID-19 pandemic escalates. Read more…


What does declaring a state of emergency mean for a city?
In the absence of orders from provincial health officers – who instead have been using moral suasion to get people to stay home before resorting to direct order – cities have given themselves specific powers to act on their own. Read more…


Yes, patios must also close under coronavirus measures: City of Vancouver
Some Vancouver bars and restaurants have had to be reminded that the closure of dine-in operations due to the coronavirus pandemic means patios also have to be closed to guests. Read more…


Ottawa’s top doctor estimates 4,000 cases of COVID-19 in the city
Ottawa’s top doctor says there is community transmission of COVID-19 in Ottawa, and people should treat all “interactions with others as a potential source of transmission of COVID-19.” Read more…


Montreal city council to take public questions online during pandemic
Despite social distancing measures banning public gatherings, Montrealers will still have a chance to ask city council questions. Read more…


Halifax closes all parks, beaches, fields to reduce spread of COVID-19
The Halifax Regional Municipality announced Sunday that they will be closing all municipal parks, beaches, playgrounds, sports fields/courts, and trails until further notice. Read more…


City of Vernon gives out 102 layoff notices due to recreation facilities closure
After closing its recreation facilities to help combat the coronavirus pandemic, the City of Vernon has issued 102 layoff notices. Read more…


City of Lacombe closes municipal facilities
The City of Lacombe is shutting down all municipally run facilities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All facilities, including city hall, are closed to the public until further notice. Read more…


Toronto reminds residents social distancing applies at playgrounds, parks
As Toronto streets are lined with closed businesses, many people have been going to city parks and green spaces to get fresh air and get out of their homes, which have turned into makeshift workplaces. Read more…


Montreal police declare state of emergency; people gathering risk $1,000 fines
Montreal police have declared a state of emergency across the territory in order to better respond to the spread of COVID-19 – including breaking up gatherings of more than two people. Read more…


Canadian scientists fight coronavirus pandemic on dozens of fronts
The federal government awarded almost $27 million in grants to coronavirus-related research. The money is funding 47 projects across the country. Read more…


March 22

Canada will use “every measure in our toolbox” to prevent COVID-19 spread, minister says
Health Minister Patty Hajdu delivered a strong message to Canadians on preventing the spread of the coronavirus, saying that while the government would prefer not to penalize those who are asked to stay in self-isolation — it will if it has to. Read more…


Vancouver Park Board closes all public outdoor recreation facilities within parks and beaches
The Vancouver Park Board is closing all public outdoor recreation facilities within parks and beaches. That includes volleyball, skate parks, field sports, and tennis courts. The Park Board said in a tweet that it is currently installing signage to limit access to facilities. Read more…


Toronto man dies from COVID-19, marks city’s first coronavirus-related death
Toronto Public Health (TPH) says a man in his 70s is the first person in the city to die from COVID-19 since the coronavirus outbreak began. The man recently travelled to the United Kingdom. Read more…


Quebec closes shopping malls, restaurants, extends school closure
Quebec is ordering the closure of all restaurant dining rooms and shopping malls until at least May to prevent people from gathering and potentially spreading the virus that causes COVID-19. Read more…


Labatt to switch production from beer to hand sanitizer
Labatt Breweries announced Sunday that they are shifting production from beer to sanitizer. These shifts will take place it their Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto, Montreal, and London. Read more…


Canadian scientists fighting coronavirus pandemic on dozens of fronts
Public health officials across Canada and around the world are working flat out to test as many people as possible for the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Nova Scotia declares province-wide state of emergency
Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil has declared a province-wide state of emergency. Among the province-wide restrictions, no entry into Nova Scotia is being allowed for social reasons and no more than five people permitted to gather in once location. Read more…


Kingston moves youth shelter, creates new space for homeless to “self-isolate”
The City of Kingston is introducing new resources and measures to protect the city’s homeless population during the COVID-19 pandemic. The city said it will also be looking to identify a second location in the city to provide homeless individuals with “a space for self-isolation.” Read more…


Ontario hospitals get new emergency powers; province to set up special daycare centres
Ontario hospitals have been given broad new powers to cope with COVID-19 outbreaks and special day care centres are being set up for the children of health care workers, paramedics, police, and firefighters to help them stay on the job. Read more…


Hydro-Quebec suspends fees as COVID-19 cases rise in province
Hydro-Quebec announced on its website on Sunday that it will be suspending its actions against unpaid bills. The provider said it will cease cutting off power to those unable to pay their electricity bills — residential or business. Read more…


Locals worried as people still head to Rocky Mountains despite COVID-19 pandemic
To the bewilderment of residents who live in places like Canmore and Bragg Creek, many people continue to flock to the mountains with some residents saying their communities were downright bustling despite the COVID-19 pandemic and pleas from governments to stay home. Read more…


Local spread of coronavirus confirmed in Toronto; city urges continued social distancing
Toronto’s chief medical officer of health confirmed Saturday that community transmission of the coronavirus is occurring in the city. The city also cautioned people who gather in parks that they are putting others at risk for infection. Read more…


Calgary City Hall restricting access starting Monday
As COVID-19 continues to spread, the City of Calgary is restricting access to its city hall complex in an effort to minimize the amount of people gathering in a single space and encourage social distancing. Read more…


Appointing councillor only option if city can’t hold byelection
The City of Ottawa’s ability to hold a byelection in Cumberland ward during a global pandemic is decreasing by the day, raising the possibility of selecting the only other option to fill the vacant council seat. Read more…


City of Nanaimo close all playgrounds after public comments, concerns
City officials have followed the lead of other municipalities in the region, along with pressure from Nanaimo residents and shut down playgrounds during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


The City of Windsor announces collaboration to help the homeless
As the City of Windsor announced a State of Emergency, the Windsor Essex County Health Unit, The Downtown Mission, The Welcome Centre, and the Salvation Army Centre of Hope, are working together to help the homeless. Read more…


Regina city council to ask SHA for health assessment of refinery work camp
Worried about the safety of workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Regina city council is calling on the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) to do an assessment of the refinery work camps. Read more…


Orillia shuts down access to playgrounds due to pandemic fears
The City of Orillia continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic by evaluating the precautionary measures it can put in place to combat the spread of the virus and encourage social distancing. Read more…


City of Medicine Hat launches list of COVID-19 support
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Medicine Hat has put together a list of support that is available. The list is comprised of government agencies, cultural supports, financial assistance, grocery stores, and mental health resources. Read more…


London playgrounds stay open, but city urges kids to keep safe distance from each other
The City of London says it will keep playgrounds open for now, but is urging kids who play on them to keep a safe distance away from each other. Read more…


Northwest Territories shuts its borders as 1st case of COVID-19 confirmed
The Northwest Territories has its first confirmed case of COVID-19. It’s the first case from all three territories, which were the last provincial and territorial jurisdictions remaining in Canada to report zero cases of COVID-19. Read more…


March 21

Quebec City police arrest COVID-19 patient for defying quarantine
Quebec City police have arrested a woman, who has tested positive for the coronavirus, for being out in the city’s Limoilou neighbourhood despite being under a quarantine order. Read more…


Travellers returning from March break “must stay home,” Toronto’s medical officer of health says
Toronto’s medical officer of health Dr. Eileen de Villa is reminding anyone who travelled over March break that ignoring the stipulated 14-day self-isolation is not an option, as the city works to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


No extension of city utility bill, property tax deadlines
The City of Prince George is encouraging residents to take advantage of several remote-paying options for utility bills and property taxes. There is no change to payment deadlines for utility bills or property taxes, the city said in a statement. Read more…


Winnipeg budget passes as political business winds down at city hall
Winnipeg’s city council voted 11-3 for a four-year budget that sees some grants pared back and a property tax increase of 2.33 percent. The budget vote came during what may be one of the last public meetings at city hall for several weeks or months because of COVID-19. Read more…


Montreal announces measures to protect city’s homeless amid pandemic
Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante and health officials announced that homeless people in Montreal infected with coronavirus, or who may be infected with the virus and are awaiting results, will be housed in isolation at the old Royal Victoria Hospital. Read more…


Prince Albert City Hall closes its doors in response to COVID-19
Prince Albert City Hall is closed to the public due to the COVID-19 virus. The city announced employees will continue to do their regular jobs but with no face-to-face public interaction. Read more…


Regina votes to add retail stores to list of businesses it feels should be closed
Effective Monday, Regina city council has added a selection of retail stores – including clothing, shoes, sporting, furniture, toy, craft, and gaming retail shops – to the list of businesses they feel must close in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Windsor declares state of emergency, Devonshire and Tecumseh malls to close
As part of the city’s ongoing response to COVID-19, Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens officially declared a state of emergency Friday evening and ordered the temporary closures of Devonshire and Tecumseh malls. Read more…


City service to be offered remotely for Kelowna residents
The City of Kelowna has announced that from now on, city services will be delivered remotely. Services will continue to be available by phone, e-mail and appointment only, during regular business hours. Read more…


March 20

City of London declares state of emergency
The City of London has declared a state of emergency, which gives the city access to provincial funding when it becomes available. The state of emergency was declared Friday, the same day when the number of cases in London and Ontario jumped. Read more…


City of Kamloops declares state of local emergency due to pandemic
The City of Kamloops has declared a state of local emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The declaration gives the city the opportunity to quickly address emerging issues for the purposes of enhancing preparedness and response to the pandemic. Read more…


City of Ottawa task force addressing senior isolation, food security and housing concerns
A City of Ottawa “human needs task force” is keeping an eye on issues related to food security and helping vulnerable residents during this sensitive period of protecting people from the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


COVID-19 may keep Quebec students out of school until May, Legault says
As the number of COVID-19 cases in the province rises, Premier François Legault says it may be weeks before children return to school. He added it is “unlikely” children will be back in the province’s schools before the beginning of May. Read more…


Feds offer help to companies to retool, pump out COVID-19 medical gear
The federal government is unveiling a plan to have companies quickly produce medical equipment to cope with the rapidly multiplying cases of COVID-19 across Canada. Read more…


Partial Canada-U.S. border closure to take effect at midnight, Trudeau says
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the mutual decision by Canada and the United States to close their shared border to non-essential travel will take effect at midnight tonight. Read more…


Six new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in London region
Six new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the London region, according to the Middlesex-London Health Unit. Health officials believe all six patients acquired the virus through community transmission. Read more…


New York Govenor Cuomo bans gatherings, nonessential workers to stay home
Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he is ordering all workers in nonessential businesses to stay home and is banning gatherings statewide as confirmed cases in New York climbed to more than 7,000. Read more…


Côte Saint-Luc mayor urges self-isolation as 4 people test positive for COVID-19
Four people in Côte Saint-Luc have tested positive for COVID-19, prompting the mayor to urge residents to self-isolate to prevent the spread of the virus. Read more…


Woman purposefully coughs in St. Albert shop owner’s face
The owner of a St. Albert vape shop says she was shocked and angry when a customer purposefully coughed in her face after being asked to leave the store because she should be self-isolating. Read more…


No Indigenous community will be “left behind” in COVID-19 response
The federal government is offering $305 million to address the immediate needs of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit communities, and to get out public health messages in those communities. Read more…


Beware of COVID-19 scams, say police and municipalities
Reports have arisen of people receiving calls and text messages offering home testing for COVID-19 or free medical masks. Read more…


North Battleford to close city hall on March 23; considering online meetings
North Battleford has announced it will close city hall to the public effective Monday, March 23. The council meeting for that day has also been cancelled, but the city is working to establish council meetings through electronic means. Read more…


City of Richmond declares emergency, shuts down city hall
Richmond city council voted unanimously to declare an emergency, giving the city the ability to use any power it has to combat the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


Kingston waives hourly parking fees in response to COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Kingston has made the decision to waive all hourly parking fees on city streets in response to concerns over the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Coronavirus infects Manitoba budget projections
Manitoba Finance Minister Scott Fielding finally got to introduce his 2020 budget. However, in the midst of the novel coronavirus pandemic, his economic and fiscal projections are in a state of flux. Read more…


Toronto announces 60-day grace period for bill payments amid pandemic
Mayor John Tory has announced a 60-day grace period for City of Toronto residents and businesses due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Saskatoon approves emergency measures as pandemic spreads
Saskatoon council unanimously approved a suite of emergency measures designed to ease the financial burden on residents as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the province mounts. Read more…


More than 5,000 layoffs at Air Canada due to COVID-19
Air Canada has announced more than 5,000 workers will be laid off come April 30 due to a stark reduction in demand and strict limits on the destinations to which planes can fly amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Gov. Gavin Newsom of California orders Californians to stay at home
Gov. Gavin Newsom of California has ordered Californians – all 40 million of them – to stay in their houses as much as possible in the coming weeks as the state confronts the escalating coronavirus outbreak. Read more…


March 19

Meeting rules could impact COVID-19 financial relief vote at London city hall
According to the Municipal Act only council members in attendance can vote on motions. London Mayor Ed Holder is asking the province to temporary permit voting remotely. Read more…


Quebec urges all municipalities to put a halt to citizen gatherings
The Quebec government is asking all municipalities to cancel or postpone all forms of consultation that require the presence of citizens, such as public consultation meetings, referendums or register keeping. Read more…


Nunavik forms COVID-19 response committee
Nunavik’s leaders have struck a new committee to help coordinate responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Nunavik Regional Emergency Preparedness Advisory Committee brought together the Kativik Regional Police Force and the Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services, led by the Kativik Regional Government. Read more…


Nearly $1 million in funding for Western to start work on COVID-19 vaccine
A team of researchers at Western University is starting work on a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 – the virus that causes COVID-19. Western is home to Canada’s newest Containment Level 3 facility, which will allow researchers to work safely. Read more…


Wuhan reports no new coronavirus cases, offering hope to world
Wuhan was where the COVID19 outbreak first took hold and thousands once lay sick or dying in hurriedly constructed hospitals. But Chinese authorities said Thursday that all 34 new cases recorded over the previous day had been imported from abroad. Read more…


Halton announces second COVID-19 death in Ontario as province announces 43 new cases
Halton Region Public Health announces that it has been notified of a death related to COVID-19. The individual, a man in his 50s, is the second known death in Ontario related to COVID-19. Read more…


City of Windsor closes city hall, scales back services
The City of Windsor is closing city hall and scaling back all non-essential programs to ensure it can deliver critical services in the face of the COVID-19 threat. The changes begin at the end of the business day on Thursday and will continue until at least April 5. Read more…


City of Kingston increasing allowed number of residential garbage bags
Until April 5, the City of Kingston is increasing the number of garbage bags – from 1 to 4 – that each household is allowed to put out. This change is being instituted to help self-isolating individuals and families to dispose of their garbage safely. Read more…


Corner Brook rolls back city staff while preparing for “protracted situation” with COVID-19
The City of Corner Brook is starting to prepare for what the mayor is calling a “protracted situation” with the COVID-19 outbreak. One of the first measures the city is taking is to send home city employees, with the exception of core services staff. Read more…


City of Kamloops closes scores of buildings amid pandemic
Following a state of emergency declared in the province, the City of Kamloops is taking further steps to close civic facilities to the public, including city hall, bylaw services and the water- and sewage-treatment plants. Read more…


City of Vancouver declares state of emergency amid coronavirus outbreak
The City of Vancouver has declared a state of emergency in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic. It gives the city power to enforce public safety measures, such as monitoring grocery stores and pharmacies, to curb panic buying. Read more…


City of Saskatoon closes all facilities amid pandemic, including city hall
The City of Saskatoon is closing all its facilities, including city hall, after the Saskatchewan government declared a state of emergency. Read more…


COVID-19 concerns don’t dampen opposition to Winnipeg budget
Despite public health officials discouraging gatherings and encouraging social distancing during the COVID-19 outbreak, the list of delegations wishing to speak about the city budget runs 14 pages. Read more…


Orillia shutting down; declaring an emergency is “on the table”
While the city’s offices within the Orillia City Centre are closed to the public, there will be at least one staff member in each department to field calls and answer emailed questions during business hours. Read more…


Port Moody shuts down city hall, cancels and closes meetings
Port Moody is shutting down normal operations at city hall so the city can deal with COVID-19 pandemic, says Mayor Rob Vagramov. Read more…


Quebec City to open a drive-thru COVID screening clinic
Quebec City is opening a drive-thru COVID-19 screening clinic. Citizens can therefore be tested without getting out of their car: they only have to go through a garage door and exit from the other end like a car wash. Read more…


Toronto confirms seven more COVID-19 cases, says local transmission rising
Toronto Public Health confirmed seven new cases of COVID-19, with officials saying the evidence for local transmission of the virus appears to be growing. Read more…


Steinbach city council prepared to cancel April meetings if necessary
Steinbach city council passed a motion giving Mayor Earl Funk the ability to postpone, cancel, or change meeting dates in April with 72-hour notice. Read more…


Water taps won’t be turned off for Halifax residents struggling to pay
All Halifax Regional Municipality customer service centres are closed to the public, but those water customers facing economic hardships will not lose services because of an inability to pay during the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…

City of Ottawa to defer property taxes in light of COVID-19
The City of Ottawa is giving property owners more time to pay their property tax bills in light of the financial challenges created by he COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


March 18

Canada’s big grocers say there’s enough food stock to go around
Amid panic buying due to concerns around the spread of COVID-19, Canadian grocers are assuring customers they have enough supply to go around for most products. Read more…


City of Toronto fires director of Office of Emergency Management in middle of COVID-19 crisis
The City of Toronto has abruptly fired the director of its Office of Emergency Management, Charles Jansen. Jansen said he was relieved of his duties by city officials who told him the city is taking the office in “a different direction” and that they were worried Jansen “might not be the right fit.” Read more…


Moncton fire chief overseeing pandemic response goes into self-isolation
Moncton’s fire chief, in charge of the city’s emergency response to the coronavirus pandemic, has gone into self-isolation after learning he was among 70 people aboard a WestJet flight with a Prince Edward Island woman who tested positive. Read more…


Yellowknife closing facilities, suspending programming
The City of Yellowknife is shutting down six of its facilities and suspending visitor centre services out of city hall as a method to prepare for the potential spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Strathroy-Caradoc has issued a Declaration of Emergency
The Municipality of Strathroy-Caradoc has issued a Declaration of Emergency. The municipality reassured residents the declaration doesn’t reflect any material change to the situation at hand, but will better position it to access funding related to COVID-19. Read more…


Canada’s big banks to allow mortgage payment deferrals
Canada’s big six banks will allow mortgage payment deferrals for up to six months as part of extraordinary measures to help customers struggling with the financial impacts of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


London council to waive interest, penalties on unpaid taxes for 30 days 
London city councillors will introduce a motion to provide economic relief for families so they can weather the financial hardships of the growing coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Trudeau announces $82 billion in aid; Canada/U.S. border closed to non-essential traffic
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says temporary wage subsidies will be provided to businesses to keep employees on the payroll. Income tax deadlines extended to August. Child care benefit will also be boosted for families. Read more…


Canada, U.S. working to close border to non-essential travel over coronavirus
Canada and the U.S. are working on a mutual ban on non-essential travel between the two countries over the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


Moose Jaw making changes to council meetings during pandemic
In addition to closing many city-run facilities, Moose Jaw council will stick with its normal meeting schedule, but sessions will be closed to the public. Read more…


City of Toronto scaling back on “non-essential” services
The City of Toronto is scaling back or changing the delivery of a slew of non-essential services. However, services such as police, fire, paramedics, garbage collection, water, and others will continue. Read more..


City of Regina outlines bill payment options amid city hall closure
Regina’s city hall is closed to the public until further notice to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Instead, the city is offering a list of alternatives to making bill payments in person. Read more…


City of Windsor postpones Ward 7 byelection
Citing COVID-19 concerns, the City of Windsor announced the April 27 byelection for the Ward 7 seat will be postponed until a yet-to-be-determined date. Read more…


City of Winnipeg moves to Level 2 emergency response to COVID-19
The City of Winnipeg has upgraded its response to the COVID-19 pandemic to Level 2 as it manages essential services and assesses what changes are coming. Read more…


City of Vernon to close all recreation facilities
The City of Vernon is benching its recreation services during what it calls the “unprecedented times” of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


South Niagara municipalities close city halls
Welland, Port Colborne, Wainfleet, and Pelham have closed their offices to the public. All four municipalities also partially activated their emergency operations centres before Ontario declared a state of emergency. Read more…


City of Charlottetown unveils efforts to prevent spread of coronavirus
The City of Charlottetown is locking the doors to all of its buildings – including both fire stations, the police station, and city hall – to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


B.C. just announced a public health emergency. What does that mean?
British Columbia has announced a public health emergency due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. It’s just the second time such a declaration has been put into effect. Read more…


March 17

Canada among top world performers in testing for COVID-19, despite shortcomings
Figures indicated 34,000 had been swabbed for the pathogen across Canada, compared to 23,000 tests in the U.S., which has 10 times the population and number of COVID-19 cases. Read more…


PM says financial measures on the way to help “millions of Canadians” get through COVID-19 crisis
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says a package of financial supports is on the way to help millions of Canadians and businesses get through the COVID-19 crisis — and he isn’t ruling out an extension to the tax filing deadline. Read more…


City workers asked to report to offices, despite social distancing push during COVID-19 outbreak
City workers who can work remotely are concerned the city is asking them to report for work, even as Toronto’s medical officer of health has asked that anyone who can stay home do so. Read more…


City of Orillia CAO back at city hall day after returning from Cayman Islands
City CAO Gayle Jackson returned from a vacation to the Cayman Islands on Sunday and was given permission to return to work at city hall Monday rather than self-isolate. Read more…


Eight more cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Ontario, bringing total to 185
There are eight more cases of the COVID-19 in Ontario, bringing the provincial total to 185, including five recoveries, as of Tuesday morning. Among the cases, five are in Hamilton, two are in Middlesex-London, and one is in York Region. Read more…


Ontario declares state of emergency amid COVID-19 pandemic 
Ontario Premier Doug Ford has declared a state of emergency as the province tries to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Homeless vulnerable to COVID-19 need help from governments: advocates
Homeless people staying in close quarters at shelters, tent cities, and warming centres are especially at risk for COVID-19, says a Vancouver community advocate working to ensure hand-washing stations and clean bathrooms are available. Read more…


Alberta cities ramping up measures to fight spread of COVID-19
Two Alberta cities – Calgary and Red Deer – have called local states of emergency to help fight the spread of COVID-19. The move gives these cities access to additional resources and special powers under the Emergency Management Act. Read more…


How cities around the world are handling COVID-19
Cities that are open, transparent, collaborative, and adopt comprehensive responses are better equipped to manage pandemics than those that are not. Read more…


No local state of emergency, but Edmonton cutting transit hours amid COVID-19
Edmonton is not declaring a local state of emergency but is switching transit services to a reduced schedule amid a fall in ridership brought on by COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto faces new reality amid “evidence” of COVID-19 community spread
All Toronto bars, nightclubs, theatres, and restaurants – with the exception of take-out options – were asked to close, or risk facing a $25,000 daily fine. Read more…


Uber suspends pooled rides in US and Canada to limit coronavirus spread
Uber Technologies is suspending shared rides on its ride-hailing platform in the United States and Canada to limit the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


More beaches are shut down in South Florida to ward off coronavirus
More South Florida cities closed down their beaches after Fort Lauderdale and Miami Beach announced they were shutting down to help contain COVID-19. Read more…


Trump asks Americans to avoid groups over 10 people
U.S. President Donald Trump is asking Americans to avoid restaurants, groups of more than 10, and older people and those with underlying conditions. Read more…


U.S. cities and states suspend water shutoffs to tackle coronavirus pandemic
Almost 90 cities and states across the U.S. have suspended water shutoffs for residents unable to afford their bills, as local leaders scramble to tackle the complex public health threats posed by the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


“Unprecedented”: B.C. cities close facilities, suspend “non-essential services”
Several B.C. municipalities are suspending non-essential services and shutting down civic facilities in an effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Halifax outlines measures taken to mitigate risk of COVID-19
Halifax Regional Municipality is shutting down recreational and community facilities while urging citizens to look out for each other. Read more…


Canadian tourism operators hope for cruise ports to reopen
Tourism operators across the country are hoping that Canadian ports will reopen to cruise ship passengers in time for the busy season to begin in July. Read more…


Regina takes action against COVID-19, closing recreation facilities and libraries
The City of Regina announced a number of preemptive measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including shutting down its community and recreation facilities to the public. Read more…


Quebec ramps up testing in bid to contain coronavirus
As coronavirus cases continue to climb in Quebec, the province has rolled out new measures to mitigate the economic impact of the disease. Read more…


WHO says countries not testing enough for coronavirus cases
The World Health Organization said that while social-distancing measures are important, countries need to ramp up testing in order to fight COVID-19. Read more…


March 16

Montreal, public health authorities aim to inform travellers at airport over coronavirus outbreak
Travellers arriving at the Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport in Montreal will be asked to self-isolate for two weeks and take their temperatures twice per day as the number of novel coronavirus cases continues to climb in the province. Read more…


City of Saskatoon closing leisure centres, libraries to mitigate COVID-19 risk
The City of Saskatoon is closing all its leisure centres, libraries and indoor rinks until further notice in order to mitigate the risk of contracting COVID-19. Read more…


City of Regina closes city centres, postpones council meetings
The City of Regina has announced the closure of most city centres and postponement of council meetings in an effort to handle COVID-19. Read more…


Canada’s Chief Medical Officer says government needs to “act now”
Top Canadian public-health officials stressed that the window is closing to limit the exponential spread of COVID-19 as they escalated warnings and broad closings and identified new cases of community spread. Read more…


Calgary declares state of local emergency in response to COVID-19
The City of Calgary declared a state of local emergency Sunday as the number of COVID-19 infections in Alberta jumped significantly over the weekend. Read more…


Winnipeg council to vote on budget five days earlier than scheduled
The City of Winnipeg’s preliminary multi-year budget will be voted on by council a full five days earlier than scheduled in response to actions taken by the provincial government on COVID-19. Read more…


City of Edmonton employee tests positive for COVID-19
The City of Edmonton announced late Sunday a municipal employee has tested positive for COVID-19. According to the city, the case is travel-related. Read more…


City of Ottawa municipal facilities close, malls reduce hours due to COVID-19
All City of Ottawa recreation and cultural facilities are now closed for the next three weeks in a bid to minimize the potential spread of COVID-19 in the community. Read more…


Vancouver mayor Kennedy Stewart outlines city’s response to COVID-19
Mayor Kennedy Stewart says his top priority right now is to ensure that the spread of the virus can be slowed and that Vancouver’s most vulnerable residents remain safe. Read more…


Toronto councillor calls for postponement of commercial property taxes
A Toronto city councillor is calling for commercial property taxes, water and waste collection bills to be postponed for local businesses in the city amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Saskatoon closing leisure facilities, public libraries
The City of Saskatoon is temporarily shutting down its leisure facilities and all Saskatoon Public Library locations to limit the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Kawartha Lakes has first confirmed case of COVID-19
Health officials have confirmed the first positive case of COVID-19 in the City of Kawartha Lakes. According to health officials, the woman in her 60s recently visited Germany. Read more…


Majority of Canadians worried about a coronavirus outbreak, poll finds
According to the poll, 59 percent of Canadians were worried that someone in their family would get sick from the coronavirus. Read more…


March 15

Toronto mayor to set up task force to help businesses affected by COVID-19
Toronto Mayor John Tory would lead an “economic support and recovery” task force designed to help businesses affected by the economic fallout of the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more …


COVID-19-related closures, cancellations at Metro Vancouver community centres and libraries
After British Columbia prohibited gatherings of more than 250 people Thursday, cities cancelled events and bookings expected to draw crowds of 250 or more. All Lower Mainland cities are urging anyone experiencing symptoms to self-isolate. Read more …


“Don’t travel here unless absolutely necessary,” says City of Iqaluit
The City of Iqaluit is asking the public not to travel to the city unless absolutely necessary, amid growing concerns over the prospect of the COVID-19 virus spreading in Nunavut. Read more …


Ottawa reports 5 new cases of COVID-19, bringing city total to 10
Ontario health officials confirmed five new cases of novel coronavirus in Ottawa Sunday morning, bringing the total in the city to 10. Read more …


City of London closing all city-operated facilities due to COVID-19
The City of London has announced that it’s cancelling all city-operated programs and closing the facilities where those programs are run due to COVID-19. Read more …


Edmonton closes city facilities and rec centres due to COVID-19
The City of Edmonton has closed all of its recreation facilities and attractions. Annual memberships will be put on hold, and the city is working on full or prorated refunds for programs. Read more …


City of Windsor to close facilities in response to COVID-19
The City of Windsor has opted to close some of its public facilities as a proactive measure following updates from the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit in response to COVID-19. Read more …


City of Kamloops closes hot tubs, saunas and steam rooms; public facilities to remain open
All City of Kamloops-operated hot tubs, saunas and steam rooms will be closed until further notices based on direction from the BC and Yukon Lifesaving Society. At this time public facilities remain open. Read more …


City of Brantford closing municipal facilities
All city-owned community centres and facilities in Brantford are being closed in response to the threat of the coronavirus pandemic. They will remain closed until at least April 5. Read more …


March 14

City of Saskatoon creates webpage to help keep public informed about COVID-19
After Saskatoon’s first two presumptive cases of COVID-19 were discovered, the City of Saskatoon has created a webpage to help keep resident informed on the effect the virus is having on the community. Read more …


City of Winnipeg shutting down pools, libraries
The City of Winnipeg has announced that all city-owned and operated recreation centres, pools and libraries will be closed to the public beginning Monday, March 16. Read more …


City temporarily cancels all rec and culture programming, enacts other measures
The City of Red Deer announced the temporary cancellation of all recreation and culture programming at city facilities – effective immediately. Read more …


London Mayor Ed Holder will start self-isolation on Monday
London Mayor Ed Holder will self-isolate for two weeks starting Monday, after returning from a trip to the U.S. Read more…


Toronto shutting down major city services, Mayor Tory self-isolating
The City of St. Catharines is closing several city facilities until early April to help stop the spread of COVID-19, including all recreation centres, arenas, and sports fields. Read more…


City of Lachute closes municipal buildings, suspends all municipal activities, events
The City of Lachute announced this afternoon that all municipal buildings will be closed immediately and all municipal activities will be suspended, including use of the municipal pool. Read more…


Regina lays out COVID-19 strategy
Regina Mayor Michael Fougere explained that just because there aren’t any presumptive cases of COVID-19 in the city, doesn’t mean that they can’t be cautious and be prepared. Read more…


City of Ottawa closing all facilities on Monday, launching supports for festivals, small businesses
The City of Ottawa is closing all of its facilities, starting Monday, March 16. In the meantime city task force has been assembled to reduce the affect of coronavirus-related closures on special events, restaurants, and small businesses. Read more…


City of Gatineau shuttering facilities while opening first COVID-19 assessment centre
Though Gatineau has yet to have a confirmed case of COVID-19, authorities asked anyone with suspicious symptoms to call 1-877-644-4545 for guidance. Read more…


City of Iqaluit forms COVID-19 task force
To deal with a potential outbreak of COVID-19, the City of Iqaluit has created a take force dedicated to coordinating its prevention and, should the need arise, response. Read more…


Kelowna cancels large events in city-run facilities
The City of Kelowna is following a directive from provincial health officials, and will cancel all events attracting more than 250 people in city-run facilities. Read more…


Edmonton encourages two-metre separation distance, caution while using transit
City leaders are encouraging aggressive social distancing measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic while keeping transit running and recreation centres open. Read more …


March 13

City of St. Catharines closing several city facilities
The City of St. Catharines is closing several city facilities until early April to help stop the spread of COVID-19, including all recreation centres, arenas, and sports fields. Read more…


Queensway Carleton shuts down drive-thru testing centre
Hours after it opened, Queensway Carleton Hospital has shut down the city’s first drive-thru testing facility for COVID-19, a temporary measure to reduce a backlog. Read more…


Calgary implements Municipal Emergency Plan amid coronavirus pandemic
In response to the constantly changing COVID-19 situation, the City of Calgary implemented its municipal emergency plan. Read more…


Woodstock to proceed with March Break camps despite virus fears
Kids are still welcome to attend the City of Woodstock’s March Break camps, but the city said it will be taking extra precautions as concerns around the COVID-19 virus mount. Read more…


Barrie using “abundance of caution” with changes and cancellations
The City of Barrie is working closely with the Simcoe-Muskoka District Health Unit and other community partners to monitor the global situation and respond accordingly. Read more…


No confirmed cases in Windsor area of COVID-19
Tests remain ongoing, but there are no confirmed local cases of COVID-19 as of Friday afternoon, said Windsor’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Wajid Ahmed. Read more…


FCM takes steps in response to COVID-19 outbreak
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities has announced a 30-day work-from-home directive for all staff – effective Monday, March 16. It is also immediately suspending all international and domestic business travel. Read more…


Edmonton city council to hold emergency meeting on COVID-19
Edmonton will hold an emergency council meeting to discuss closing recreation centres and other actions in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


Quebec bans gatherings of more than 250 people to contain COVID-19 spread
Quebec Premier François Legault has banned public gatherings of more than 250 people and ordered into quarantine any public servants who return from outside the country, saying it’s time for the province to go into “emergency mode.” Read more…


Victoria council asking for ban on cruise ship visits amid coronavirus pandemic
Victoria city council has passed a resolution calling on the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority and Transport Canada to suspend cruise ship visits to the Port of Victoria until the risk of coronavirus transmission has subsided. Read more…


Toronto activates “emergency operations centre” in response to coronavirus
The City of Toronto says it has begun the next phase of managing COVID-19 by activating its “Emergency Operations Centre” in response to the global pandemic of coronavirus. Read more…


City facilities to remain open as Moose Jaw officials monitor COVID-19 situation
The City of Moose Jaw is monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely, but announced it will keep city facilities open – for now. Read more…


Canada develops COVID-19 guidelines on when to cancel major events
The Public Health Agency of Canada has posted guidelines aimed at helping event planners figure out whether to cancel mass gatherings of people as the federal government works to quell the potential spread of novel coronavirus. Read more…


Cobourg cancels all town events amid coronavirus concerns
The Town of Cobourg has cancelled all of its events as part of “decisive action” to ensure the well-being of residents in light of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Halifax first responders preparing for coronavirus pandemic
First responders in Halifax are preparing for the province to be hit by the global pandemic of the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Local Municipalities Issue Statements on Coronavirus
Municipal officials are working with the Dufferin County officials, and health authorities while closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation. Read more…


March 12

Ontario schools to shut down for two weeks after March Break to fight the spread of COVID-19
Ontario schools will be shut down for two weeks following the March Break to help fight the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


COVID-19 can “completely overwhelm” hospital, health system
The medical officer of health at Thunder Bay District Health Unit warned that COVID-19 has the potential to “completely overwhelm the health system and the hospital.” Read more…


Toronto to activate emergency operations centre amid COVID-19 outbreak
The City of Toronto says that it will create a task force and activate its emergency operations centre amid the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


Mayor holds off on COVID-19 motion at council meeting
After discussions with administration, Mayor Don Scott decided to hold off a motion proposing a municipal response plan to COVID-19 after reviewing steps already undertaken. Read more…


County prepping for COVID-19 potential impact
With waves of international news about the spread of the coronavirus, and its declaration from the World Health Organization  as a pandemic illness, Prince Edward County is preparing for potential impact. Read more…


Enhanced measures to protect Ontarians from COVID-19
As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to evolve globally, Ontario is taking further action to ensure the province’s health care system is positioned to continue to safeguard the health and well-being of Ontarians. Read more…


Still no confirmed COVID-19 cases in N.L.
Newfoundland and Labrador’s health minister says there are still no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the province as of March 12. Read more…


B.C. forestry convention cancelled due to coronavirus
The B.C. Council of Forest Industries has cancelled its annual convention due to concerns about COVID-19. Read more…


COVID-19 worries prompt Saskatoon Catholic churches to remove holy water, common communion cup
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon has that it’s temporarily restricting some liturgical practices in its parishes across the city due to growing concern about the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


NYC mayor says new virus restrictions will be announced soon
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said he will announce new restrictions on gatherings to halt the spread of the new coronavirus in the coming days. Read more…


30 percent of Winnipeg firefighters could become exposed to COVID-19
The president of the United Fire Fighters of Winnipeggers said upwards of 30 percent of the firefighting force could be exposed to COVID-19 and will need to be quarantined. Read more…


Coronavirus: Hamilton public health confirms 2nd positive test for COVID-19
Hamilton Public Health has confirmed that a 52-year-old man is the second case of COVID-19, the novel coronavirus disease, in the city. Read more…


Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief statement on coronavirus disease pandemic
Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Glen Hare states that the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the global coronavirus disease outbreak a pandemic. Read more…


Air Canada halting service to Lethbridge, Medicine Hat
Air Canada is suspending service at airports in Lethbridge and Medicine Hat at the end of this month. Read more…


Windsor groups raising money for Chinese cities hit by coronavirus
A pair of local Chinese associations have joined with the City of Windsor to send supplies to two cities in China hit hard by the coronavirus. Read more…


March 11

City of Calgary outlines plans to “flatten the curve” of COVID-19
Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi said the city would be making a number of determinations on how to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak and its plans to attempt to “flatten the curve.” Read more…


As COVID-19 hits pandemic status, Kamloops taking cues from health experts
While there is no need to panic, City of Kamloops CAO David Trawin said the municipality is meeting with Interior Health and has a pandemic plan in case of an emergency. Read more…


Chicago, other cities, cancel St. Patrick’s Day parades
Chicago has joined the ranks of cities around the world to scrap St. Patrick’s Day parades over concerns about spreading the new coronavirus. Read more…


“This isn’t a sprint,” city manager tells Edmonton committee on COVID-19 prep
While Edmonton is making preparations to control the coronavirus outbreak, it isn’t currently planning to shut down any facilities or cancel events. Read more…

A Supplement to the Municipal World Daily

To help our clients and partners in their efforts to  #FlattenTheCurve across Canada, Municipal World is curating this special #COVID19 news update page. The response to the outbreak is rolling out differently across the country, as appropriate for local circumstances, so our team is working to collect those items most relevant to local governments, including changes related to conferences and events. Also, you can listen to our special podcast episode on the coronavirus and the impact on communities. Check back for updates as they are posted.

Coronavirus Municipal Conference Updates

Last updated: April 29 at 3 p.m.

April 29

Ontario’s big city mayors join call for emergency municipal funding
The Large Urban Mayors’ Caucus of Ontario has joined the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) in its request for emergency funding for municipalities from the Government of Canada. Read more…


Cuts are coming to city halls across B.C. Here’s what you need to know
Cuts are coming to city halls across B.C., with municipalities dipping into savings in order to make up for lost revenue from the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


Transit Windsor re-start expected to rack up losses for city hall
The imminent resumption of public transit service is expected to be a costly endeavour according to a report outlining COVID-19 related costs for the City of Windsor. Read more…


Montreal parking restrictions to take effect this week after city loosened rules
Parking restrictions in Montreal will once again be fully enforced starting on Friday after the city initially eased the rules that usually come into effect in April due to the novel coronavirus crisis. Read more…


Advocates push Ottawa to buy hotels as housing for city’s homeless during coronavirus pandemic
As many hotels across the nation’s capital sit empty, some are seeing an opportunity to both protect the city’s vulnerable populations during the coronavirus pandemic and address long-term homelessness concerns in Ottawa. Read more…


City of Prince George tailors downtown initiatives to meet emerging needs amidst pandemic
The City of Prince George is working with several of its partners on a number of initiatives during the COVID-19 pandemic aimed at improving safety, cleanliness, and inclusion for all residents, in the downtown. Read more…


Here’s what to expect from the City of Saskatoon in the coming months
City council’s decision to approve a package of financial measures and service reductions aimed at partially offsetting the cost of the coronavirus pandemic will affect not only city employees, but also everyone living in Saskatoon. Read more…


Edmonton requesting $300 million increase in borrowing limit 
The City of Edmonton is asking council to more than double its current borrowing limit to $500 million as a result of lower tax revenue expected in June. Read more…


Public donates close to 80,000 gloves, masks, shields to Windsor, Essex County
Close to 80,000 gloves and masks and thousands of litres of hand sanitizer have been collected by City of Windsor and Essex County municipal staff to help front line health care workers. Read more…


Montreal to continue delivery service for businesses during COVID-19 crisis
The City of Montreal announced it will continue to offer local businesses a delivery service during the COVID-19 pandemic that has resulted in a state of emergency in the city. Read more…


Calgary doles out first fines for breaking COVID-19 physical distancing rules
Calgary peace officers have written the first tickets for people “flagrantly ignoring social distancing orders” during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Toronto rolling out free internet to low-income, vulnerable residents
Mayor John Tory said the city will be installing temporary free internet access to some of Toronto’s most vulnerable residents as COVID-19 restrictions force more essential activities online. Read more…


Medicine Hat won’t restrict residents from leaving the city
Medicine Hat’s director of emergency management says that despite what he’s heard from some residents, officials won’t stop letting people leave the city. Read more…


Vancouver’s brief run of free parking is over
Vancouver council has decided that free parking across the city has run its course – with paid parking being reinstated this week, including at meters. Read more…


Social distancing means massive lineups at Winnipeg landfills, says city
Winnipeg’s solid waste manager says social distancing measures were a big reason behind massive lineups at city-run landfills and recycling facilities. Read more…


Saint John floats idea of heavy truck tax to repair beat-up roads
City hall is considering a new tax on transport trucks to help pay for beat-up roads in Saint John, but opponents say now is not the time to penalize a key player in supply chains. Read more…


April 28

Anti-Asian bias alive and well in Canada’s biggest cities, poll finds
One-in-five respondents in Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal said they do not believe it’s safe to sit next to an Asian or Chinese person on a bus if they’re not wearing a mask, according to new survey. Read more…


Ontario and Quebec have more than 80 percent of Canada’s COVID-19 cases, officials say
Federal health officials have reported that Ontario and Quebec represent more than 80 percent of all confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada. Read more…


As Quebec moves to reopen daycares and schools, Ford says Ontario will not put “children in harm’s way”
Premier Doug Ford said Ontario has chosen to take a different path than Quebec when it comes to reopening schools because he does not want to put “children in harm’s way.” Read more…


Lost casino revenues add to Thunder Bay’s financial woes
Lost revenue from the closure of the Gateway Casino is set to add to a growing list of financial challenges faced by Thunder Bay’s municipal government. Read more…


Dealing with deficit will not include further tax increases: City of Saskatoon
The City of Saskatoon said it will not rely on further tax increases to make up any deficit to the city’s budget due to the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


COVID-19 economic recovery task force to be formed for Peterborough city and county
City council unanimously approved a new post-pandemic economic recovery plan from Peterborough and the Kawarthas Economic Development. Read more…


City of Kelowna endorsed measures to assist taxpayers affected by COVID-19
It didn’t take long for Kelowna city council to endorse several temporary changes to tax and utility bill payments. Read more…


Plummeting business tourism costing cities hundreds of millions in lost revenues
The cancellation of business conferences and conventions across the country is costing cities hundreds of millions of dollars in lost revenue as the COVID-19 pandemic devastates the tourism industry. Read more…


City of Edmonton lays off nearly 900 workers amid COVID-19 budget shortfalls
In an effort to balance a challenging budget amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Edmonton issued two-week layoff notices to nearly 900 workers. Read more..


Toronto launches program to increase space for pedestrians at city “hot spots”
Toronto is launching a program to further promote physical distancing measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic at 100 “hot spots” across the city. Read more….


Food truck operators call on Winnipeg to waive fees, permit parking lot use
More than a dozen food truck operators have written Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman to ask the city to waive licensing fees and asking for special permission to set up shop in city-owned parking lots. Read more…


Spring litter cleanup by City of St. John’s will go ahead without volunteers
The COVID-19 pandemic means hundreds of community litter cleanups – a rite of spring for many volunteers – won’t happen this year in St. John’s. Read more…


More city of Vancouver job cuts off the table: union president
The president of CUPE 1004, which represents Vancouver’s outside workers, says he’s confident more job cuts are no longer going to be on the table. Read more…


City of Calgary to support front-line workers with ribbon campaign
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Calgary city councillors are looking to support the work done by essential service staff and front-line workers with a commemorative ribbon campaign. Read more…


Yellowknife lukewarm to some chamber of commerce recommendations
While in full support of recommendations the city’s chamber of commerce has made to the territorial and federal governments during COVID-19, Yellowknife councillors are less enthusiastic about some measures aimed at the city. Read more…


April 27

Thousands apply for wage subsidy PM says, as businesses await go-ahead to gradually reopen
Within hours of the major wage subsidy program launching Monday morning, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says approximately 10,000 businesses had already applied. Read more…


Canadian Urban Institute Examines Role of Libraries in Light of COVID-19
The COVID-19 crisis is forcing workplaces, governments, and city institutions to adapt digitally—and public libraries are no exception. Read more…


Ford “won’t set hard dates” for reopening, saying Ontario must see drop in new COVID-19 cases first
Ontario must see a “consistent two-to-four week decrease in the number of new daily COVID-19 cases” before the government can start loosening restrictions and begin reopening the economy. Read more…


Canadian researchers part of global effort to develop COVID-19 vaccine
A recent $28-million funding boost from the federal and provincial government to enhance its COVID-19 research capacity to test antivirals, drugs, and therapeutics has been helping fast-track that research even more. Read more…


PM Trudeau says COVID-19 will change life in Canada for “years”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says that “normal” is a “long way off” for all Canadians – and that some differences implemented as a result of lessons learned during this pandemic will last for “years.” Read more…


Quebec to reopen schools next month
Quebec Premier Francois Legault is announcing elementary schools and daycares outside the greater Montreal area will reopen on May 11. Read more…


Edmonton city council debates 2020 budget adjustment as $163 million shortfall looms
The city’s latest estimate predicts the pandemic will leave a $163.7-million hole in its 2020 operating budget. Read more…


Winnipeg group wants to end homelessness once and for all
A Winnipeg group is hoping to create positive change from the COVID-19 pandemic – ending homelessness once and for all. Read more…


Regina reducing mosquito control program to save money
While social distancing restrictions prohibit crowds of people from gathering outside, swarms of mosquitoes may become unwelcome guests in backyards this summer as the City of Regina scales back on its pest control program to save money. Read more…


Metro Vancouver reports big drop in garbage during pandemic
Metro Vancouver says commercial waste in the region has declined by as much as 25 percent since COVID-19 struck. Read more…


City of Greater Sudbury offers online resources for learning and fun
As physical distancing becomes more important than ever to flatten the curve of COVID-19 in our community, the City of Greater Sudbury has created new online resources for individuals and families. Read more…


COVID-19 takes bite out of budgets for P.E.I. cities, towns
COVID-19 has meant a loss of revenue as well as changes to staffing for P.E.I.’s two cities and some towns as well. Read more…


Tsuut’ina Nation institutes curfew fines as Calgary COVID-19 cases rise
Tsuut’ina First Nation has yet to see its first case of COVID-19, but with nearly 3,000 cases in neighbouring Calgary, the reserve is on high alert. Read more…


Owen Sound expecting impact from COVID-19 pandemic to hit $1 million
Owen Sound officials say the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to deliver a roughly $1 million hit to the city’s operating budget. Read more…


April 26

N.W.T. newspaper publisher back in print after COVID-19 hiatus
Some local northern newspapers are back in print. Northern News Services Ltd. stopped producing print editions of its newspapers a month ago due to concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


B.C. enacts order to move tent city residents into hotels amid COVID-19 pandemic
B.C. is enacting a public safety order to move homeless people living in tent city encampments into hotels in Vancouver and Victoria during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Montreal community gardens hope for May openings
While Ontario’s community gardens got permission to reopen on Saturday, many Quebecers with green thumbs are still wondering when they’ll be able to put them to use. Read more…


Tory calls charter challenge over shelters “disappointing”‘ says Toronto’s efforts to relocate homeless have been “epic”
Toronto Mayor John Tory says that a legal challenge by a group of organizations that support the homeless is “disappointing” given the “epic” efforts that the city is taking to limit the spread of COVID-19 within shelters. Read more…


City of Red Deer notifies 150 more employees of temporary lay-offs
The City of Red Deer says approximately 150 staff members were issued temporary work interruption notices, including 78 to permanent full-time employees. Read more…


City of Ottawa-run childcare centres reopen after negative COVID-19 tests
The City of Ottawa says two of its emergency childcare centres will reopen after being forced to close as a precaution when staffers became ill. Read more…


City of Prince George golf courses open for business
Emerging from a long winter and a COVID-19 cloud of uncertainty, northern B.C. golfers are getting back into the swing of things as the course opened for the season at Prince George Golf and Curling Club. Read more…


City of Thunder Bay navigates “wild west of procurement” to secure PPE
The City of Thunder Bay says it has enough personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect frontline workers from COVID-19 – for now, at least. Read more…


Richmond considers borrowing up to $36.5 million
The City of Richmond might borrow up to $36.5 million to cover revenue shortfalls because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Moose Jaw still operating with essential services
Even city facilities are closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic, City Manager Jim Puffalt said there are still emergency and essential services working in the community. Read more…


April 25

Here’s how quickly cities across Canada are burning through cash
A look at how local governments from coast-to-coast are struggling with COVID-19 economics. Read more…


Montreal-area business owners anxious to get back to work
After putting the province on hold for six weeks, Quebec Premier François Legault says it’s time to get things moving again. Read more…


City of Thunder Bay readies COVID-19 aid for local non-profits
The City of Thunder Bay will look to buttress local emergency food and shelter efforts with funding for local non-profits responding to the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


So far, City of Kamloops is weathering pandemic’s economic storm
The City of Kamloops has not had to dip into $12.4 million worth of reserves in response to financial pain brought on by the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


City of Windsor urged to close streets, share lanes with pedestrians
With the public under strict doctor’s orders to maintain physical distancing during the war on COVID-19, some are urging Windsor to create more outdoor elbow space for its citizens. Read more…


City of Saskatoon facing up to $42.9 million deficit in 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Saskatoon says it’s facing up to a $42.9 million deficit, depending when restrictions are lifted in Saskatchewan. Read more…


Hamilton city staff to begin framework for relaxing coronavirus restrictions
Mayor Fred Eisenberger says city staff are “turning” their minds to the relaxing of current emergency orders that have shut down much of Hamilton amid the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


City-run summer camps cancelled in Calgary due to COVID-19 risk
The City of Calgary announced Friday that all summer camps run by the city will be cancelled for 2020. Watch more…


City of Kenora temporarily lays off some staff due to COVID-19 pandemic
According to Mayor Dan Reynard, approximately 20 to 25 City of Kenora employees volunteered to be laid off temporarily as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues. Read more…


Charlottetown residents reminded to practise physical distancing
The City of Charlottetown is reminding the public to continue to heed public health orders and recommendations as the nicer spring weather draws more people outside. Read more…


April 24

Trudeau announces rent relief of 75 percent for small businesses affected by coronavirus
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced agreements have been reached with all provinces and territories to lower rent by 75 percent for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic for April, May and June. Read more…


Toronto launches recovery and rebuild office amid COVID-19 pandemic
Toronto Mayor John has announced the launch of its recovery and rebuild office, which will guide the city back to normalcy following the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Homeless Calgarians worried about COVID-19 in shelters
There are a number of homeless shelters in Calgary but some people still opt to stay outdoors, even when the temperature dips. Read more…


Winnipeg further expands active transportation routes through coronavirus
The City of Winnipeg is adding more temporary bicycle and active transportation routes across the city through the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Differing COVID-19 orders a challenge for boundary city of Lloydminster
As the mayor of Lloydminster, which straddles the Alberta-Saskatchewan boundary, Gerald Aalbers has dealt with some unique situations. Now, he says, the city is in the middle of one of it biggest challenges yet as it navigates the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Dawson Creek braces for millions in shortfall
Dawson Creek CAO Blair Lekstrom outlined a grim financial picture to council with a late tax penalty deadline moved to October – the city could be millions short. Read more…


Second City of Ottawa daycare closed over possible COVID-19 infection
For the second day in a row, a City of Ottawa child care facility has been shut down because of novel coronavirus fears. Read more…


Tent-city deaths illustrate how crises are taking toll on Victoria’s homeless
The deaths of two homeless men sheltering in a tent city at Victoria’s Topaz Park have devastated staff, outreach workers, and residents. Read more…


Edmonton to vote on amendments to 2020 budget amid COVID-19 shortfall
If suggested amendments to Edmonton’s 2020 budget go ahead, property owners could be paying less in property taxes than they did last year. Read more…


Humboldt’s mayor pleased with reopening plan; city hall to reopen May 4
Humboldt’s mayor is hailing the Province of Saskatchewan’s reopening plan as great news, but added that the city’s citizens can’t become complacent and asked them to continue to respect physical distancing. Read more…


City of Thunder Bay declares State of Emergency
Mayor Bill Mauro has declared a State of Emergency for the City of Thunder Bay, effective until further notice, in response to the threat of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Penticton votes for 60-day bill deferment, tax relief
The City of Penticton has adopted COVID-19 financial relief steps for its citizens, including property tax deferment and lower utility bills. Read more…


Vancouver community spirit shines amidst COVID-19 response
In the darkness of the COVID-19 pandemic, Vancouver’s community spirit is shining through as businesses and residents have stepped up to help those most in need. Read more…


Tourism operators in holding pattern because of cruise ship uncertainty
There is still a lot of uncertainty for P.E.I. tourism operators that rely on the business generated by the thousands of visitors that arrive each year on cruise ships. Read more…


Details of $306 million assistance for Indigenous businesses in the works
The federal government is working out the specifics of its $306.8 million funding package for small and medium-sized Indigenous businesses across Canada. Read more…


April 23

Municipalities asking Ottawa for billions in emergency funding
With communities across the country facing the possibility of austerity measures, further layoffs, and potential tax increases, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities is calling on Ottawa to provide upward of $15 billion in emergency funding. Read more…


City of Kawartha Lakes eyes “soft re-opening” of some outdoor services on May 12
All City of Kawartha Lakes municipal amenities and boat launches remain closed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. But it may not be that way come May 12. Read more…


Summerside shows love to essential workers with lighted heart over city
The City of Summerside electrical department has put up a lighted heart of thanks and hope, saying it “is a way to link the community together during these unprecedented times.” Read more…


Port Moody cuts casual and temporary workers
Union says cuts cause by COVID-19 pandemic affect some of the City of Port Moody’s “most precarious employees.” Read more…


Winnipeg to close six more streets for safer walking, biking
The City of Winnipeg is looking to expand its street closures to make space for people who want to get outside as the weather warms without fighting vehicle traffic. Read more…


City of Prince Albert looking to province for guidance on summer activities
Prince Albert’s Mayor says the city is waiting on the provincial government before making decisions on what summer activities can proceed. Read more…


City of Waterloo launches online programs to make best of time at home
An online program to keep residents active, connected, and creative while at home during the COVID-19 pandemic has been launched by the City of Waterloo. Read more…


Residents of Saskatoon’s inner city face unique challenges during pandemic
Housing and health services top list of concerns for residents of Saskatoon’s inner city. Read more…


Winnipeggers throwing away more trash amid coronavirus, according to the city
According to numbers from the city, Winnipeg’s landfills saw an increase of more than 1,400 metric tons of trash trucked to the dump in March. Read more…


City of Edmonton expands state of emergency; bans garage sales
The City of Edmonton has expanded the state of emergency for another seven days and announced new restrictions, that include banning garage sales, to further prevent the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto to start gathering race-based data connected to COVID-19
Toronto Public Health will now be collecting race-based data connected to COVID-19, a practice its provincial counterparts aren’t doing. Read more….


City of Richmond warns of scam demanding payment by wire service
The City of Richmond is warning of an increase in scams and phishing emails – likely due to the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


Mississauga turns cherry blossoms viewing into a virtual experience
The City of Mississauga’s beautiful cherry blossoms in Kariya Park are expected to be in full bloom in the coming weeks and while residents won’t be able to visit in person, they can admire them from the city’s new blossom webcam. Read more…


Saint John wants province to levy regional road toll to help balance the books
Saint John is looking beyond its borders to help solve its approximately $10-million deficit and put the city on the right financial track. Read more…


City of Kingston says COVID-19 response has cost $750,000 to date
Kingston isn’t immune to feeling the financial pressures that COVID-19 has placed on many cities around the world, taking a $750,000 hit to its bottom line. Read more…


Kelowna mayor says city in good financial shape
Kelowna’s mayor says the city is in better shape financially than many others in British Columbia as local governments navigate the uncertainty of COVID-19. Read more…


Calgary looks to help businesses modify operations amid COVID-19 pandemic
As COVID-19 continues to change the way businesses in Calgary operate, the city is looking to help create new opportunities for workers in the community. Read more…


Swift Current reduces road repair projects in 2020 due to COVID-19
The City of Swift Current had budgeted $4.1 million for road repairs in 2020, but that was reduced by $1.5 million due to complications related to COVID-19. Read more…


April 22

Winnipeg Transit reduces service, lays off more than 250 staff
Facing a 72 percent reduction in ridership, Winnipeg Transit will reduce bus service and lay off 253 full- and part-time drivers because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the city announced Wednesday. Read more…


City of Ottawa emergency team moving to recovery mode in COVID-19 pandemic
Ottawa City manager Steve Kanellakos told council Wednesday that the city’s emergency management centre has moved from a response posture to a recovery posture in the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Red Deer offering COVID-19 updates via text, e-mail
Red Deerians can now sign-up for text and email updates about The City of Red deer’s municipal response to COVID-19 through its Notify Red Deer program. Read more…


Ottawa announces $9 billion aid package for students amid coronavirus pandemic
Ottawa has announced a $9 billion funding package for students whose education and job prospects have been disrupted by COVID-19. Watch more…


City of London bracing for $33 million budget blow from COVID-19 – at least
London city hall is expecting COVID-19 to wallop its bottom line, predicting losses of up to $33 million by summer’s end, new figures released Wednesday show. Read more…


Emergency rooms across Quebec are incapable of seeing all patients, study finds
Emergency rooms across Quebec struggle to see all patients who show up, but some are better at it than others, according to the Montreal Economic Institute. Read more…


City of Hamilton has laid 86 charges over alleged violations of provincial orders
A total of 86 charges have been laid by municipal law enforcement in Hamilton, Ont., against businesses and individuals over alleged violations of provincial orders during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


COVID-19 “tidal wave” still threatens Alberta, Hinshaw cautions in latest update
Albertans anxious to return to their jobs and some semblance of normal life should think of the novel coronavirus as a tidal wave that might have swept away thousands of lives if not for the sacrifices already made, says the province’s Chief Medical Officer of Health. Read more…


Thunder Bay not contemplating vacation cancellations due to COVID-19
The City of Thunder Bay has no current plan to cancel employee vacations in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Provinces mull whether to follow B.C.’s lead, allow cities to run deficits
Provinces across Canada are pondering whether cities should be allowed to have more leeway in how they handle cash-flow deficits this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Hotels for homeless people could tackle two crises at once: advocates
Since there is already a housing and homelessness crisis in many parts of the country, advocates say funds to fight the spread of COVID-19 could be used to keep people housed long after the pandemic has ended. Read more…


As Earth Day turns 50, COVID-19 offers valuable warning
Those battling environmental degradation and climate destabilization are pointing to the global community’s dramatic response to the novel coronavirus as offering valuable lessons on the way forward. Read more….


New pandemic plan unveiled at North Battleford city hall
In presenting North Battleford’s Planning Committee with the new Joint Municipality Pandemic Plan, Fire Chief Lindsay Holm said it would “serve the city for many years to come.” Read more…


EORN issues to tackle cellular dead zones across eastern Ontario
Eastern Ontario is one step closer to improved cellular services that will help rural communities take part in the digital economy, create jobs, and improve public safety. Read more…


Toronto groups threaten legal action over “deplorable” shelter conditions
A coalition of public-interest organizations is threatening to file legal proceedings against the City of Toronto unless more “urgent action” is taken to protect people experiencing homelessness amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Weyburn reminds trails are open, but stay distanced
Andrew Crowe, Director of Leisure Services with the City of Weyburn, is telling the public they can go for a walk, or a bike ride, or go for a run, but they have to remain socially distanced while doing so. Read more…


City of Grande Prairie mulling no tax increase
The City of Grande Prairie is considering a zero percent tax increase in order to provide financial relief to residents during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Indigenous people in big cities feel excluded from federal COVID-19 relief
The National Association of Friendship Centres says that urban Indigenous people are being left behind in federal government assistance programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Wuhan embraces Yangtze River as virus-hit city reopens
The reopening of the ferry service on the Yangtze was an important symbolic step in official efforts to get business and daily life in this central Chinese city of 11 million people back to normal. Read more…


April 21

How long will COVID-19 affect our lives? Here’s what 500+ mayors and councillors think
Researchers surveyed more than 500 mayors and councillors across Canada in early April and if there’s one thing most could agree on, it’s that we’re months and months away from things returning to normal. Read more…


Pandemic causes drop in electricity demand across the province: Manitoba Hydro
Manitoba Hydro said it has seen about a six percent reduction in the daily peak electricity demand, adding this is due to the many businesses and downtown offices that are temporarily closed due to COVID-19. Read more…


“It’s not business as usual”: Thunder Bay council debates role during pandemic
It’s clearly not business as usual at Thunder Bay city hall because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has left city council debating just how much normal business can be accomplished in the coming weeks and months. Read more…


City of Winnipeg could be losing $12 million monthly due to COVID-19: report
The City of Winnipeg says it could be losing as much as $12 million a month due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


Kawartha Lakes starting to look at recovery from coronavirus pandemic
The mayor of the City of Kawartha Lakes says he’s asking the province if some non-essential businesses can return to doing “behind the scenes” work before being allowed to fully open again. Read more…


Medicine Hat mayor commends residents, hints at generous municipal relief package
Medicine Hat Mayor Ted Clugston said he is proud to be mayor of a city right now where, “the vast majority of citizens, residents have been very diligent in understanding and following the rules.” Read more…


COVID-19 hitting Ottawa’s nursing homes hard
Ottawa Public Health is sharing more details about the devastating toll COVID-19 is taking on the city’s hospitals and long-term care homes. Read more…


Charlottetown mayor says people heeding physical distancing rules in parks, neighbourhoods
Charlottetown Mayor Philip Brown says people are heeding the province’s message when it comes to physically distancing in the city’s parks and neighbourhoods. Read more…


Cities’ budget crisis may force a rejig of their revenues
Many cities face a massive budget crunch as the COVID-19 pandemic leaves its mark, a reality that experts say could erode services or force municipalities to demand new sources of funding. Read more…


Calgary to expand road closures as weather warms up
To ease the congestion in popular parks the City of Calgary plans to close more sections of roadway to allow people more room for physical distancing. Read more…


Toronto staff set to be re-deployed to COVID-19 response, or put on leave
Mayor John Tory says the city has reached a deal with the unions representing city staff that will see thousands of municipal workers redeployed to Toronto’s COVID-19 emergency response, or put on leave. Read more….


Financial plan in limbo as Nanaimo weighs immediate COVID-19 relief 
Nanaimo council faces a difficult decision as councillors weigh immediate COVID-19 relief versus future protections. Read more…


City of Ottawa distributing millions for homelessness programs
The City of Ottawa is using and distributing $11.4 million from upper-levels of government to boost homelessness programs during the COVID-19 pandemic after people in the shelter system have tested positive for the virus. Read more…


Pandemic pushes rural internet speeds to the breaking point
Notoriously slow already, rural internet has struggled with increased demand during the pandemic – and that isn’t likely to change any time soon. Read more…


Saint John sets sights on long-term financial sustainability
The long-term financial sustainability plan Saint John’s city manager presented to council involves dozens of recommendations to close a $10-million budget shortfall by the end of the year. Read more…


Brampton announces Backyard Garden Program in response to COVID-19
The City of Brampton has launched the Backyard Garden Program, a new eco-friendly initiative to help support food security in the city, and encourage residents to get active at home during the COVID-19 emergency. Read more…


Pandemic not slowing tide of inner-city drug use: Winnipeg Bear Clan
The world may have changed around it, but for Winnipeg’s Bear Clan Patrol, it’s business as usual, even during a pandemic. Read more…


Timmins city hall provides platform for youths’ voices to be heard
Timmins Mayor George Pirie is asking youths to share their thoughts, messages,
and feelings on this COVID-19 pandemic situation in hopes of spreading positivity throughout the community. Read more…


Montreal looks for “winning conditions” to restart economy, keep everyone safe
With a COVID-19 vaccine likely more than a year away, Mayor Valérie Plante and business leaders across the city are looking at how Montreal can restart its economic engine. Read more…


UNWTO leads call for firm action by governments to support tourism recovery
The Global Tourism Crisis Committee has united behind the World Tourism Organization’s rallying cry for governments to “go beyond words” to safeguard the millions of jobs under threat as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 20

Eventual reopening of Toronto likely to be “phased in over period of months:” Tory
The eventual reopening of Toronto will likely be “phased in over a period of months” and may not even get underway for some time yet, warns Mayor John Tory. Read more…


Northwest Territories economy in a battle for survival amid COVID-19 pandemic
Businesses in the Northwest Territories are struggling as they wait for more support from federal and territorial governments. Read more…


Manitoba’s state of emergency extended; testing to widen
The Province of Manitoba is extending the current state of emergency for another 30 days and has expanded testing starting Monday. Read more…


Coliseum Inn will temporarily house vulnerable Edmontonians through COVID-19
A 98-unit hotel will be converted into a temporary shelter for Edmonton’s vulnerable amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Vancouver’s tech supercluster commits $60 million to COVID-19 fight
With a vaccine against COVID-19 is months — if not at least a year — away, one Vancouver-based initiative is tapping artificial intelligence to repurpose available drugs that could potentially treat pandemic patients. Read more…


Cities are facing a coronavirus fiscal crisis
Canada’s cities are under intense fiscal strain from COVID-19 and Ottawa and the provinces will soon need to act. Read more…


Kingston could be first city in Ontario to ease COVID-19 restrictions
In what could be a first step in returning to normal since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Kingston is looking at scaling back emergency restrictions. Read more…


With new rules in place, residential construction resumes in Quebec
Residential construction and renovation projects that had been scheduled to be finished by July 31 can resume today in Quebec. Read more…


How coronavirus could change our cities forever. Or not.
The COVID-19 pandemic has cast a spotlight on the nature of how we design our homes, offices, and cities. What does a city look like after it’s been changed by a year of social distancing? Hear more…


City of Armstrong staff challenged to amend budget
Armstrong council has requested staff look at the approved 2020 budget and, in the wake of COVID-19, see if they can take a proposed 2.5 percent tax increase and come back with no increases. Read more…


Back to business for Winnipeg’s city hall
Councillors will be in separate locations and delegations will appear remotely by video conference as the city of Winnipeg kick starts its day-to-day business. Read more….


Ridership down 85 percent on Regina buses
According to the City of Regina, transit ridership is down about 85 percent compared to pre-pandemic levels. The city says it stands to lose $650,000 to $700,000 a month at the fare-box. Read more…


Kelowna considering borrowing up to $150 million to cover late taxes
Kelowna city council will consider borrowing up to $150 million in the short term to cover the late payment of taxes during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Humboldt adjusting business directory to reflect changes during COVID-19
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the provincial orders being placed on many businesses, the City of Humboldt has made a couple changes to its online business directory. Read more…


New Brunswick cities call for help to keep buses running in pandemic
New Brunswick’s cities are calling for provincial and federal support to keep four municipal transit systems operating, something the province’s premier says is being examined. Read more…


April 19

Pandemic reveals importance of food security, say northern growers
A Northwest Territories farming advocate says the COVID-19 pandemic is highlighting just how important growing food locally is – especially in the North. Read more…


Behind-the-scenes planning for Toronto’s reopening a “sign of hope:” Tory
Residents should view the work taking places behind the scenes to plan for the eventual reopening of Toronto as a “sign of hope” even if they will have to wait a little longer for a return to normalcy, Mayor John Tory says. Read more…


City of Moose Jaw contest asks how you are “Coping with COVID-19”
The City of Moose Jaw is holding a contest through their smartphone app asking people to submit pictures of what’s making them happy during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Vancouver Pride 2020 cancelled due to COVID-19
The Vancouver Pride Society announced Pride 2020 has been cancelled, but in a letter to the community, organizer say “Pride can’t be cancelled. It is a feeling, not a physical space”. Read more…


More than 400 Nova Scotia restaurants could close due to COVID-19
Going into the coronavirus pandemic, there were about 3,000 restaurants in the province. But when Nova Scotia emerges on the other side, that number could be drastically different. Read more…


New York COVID-19 deaths drop below 550 for first time since April 1
New York’s daily toll of coronavirus deaths hit its lowest point in more than two weeks, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo warned Saturday that the state isn’t ready to ease up on shutdowns of schools, businesses and gatherings. Read more…


City of Brooks Mayor braces residents to prepare for more COVID-19 cases
Taking to Facebook Live Saturday morning, Brooks Mayor Barry Morishita told residents to prepare for additional COVID-19 cases. Read more…


State of Emergency impact on Greater Sudbury programming, trail and fire use
The City of Greater Sudbury would like to remind residents of the changes to leisure and fitness programming as well as trail and open-air fire use under the municipal State of Emergency. Read more…


Volunteers needed to provide advice to Delta City Hall
The City of Delta is looking for volunteers to serve on a variety of advisory committees that provide advice to council on various issues affecting the community. Read more…


Richmond automates 20 crosswalks to reduce COVID-19 spread
The City of Richmond has automated 20 high-use pedestrian crosswalks in an effort to further reduce the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


April 18

Coronavirus could cost City of Toronto at least $1.5 billion, mayor says
Mayor John Tory says the coronavirus pandemic could cost the City of Toronto between $1.5 and $2.76 billion, depending on the duration of public health and government measures. Read more…


Vancouver city councillors agree to 10 percent pay cut during pandemic
Most Vancouver city councillors say they will follow Mayor Kennedy Stewart’s lead and take a 10 percent pay cut to help achieve some savings in the city’s operating budget. Read more…


Winnipeg’s spring cleanup to start next week, city launches website for updates on work
As Winnipeg’s annual spring cleanup kicks off next week, the city has launched a new website to help Winnipeggers keep up with progress and stay out of the way of cleanup crews. Read more…


Hamilton’s 1,200 part-time city employees now on hiatus, leaf and yard waste collection to resume
It’s not officially being called a layoff, but Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger says the scheduling of 1,200 non-essential, part-time employees is being discontinued until further notice. Read more…


City of Victoria calls on province to commandeer hotel rooms for homeless
The City of Victoria is urging the province to requisition hotel and motel rooms to house homeless people during the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


City of Gatineau announces second round of layoffs due to COVID-19 pandemic
More than 160 municipal employees are being temporarily laid off as the City of Gatineau announces a second round of staffing reductions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Moose Jaw to establish $15 million line of credit
The City of Moose Jaw is looking to establish a $15 million line of credit. Historically, the city used the return on high-quality bonds in place of a line of credit to the tune of about $10 million. Read more…


North Bay Transit losing about $17,000 a week
North Bay Transit is facing an approximately $17,000 weekly shortfall as a result of measures taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Armstrong extends deadline for utility bills in response to COVID-19
The City of Armstrong has issued extended the due date for utility bills until June 1, in response to COVID-19. The city has also implemented a new online payment process. Read more…


City of Windsor “in the hole” $4 million per month
Mayor Drew Dilkens said Friday the City of Windsor is “probably $4 million a month in the hole” due to the rising costs and sinking revenues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 17

B.C. first province to give cities more leeway to run deficits 
British Columbia has become the first province to allow cities to run deficits – something that is prohibited across the country – as a way of coping with massive budget holes created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New Brunswick municipalities hoping for aid as pandemic takes economic toll
New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs says he’ll meet with the province’s municipalities to discuss the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Saskatchewan State Of Emergency extended two weeks
The province of Saskatchewan announced on April 15 that it was extending the provincial state of emergency by a further two weeks due to COVID-19. Read more….


Security issues mean Edmonton Transit riders losing hours of night service 
The City of Edmonton is reducing night transit service in response to security issues involving non-destination riders amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Barrie extends lockdown until summer, bans yard sales
The City of Barrie has extended the closure and cancellations of its community centres, events, theatre shows, and sports field bookings until June 30. Read more…


Steinbach’s Summer In The City officially cancelled
Steinbach’s annual Summer in the City festival has officially been cancelled in light of ongoing COVID-19 concerns. Read more…


City of Windsor is offering grant money to help struggling artists
The City of Windsor is offering enhanced funding worth $60,000 to support local artists affected by COVID-19. Read more…


Vancouver mayor to take 10 percent pay cut during pandemic
Mayor Kennedy Stewart said he will ask city council to approve a 10 percent cut to his $178, 265 salary to help cover the loss in pandemic-related revenues. Read more…


Toronto’s City Hall Live music series goes virtual
With public events on hold due to the COVID-19 crisis, the City of Toronto has partnered with Unison Benevolent Fund to continue its City Hall Live music series – albeit virtually on Facebook live. Read more…


Calgary projects $400 million in revenue losses without financial support
The City of Calgary says it’s losing between $10 million and $15 million each week as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The total could climb to more than $400 million over the next six months. Read more…


April 16

More time needed before U.S., Canada border can open: PM Trudeau
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says there is still a “significant amount of time” before Canada would begin looking at lifting border restrictions with the U.S. Read more…


Regina approves plan to make up projected $20.7 million shortfall
Regina city council has approved a plan to make up for a $20.7-million shortfall projected by the end of September due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City needs a federal bailout, Mayor says
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called on President Trump to “bailout” Trump’s “hometown” from the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The city expects a $7.4 billion budget hit in the next 15 months. Read more…


City of Toronto to continue yard waste collection until May 1
The City of Toronto says it will continue yard waste collection from April 20 to May 1 to accommodate residents. The start of seasonal yard waste collection was suspended in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Vernon offers grants, extension on property taxes
The City of Vernon is offering relief on tax payments as the COVID-19 pandemic grips the economy. Measures include a one-time grant program to be available for all municipal tax payers Read more…


City of Ottawa to decide by end of April whether summer events will go on
Mayor Jim Watson says he’ll be meeting with the city’s special events team and Ottawa Public Health before the end of the month to determine whether summer festivals will continue as the COVID-19 pandemic rages. Read more…


Disposable wipes and paper towel don’t go down the toilet: City of Winnipeg
The City of Winnipeg says they’ve noticed more disposable wipes plugging pumps at the sewage treatment plants. They say even the wipes that say flushable can cause blockages and overwhelm the sewer system. Read more…


City of Toronto unveils donation portal for local pandemic relief efforts
The City of Toronto has launched a new portal for those who want to assist with local coronavirus pandemic relief efforts. Read more…


Regina to use reserve funds to balance books amid COVID-19 struggles
Regina city council will be taking $400,000 out of its reserve fund to make up for the loss of revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Delta calls for reopening of regional parks
The City of Delta is calling on Metro Vancouver to reopen a pair of regional parks within the city’s borders, now that the Easter long weekend has passed. Read more…


Guelph getting lots of calls from public with COVID-related complaints
The City of Guelph is getting 20 to 30 calls a day from the public with complaints about people breaking rules related to COVID-19. Read more…


City of Montreal says its finances sound enough to face coronavirus crisis
The City of Montreal says it is financially prepared to face the potential impact the novel coronavirus crisis will have on its economy. Read more…


Cities need help to survive COVID-19 financial impact: Vancouver mayor
Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart wants to know if economic relief is on its way as cities deal with the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New estimates suggest COVID-19 could cost Edmonton up to $260 million
In a “worst-case scenario,” if the novel coronavirus pandemic continues into December, it could cost the City of Edmonton close to $260 million. Read more…


City unable to confirm go-ahead for community gardens
With municipalities across Canada declaring the cancellation of community gardens this year, some may be wondering what will be happening in Weyburn. Read more…


Halifax to lay off 1,480 employees after deferring tax collection until June
The Halifax Regional Municipality will lay off 1,480 casual, temporary, and seasonal workers as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


How many people are still coming into the Northwest Territories?
Designed to combat COVID-19, the Northwest Territories has placed unprecedented restrictions on the way in which people enter the territory. Read more…


April 15

Bank of Canada expects economic activity to slow by as much as 30 percent from end of 2019
Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz says the COVID-19 pandemic has hit Canada’s economy hard, adding widespread lockdowns, layoffs, and other drastic measures will have a dramatic impact on nation’s economy in the months ahead. Read more…


City of Winnipeg says no tickets given out yet for COVID-19 rule-breakers in city parks, public spaces
The City of Winnipeg says no fines were doled out for COVID-19 public health order violations over the Easter weekend. There were, however, 12 verbal warnings about social distancing issued. Read more…


City of North Battleford prepared for financial and health impacts of COVID-19
The switch to virtual city council meetings was the most visible evidence yet of the impact the pandemic has had on North Battleford City Hall. But other impacts have been felt elsewhere. Read more…


Home sales fell 14 percent in March as COVID-19 settled in
Home sales fell by 14 percent in March as COVID-19 lockdowns slowed the market to a crawl, the Canadian Real Estate Association says. Read more…


City of Hamilton to host virtual town hall on coronavirus
Hamilton residents who have questions about the new coronavirus disease, COVID-19, will have a chance to get some answers Wednesday night. Read more…


New York City’s COVID-19 death toll soars as “probable” fatalities get counted
The official death toll from the coronavirus soared in New York City on Tuesday after health authorities began including people who probably had COVID-19, but died without ever being tested. Read more…


Grande Prairie cancels recreational programs and bookings through end of May
The City of Grande Prairie has cancelled all recreational programs and bookings up to May 31st, due to the novel coronavirus. Read more…


City of Saskatoon resists call to shut down some roads to allow cyclists, pedestrians to spread out
The City of Saskatoon says it will not be closing down streets to traffic in order to avoid congestion along city walking paths. Read more…


Red Deer city council votes to extend property tax deadline; some city facilities closed until July
Red Deer city council voted Tuesday to approve, in principle, pushing back the deadline for homeowners to pay property taxes for 90 days. Read more…


City of Brockville braces for financial hit
Like municipalities across the country, Brockville has had to lay off staff and is bracing for a massive financial blow from COVID-19. Read more…


Homebuilding slows down in Canada due to COVID-19: TD economist
Figures released by TD Bank’s research arm indicate that Canadian housing starts declined 7.3 percent in March 2020 compared to February. Read more…


Moncton keeping trails and parks open, but with strict rules
There’s no shortage of visitors to Moncton’s major parks. Parking lots are full and so are the trails, but new signage indicate it’s now one-way only. Read more…


COVID-19 makes disposal difficult, but there is help for hoarders
Spring cleaning is a tradition for many people. Disposal, however, is a challenge this spring because many local municipalities have cancelled or postponed their annual large garbage pick-up due to the COVID-19 situation. Read more…


Alberta aims to limit human-caused wildfires during the COVID-19 pandemic
Wildfire season and the COVID-19 pandemic are projected to peak at the same time. The province is taking steps to reduce the number of human-caused wildfires, including new fire bans and hiring 200 extra firefighters. Read more…


Ontario extends Declaration of Emergency to continue fight against COVID-19
The Ontario government is extending the Declaration of Emergency under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act for a further 28 days. Read more…


City of Prince George opens washrooms for marginalized community members
Many businesses in downtown Prince George have closed their doors due to the COVID-19 pandemic, leaving marginalized individuals who call downtown home with less options for washrooms and vulnerable to poor hygiene. Read more…


Toronto mayor says city not yet at a “crisis” point with PPE supply
Mayor John Tory says Toronto is not at a “crisis” point with respect to its stockpile of personal protective equipment, despite new projections suggesting that it could run out of some things as soon as next week in a worst case scenario. Read more…


Virtual yoga and body sculpt classes offered free from the City of Surrey
Online exercise videos are gaining in popularity as normally active people look for ways to work out while keeping their distance, and less physical people look for something to do to keep busy. Read more…


City of Thompson reviving mothballed community development corporation 
City council has voted in favour of reviving the Thompson community development corporation, which has lain dormant since mid-2016, when Thompson Unlimited’s general manager and board resigned. Read more…


April 14

Canada is still weeks away from easing pandemic restrictions and restarting economy, Trudeau says
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said today there will be a phased-in approach to reopening Canada’s economy as the COVID-19 crisis subsides — but it will be weeks still before business and school shutdowns begin to ease off. Read more…


Toronto opens COVID-19 recovery site for homeless amid news of 30 cases in shelter system
A temporary recovery site for members of Toronto’s homeless community who contract COVID-19 will open today as the city ramps up its efforts to limit the spread of the virus within its shelter system. Read more…


Pandemic forces City of Swift Current to alter 2020 capital plan
The City of Swift Current has announced that a revision has been made to projects included in its 2020 Capital Plan due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions on gatherings put in place. Read more…


City of Guelph to look at borrowing $100 million, defer property taxes to end of July
The City of Guelph is looking at borrowing up to $100 million to help cover operating expenses for the current fiscal year. It is also looking at further deferring property tax payments until the end of July without penalty. Read more…


City of Montreal renews state of emergency until April 18
The City of Montreal is renewing its state of emergency again, this time until Saturday, April 18, amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Northwest Territories amends eviction rules to let tenants defer rent in pandemic
New regulations shared online by NWT MLAs will make it easier for renters to stay in their homes during the Covid-19 pandemic, even if they can’t pay their rent. Read more…


City of Kawartha Lakes issues more than 200 layoff notices, delays summer hiring
In the City of Kawartha Lakes, which relies heavily on seasonal tourism, layoff notices have been handed out to more than 200 part-time, temporary, contract and seasonal staff. Read more…


City of Moose Jaw reopening operating budget to help business owners
Moose Jaw council has decided to reopen the operating budget to find savings to all along to citizens struggles financially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Ottawa bans long-term care staff from working at multiple homes
The City of Ottawa is banning staff at its four long-term care homes from working at more than one facility. The policy is aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Do Saskatoon cyclists need more space amid COVID-19?
Cyclists in Saskatoon are calling on the city to open up more space for people and bikes, claiming there isn’t enough room on city sidewalks to walk or ride while social distancing occurs amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Niagara Falls helping businesses through pandemic
The City of Niagara Falls has created an Open for Business directory on its website to support those that remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more….


Grande Prairie launches free indoor gardening project for residents
The City of Grande Prairie has launched a new program offering free supplies for residents to start their own indoor garden. Read more…


Mayor says planning is underway on how Toronto could eventually be reopened
Mayor John Tory says planning is underway on how Toronto could eventually be reopened, even as MPP’s meet at Queen’s Park to extend an emergency order requiring the closure of non-essential businesses for another 28 days. Read more…


Port Coquitlam Mayor says city finances solid despite pandemic
Port Coquitlam Mayor Brad West says the city is “in a strong position” to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, but admits his concerns are with local businesses. Read more…


City of Waterloo cancels, delays events up to June 30
The City of Waterloo, in collaboration with other local municipalities and organizers of large events on municipal property, has agreed to reschedule, delay, or cancel events up to June 30. Read more…


City of Kelowna asks residents to shift their mindset as cycling season begins
As recreational traffic involving cyclists and pedestrians increases, the City of Kelowna is asking residents to shift their mindset and share the road. Read more…


Liquor sales helping P.E.I. restaurants stay sustainable during pandemic
The P.E.I. Liquor Control Commission announced restaurants that have a Package Sales Licence can sell unopened liquor to customers that order a meal for take out. Read more…


April 13

Cities face massive financial shortfalls because of COVID. How can they cope when they can’t run deficits?
While some cities have begun laying off workers by the thousands, that won’t be enough to compensate for the budgetary shortfalls, say mayors and councillors. Read more…


City of Vancouver at risk of bankruptcy, says mayor
The City of Vancouver is at risk of going bankrupt, says the mayor, citing a recent poll showing more than half of property owners are not expecting to pay full property taxes this year as COVID-19 financial woes take hold. Read more…


Montreal will begin cleaning its streets and filling potholes
City of Montreal crews will begin cleaning streets and filling potholes. The street-cleaning and pothole-filling operations will be conducted while respecting the COVID-19 orders and directives issued by Montreal’s public health department. Read more…


Alberta chipping in up to $2 million to support charities during COVID-19
Alberta charities responding to the COVID-19 crisis say newly-announced support from the province will further help vulnerable people with food, shelter and mental health supports. Read more…


City of Toronto figures suggest people may be getting physical distancing message
The city’s enforcement team hit 48 people in Toronto with tickets for failing to properly practise physical distancing on Saturday. However, figures released by the city suggest that all the tough talk about physical distancing may be paying off. Read more…


City of Wetaskiwin builds resiliency plan for local economy
The City of Wetaskiwin’s economic development department – in partnership with the Leduc Regional Chamber of Commerce – is exploring how to best support business resilience in the days and months ahead.  Read more…


Saskatoon Cycles makes “urgent appeal” to open up roads to cyclists, pedestrians
Saskatoon Cycles has published an open letter asking the City of Saskatoon to open up more road space to cyclists and pedestrians. Read more…


A guide to COVID-19 scams and how to protect yourself
The global pandemic has trapped most people inside their homes. Which means, sadly, people have never been riper targets for scammers and fraudsters looking to profit off the community’s collective misery. Read more…


As COVID-19 ravages Nova Scotia’s hospitality industry, some establishments helping people in need
Despite dire times for Nova Scotia’s hospitality industry, some establishments are switching gears during the COVID-19 pandemic to help community groups that provide help to clients in need. Read more…


Quebec wants to ready businesses for “new world” of protectionism that will follow pandemic
When the Quebec government shut down non-essential business activity in the province last month to deal with the deadly coronavirus, it promised to help kick-start the economy again once the danger had passed. Read more…


April 12

Online teaching resources out of reach for many rural New Brunswick families
Educators continue to work with New Brunswick families without internet to figure out how to support at-home learning. Read more…


Winnipeg’s city ambassadors to patrol parks for people breaking COVID-19 procedures
Starting Saturday, City of Winnipeg ambassadors will be deployed in city-owned public spaces to provide information on COVID-19 and the measures being implemented by Manitoba Health. Read more…


Border city Lloydminster adapts to differing responses amid pandemic
Sitting between two provinces, Lloydminster has had to adapt quickly as Alberta and Saskatchewan enacted a recent flurry of COVID-19 health orders throughout March with varying degrees of severity. Read more…


Ministerial order allows Quebec to loan school board staff to health network
With the COVID-19 crisis putting pressure on Quebec’s health network, the province’s school boards could be forced to loan staff to ease the pressure. Read more…


Hamilton’s biggest arena transforms into a homeless shelter as city COVID-19 cases climb to 232
Hamilton’s biggest hockey rink transformed into a pandemic homeless shelter Saturday as the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the city climbed to 232. Read more…


City of Coquitlam temporarily lays off 800 workers
The city of Coquitlam has announced it has cut roughly 800 auxiliary employees as it looks to make operational savings in the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


City of Kingston places new restrictions on yard waste drop-off
As part of its Stay Safe, Stay Home protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Kingston is asking residents to curtail non-essential trips to the Kingston Area Recycling Centre to drop off yard waste until after emergency measures are lifted. Read more…


Long-haul truckers now getting some “relief” while on the road
Truckers who haul between Canada and the U.S. are finding it easier to locate food and washrooms while performing their long haul duties. Read more…


Concerns raised about COVID-19 quarantine rules for migrant workers
Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves-Francois Blanchet is raising concern about temporary foreign workers arriving in Canada to work on farms, saying he believes the quarantine rules for these workers are inadequate. Read more…


House of Commons passes $73 billion wage subsidy bill
The House of Commons has approved a massive $73-billion wage subsidy program aimed at helping businesses and workers survive the economic ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 11

Canadian cities burn through cash, call on Ottawa for help
Some Canadian mayors are warning that their ability to continue providing public services is being impeded and they need financial support from higher levels of government. Read more…


Wage subsidy bill expected to pass as party leaders speak before Parliament reconvenes
The federal government’s wage subsidy legislation is expected to pass today inside the House of Commons after days of negotiations between the government and opposition parties. Read more…


B.C. cities are scrambling to pay for pandemic costs as they lose millions in revenue
Cities across Metro Vancouver are scrambling to find a way to make up for lost revenue and pay for essential services in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City schools closed for rest of year amid pandemic
New York City’s 1.1 million-pupil public school system will be closed for the rest of the school year as the city struggles to contain the coronavirus outbreak, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Saturday. Read more…


City of Saskatoon to offer voluntary temporary layoff plan to employees
The City of Saskatoon is rolling out a voluntary temporary layoff program and a redeployment strategy for a number of employees in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Vancouver golf clubhouses to feed needy during pandemic
Two Vancouver golf courses are providing thousands of meals over Easter weekend to residents of city-run housing projects to help the needy follow public health advice and stay inside. Read more…


Remote delegations allowed at upcoming emergency meeting of Guelph council
Guelph held its first online emergency meeting on March 23. While there were no delegates at that time, online public delegations will be allowed at an emergency meeting of Guelph City Council on April 16. Read more…


Richmond city revenues dropping amid COVID-19 crisis
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on business is obvious in the streets of Richmond with many sectors paralyzed, but the crisis is also taking a toll on municipal revenues. Read more…


RCMP, Reed Deer city officials raise concerns about recent uptick in drivers speeding
The director of the City of Red Deer’s emergency operations centre says both the city and Red Deer RCMP are taking action to respond to recent concerns about drivers speeding in the community. Read more…


Halifax Transit implements new COVID-19 safety measures
Halifax Transit has adopted some new measures for the holiday weekend to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 after the Nova Scotia Health Authority warned of recent potential exposures to the virus on three bus routes. Read more…


April 10

Obama says “biggest mistake” mayors can make in coronavirus pandemic is to misinform the public
As the number of coronavirus cases kept climbing worldwide Thursday, former president Barack Obama offered some simple advice for mayors and local leaders battling outbreaks in cities across the globe: “Speak the truth.” Read more…


Modelling shows New Brunswick could have between 550 and 1,750 COVID-19-related deaths
New Brunswick’s COVID-19 projection models estimate there could be between 550 and 1,750 deaths in the province during the course of the pandemic. Read more…


As Montreal surpasses 5,000 COVID-19 cases, city’s blue-collar workers return to the job
As Montreal registers 5,262 COVID-19 cases and a total of 91 deaths, the city’s blue-collar workers are returning to work on a gradual basis. Read more…


City of Ottawa still patching potholes, maintaining parks with smaller crews for physical distancing
As the City of Ottawa tackles the COVID-19 pandemic along with the spring freshet, potholes are still being patched and parks maintained with smaller crews to allow workers to physically distance from one another. Read more…


City of Lethbridge extends State of Local Emergency for 90 days
It may not be needed for the entirety of the 90 day period, but do not expect the City of Lethbridge’s State of Local Emergency to end right away. Read more…


No property tax increase for Victoria homeowners, city announces
Victoria homeowners are getting a break on their property taxes this year as the city announced Thursday there will be a zero percent increase in taxes on commercial and residential properties in 2020. People will also have more time to pay them. Read more…


“This will be a real test to our community,” city ready to close parks if necessary
Interim city manager Adam Laughlin warned the City of Edmonton could take more stringent steps to ensure people are following the province’s public health orders to curb COVID-19 depending on how residents behave over the Easter weekend. Read more…


Mayor’s group lays out blueprint for London to survive, recover from COVID-19 shutdown
Two task forces struck by London Mayor Ed Holder to respond the economic and social damage caused by COVID-19 have released an initial reporting outlining 32 ways to survive the shutdown and help a recovery. Read more…


City of Kamloops taking extra steps to promote physical distancing
The City of Kamloops is introducing new measures to help people successfully physical distance, including closing the ring road on McArthur Island to vehicle traffic while allowing it to remain open to pedestrians and cyclists. Read more…


City of Toronto announces mental health supports during coronavirus pandemic
The City of Toronto is teaming up with several mental health service providers to help people who are struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


April 9

No return to “normality” until coronavirus vaccine is available, Trudeau says
Canadians won’t be able to return to life as they knew it before the novel coronavirus pandemic until a vaccine is available, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday. Read more…


New York City hires laborers to bury dead in potter’s field amid coronavirus surge
New York City officials have hired contract laborers to bury the dead in its potter’s field on Hart Island as the city’s daily death rate from the coronavirus epidemic has reached grim new records in each of the last three days. Read more…


Premier Doug Ford urges city residents to stay out of cottage country on Easter weekend
Premier Doug Ford has made another plea to residents living in Ontario’s urban centres to stay away from cottage country during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


City of Regina looking at redirecting capital funding, reserves to operations
With revenue down significantly due to COVID-19, the City of Regina is considering using money set aside for capital projects and even dipping into reserve funds to support operations and the continuation of essential services. Read more…


More recyclables headed to Edmonton landfills due to reduction in sorting staff
More plastic and paper are winding up in Edmonton landfills due to reduced processing capacity at the city’s sorting facility. Read more…


City of Brantford lays off hundreds of workers
The City of Brantford announced 380 employees were given records of employment Wednesday and most of them placed on job-protected unpaid emergency leave. Read more…


Dwindling revenues likely point to staff layoffs in Halifax
With “material changes” to the Halifax Regional Municipality’s budget to about the tune of $5 million a month, CAO Jacques Dube cautioned the municipality’s 3,300 employees could be at risk of job loss. Read more…


More Saskatoon staff laid off, two diagnosed with COVID-19
Two City of Saskatoon employees have been diagnosed with COVID-19 while around 300 have been laid off and hundreds more could see their jobs change or temporarily disappear as the city prepares for at least several more weeks of restrictions aimed at halting the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Charlottetown mayor says city working to upgrade trail system in times of physical distancing
The City of Charlottetown is working to upgrade its trail system to give people room to get some fresh air amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Edmonton adjusts roads, pedestrian call buttons to promote physical distancing
The City of Edmonton is changing pedestrian crossings and converting some roads into shared use between pedestrians and vehicles, in hopes of spreading people out to promote better physical distancing. Read more….


Giant Canadian Flag set to fly at Ottawa city hall to express solidarity
To show the City of Ottawa’s solidarity in Canada’s fight against COVID-19, council passed a motion to display a large Canadian flag from the roof of city hall. Read more…


“The unsealing of Wuhan” brings cheers and new surveillance
For many, a new kind of hardship is just beginning as they enter an invasive surveillance regime with doubts about whether the virus has actually been contained. Read more…


Urgent Animal Care Fund launched to support pets during COVID-19 crisis
The Ontario SPCA and Humane Society has set up an Urgent Animal Care Fund with other SPCAs and humane societies in Ontario to help animal organizations care for animals and support pet owners during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City sees more deaths from coronavirus than 9/11
New York City faced one of its darkest days with the death toll from the coronavirus surging past 4,000 – more than the number killed on 9/11. Read more..


City of Saint John closes pedways to promote physical distancing
The City of Saint John has closed a series of pedways in the city’s downtown core as it attempts to promote physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Surrey’s new pandemic shelter highlights desperation of homeless people
City of Surrey, Fraser Health, and BC Housing coordinated to open the North Surrey Recreation Centre one week after police intervened on squatters seeking shelter from COVID-19. Read more…


Orillia establishes COVID-19 Economic Recovery Task Force
The City of Orillia has formed an Economic Recovery Task Force to work with local businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic and to plan and develop measures to help the local economy recover moving forward. Read more…


Rural counties to receive 200,000 pieces of PPE from Bruce Power
The Western Ontario Wardens’ Caucus (WOWC) will be receiving 200,000 pieces of personal protective equipment (PPE) from Bruce Power to be dispersed to front-line community workers in the fight against COVID-19. Read more…


City of Vancouver asks province for $200 million in emergency funding
The City of Vancouver asked the provincial government on Wednesday for $200 million in emergency funding to help maintain essential services and continue to support vulnerable residents during the pandemic. Read more…


April 8

City of Ottawa faces nine-figure revenue hit because of COVID-19 restrictions
The City of Ottawa is staring at a $273-million revenue void if the physical distancing rules of the COVID-19 pandemic last for the rest of 2020, council heard Wednesday during a meeting. Read more…


City of Burnaby will lay off staff due to COVID-19
The City of Burnaby will be laying off some of its staff due to COVID-19, despite early efforts to keep employees in their paid positions. Read more…


City of Leduc to lower tax rate to zero, remove penalties to end of year
The City of Leduc has implemented several measures to take some financial pressure off of residents and businesses while utilizing reserves to make up for budgetary impacts. Read more…


Orillia, local business experts form Economic Recovery Task Force
The City of Orillia has formed an Economic Recovery Task Force to work with local businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic and to plan and develop measures to help the local economy recover moving forward. Read more…


Traffic volumes down in Winnipeg amid pandemic
Traffic is down about 40 per cent on Winnipeg roads as people are encouraged to stay home amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the city. Read more…


Enmax boosts annual dividend to help City of Calgary
After declaring a $48-million annual dividend for its sole shareholder, the City of Calgary, Enmax’s board decided to declare a further special dividend of $6 million. Read more…


Iqaluit city council approves funds for COVID-19 homelessness response
Iqaluit city councillors have approved the allocation of $351,200 to three local organizations helping with the city’s ongoing COVID-19 homelessness response. Read more…


City of Saint John closes pedways to promote physical distancing during COVID-19 pandemic
Saint John has closed a series of pedways in the city’s downtown core as it attempts to promote physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Edmonton bolsters Capital City Clean Up after influx of tossed gloves and masks
COVID-19 has led to more people taking wearing masks and gloves, but those items are now covering parking lots. As a result, the City of Edmonton is providing clean-up kits to grocery stores and pharmacies as part of an expanded Capital City Clean Up program. Read more…


Stay home today, #TravelTomorrow
#TravelTomorrow has become the common thread that runs through the World Tourism Organization’s response to the current crisis, highlighting the enduring values of tourism. Read more…


Coronavirus throttles B.C. city hall revenue streams
Staff numbers at B.C.’s city halls have been shrinking during the COVID-19 pandemic, and a lengthy economic decline will force local policy-makers to decide how to employ financial reserves to stave off deeper cuts. Read more….


Prince Albert mayor declares first electronic council meeting a success
For the first time since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, Prince Albert’s elected municipal officials met via teleconference for a regular council meeting. Read more…


Victoria considers lowering property taxes due to COVID-19
Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps says the city is considering lowering property taxes this year to provide financial relief for residents due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Feds asked to cover overruns on projects
Cities and construction groups are asking the Trudeau Liberals to relax the rules for expected cost overruns from infrastructure projects facing delays from the COVID-19 pandemic – or add more cash to help them deal with it. Read more…


Greater Saint John suspends recycling because of worker safety concerns
Waste collection has become more complicated in the era of COVID-19, with worker safety becoming a serious concern. One of the changes in the Greater Saint John Region is the indefinite closure of the blue recycling bins. Read more…


Yukon agents placed at B.C. and N.W.T. boundaries to limit spread of COVID-19
Yukon says it has placed enforcement officers at its boundaries and at the Whitehorse airport to get details of travellers’ self-isolation plans, their contact information, and to look for any symptoms of COVID-19. Read more…


Owen Sound received most feedback on boat launch closures, council hears
Of all the closures announced by the City of Owen Sound to help stop the spread of COVID-19, officials say the closure that has generated the most controversy so far was the decision to shutter Owen Sound’s boat launches. Read more…


City of Kamloops fighting through a financial crisis
The City of Kamloops needs to come up with $3.7 million in savings to balance its budget, in the event the pandemic continues to the end of June. That number jumps to $6.2 million, should the crisis continue through the end of September. Read more…


City of Grande Prairie council opens $35 million line of credit
Grande Prairie council approved a borrowing bylaw to open a revolving $35 million line of credit for the city’s operating budget in response to COVID-19. Read more…


Influx of non-residents chasing gas, smokes, pot putting First Nations at risk
Despite directives to stay home, non-residents stocking up on gasoline, cigarettes, and cannabis continue to flood First Nation communities in Ontario and Quebec, putting already vulnerable people at greater risk of a COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


April 7

Canada working to produce up to 30,000 ventilators domestically: Trudeau
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says his government is teaming up with a handful of Canadian companies to produce up to 30,000 ventilators — a critical piece of equipment in the battle against COVID-19. Read more…


Why B.C. is flattening the COVID-19 curve while numbers in central Canada surge
The COVID-19 outbreak is currently more severe in Canada’s two largest provinces than it is in British Columbia. That’s not opinion; it’s fact. Read more…


“A lot of pain.” New York has biggest one-day jump in virus deaths
New York state recorded 731 new coronavirus deaths, marking its biggest single-day jump, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday. The state’s death toll since the beginning of the outbreak last month grew to 5,489. Read more…


City of Ottawa’s COVID-19 cases nearly triple in a week
The City of Ottawa has now surpassed 400 confirmed COVID-19 cases. Public health officials announced Tuesday the city has 403 confirmed cases, up from 144 last Tuesday. Read more…


Winnipeg expands active transportation route schedule to help with physical distancing 
The City of Winnipeg is expanding its annual bicycle and active transportation route schedule in order to help with physical distancing requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Premier Kenney predicts 25 percent unemployment in Alberta due to COVID-19
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has a grim prediction for workers in his province. He says there may well be 25 percent unemployment as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Kitchener lays off 842 workers
The City of Kitchener has put 842 workers on what’s called temporary Declared Emergency Leave. That means they will stay on the record as employees of the city and will return to their jobs once the city opens for business. Read more…


City of Portage la Prairie encourages use of e-services during COVID-19
The City of Portage la Prairie wants to inform you of a few services during COVID-19 – including plenty of phone-based and online services. Read more…


Shelter space opened across B.C. for homeless to self isolate
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, shelter space is being temporarily opened at hotels, motels, and community centres across British Columbia, for those without housing who need to self isolate. Read more…


Durham municipalities look for financial assist from province over coronavirus hit
Ajax, Clarington, Pickering, and Whitby are asking for provincial and federal support for local businesses and individuals hammered by job losses and shutdowns imposed by physical distancing demands caused by the pandemic. Read more…


Cities grapple over whether to give more room to pedestrians to spread out
Battles are brewing in some cities over use of increasingly limited public space, as local governments struggle with whether to give more room for pedestrians to spread out. Read more….


City of Ottawa putting more than 4,000 employees on emergency leave
As the City of Ottawa extends its closure of public facilities and suspension of non-essential services, activities, and programs, it’s putting more than 4,000 of its part-time employees on a job-protected legislated leave of absence. Read more…


COVID-19 prompts borrowing request by City of New Westminster
New Westminster is taking steps to borrow up to $15 million in case it needs more cash to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic – but there’s no guarantee it will be able to get the cash. Read more…


Edmonton issues more than 300 warnings after dog parks, playgrounds closed
The City of Edmonton announced more than 300 warnings were issued over the last week to people at dog parks and using playground equipment amid the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak. Read more…


City of Regina postpones National Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations
City of Regina events are looking at being postponed or axed in the coming months to limit and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Among the planned events affected by the virus is National Indigenous Peoples Day. Read more…


New York City considers temporary mass graves as the death toll rises
As New York City’s fatalities from the new coronavirus increase and threaten to overwhelm the city’s capacity to handle the dead, officials have begun to consider resorting to temporary burial sites. Read more…


Leduc announces measures to help those hurting financially over COVID-19
Three weeks after Leduc declared a local state of emergency, the city announced new measures it says are aimed at helping those in the community facing financial troubles because of COVID-19. Read more…


Swamped community programs in Windsor welcome city worker relief
The provision of fresh recruits in the form of redeployed city hall workers will be a godsend to organizations in Windsor coping with rising demand from people confined to their homes and fewer volunteers available to help. Read more…


Medicine Hat council talks rezoning, bylaws but nothing on COVID-19
Medicine Hat city council moved to close its meetings to in-person public access while opening it up to an online setting in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Aside from that, Monday’s council meeting was fairly routine. Read more…


Halifax Partnership will lead city through COVID-19 economic crisis
The Halifax Regional Council has put the Halifax Partnership – a public-private partnership created to foster economic development – in charge of leading the city’s post-COVID-19 economic recovery. Read more…


City of Ottawa accused of going too far to enforce physical distancing rules
The Canadian Civil Liberties Association has criticized the City of Ottawa for overzealous ticketing to reinforce physical distancing rules, following a weekend blitz. Read more…


April 6

Canada’s top doctor says non-medical masks can help stop the spread of COVID-19
Dr. Theresa Tam, the top doctor at the Public Health Agency of Canada, said today that Canadians can use non-medical masks in tandem with social distancing measures to limit the transmission of the deadly virus when out grocery shopping or at a pharmacy. Read more…


In Canada’s north, authorities worry about fleeing city-dwellers spreading coronavirus
Information about COVID-19 can distort people’s estimation of the risk the virus poses to them, leading to both good and bad behaviour. Read more…


City of Toronto receives 141 complaints about gatherings, unsafe behaviour in parks
The City of Toronto says there were still some persistent problem areas at city parks during an enforcement blitz over the weekend amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Tri-Cities feeling financial impact of pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic is having an impact on revenues and costs in the Tri-Cities. But the municipalities have yet to announce any layoffs. Read more…


City of London cuts 800 jobs as COVID-19 keeps programs shut down
As the City of London continues to deal with the fallout from the spread of COVID-19, around 1,100 temporary and casual employees are left wondering about the future of their jobs. Read more…


One-way shopping aisles introduced at some Edmonton grocery stores
In light of COVID-19, Safeway stores are taking additional physical distancing measures—including limiting the number of shoppers in stores, telling customers not to handle food they don’t buy and introducing one-way aisles to limit customer contact. Read more…


“Many will die unless” people follow pandemic rules, City of Elliot Lake warns
City of Elliot Lake declares state of emergency over the weekend; anyone disregarding social distancing orders could be fined up to $100,000. Read more…


Calgary aims to reduce economic impact of COVID-19
The City of Calgary is exploring what funds it can make available, in reserves or investment money, to potentially mitigate the financial fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Windsor inside workers agree to redeployment, layoffs for idled city hall staff
Hundreds of idled Windsor city hall staff are expected to be redeployed for needed community projects in the coming days, after CUPE Local 543 leadership signed a memorandum of agreement on Sunday. Read more…


Winnipeg closes underground concourse, downtown skywalk amid COVID-19
The City of Winnipeg has shut the doors to the entire downtown overhead walkway system, along with the underground concourse at Portage and Main, until further notice as a health precaution due to COVID-19. Read more…


London tightens rules on bridges, sidewalks to promote social distancing
City hall is making changes to how pedestrians use London’s sidewalks, roads, and parks during the coronavirus pandemic, as the province releases stark numbers on COVID-19’s potential death toll. Read more…


City of Kamloops adjustments continue as pandemic keeps going
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, so do adjustments from City of Kamloops staff. At the same time, bylaw officers are stepping up foot patrols in city parks along with the downtown core. Read more…


Torontonians seem to be getting the “stay at home” message, Mayor Tory says
“That evidence is truer today than it was yesterday, and I think people are beginning to get the message,” Mayor John Tory said after the first day of a city-wide enforcement blitz. Read more…


Surrey should delay its police transition due to outbreak, city councillor says
Surrey city councillor Linda Annis was against the transition to a municipal police force before the COVID-19 outbreak. Now, she’s even more concerned. Read more…


Quebec sugar shacks reeling after “catastrophic” COVID-19 closures
While the pandemic has left few businesses untouched, the timing has been particularly cruel for Quebec’s several hundred commercial sugar shacks. Read more…


Ontario hospitals ban health-care workers from criss-crossing borders to work
A massive surge in COVID-19 cases in Michigan is prompting Ontario border cities to confront difficult questions about how to reduce the spread of disease in hundreds of Canadian health-care professionals who work in the United States. Read more…


Nunavut using natural “social distancing” to its advantage
Nunavut has managed to turn its northern isolation and lack of connecting roads into a successful defence against the deadly novel coronavirus that has killed thousands of people around the world. Read more…


Vancouver mayor counting on governments to help city re-hire 1,500 workers
Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart says he’s counting on funding relief from other levels of government, which heavily depend on work done by civic employees, to help the city re-hire 1,500 workers laid off because of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Timmins to deploy bylaw officers at grocery stores
Timmins residents who persist in treating shopping excursions like social outings amid the COVID-19 outbreak may find themselves paying for more than just the cost of their groceries. Read more…


Calgary organizations staring down $376 million shortfall due to COVID-19
A city document estimates that it would cost approximately $376 million to cover the costs for various sectors in Calgary, including affordable housing, homeless shelters, and civic partners. Read more…


Charlottetown, Stratford, P.E.I. won’t turn off taps during COVID-19
Residents of Charlottetown and Stratford can rest assured they will not have their water disconnected for failing to pay their bill on time during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Kitchener mayor “angry” after city, police halt forbidden basketball game 
Kitchener mayor Berry Vrbanovic is “angry” after a group of people were caught playing basketball at McLennan Park on Saturday despite restrictions put into place due to the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


April 5

Cities “bleeding” cash because of COVID-19 could be next financial domino to fall for federal government
Most municipalities in Canada are required to run balanced budgets, which means unlike other governments they can’t simply borrow through this crisis. Read more…


Coquitlam aims to help businesses hurt by pandemic
Owners of the more than 7,000 businesses in Coquitlam are being encouraged to contact the city’s economic development office. Read more…


Toronto police enforcing city bylaws, provincial orders to stop COVID-19 spread
Toronto police say they are prepared to issue fines of up to $1,000 to people who violate a new physical distancing city bylaw. Read more…


Halifax staff “working harder than ever,” no layoffs planned: Deputy Mayor
Halifax Regional Municipality Deputy Mayor Lisa Blackburn says many employees are working from home during COVID-19, but that doesn’t mean work isn’t getting done. Read more…


City of London takes more action to keep pedestrians apart
The City of London is taking more steps in in an effort to enhance physical distancing measures on sidewalks, roads and in parks. Read more…


Richmond to vote on reducing credit card service fee for online property tax, utility payments
Richmond city council will consider reducing credit card service fees to encourage online payments in light of current physical distancing and health guidelines. Read more…


City takes further steps to make waste collection safer during COVID-19 pandemic
While Greater Sudbury’s waste collection crews continue to provide a vital service to the community, the city is taking additional steps to limit the potential spread of the COVID-19 virus. Read more…


Vancouver city staff will patrol parks for physical distancing
The Vancouver park board is bringing back staff who were working as recreation programmers to patrol parks and beaches to remind people to maintain physical distance. Read more…


Fort Saskatchewan continues to maintain services despite facility closures
Despite the recent closures to facilities, Fort Saskatchewan City Manager Troy Flemming is  emphasizing that city services are being maintained. Read more…


People who live in Ontario’s “cottage country” want big city dwellers to stay home
Locals living in Ontario’s lakeside towns say big-city day-trippers and cottagers are still making regular visits to their communities despite authorities urging them to stay home to stop the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


April 4

Cities lead the charge on the coronavirus front lines: U of T expert
The rapid spread of COVID-19 has upended lives and livelihoods. In cities around the world, the repercussions of scaling back as a result of physical distancing measures have had exceptionally damaging impacts. And at the same time, observers marvel at the ways in which urban life continues. Read more…


All city-organized public events in Calgary cancelled up to June 30
Festivals, public gatherings, and events in Calgary up until June 30 are cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, city hall announced Friday. Read more…


Winnipeg declares local state of emergency due to COVID-19, passes tax-relief plan
Winnipeg city council declared a local state of emergency on Friday, as council also voted 15 to 1 in favour of a tax-relief package for businesses and property owners. Read more…


Saskatchewan cities join Saskatoon mayor in criticizing province’s pandemic response
The mayors of Saskatchewan’s largest cities are echoing Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark’s criticism of the provincial government’s efforts to protect homeless people during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Toronto could see up to 3,000 COVID-19 deaths, city facing $65 million cost each week: officials
Toronto could see anywhere from 600 to 3,000 deaths by the end of the COVID-19 pandemic based on projections unveiled by the provincial government Friday, the city’s medical officer of health says. Read more…


City of Yellowknife changing garbage collection as residential waste increases
The City of Yellowknife is changing how it collects garbage as the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase in residential and household waste. Read more…


Quebec City police respond 100 times a day to people not respecting COVID-19 restrictions
Quebec City Police officers have intervened 900 times since the start of the COVID-19 crisis when people did not comply with public health guidelines. Read more…


City of Humboldt taking action to ensure essential services
To ensure it provides essential services throughout the pandemic, the City of Humboldt has divided public works staff into two crews that avoid interacting with each other. That way, if somebody develops COVID-19 on one of the crews and they have to self-isolate, there’s still another crew working. Read more…


City of Edmonton forces laid-off workers to “choose between a rock and a hard place”
Last Monday, the City of Edmonton temporarily let go 1,600 city recreation centre staff . On Thursday, the city sent out an e-mail offering some workers a different job. Employees were not told what the job was, but they had to make a decision by 6 p.m. that same day. Read more…


City council to consider closing meetings to public during pandemic
Prince George city council will consider major changes to the way it conducts business during the COVID-19 pandemic as the B.C. Emergency Program Act, issued on March 26, authorizes city councils to hold meetings by teleconference, accelerate the passage of bylaws, and hold meetings without the public in attendance. Read more…


April 3

City of Kelowna to webcast council meetings starting Monday
In conjunction with recent system upgrades in chambers, cameras have been installed to allow for webcasting of Kelowna public council meetings and hearings. Read more…


Brantford trails, parks still open but public asked to maintain physical distancing
Brantford Mayor Kevin Davis said “walking, jogging or taking your dog for a walk” are still permitted in city parks and trails, provided people are following physical distancing requirements and staying at least two metres away from one another. Read more…


Tri-City firefighters will now only respond to most serious medical calls
Fire departments across the Tri-Cities (Port Moody, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam) will be scaling back their responses to medical calls after the province dropped them from the BC Ambulance call triaging system for all but the most serious medical emergencies. Read more…


City of Ottawa prepared to fine citizens who disregard COVID-19 restrictions
Ottawa bylaw officers have issued dozens of verbal warnings, but are moving into “the charging phase” and are prepared to start charging residents who openly disregard the province’s COVID-19-related emergency orders. Read more…


Winnipeg city council report shows losses in millions because of COVID-19
The City of Winnipeg could be more than $73 million in the red if the COVID-19 health crisis reaches to the end of July, but Mayor Brian Bowman is so far holding back on measures to cut staff or services. Read more…


City of Barrie sets up hotline to report COVID-19 rule-breakers
The City of Barrie has set up a dedicated COVID-19 Enforcement Line for the public to report instances of non-compliance with the COVID-19 emergency orders. Read more…


Vancouver lays off 1,500 city workers due to COVID-19
The City of Vancouver has temporarily laid off 1,500 workers – mostly from theatres, recreation and community centres, and libraries – but they will continue to be paid for 42 days and will have their benefits extended for three months. Read more…


Winnipeg staff, school workers reinventing themselves to stave off layoffs 
While government and school workers are losing their jobs nationwide, in Winnipeg, city employees are turning the phrase “other duties as assigned” into a mantra. Read more…


City of Prince George suspends parking time limits downtown, near hospital
The City of Prince George announced it will not be enforcing time limits related to parking in the downtown and near the hospital due to COVID-19. Read more….


Windsor makes sandbags available for at-risk waterfront properties
The City of Windsor says that while there is no imminent threat at this time, water levels are high enough to warrant concern and preparations. Read more…


Document details grim impact of COVID-19 on Calgary non-profits, social services
The City of Calgary could need nearly $400 million over the next year to protect social services and non-profit organizations, according to an internal document prepared by city staff to plan for the COVID-19 emergency. Read more…


City of Toronto bylaw officers start crackdown
Accompanied in some cases by police officers, City of Toronto bylaw officers are being dispatched to hot spots where people have been seen using facilities closed to the public under emergency orders to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City increasing transit security, shuttle service to aid homeless Edmontonians
The City of Edmonton is boosting supports for vulnerable residents after rising concerns of “disruptive behaviour” on the transit system. Read more…


City of Surrey lays off more than 2,000 employees
Surrey is the latest city to confirm massive layoffs of municipal workers due to the COVID-19 pandemic –1,900 of those laid off are auxillary workers without permanent, full-time jobs. Read more…


April 2

Calls mount for Ottawa to release projections on COVID-19 spread
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said the country may have to endure the COVID-19 pandemic for months to come, but his government has so far refused to release internal projections of just how deadly the virus could be and when the caseload might peak. Read more…


B.C. city halls are shrinking but some have bigger reserves to fall on
British Columbia’s city halls are contracting during the early onset of the COVID-19 pandemic response, and a lengthy economic decline will force local policy makers to decide how to employ financial reserves to stave off much greater attrition. Read more…


Charlottetown increases spending to aid post-pandemic economic recovery
The City of Charlottetown is planning more spending on infrastructure in the hopes of boosting the economy following the COVID-19 pandemic. The increased spending necessitated changes to the already passed capital budget. Read more…


COVID-19 scofflaws in Hamilton told to “knock it off”
“Knock it off” is the message from the city to troublemakers that have Hamilton bylaw officers bylaw “running ragged” trying to keep up as the Steel City focuses the bulk of its resources on fighting the potentially deadly virus. Read more…


Edmonton taking steps to address problems caused by homeless people on buses, LRT trains
The City of Edmonton says it is taking steps to address the growing problem of homeless people spending hours riding buses and LRT trains during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of London moving homeless into motels to combat spread of COIVD-19
The City of London has rented 100 motel rooms to help house the municipality’s vulnerable population during the COVID-19 pandemic. The city is working with London InterCommunity Health to get people assessed and tested as needed. Read more…


Saskatoon calling on province to act now to help city’s homeless
The Government of Saskatchewan needs to act faster to help Saskatoon’s homeless and vulnerable populations amid COVID-19, according to the city. Read more…


Jump in overdose deaths in Vancouver highlight two health emergencies: city
A recent spike of overdose deaths in Vancouver is an important reminder there are two ongoing public health emergencies, the city says as the province grapples with the rollout of a safe supply of drugs for users. Read more…


Complaints pour into London’s COVID-19 tip line, city hall responds by phone
In just five days, Londoners have lodged 1,250 complaints about people and businesses not following provincial COVID-19 orders. Read more…


Saskatchewan First Nation joins call for closing liquor stores during pandemic
The Chief and Council of Montreal Lake Cree Nation want the province to ban the sale of liquor to stop the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Nova Scotia municipalities adopt new building inspection rules during pandemic
Municipalities across Nova Scotia have adopted new protocols for building inspections during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Laid off City of Regina workers navigating new COVID-19 reality
With all of the city’s recreational facilities and programming temporarily shut down, City Manager Chris Holden said the hours just weren’t there to justify keeping casual employees on. Read more…


City of Lethbridge urges against gas hoarding during COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Lethbridge’s chief fire marshal had a stern message for anyone opting to take advantage of low gas prices by filling up more than just their vehicle. Read more…


Cargo ship denied entry to Port of Halifax over COVID-19 fears
A Halifax-bound vessel has been denied entry to the Port of Halifax by the Public Health Agency of Canada as some crew members displayed symptoms that resemble COVID-19. Read more…


Richmond Hill okays “boldest” move to extend relief measures to January 1
In what several councillors described as the “boldest move” the city could make, Richmond Hill residents who are enduring financial difficulties due to the COVID-19 pandemic may delay their tax payments until January 1. Read more…


Bootleggers are an old N.W.T. problem, Covid-19 is a new worry
Indigenous leaders across the Northwest Territories are imploring bootleggers to stop, worried they may bring Covid-19 into small communities alongside drugs and alcohol. Read more…


North Stormont council offers dial-in council meeting
North Stormont council has been looking into live-streaming their meetings. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, council has decided to expedite this initiative by holding a virtual meeting that will be available to the public via telephone. Read more…


City of North Vancouver warns of tight COVID-era budgets
City of North Vancouver council is making some 11th hour changes to its 2020 budget, realizing the COVID-19 pandemic is going to have a major hit on the city’s coffers. Read more…


April 1

Trudeau wants to recall MPs to back massive coronavirus aid package
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Wednesday he wanted to recall Parliament so legislators could approve a massive aid package he called “the biggest economic measures of our lifetimes”. Read more…


Shuttered Montreal hospital may be re-opened to in-patients, other makeshift facilities in works
Quebec’s health ministry says it is considering using Montreal’s Hotel Dieu to treat non-COVID in-patients, if a surge in people suffering from the new coronavirus strains resources at the city’s other hospitals. Read more…


Ottawa bylaw officers investigate pandemic beefs about birthdays, joggers and open businesses
Ottawa bylaw officers have responded to complaints about birthday bashes and joggers as people drop a dime on potential delinquents in this new era of physical distancing. Read more…


No live broadcasts of Port Coquitlam council meetings
Port Coquitlam city council meetings will have a different look for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis. But, unlike in Coquitlam, the meetings won’t be webcast live; rather, they’ll be recorded and posted online within two days. Read more…


City of Brampton to provide rent relief for small businesses and city tenants amid COVID-19 outbreak
The City of Brampton announced that the city will defer rent payments for non-profits and small for-profit tenants for a period of three months. Read more…


City of Toronto cancels events through June 30, including Pride Parade
The City of Toronto has cancelled all city-led major events, festivals, conferences, and cultural programs through June 30 amid the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


One P.E.I. town is finding unique ways to celebrate 25 years
As the Town of Stratford turns 25 on Wednesday, April 1, the community celebration that was being planned is on hold due to COVID-19, but that won’t stop residents from celebrating in other ways. Read more…


London continues some in-person meetings, but should they?
A small number of in-person meetings continue to take place at London city hall, and while distancing measures are in place, some are asking if in-person meetings are necessary at all. Read more….


Trail RCMP addresses COVID-19 concerns, including service delivery, frauds
Trail top cop Sgt. Mike Wicentowich has detailed a variety of ways COVID-19 is impacting local policing, including new frauds the virus has inspired. Read more…


Saskatoon plans to roll out “adjusted staffing plan” for next three months
The City of Saskatoon is expected to roll out an “adjusted staffing plan” it expects will be in place for at least three months as it works to maintain essential services while the pandemic sweeps through the province. Read more…


Brampton to enforce physical distancing with large fines
The City of Brampton will impose fines of between $500 and $100,000 for those not adhering to physical distancing guidelines. Read more…


Winnipeg to open four active transportation routes for pedestrians, cyclists
The City of Winnipeg is opening up its annual active transportation routes for pedestrians and cyclists earlier than normal, though the routes will be monitored to ensure Winnipeggers are practising physical distancing. Read more…


Hamilton closures extend to end of May as confirmed COVID-19 cases climb
The City of Hamilton’s closures will extend to May 25 as new COVID-19 cases continue to appear and cast doubt on how much longer it will take for life to return to normal. Read more…


Vancouver city council unanimously approves 2020 cultural grants
After weeks in crisis mode, Vancouver arts groups say announcements this week offer some hope for staying afloat through COVID-19 shutdowns. Read more…


Surge in transit concerns City of Timmins officials
The city is urging residents to be mindful that the free Timmins Transit service is intended for “essential travel only, meaning those requiring the service to get to and from work, or to secure essential goods and services.” Read more…


Edmonton working to get more showers for EXPO Centre COVID-19 facility
The City of Edmonton has set up a facility to support vulnerable people through the COVID-19 crisis. Staff are now pushing to get more shower facilities for those who use the services. Read more…


March 31

Canadian companies now manufacturing ventilators, surgical masks
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced that companies across the country are now producing medical supplies, including hundreds of ventilators, as part of Canada’s battle to increase desperately needed equipment in the fight against COVID-19. Read more…


Windsor council to make “gut-wrenching” choice on paying city staff who are not working amid pandemic
Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens says a tough decision will need to be made with regards to paying city workers who are currently not working during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Lethbridge lays off more than 200 staff members
The City of Lethbridge is providing details on staff layoffs related to COVID-19. A total of 248 staff have been laid off: 244 casual positions and four permanent part-time roles. Read more…


Toronto converts hotel into COVID-19 recovery centre for people experiencing homelessness
In what the chair of Toronto’s Board of Health is calling a first in Canada, the city has converted a 200-room hotel into a COVID-19 recovery centre for people experiencing homelessness. Read more…


Crews doing the job differently, but municipal services continue to operate in Charlottetown, Summerside
Public works crews in Charlottetown and Summerside are doing their best to stay on top of work that needs to be done, all while doing it safely. Read more…


City of Barrie offers three extra garbage bag tags per household during pandemic
With more people working from home or waiting out the COVID-19 pandemic before they can head back to work, the city offering up three extra bag tags per household to handle the expected increase in garbage. Read more…


Ontario shutters playgrounds, beaches as emergency order extended
The Ontario government is ordering the closure of all communal or shared, public, or private outdoor recreational amenities across the province in order to help stem the transmission of COVID-19. Read more…


COVID-19 costs to City of Edmonton likely upward of $112 million
Through a lack of revenue and increased expenses, the City of Edmonton could be out $112.3 million if the current situation lasts until mid-September. Read more…


City of Kelowna preparing to slash 2020 budget amid coronavirus pandemic
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Kelowna anticipates revenues will plummet in 2020 and not support plans to run the city with $148 million this year. Read more….


Calgary temporarily lays off part-time, casual workers during pandemic
Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi said “somewhere south” of 10 percent of the city’s workforce of about 13,000 part-time or casual staff will be laid off. Read more…


City wants to share kids’ Medicine Hat artwork
In a video posted to the City of Medicine Hat’s YouTube page, Mayor Ted Clugston asks schoolkids to draw or paint their favourite part of the city. He then wants parents to submit a photo of it through the city’s Facebook page. Read more…


“Staggering”: New York virus death toll rises above 1,200
A Navy hospital ship with 1,000 beds arrived Monday in New York City as the number of deaths in the state from the coronavirus outbreak climbed quickly. Read more…


Mayor warns of $5,000 fines for people who gather at Toronto parks
Toronto Mayor John Tory said “time is up” for people who continue to congregate at city parks, warning that fines ranging from $750 to $5,000 will start being doled out with regularity until they “get the message.” Read more…


Halifax police warn those who ignore COVID-19 rules will face consequences 
Halifax’s chief of police says some people are taking unnecessary risks during the COVID-19 pandemic. Chief Dan Kinsella said, by now, everybody should be aware of state of emergency restrictions. Read more…


City of Ottawa opens up donations process for commercial-grade PPE
The City of Ottawa is looking for donations of commercial-grade personal protective equipment to protect first responders and front-line workers. Read more…


City of Richmond defers utility bill to June due to COVID-19
The City of Richmond has announced the 2020 Flat Rate Utility Bill due date has been extended from March 31 to June 30 due to COVID-19. Read more…


March 30

Justin Trudeau reveals wage subsidy for businesses that see 30 percent or more drop in revenue
Any business that has seen a drop of 30 percent or more in revenue because of the fallout of COVID-19 will be eligible for federal wage subsidies of 75 per cent to help keep workers on the payroll. Read more…


City of London snitch line receives hundreds of calls and emails
The City of London’s COVID-19 “snitch line,” a way for people to report businesses and residents not following advisories put in place to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, received nearly 800 emails and phone calls over the weekend. Read more…


Winnipeg charities, non-profits face financial strain from COVID-19
The local charity and non-profit agencies that serve Winnipeg’s most vulnerable populations and lowest income residents are feeling the impact of the financial uncertainty during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Several employees at Toronto Public Health headquarters test positive for COVID-19
Employees have been told to self-isolate from Toronto Public Health headquarters in the city’s downtown core after several workers tested positive for coronavirus. Read more…


Saskatchewan airports adjusts to fewer travellers during pandemic
Airlines are making significant cuts to the number of flights at Saskatchewan airports. There are fewer people travelling as residents heed advice to self isolate. Read more…


University of Ottawa dorm to house 65 people at risk of contracting coronavirus
About 65 people from Ottawa families at-risk of contracting the novel coronavirus are moving into a University of Ottawa residence downtown, after the school said it agreed to a request from the City of Ottawa to house them. Read more…


Canada Post resumes St. John’s service in wake of 5 positive tests for COVID-19
Canada Post workers are urging people in the St. John’s area to give them their space as they get back to work Monday morning, after five employees tested positive for COVID-19. Read more…


Residents encouraged to take part in #BellevilleCares initiative
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the new reality, the City of Belleville kicked off the #BellevilleCares initiative in which the city is calling on residents to share some of the wonderful acts of kindness they have seen in the community recently. Read more…


Canada preparing makeshift hospitals as COVID-19 pandemic stretches capacity
Provincial and municipal leaders in Canada are following examples in Europe and the U.S. by commandeering vast spaces normally reserved for conferences or sporting events to house the thousands of patients sickened by COVID-19. Read more…


More fines, more patrols as Montreal police ramp up public health enforcement 
Montreal police will begin handing out fines to people and businesses who disobey public health directives aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto acquires hotels, rental buildings for homeless in response to COVID-19
The City of Toronto has acquired hotels and residential buildings as part of its “integrated homelessness response to COVID-19.” Read more…


Calgary blocks traffic lanes to help pathway users maintain separation
Fans of Calgary’s decision to block off some traffic lanes to give pedestrians and cyclists extra room for social distancing hope other cities will follow suit. Read more…


Coquitlam wants residents to show their hearts for health care workers
Coquitlam wants residents to download a printable heart from the city website to adorn a window in their homes and cheer on health care workers at 7 p.m. daily. Read more…


City of Mississauga holds a Tele Town Hall amidst COVID-19 concerns
Joined by Mayor Bonnie Crombie, the City of Mississauga organized a virtual town hall to cover pressing questions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Nature takes back world’s empty city streets
As humans retreat into their homes as more and more countries go under coronavirus lockdown, wild animals are slipping cover to explore the empty streets of some of our biggest cities. Read more…


Saskatoon police highlight uplifting signs around city
The Saskatoon Police Service shared a few photos of uplifting signs patrol officers have found around the city. The photos were shared by the service to its Facebook page on Sunday. Read more…


City of Red Deer asks residents to help protect the pipes
City of Red Deer residents are reminded that disposable wipes are not flushable and should be disposed of in Black Carts to avoid costly blockages in the wastewater treatment system. Read more…


March 29

151 new COVID-19 cases in Ontario as province cracks down on price gouging, large gatherings
Ontario is cracking down on price gouging for essential hygiene and medical supplies, and pushing to limit gatherings to five people or fewer, as part of ongoing efforts to handle the COVID-19 outbreak across the province. Read more…


Coquitlam cancels May events, waiting on Canada Day and other summer happenings
Both Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam are taking a wait-and-see approach to events scheduled for after May and say they will heed advice from health authorities. Read more..


City of Hamilton helping local businesses shift to an online market
The City of Hamilton has launched a new website that houses many of the Steel City’s favourite neighbourhood spots under one roof so Hamiltonians can continue to support small vendors and restaurants. Read more…


City to help Winnipeg Harvest during virus
Amid the COVID-19 outbreak, Winnipeg Harvest has become busier and is in need of more volunteers. Mayor Brian Bowman announced Saturday that the city will be stepping up to help the organization sort food and stock hampers. Read more…


City of Montreal to provide more resources for homeless
Montreal is stepping up its measurers to help the homeless cope with the coronavirus. They include the opening of five outdoor day centres, expanded shelter room for men and women, and temporary public toilet facilities. Read more…


North Bay making changes to garbage and blue box pickup
In a social media post, the City of North Bay is asking residents to bag all garbage before placing into a garbage container. The city is asking for no loose garbage for the safety of its waste and blue box collection drivers. Read more…


First case of COVID-19 in Nunavik confirmed
Health authorities in the Nunavik region of northern Quebec have confirmed a case of the coronavirus known as COVID-19. Read more…


City of Richmond launches COVID-19 website
The City of Richmond just launched a COVID-19 website to let residents know what city services are closed and what are still functioning. Read more…


Police rack up nine more stunt driving offences on barren city streets
Ottawa police traffic officers continued their attack on speeders Saturdays, as drivers took advantage of light traffic conditions to put the pedal to the metal. City police issued 15 tickets for stunt driving over the past week. Read more…


Whitehorse businesses move to phone and online sales amid COVID-19 precautions
Many small businesses in Whitehorse are laying off staff, reducing hours and locking their front doors, but that doesn’t mean they’re shutting up shop completely. Read more…


March 28

London unveils “snitch line” for COVID-19 rule violations
City of London officials have set up new ways for residents to report businesses and individuals who aren’t following the rules around COVID-19. Read more…


Police boost patrols as Montreal declares state of emergency
Police are stepping up patrols across Montreal to make sure non-essential businesses stay closed and no public gatherings take place as the city declared a state of emergency on Friday. Read more…


Six Nations building barricades to block outsiders amid COVID-19
The Six Nations of the Grand River Elected Council plans to build and install barricades to block people who aren’t part of the community from entering its territory and spreading COVID-19. Read more…


City of Kawartha Lakes now has 27 COVID-19 cases
Ontario’s largest outbreak is at Pinecrest Nursing Home in Bobcaygeon; City of Kawartha Lakes closes playgrounds. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the City of Kawartha Lakes has risen to 27. Read more…


City of Burnaby employee tests positive for COVID-19
A City of Burnaby employee has tested positive for COVID-19, and another staff member who was in contact with the affected employee has been told to undergo self-assessment. Read more…


City launches online COVID-19 resources for Mississauga businesses
The City of Mississauga’s Economic Development Office has launched a new dedicated online resource for the business community in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City of Vancouver suspends business licence of downtown Tim Hortons after repeated COVID-19 bylaw noncompliance
The City of Vancouver announced Friday afternoon (March 27) that it has suspended the business licence of a downtown Tim Hortons restaurant because of noncompliance with the city’s State of Emergency bylaw to combat the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


March 27

Government boosts wage subsidy to 75 percent for small, medium businesses
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced more help for small and medium-sized businesses to keep employees on the payroll during the COVID-19 crisis, including a 75 percent wage subsidy and guaranteed interest-free loans. Read more…


New pop-up shelters coming for Halifax amid COVID-19 spread
An organizer with the Out of the Cold shelter in Halifax says the province has authorized the creation of two new pop-up shelters with a third one expected to open next week. They will allow for physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Legault promises every Quebec worker at least $2,000 monthly through COVID-19 crisis
Quebec Premier François Legault has promised that no one who is working now and earning minimum wage will take home less than $2,000 monthly. Read more…


City of Ottawa closes off-leash dog parks, park equipment due to COVID-19
The City of Ottawa has closed off-leash dog parks and playground equipment to the public during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


B.C. assumes power to take over supply chains amid COVID-19
British Columbia has dramatically stepped up its use of emergency powers, giving itself the authority to take over supply chains for delivering essential goods and services throughout the province. Read more…


City of Regina lays off 80 percent of casual staff amid COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Regina has issued layoff notices to 360 casual employees and is postponing the recall of 500 seasonal employees as confirmed COVID-19 cases grow. Read more…


City to relax construction traffic restrictions on major roads
Traffic volumes are lower because of the COVID-19 pandemic and contractors have asked the City of Ottawa to relax work restrictions on arterial and major collector roadways during peak periods. Read more…


Vancouver opening two emergency facilities inside community centres
The City of Vancouver is opening two emergency response centres inside community centres in order to create more space for homeless residents to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Montreal, Quebec City transit agencies reduce services as ridership plummets
With ridership dwindling due to COVID-19, the public transit agencies in Montreal and Quebec City will strategically reduce services starting March 30. Read more…


Recent uptick in speeding on Edmonton roads concerns mayor 
As Edmontonians are being asked to stay home amid an ongoing coronavirus pandemic, city officials say they have seen a spike in drivers speeding. Read more…


Metro Vancouver cities identifying facilities for makeshift hospitals
The province is calling on British Columbia’s cities to offer possible venues for potential expansion of critical medical and logistical infrastructure. Read more…


Stay out of the city’s west end, director of public health warns Montrealers
Quebec’s director of public health is urging Montrealers and everyone else to stay out of the city’s west end, where the number of COVID-19 cases is growing. Read more…


New Brunswick cultural workforce looks to make up lost income
New Brunswick’s arts and culture workforce contribute around $550 million to the province’s GDP, but now that workforce is among those getting hit hardest by the widespread social distancing and other public health measures. Read more..


Is the City of North Bay muzzling employees?
City hall is either taking restrictive measures to stop the flow of information getting out to the public, or can’t get their message straight with its own workers. Read more…


Charlottetown outreach centre moves amid “stressful” COVID-19 situation
The Community Outreach Centre located at 211 Euston St. in Charlottetown has temporarily relocated to Birchwood Intermediate School just a few blocks away in order to adhere to public health recommendations like social distancing. Read more…


New Westminster council ponders the new COVID-19 normal
How not to let city priorities fall by the wayside and how to continue with public engagement are two of the issues facing New Westminster city council in the face of the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


March 26

British Columbia takes over emergency response from cities
In an escalation of its response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the provincial government announced it has invoked the Emergency Program Act to take over emergency response from municipalities across British Columbia, give civic bylaw officers the ability to enforce orders from health authorities, and take control of supply chains. Read more…


Canadians targeted by scams taking advantage of COVID-19 fears
Canadians should be vigilant for text scams amid the coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday during a press briefing outside his Ottawa home. Read more…


City of Kingston declares State of Emergency in response to COVID-19
Mayor Bryan Paterson declared a State of Emergency for Kingston to help contain the spread of COVID-19. This decision aligns with steps the Province of Ontario has taken in response to the pandemic. Read more…


Woman arrested for the second time after allegedly not self-isolating
Police say a woman in Newfoundland has been arrested for a second time for allegedly refusing to stay inside after arriving from outside the province, contravening public health measures put in place to combat COVID-19. Read more…


City of Sault Ste. Marie identifying business challenges, looking for solutions, during COVID-19
More than 160 participants tapped in to the City of Sault Ste. Marie’s business teleconference Thursday to learn about programs and services that may be available to help them keep afloat during the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


COVID-19: London-area man in his 20s hospitalized as case count rises
A London-area man in his 20s is in hospital after testing positive for COVID-19, as new cases in Ontario soar by 170 in a single day. Read more…


City of Saskatoon closes pedestrian bridge in response to COVID-19
The City of Saskatoon closed the CP Rail Pedestrian bridge – which spans the South Saskatchewan River from Spadina Crescent to the city’s university area – amid concern the bridge is not wide enough to maintain proper physical distancing. Read more…


Trudeau says banks, credit card companies asked to lower interest rates
The federal government is asking banks and credit-card companies to lower interest rates on Canadians struggling financially because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City’s Work in Belleville program still working
A city-created program aimed at connecting employers and potential employees continues to work despite the current economic challenges. Read more…


Guelph mayor doesn’t feel it’s necessary to declare state of emergency right now
As of Wednesday, roughly 80 of Ontario’s 444 municipalities having declared a state of emergency. However, Mayor Cam Guthrie says at this point there is no need to for the City of Guelph to do the same. Read more…


City encourages Ottawans to buy local during coronavirus pandemic with new campaign
In a new campaign launched Thursday, the City of Ottawa is encouraging residents to support local businesses and take action to help keep them afloat amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Ontario municipalities worry about going in the red as COVID-19 drains coffers
A group representing Ontario’s municipalities is asking the province to commit enough cash to keep cities from going into debt amid concerns that COVID-19 will throw them into a fiscal hole so deep they can’t climb out. Read more…


City of Ottawa braces for shrinking revenues, workforce as coronavirus spreads
The City of Ottawa is exploring how to limit its spending and perhaps shrink its operations to only essential services as the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak threatens its finances, workforce, and ability to rally resources. Read more…


As N.W.T. news outlet suspends print, will northerners stay informed online?
Northern News Services Limited announced the company is suspending print copies and focusing its online output until the COVID-19 crisis is under control. Read more…


Thunder Bay ceases all non-essential services “until further notice”
The City of Thunder Bay announced it will be ceasing all non-essential services and employees have been instructed to stay home. Essential services such as emergency, water, wastewater, and transit will continue. Read more…


City of Regina updates lunch program and makes inspection changes
The City of Regina makes changes to the lunch program and how building inspections will be done to ensure the health of residents during COVID-19. Read more…


City of Guelph closes public waste drop-off to residents
The City of Guelph announced that due to an increase in traffic to waste drop off sites, and in order to help everyone maintain a safe physical distance of two metres, they’re suspending the service. Read more…


Frizzell seeks president’s seat at FCM
Prince George Coun. Garth Frizzell has put his nomination forward for the presidency of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. Read more…


Kamloops, province working to enable virtual council meetings
The City of Kamloops is working with the British Columbia government to speed up the process to allow for virtual council meetings. The city’s procedural bylaw currently does not allow for electronic meetings. Read more…


City of Toronto closing all park amenities and playgrounds
Toronto is closing all city-owned playgrounds and other park amenities effective immediately as part of efforts to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


Mapleton water, wastewater project draws fire from CUPE
Mapleton Township’s plan to outsource construction and operation of municipal water and wastewater infrastructure has drawn fire from a national public workers union. Read more…


Stay away from playgrounds for now, City of Greater Sudbury advises
The City of Greater Sudbury announced that for the time being, it is strongly discouraging the use of playgrounds, as equipment is not sanitized or maintained during the off-season. Read more…


Newfoundland issues stark warning as COVID-19 cases nearly double overnight
The number of COVID-19 patients in Newfoundland and Labrador has nearly doubled overnight, with 32 new cases announced on Wednesday. Read more…


March 25

Emergency COVID-19 bill that ups $27 billion in direct support to $52 billion gets royal assent
An emergency federal bill to give the government billions of dollars to spend to help anxious workers, families and employers cope with COVID-19 is now law. Read more…


Residential landlords face mounting calls for rent relief as COVID-19 results in layoffs, income loss
Residential landlords are facing mounting pressure to ease or defer rental charges as the COVID-19 pandemic results in widespread layoffs and loss of income, leading some tenants to consider withholding payments as part of a “rent strike” due to start next month. Read more…


No state of emergency declaration in Winnipeg, mayor says during COVID-19 response update
There is no need for the City of Winnipeg to declare a local state of emergency right now, the city’s mayor and emergency operations manager said during an update on Winnipeg’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Coronavirus is reshaping the way we get around cities
The rising need for social distancing has been changing how we get around cities – and whether we get around at all. Read more…


Small and medium-sized Quebec hardware stores to remain open during COVID-19 pandemic
While many merchants are forced to close their doors until mid-April, the Quebec government said small and medium-sized hardware stores may remain open following concerns expressed by the association that represents them. Read more…


“Playing it safe”: City of Guelph extends closure of all facilities to April 30
Based on the Ontario government’s declaration of an emergency, and advice from Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health, the City of Guelph is extending the closure of all City facilities to April 30 to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Newfoundland woman arrested for refusing to self isolate after talking to police
The arrest of a Newfoundland woman for refusing to stay home after she returned from a trip outside the province is raising questions about the extent to which law enforcement agencies can limit basic freedoms to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Ottawa declares state of emergency over coronavirus
Mayor Jim Watson has declared a state of emergency in Ottawa in response to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Toronto rolling out major initiatives to help homeless people, vulnerable renters affected by COVID-19
The City of Toronto is taking steps to help prevent homeless people from contracting COVID-19 and help those who have been infected, including opening nine new shelters and setting up Canada’s first dedicated isolation and recovery sites. Read more…


How Regina city councillors are coping and caring for residents amid COVID-19
The background sounds of city council are normally limited to papers shuffling, residents conversing quietly and the shifting of bodies as a room full of people rise to greet the mayor entering council chambers, signalling the beginning of a meeting. In a COVID-19 world the sounds and the view are very different. Read more…


Montreal shelters’ concerns heightened after homeless man tests positive for COVID-19
A first reported case of COVID-19 within Montreal’s homeless community has prompted concern and questions among those who care for the city’s most vulnerable. Read more…


Canadians are panic-buying marijuana: Could coronavirus cause another shortage?
Marijuana sales hit an unprecedented bump recently, as U.S. consumers stocked up on cannabis goods like it was toilet paper or hand sanitizer. Data now shows Canadian cannabis stores experience a similar coronavirus-related spike in sales, in some provinces. Read more…


Kingston aims to open second temporary homeless shelter during COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Kingston confirms it’s working to open a second temporary shelter for the homeless during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City to close streets, ban contact sports in parks to halt coronavirus
New York City will begin closing streets to traffic and ban close contact sports in city parks to help combat the coronavirus, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Wednesday. Read more…


City of Vaughan closing all park facilities, including playgrounds
The City of Vaughan will close all facilities within its parks, including playgrounds, as it works to limit the spread of COVID-19 within the community. Read more…


Government, opposition reach deal on COVID-19 emergency aid bill
The COVID-19 Emergency Response Act passed after significant delays caused by opposition to the Liberals’ attempt to grant broad spending and taxing powers to cabinet without parliamentary oversight. Read more…


London council waives interest and penalties on unpaid taxes for 60 days
Londoners will not be charged any late penalties or interest fees for unpaid property tax bills due at the end of March for two more months as the City of London tries to help lessen the financial burden brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


City police to enforce public health order in Moose Jaw
The Moose Jaw Police Service will be checking local bars, nightclubs, and lounges in the coming days to make sure they are closed. Read more…


Municipal councils grapple with ways to be transparent during COVID-19
With social distancing rules in place, councils in Nova Scotia are grappling with ways to hold online meetings while still being transparent with the public. Read more…


Edmonton closes playgrounds, service counters amid COVID-19
Effective immediately, the City of Edmonton is closing all playgrounds as the city continues to navigate the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


City of Hamilton, waste collectors find common ground
The City of Hamilton and the outside workers unit of CUPE 5167 have resolved the health and safety concerns that prompted waste collectors to participate in a one-day work refusal on Monday. Read more…


Is your business closed? OPP have tips to keep your property safe
The OPP are offering tips to anyone who has had to shutter their business either due to provincial order or for social distancing purposes. Read more…


All-volunteer cyber civil defence brigade assembles to fight COVID-19 hackers
Civil defence used to involve air raid wardens, ambulance drivers, and rescue teams. These days, it means taking the fight online – against hackers and cyber criminals looking to take down or ransom critical infrastructure. Read more…


City of Fort St. John declares State of Local Emergency
The City of Fort St. John has declared a State of Local Emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although this declaration provides the city with nine additional powers, it doesn’t mean that they will use all or any of them. Read more…


Saskatoon lays off temporary staff, closes playgrounds amid COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Saskatoon is laying off 126 casual staff members, including lifeguards, cashiers, activity leaders, and recreational employees amid growing fear about the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Kingston city council to move to remote format for future meetings
Kingston council met in a virtual meeting format for the first time on Tuesday and it will likely be via videoconferencing that the councillors will assemble for meetings for the foreseeable future. Read more…


Winnipeg keeping parks open for now, adding physical distancing signage
The City of Winnipeg won’t be closing parks or play structures, but says it’s taking action to get the message out about proper usage during the pandemic. Read more…


Quebec City has laid off 2,000 employees due to the COVID-19 health crisis
Due to the COVID-19 health crisis and following directives from the Quebec government, Quebec City has laid off 2,000 employees. Read more…


March 24

Trudeau rules out phone-based surveillance for now
The federal government isn’t looking at using location data from Canadians’ phones to track cases of the novel coronavirus, but isn’t ruling it out in the future, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday. Read more…


Bombardier furloughs 12,400 workers, halts plane and rail production in Canada
Bombardier Inc. is temporarily halting production at its Canadian plants, sending 12,400 employees on unpaid leave as the plane maker suspends its 2020 financial forecast due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Saskatchewan chief medical health officer cautions about public outdoor spaces for most self-isolating
Saskatchewan has mandated 14-day isolation for travellers, anyone in close contact with COVID-19 patients. However, there seems to be some confusion about what self-isolation means and what people are allowed to do. Read more…


Kitchener offers economic relief for businesses, residents amid coronavirus pandemic
Kitchener city council has approved measures designed to provide some financial relief for area residents and local businesses due to the new coronavirus pandemic, which has shut down much of the city. Read more…


The “measure of last resort”: What is the Emergencies Act and what does it do?
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the provincial and territorial leaders spoke about the possibility of invoking the federal Emergencies Act as the COVID-19 pandemic spreads — legislation that empowers Ottawa to do just about anything it thinks is necessary to cope with the crisis. Read more…


Alberta won’t “tolerate” returning snowbirds who don’t self-isolate immediately
Snowbirds who are returning to Alberta from the U.S. must follow self-isolation rules or else the government will enforce them, Premier Jason Kenney said Monday. Read more…


Canada’s farm industry reacts to Prime Minister’s pledge to aid
With global concern rising in the Agri-food industry, some Saskatchewan farmers breathed a sigh of relief when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced financial aid is imminent during uncertain times as Covid-19 spreads. Read more…


Kitchener offers economic relief for businesses, residents amid coronavirus pandemic
Kitchener city council has approved measures designed to provide some financial relief for area residents and local businesses due to the new coronavirus pandemic, which has shut down much of the city. Read more…


City of St. John’s closes all parks
The City of St. John’s closed all city parks and other outdoor spaces in response to the COVID-19 crisis, to promote social distancing and limit the spread of the pandemic. Read more…


Peterborough city, county declare state of emergency amid coronavirus pandemic
The City of Peterborough and Peterborough County have declared states of emergency amid the coronavirus pandemic. Both municipalities said the declaration may provide access to provincial funding for actions related to the emergency and relief, should funding become available. Read more…


Ontario closing at-risk businesses; releases list of essential workplaces
Due to the evolving COVID-19 situation, the Ontario government is ordering at-risk workplaces to close-down. The list of essential workplaces has now been released. Read more...


Never underestimate the resilience of a city
Cities are uniquely vulnerable in a crisis like this, but – let’s not forget – they are also uniquely resilient. Read more…


Vancouver increases fines to $50,000 for biz breaching state of emergency
Businesses who violate the City of Vancouver’s State of Emergency bylaw by failing to comply with social distancing orders during the COVID-19 pandemic could be fined as much as $50,000. Read more…


Moose Jaw to waive transit and paratransit fees
The City of Moose Jaw will be making a number of changes to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, including waiving ridership fees for city transit and paratransit services. Read more…


Mississauga declares state of emergency
The City of Mississauga has declared a State of Emergency due to the rapid spread of COVID-19. The declaration gives the city options to protect the health and safety of Mississauga’s residents. Read more…


Prince Albert council passes two new emergency measures
Prince Albert council passes two new emergency measures to help deal with the COVID-19 outbreak. However, four others died on the meeting floor and a fifth was cut short after too many councillors left during the meeting. Read more…


City of Victoria to allow temporary shelters during outbreak
Mayor Lisa Helps confirmed the City of Victoria will allow people without homes to set up temporary shelters at Beacon Hill and Topaz parks in a move aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Windsor, emergency shelters shift services for homeless amid COVID-19
The City of Windsor announced shelters would implement heightened screening and cleaning protocols, and adopt social distancing measures such as increased distance between beds and staggered eating times. Read more…


Saint John council rejects freezing wages of city workers
Saint John council defeated a motion to freeze the wages of city workers for four years. Council also reject a motion to cut the mayor’s salary by $10,000 and the compensation of the deputy mayor and each councillor by 10 percent. Read more…


Toronto gathering cellphone location data in bid to slow spread of COVID-19
The City of Toronto is obtaining cellphone data from wireless carriers to help it identify where people have assembled in groups as part of its attempts to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Yellowknife waives late fees for property tax bills
Homeowners who can’t pay their interim property tax by the end of March won’t be charged late payment fees, according to the City of Yellowknife. Read more…


Town of Orangeville announces relief measures
Following the Town of Orangeville’s emergency declaration on March 20, a special meeting was held to waive all fees and interest related to the late payment of property taxes – on all tax classes – for a three-month period. Read more…


March 23

Ontario to close all non-essential businesses, as province confirms 78 new COVID-19 cases
Ontario Premier Doug Ford is ordering all non-essential stores and services to close starting Tuesday at 11:59 p.m. in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Winnipeg biotech company says COVID-19 treatment nearing production
A Winnipeg company is working on a way to treat those who have become ill with COVID-19. Emergent Biosolutions is developing experimental treatments for the illness caused by the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Vancouver seeks big fines, stricter measures as locals ignore social distancing rules
Despite the grim scenes playing out in areas of the world hardest-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, health professionals and government officials are growing increasingly frustrated by those who just don’t seem to understand the severity of the situation. Read more…


Ontario announces $200 million for vulnerable populations
The Ontario government has announced $200 million in new money aimed at protecting Ontario’s most vulnerable populations as part of the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


COVID-19 won’t stop London city council’s meeting. But it will make it dramatically different
London city council will go ahead, officials say, with its regular meeting schedule, and be held in council chambers at 300 Dufferin Ave. as usual. However, there will be some stark changes in format. Read more…


More First Nations lock down borders, declare their own states of emergency to keep COVID-19 out
More First Nations in Manitoba are locking down entry points to their communities and declaring their own states of emergency as the COVID-19 pandemic escalates. Read more…


What does declaring a state of emergency mean for a city?
In the absence of orders from provincial health officers – who instead have been using moral suasion to get people to stay home before resorting to direct order – cities have given themselves specific powers to act on their own. Read more…


Yes, patios must also close under coronavirus measures: City of Vancouver
Some Vancouver bars and restaurants have had to be reminded that the closure of dine-in operations due to the coronavirus pandemic means patios also have to be closed to guests. Read more…


Ottawa’s top doctor estimates 4,000 cases of COVID-19 in the city
Ottawa’s top doctor says there is community transmission of COVID-19 in Ottawa, and people should treat all “interactions with others as a potential source of transmission of COVID-19.” Read more…


Montreal city council to take public questions online during pandemic
Despite social distancing measures banning public gatherings, Montrealers will still have a chance to ask city council questions. Read more…


Halifax closes all parks, beaches, fields to reduce spread of COVID-19
The Halifax Regional Municipality announced Sunday that they will be closing all municipal parks, beaches, playgrounds, sports fields/courts, and trails until further notice. Read more…


City of Vernon gives out 102 layoff notices due to recreation facilities closure
After closing its recreation facilities to help combat the coronavirus pandemic, the City of Vernon has issued 102 layoff notices. Read more…


City of Lacombe closes municipal facilities
The City of Lacombe is shutting down all municipally run facilities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All facilities, including city hall, are closed to the public until further notice. Read more…


Toronto reminds residents social distancing applies at playgrounds, parks
As Toronto streets are lined with closed businesses, many people have been going to city parks and green spaces to get fresh air and get out of their homes, which have turned into makeshift workplaces. Read more…


Montreal police declare state of emergency; people gathering risk $1,000 fines
Montreal police have declared a state of emergency across the territory in order to better respond to the spread of COVID-19 – including breaking up gatherings of more than two people. Read more…


Canadian scientists fight coronavirus pandemic on dozens of fronts
The federal government awarded almost $27 million in grants to coronavirus-related research. The money is funding 47 projects across the country. Read more…


March 22

Canada will use “every measure in our toolbox” to prevent COVID-19 spread, minister says
Health Minister Patty Hajdu delivered a strong message to Canadians on preventing the spread of the coronavirus, saying that while the government would prefer not to penalize those who are asked to stay in self-isolation — it will if it has to. Read more…


Vancouver Park Board closes all public outdoor recreation facilities within parks and beaches
The Vancouver Park Board is closing all public outdoor recreation facilities within parks and beaches. That includes volleyball, skate parks, field sports, and tennis courts. The Park Board said in a tweet that it is currently installing signage to limit access to facilities. Read more…


Toronto man dies from COVID-19, marks city’s first coronavirus-related death
Toronto Public Health (TPH) says a man in his 70s is the first person in the city to die from COVID-19 since the coronavirus outbreak began. The man recently travelled to the United Kingdom. Read more…


Quebec closes shopping malls, restaurants, extends school closure
Quebec is ordering the closure of all restaurant dining rooms and shopping malls until at least May to prevent people from gathering and potentially spreading the virus that causes COVID-19. Read more…


Labatt to switch production from beer to hand sanitizer
Labatt Breweries announced Sunday that they are shifting production from beer to sanitizer. These shifts will take place it their Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto, Montreal, and London. Read more…


Canadian scientists fighting coronavirus pandemic on dozens of fronts
Public health officials across Canada and around the world are working flat out to test as many people as possible for the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Nova Scotia declares province-wide state of emergency
Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil has declared a province-wide state of emergency. Among the province-wide restrictions, no entry into Nova Scotia is being allowed for social reasons and no more than five people permitted to gather in once location. Read more…


Kingston moves youth shelter, creates new space for homeless to “self-isolate”
The City of Kingston is introducing new resources and measures to protect the city’s homeless population during the COVID-19 pandemic. The city said it will also be looking to identify a second location in the city to provide homeless individuals with “a space for self-isolation.” Read more…


Ontario hospitals get new emergency powers; province to set up special daycare centres
Ontario hospitals have been given broad new powers to cope with COVID-19 outbreaks and special day care centres are being set up for the children of health care workers, paramedics, police, and firefighters to help them stay on the job. Read more…


Hydro-Quebec suspends fees as COVID-19 cases rise in province
Hydro-Quebec announced on its website on Sunday that it will be suspending its actions against unpaid bills. The provider said it will cease cutting off power to those unable to pay their electricity bills — residential or business. Read more…


Locals worried as people still head to Rocky Mountains despite COVID-19 pandemic
To the bewilderment of residents who live in places like Canmore and Bragg Creek, many people continue to flock to the mountains with some residents saying their communities were downright bustling despite the COVID-19 pandemic and pleas from governments to stay home. Read more…


Local spread of coronavirus confirmed in Toronto; city urges continued social distancing
Toronto’s chief medical officer of health confirmed Saturday that community transmission of the coronavirus is occurring in the city. The city also cautioned people who gather in parks that they are putting others at risk for infection. Read more…


Calgary City Hall restricting access starting Monday
As COVID-19 continues to spread, the City of Calgary is restricting access to its city hall complex in an effort to minimize the amount of people gathering in a single space and encourage social distancing. Read more…


Appointing councillor only option if city can’t hold byelection
The City of Ottawa’s ability to hold a byelection in Cumberland ward during a global pandemic is decreasing by the day, raising the possibility of selecting the only other option to fill the vacant council seat. Read more…


City of Nanaimo close all playgrounds after public comments, concerns
City officials have followed the lead of other municipalities in the region, along with pressure from Nanaimo residents and shut down playgrounds during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


The City of Windsor announces collaboration to help the homeless
As the City of Windsor announced a State of Emergency, the Windsor Essex County Health Unit, The Downtown Mission, The Welcome Centre, and the Salvation Army Centre of Hope, are working together to help the homeless. Read more…


Regina city council to ask SHA for health assessment of refinery work camp
Worried about the safety of workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Regina city council is calling on the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) to do an assessment of the refinery work camps. Read more…


Orillia shuts down access to playgrounds due to pandemic fears
The City of Orillia continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic by evaluating the precautionary measures it can put in place to combat the spread of the virus and encourage social distancing. Read more…


City of Medicine Hat launches list of COVID-19 support
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Medicine Hat has put together a list of support that is available. The list is comprised of government agencies, cultural supports, financial assistance, grocery stores, and mental health resources. Read more…


London playgrounds stay open, but city urges kids to keep safe distance from each other
The City of London says it will keep playgrounds open for now, but is urging kids who play on them to keep a safe distance away from each other. Read more…


Northwest Territories shuts its borders as 1st case of COVID-19 confirmed
The Northwest Territories has its first confirmed case of COVID-19. It’s the first case from all three territories, which were the last provincial and territorial jurisdictions remaining in Canada to report zero cases of COVID-19. Read more…


March 21

Quebec City police arrest COVID-19 patient for defying quarantine
Quebec City police have arrested a woman, who has tested positive for the coronavirus, for being out in the city’s Limoilou neighbourhood despite being under a quarantine order. Read more…


Travellers returning from March break “must stay home,” Toronto’s medical officer of health says
Toronto’s medical officer of health Dr. Eileen de Villa is reminding anyone who travelled over March break that ignoring the stipulated 14-day self-isolation is not an option, as the city works to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


No extension of city utility bill, property tax deadlines
The City of Prince George is encouraging residents to take advantage of several remote-paying options for utility bills and property taxes. There is no change to payment deadlines for utility bills or property taxes, the city said in a statement. Read more…


Winnipeg budget passes as political business winds down at city hall
Winnipeg’s city council voted 11-3 for a four-year budget that sees some grants pared back and a property tax increase of 2.33 percent. The budget vote came during what may be one of the last public meetings at city hall for several weeks or months because of COVID-19. Read more…


Montreal announces measures to protect city’s homeless amid pandemic
Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante and health officials announced that homeless people in Montreal infected with coronavirus, or who may be infected with the virus and are awaiting results, will be housed in isolation at the old Royal Victoria Hospital. Read more…


Prince Albert City Hall closes its doors in response to COVID-19
Prince Albert City Hall is closed to the public due to the COVID-19 virus. The city announced employees will continue to do their regular jobs but with no face-to-face public interaction. Read more…


Regina votes to add retail stores to list of businesses it feels should be closed
Effective Monday, Regina city council has added a selection of retail stores – including clothing, shoes, sporting, furniture, toy, craft, and gaming retail shops – to the list of businesses they feel must close in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Windsor declares state of emergency, Devonshire and Tecumseh malls to close
As part of the city’s ongoing response to COVID-19, Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens officially declared a state of emergency Friday evening and ordered the temporary closures of Devonshire and Tecumseh malls. Read more…


City service to be offered remotely for Kelowna residents
The City of Kelowna has announced that from now on, city services will be delivered remotely. Services will continue to be available by phone, e-mail and appointment only, during regular business hours. Read more…


March 20

City of London declares state of emergency
The City of London has declared a state of emergency, which gives the city access to provincial funding when it becomes available. The state of emergency was declared Friday, the same day when the number of cases in London and Ontario jumped. Read more…


City of Kamloops declares state of local emergency due to pandemic
The City of Kamloops has declared a state of local emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The declaration gives the city the opportunity to quickly address emerging issues for the purposes of enhancing preparedness and response to the pandemic. Read more…


City of Ottawa task force addressing senior isolation, food security and housing concerns
A City of Ottawa “human needs task force” is keeping an eye on issues related to food security and helping vulnerable residents during this sensitive period of protecting people from the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


COVID-19 may keep Quebec students out of school until May, Legault says
As the number of COVID-19 cases in the province rises, Premier François Legault says it may be weeks before children return to school. He added it is “unlikely” children will be back in the province’s schools before the beginning of May. Read more…


Feds offer help to companies to retool, pump out COVID-19 medical gear
The federal government is unveiling a plan to have companies quickly produce medical equipment to cope with the rapidly multiplying cases of COVID-19 across Canada. Read more…


Partial Canada-U.S. border closure to take effect at midnight, Trudeau says
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the mutual decision by Canada and the United States to close their shared border to non-essential travel will take effect at midnight tonight. Read more…


Six new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in London region
Six new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the London region, according to the Middlesex-London Health Unit. Health officials believe all six patients acquired the virus through community transmission. Read more…


New York Govenor Cuomo bans gatherings, nonessential workers to stay home
Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he is ordering all workers in nonessential businesses to stay home and is banning gatherings statewide as confirmed cases in New York climbed to more than 7,000. Read more…


Côte Saint-Luc mayor urges self-isolation as 4 people test positive for COVID-19
Four people in Côte Saint-Luc have tested positive for COVID-19, prompting the mayor to urge residents to self-isolate to prevent the spread of the virus. Read more…


Woman purposefully coughs in St. Albert shop owner’s face
The owner of a St. Albert vape shop says she was shocked and angry when a customer purposefully coughed in her face after being asked to leave the store because she should be self-isolating. Read more…


No Indigenous community will be “left behind” in COVID-19 response
The federal government is offering $305 million to address the immediate needs of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit communities, and to get out public health messages in those communities. Read more…


Beware of COVID-19 scams, say police and municipalities
Reports have arisen of people receiving calls and text messages offering home testing for COVID-19 or free medical masks. Read more…


North Battleford to close city hall on March 23; considering online meetings
North Battleford has announced it will close city hall to the public effective Monday, March 23. The council meeting for that day has also been cancelled, but the city is working to establish council meetings through electronic means. Read more…


City of Richmond declares emergency, shuts down city hall
Richmond city council voted unanimously to declare an emergency, giving the city the ability to use any power it has to combat the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


Kingston waives hourly parking fees in response to COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Kingston has made the decision to waive all hourly parking fees on city streets in response to concerns over the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Coronavirus infects Manitoba budget projections
Manitoba Finance Minister Scott Fielding finally got to introduce his 2020 budget. However, in the midst of the novel coronavirus pandemic, his economic and fiscal projections are in a state of flux. Read more…


Toronto announces 60-day grace period for bill payments amid pandemic
Mayor John Tory has announced a 60-day grace period for City of Toronto residents and businesses due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Saskatoon approves emergency measures as pandemic spreads
Saskatoon council unanimously approved a suite of emergency measures designed to ease the financial burden on residents as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the province mounts. Read more…


More than 5,000 layoffs at Air Canada due to COVID-19
Air Canada has announced more than 5,000 workers will be laid off come April 30 due to a stark reduction in demand and strict limits on the destinations to which planes can fly amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Gov. Gavin Newsom of California orders Californians to stay at home
Gov. Gavin Newsom of California has ordered Californians – all 40 million of them – to stay in their houses as much as possible in the coming weeks as the state confronts the escalating coronavirus outbreak. Read more…


March 19

Meeting rules could impact COVID-19 financial relief vote at London city hall
According to the Municipal Act only council members in attendance can vote on motions. London Mayor Ed Holder is asking the province to temporary permit voting remotely. Read more…


Quebec urges all municipalities to put a halt to citizen gatherings
The Quebec government is asking all municipalities to cancel or postpone all forms of consultation that require the presence of citizens, such as public consultation meetings, referendums or register keeping. Read more…


Nunavik forms COVID-19 response committee
Nunavik’s leaders have struck a new committee to help coordinate responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Nunavik Regional Emergency Preparedness Advisory Committee brought together the Kativik Regional Police Force and the Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services, led by the Kativik Regional Government. Read more…


Nearly $1 million in funding for Western to start work on COVID-19 vaccine
A team of researchers at Western University is starting work on a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 – the virus that causes COVID-19. Western is home to Canada’s newest Containment Level 3 facility, which will allow researchers to work safely. Read more…


Wuhan reports no new coronavirus cases, offering hope to world
Wuhan was where the COVID19 outbreak first took hold and thousands once lay sick or dying in hurriedly constructed hospitals. But Chinese authorities said Thursday that all 34 new cases recorded over the previous day had been imported from abroad. Read more…


Halton announces second COVID-19 death in Ontario as province announces 43 new cases
Halton Region Public Health announces that it has been notified of a death related to COVID-19. The individual, a man in his 50s, is the second known death in Ontario related to COVID-19. Read more…


City of Windsor closes city hall, scales back services
The City of Windsor is closing city hall and scaling back all non-essential programs to ensure it can deliver critical services in the face of the COVID-19 threat. The changes begin at the end of the business day on Thursday and will continue until at least April 5. Read more…


City of Kingston increasing allowed number of residential garbage bags
Until April 5, the City of Kingston is increasing the number of garbage bags – from 1 to 4 – that each household is allowed to put out. This change is being instituted to help self-isolating individuals and families to dispose of their garbage safely. Read more…


Corner Brook rolls back city staff while preparing for “protracted situation” with COVID-19
The City of Corner Brook is starting to prepare for what the mayor is calling a “protracted situation” with the COVID-19 outbreak. One of the first measures the city is taking is to send home city employees, with the exception of core services staff. Read more…


City of Kamloops closes scores of buildings amid pandemic
Following a state of emergency declared in the province, the City of Kamloops is taking further steps to close civic facilities to the public, including city hall, bylaw services and the water- and sewage-treatment plants. Read more…


City of Vancouver declares state of emergency amid coronavirus outbreak
The City of Vancouver has declared a state of emergency in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic. It gives the city power to enforce public safety measures, such as monitoring grocery stores and pharmacies, to curb panic buying. Read more…


City of Saskatoon closes all facilities amid pandemic, including city hall
The City of Saskatoon is closing all its facilities, including city hall, after the Saskatchewan government declared a state of emergency. Read more…


COVID-19 concerns don’t dampen opposition to Winnipeg budget
Despite public health officials discouraging gatherings and encouraging social distancing during the COVID-19 outbreak, the list of delegations wishing to speak about the city budget runs 14 pages. Read more…


Orillia shutting down; declaring an emergency is “on the table”
While the city’s offices within the Orillia City Centre are closed to the public, there will be at least one staff member in each department to field calls and answer emailed questions during business hours. Read more…


Port Moody shuts down city hall, cancels and closes meetings
Port Moody is shutting down normal operations at city hall so the city can deal with COVID-19 pandemic, says Mayor Rob Vagramov. Read more…


Quebec City to open a drive-thru COVID screening clinic
Quebec City is opening a drive-thru COVID-19 screening clinic. Citizens can therefore be tested without getting out of their car: they only have to go through a garage door and exit from the other end like a car wash. Read more…


Toronto confirms seven more COVID-19 cases, says local transmission rising
Toronto Public Health confirmed seven new cases of COVID-19, with officials saying the evidence for local transmission of the virus appears to be growing. Read more…


Steinbach city council prepared to cancel April meetings if necessary
Steinbach city council passed a motion giving Mayor Earl Funk the ability to postpone, cancel, or change meeting dates in April with 72-hour notice. Read more…


Water taps won’t be turned off for Halifax residents struggling to pay
All Halifax Regional Municipality customer service centres are closed to the public, but those water customers facing economic hardships will not lose services because of an inability to pay during the COVID-19 crisis. Read more…

City of Ottawa to defer property taxes in light of COVID-19
The City of Ottawa is giving property owners more time to pay their property tax bills in light of the financial challenges created by he COVID-19 crisis. Read more…


March 18

Canada’s big grocers say there’s enough food stock to go around
Amid panic buying due to concerns around the spread of COVID-19, Canadian grocers are assuring customers they have enough supply to go around for most products. Read more…


City of Toronto fires director of Office of Emergency Management in middle of COVID-19 crisis
The City of Toronto has abruptly fired the director of its Office of Emergency Management, Charles Jansen. Jansen said he was relieved of his duties by city officials who told him the city is taking the office in “a different direction” and that they were worried Jansen “might not be the right fit.” Read more…


Moncton fire chief overseeing pandemic response goes into self-isolation
Moncton’s fire chief, in charge of the city’s emergency response to the coronavirus pandemic, has gone into self-isolation after learning he was among 70 people aboard a WestJet flight with a Prince Edward Island woman who tested positive. Read more…


Yellowknife closing facilities, suspending programming
The City of Yellowknife is shutting down six of its facilities and suspending visitor centre services out of city hall as a method to prepare for the potential spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Strathroy-Caradoc has issued a Declaration of Emergency
The Municipality of Strathroy-Caradoc has issued a Declaration of Emergency. The municipality reassured residents the declaration doesn’t reflect any material change to the situation at hand, but will better position it to access funding related to COVID-19. Read more…


Canada’s big banks to allow mortgage payment deferrals
Canada’s big six banks will allow mortgage payment deferrals for up to six months as part of extraordinary measures to help customers struggling with the financial impacts of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


London council to waive interest, penalties on unpaid taxes for 30 days 
London city councillors will introduce a motion to provide economic relief for families so they can weather the financial hardships of the growing coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Trudeau announces $82 billion in aid; Canada/U.S. border closed to non-essential traffic
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says temporary wage subsidies will be provided to businesses to keep employees on the payroll. Income tax deadlines extended to August. Child care benefit will also be boosted for families. Read more…


Canada, U.S. working to close border to non-essential travel over coronavirus
Canada and the U.S. are working on a mutual ban on non-essential travel between the two countries over the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


Moose Jaw making changes to council meetings during pandemic
In addition to closing many city-run facilities, Moose Jaw council will stick with its normal meeting schedule, but sessions will be closed to the public. Read more…


City of Toronto scaling back on “non-essential” services
The City of Toronto is scaling back or changing the delivery of a slew of non-essential services. However, services such as police, fire, paramedics, garbage collection, water, and others will continue. Read more..


City of Regina outlines bill payment options amid city hall closure
Regina’s city hall is closed to the public until further notice to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Instead, the city is offering a list of alternatives to making bill payments in person. Read more…


City of Windsor postpones Ward 7 byelection
Citing COVID-19 concerns, the City of Windsor announced the April 27 byelection for the Ward 7 seat will be postponed until a yet-to-be-determined date. Read more…


City of Winnipeg moves to Level 2 emergency response to COVID-19
The City of Winnipeg has upgraded its response to the COVID-19 pandemic to Level 2 as it manages essential services and assesses what changes are coming. Read more…


City of Vernon to close all recreation facilities
The City of Vernon is benching its recreation services during what it calls the “unprecedented times” of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


South Niagara municipalities close city halls
Welland, Port Colborne, Wainfleet, and Pelham have closed their offices to the public. All four municipalities also partially activated their emergency operations centres before Ontario declared a state of emergency. Read more…


City of Charlottetown unveils efforts to prevent spread of coronavirus
The City of Charlottetown is locking the doors to all of its buildings – including both fire stations, the police station, and city hall – to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


B.C. just announced a public health emergency. What does that mean?
British Columbia has announced a public health emergency due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. It’s just the second time such a declaration has been put into effect. Read more…


March 17

Canada among top world performers in testing for COVID-19, despite shortcomings
Figures indicated 34,000 had been swabbed for the pathogen across Canada, compared to 23,000 tests in the U.S., which has 10 times the population and number of COVID-19 cases. Read more…


PM says financial measures on the way to help “millions of Canadians” get through COVID-19 crisis
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says a package of financial supports is on the way to help millions of Canadians and businesses get through the COVID-19 crisis — and he isn’t ruling out an extension to the tax filing deadline. Read more…


City workers asked to report to offices, despite social distancing push during COVID-19 outbreak
City workers who can work remotely are concerned the city is asking them to report for work, even as Toronto’s medical officer of health has asked that anyone who can stay home do so. Read more…


City of Orillia CAO back at city hall day after returning from Cayman Islands
City CAO Gayle Jackson returned from a vacation to the Cayman Islands on Sunday and was given permission to return to work at city hall Monday rather than self-isolate. Read more…


Eight more cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Ontario, bringing total to 185
There are eight more cases of the COVID-19 in Ontario, bringing the provincial total to 185, including five recoveries, as of Tuesday morning. Among the cases, five are in Hamilton, two are in Middlesex-London, and one is in York Region. Read more…


Ontario declares state of emergency amid COVID-19 pandemic 
Ontario Premier Doug Ford has declared a state of emergency as the province tries to slow the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Homeless vulnerable to COVID-19 need help from governments: advocates
Homeless people staying in close quarters at shelters, tent cities, and warming centres are especially at risk for COVID-19, says a Vancouver community advocate working to ensure hand-washing stations and clean bathrooms are available. Read more…


Alberta cities ramping up measures to fight spread of COVID-19
Two Alberta cities – Calgary and Red Deer – have called local states of emergency to help fight the spread of COVID-19. The move gives these cities access to additional resources and special powers under the Emergency Management Act. Read more…


How cities around the world are handling COVID-19
Cities that are open, transparent, collaborative, and adopt comprehensive responses are better equipped to manage pandemics than those that are not. Read more…


No local state of emergency, but Edmonton cutting transit hours amid COVID-19
Edmonton is not declaring a local state of emergency but is switching transit services to a reduced schedule amid a fall in ridership brought on by COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto faces new reality amid “evidence” of COVID-19 community spread
All Toronto bars, nightclubs, theatres, and restaurants – with the exception of take-out options – were asked to close, or risk facing a $25,000 daily fine. Read more…


Uber suspends pooled rides in US and Canada to limit coronavirus spread
Uber Technologies is suspending shared rides on its ride-hailing platform in the United States and Canada to limit the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


More beaches are shut down in South Florida to ward off coronavirus
More South Florida cities closed down their beaches after Fort Lauderdale and Miami Beach announced they were shutting down to help contain COVID-19. Read more…


Trump asks Americans to avoid groups over 10 people
U.S. President Donald Trump is asking Americans to avoid restaurants, groups of more than 10, and older people and those with underlying conditions. Read more…


U.S. cities and states suspend water shutoffs to tackle coronavirus pandemic
Almost 90 cities and states across the U.S. have suspended water shutoffs for residents unable to afford their bills, as local leaders scramble to tackle the complex public health threats posed by the coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


“Unprecedented”: B.C. cities close facilities, suspend “non-essential services”
Several B.C. municipalities are suspending non-essential services and shutting down civic facilities in an effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Halifax outlines measures taken to mitigate risk of COVID-19
Halifax Regional Municipality is shutting down recreational and community facilities while urging citizens to look out for each other. Read more…


Canadian tourism operators hope for cruise ports to reopen
Tourism operators across the country are hoping that Canadian ports will reopen to cruise ship passengers in time for the busy season to begin in July. Read more…


Regina takes action against COVID-19, closing recreation facilities and libraries
The City of Regina announced a number of preemptive measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including shutting down its community and recreation facilities to the public. Read more…


Quebec ramps up testing in bid to contain coronavirus
As coronavirus cases continue to climb in Quebec, the province has rolled out new measures to mitigate the economic impact of the disease. Read more…


WHO says countries not testing enough for coronavirus cases
The World Health Organization said that while social-distancing measures are important, countries need to ramp up testing in order to fight COVID-19. Read more…


March 16

Montreal, public health authorities aim to inform travellers at airport over coronavirus outbreak
Travellers arriving at the Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport in Montreal will be asked to self-isolate for two weeks and take their temperatures twice per day as the number of novel coronavirus cases continues to climb in the province. Read more…


City of Saskatoon closing leisure centres, libraries to mitigate COVID-19 risk
The City of Saskatoon is closing all its leisure centres, libraries and indoor rinks until further notice in order to mitigate the risk of contracting COVID-19. Read more…


City of Regina closes city centres, postpones council meetings
The City of Regina has announced the closure of most city centres and postponement of council meetings in an effort to handle COVID-19. Read more…


Canada’s Chief Medical Officer says government needs to “act now”
Top Canadian public-health officials stressed that the window is closing to limit the exponential spread of COVID-19 as they escalated warnings and broad closings and identified new cases of community spread. Read more…


Calgary declares state of local emergency in response to COVID-19
The City of Calgary declared a state of local emergency Sunday as the number of COVID-19 infections in Alberta jumped significantly over the weekend. Read more…


Winnipeg council to vote on budget five days earlier than scheduled
The City of Winnipeg’s preliminary multi-year budget will be voted on by council a full five days earlier than scheduled in response to actions taken by the provincial government on COVID-19. Read more…


City of Edmonton employee tests positive for COVID-19
The City of Edmonton announced late Sunday a municipal employee has tested positive for COVID-19. According to the city, the case is travel-related. Read more…


City of Ottawa municipal facilities close, malls reduce hours due to COVID-19
All City of Ottawa recreation and cultural facilities are now closed for the next three weeks in a bid to minimize the potential spread of COVID-19 in the community. Read more…


Vancouver mayor Kennedy Stewart outlines city’s response to COVID-19
Mayor Kennedy Stewart says his top priority right now is to ensure that the spread of the virus can be slowed and that Vancouver’s most vulnerable residents remain safe. Read more…


Toronto councillor calls for postponement of commercial property taxes
A Toronto city councillor is calling for commercial property taxes, water and waste collection bills to be postponed for local businesses in the city amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Saskatoon closing leisure facilities, public libraries
The City of Saskatoon is temporarily shutting down its leisure facilities and all Saskatoon Public Library locations to limit the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Kawartha Lakes has first confirmed case of COVID-19
Health officials have confirmed the first positive case of COVID-19 in the City of Kawartha Lakes. According to health officials, the woman in her 60s recently visited Germany. Read more…


Majority of Canadians worried about a coronavirus outbreak, poll finds
According to the poll, 59 percent of Canadians were worried that someone in their family would get sick from the coronavirus. Read more…


March 15

Toronto mayor to set up task force to help businesses affected by COVID-19
Toronto Mayor John Tory would lead an “economic support and recovery” task force designed to help businesses affected by the economic fallout of the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more …


COVID-19-related closures, cancellations at Metro Vancouver community centres and libraries
After British Columbia prohibited gatherings of more than 250 people Thursday, cities cancelled events and bookings expected to draw crowds of 250 or more. All Lower Mainland cities are urging anyone experiencing symptoms to self-isolate. Read more …


“Don’t travel here unless absolutely necessary,” says City of Iqaluit
The City of Iqaluit is asking the public not to travel to the city unless absolutely necessary, amid growing concerns over the prospect of the COVID-19 virus spreading in Nunavut. Read more …


Ottawa reports 5 new cases of COVID-19, bringing city total to 10
Ontario health officials confirmed five new cases of novel coronavirus in Ottawa Sunday morning, bringing the total in the city to 10. Read more …


City of London closing all city-operated facilities due to COVID-19
The City of London has announced that it’s cancelling all city-operated programs and closing the facilities where those programs are run due to COVID-19. Read more …


Edmonton closes city facilities and rec centres due to COVID-19
The City of Edmonton has closed all of its recreation facilities and attractions. Annual memberships will be put on hold, and the city is working on full or prorated refunds for programs. Read more …


City of Windsor to close facilities in response to COVID-19
The City of Windsor has opted to close some of its public facilities as a proactive measure following updates from the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit in response to COVID-19. Read more …


City of Kamloops closes hot tubs, saunas and steam rooms; public facilities to remain open
All City of Kamloops-operated hot tubs, saunas and steam rooms will be closed until further notices based on direction from the BC and Yukon Lifesaving Society. At this time public facilities remain open. Read more …


City of Brantford closing municipal facilities
All city-owned community centres and facilities in Brantford are being closed in response to the threat of the coronavirus pandemic. They will remain closed until at least April 5. Read more …


March 14

City of Saskatoon creates webpage to help keep public informed about COVID-19
After Saskatoon’s first two presumptive cases of COVID-19 were discovered, the City of Saskatoon has created a webpage to help keep resident informed on the effect the virus is having on the community. Read more …


City of Winnipeg shutting down pools, libraries
The City of Winnipeg has announced that all city-owned and operated recreation centres, pools and libraries will be closed to the public beginning Monday, March 16. Read more …


City temporarily cancels all rec and culture programming, enacts other measures
The City of Red Deer announced the temporary cancellation of all recreation and culture programming at city facilities – effective immediately. Read more …


London Mayor Ed Holder will start self-isolation on Monday
London Mayor Ed Holder will self-isolate for two weeks starting Monday, after returning from a trip to the U.S. Read more…


Toronto shutting down major city services, Mayor Tory self-isolating
The City of St. Catharines is closing several city facilities until early April to help stop the spread of COVID-19, including all recreation centres, arenas, and sports fields. Read more…


City of Lachute closes municipal buildings, suspends all municipal activities, events
The City of Lachute announced this afternoon that all municipal buildings will be closed immediately and all municipal activities will be suspended, including use of the municipal pool. Read more…


Regina lays out COVID-19 strategy
Regina Mayor Michael Fougere explained that just because there aren’t any presumptive cases of COVID-19 in the city, doesn’t mean that they can’t be cautious and be prepared. Read more…


City of Ottawa closing all facilities on Monday, launching supports for festivals, small businesses
The City of Ottawa is closing all of its facilities, starting Monday, March 16. In the meantime city task force has been assembled to reduce the affect of coronavirus-related closures on special events, restaurants, and small businesses. Read more…


City of Gatineau shuttering facilities while opening first COVID-19 assessment centre
Though Gatineau has yet to have a confirmed case of COVID-19, authorities asked anyone with suspicious symptoms to call 1-877-644-4545 for guidance. Read more…


City of Iqaluit forms COVID-19 task force
To deal with a potential outbreak of COVID-19, the City of Iqaluit has created a take force dedicated to coordinating its prevention and, should the need arise, response. Read more…


Kelowna cancels large events in city-run facilities
The City of Kelowna is following a directive from provincial health officials, and will cancel all events attracting more than 250 people in city-run facilities. Read more…


Edmonton encourages two-metre separation distance, caution while using transit
City leaders are encouraging aggressive social distancing measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic while keeping transit running and recreation centres open. Read more …


March 13

City of St. Catharines closing several city facilities
The City of St. Catharines is closing several city facilities until early April to help stop the spread of COVID-19, including all recreation centres, arenas, and sports fields. Read more…


Queensway Carleton shuts down drive-thru testing centre
Hours after it opened, Queensway Carleton Hospital has shut down the city’s first drive-thru testing facility for COVID-19, a temporary measure to reduce a backlog. Read more…


Calgary implements Municipal Emergency Plan amid coronavirus pandemic
In response to the constantly changing COVID-19 situation, the City of Calgary implemented its municipal emergency plan. Read more…


Woodstock to proceed with March Break camps despite virus fears
Kids are still welcome to attend the City of Woodstock’s March Break camps, but the city said it will be taking extra precautions as concerns around the COVID-19 virus mount. Read more…


Barrie using “abundance of caution” with changes and cancellations
The City of Barrie is working closely with the Simcoe-Muskoka District Health Unit and other community partners to monitor the global situation and respond accordingly. Read more…


No confirmed cases in Windsor area of COVID-19
Tests remain ongoing, but there are no confirmed local cases of COVID-19 as of Friday afternoon, said Windsor’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Wajid Ahmed. Read more…


FCM takes steps in response to COVID-19 outbreak
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities has announced a 30-day work-from-home directive for all staff – effective Monday, March 16. It is also immediately suspending all international and domestic business travel. Read more…


Edmonton city council to hold emergency meeting on COVID-19
Edmonton will hold an emergency council meeting to discuss closing recreation centres and other actions in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


Quebec bans gatherings of more than 250 people to contain COVID-19 spread
Quebec Premier François Legault has banned public gatherings of more than 250 people and ordered into quarantine any public servants who return from outside the country, saying it’s time for the province to go into “emergency mode.” Read more…


Victoria council asking for ban on cruise ship visits amid coronavirus pandemic
Victoria city council has passed a resolution calling on the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority and Transport Canada to suspend cruise ship visits to the Port of Victoria until the risk of coronavirus transmission has subsided. Read more…


Toronto activates “emergency operations centre” in response to coronavirus
The City of Toronto says it has begun the next phase of managing COVID-19 by activating its “Emergency Operations Centre” in response to the global pandemic of coronavirus. Read more…


City facilities to remain open as Moose Jaw officials monitor COVID-19 situation
The City of Moose Jaw is monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely, but announced it will keep city facilities open – for now. Read more…


Canada develops COVID-19 guidelines on when to cancel major events
The Public Health Agency of Canada has posted guidelines aimed at helping event planners figure out whether to cancel mass gatherings of people as the federal government works to quell the potential spread of novel coronavirus. Read more…


Cobourg cancels all town events amid coronavirus concerns
The Town of Cobourg has cancelled all of its events as part of “decisive action” to ensure the well-being of residents in light of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Read more…


Halifax first responders preparing for coronavirus pandemic
First responders in Halifax are preparing for the province to be hit by the global pandemic of the novel coronavirus. Read more…


Local Municipalities Issue Statements on Coronavirus
Municipal officials are working with the Dufferin County officials, and health authorities while closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation. Read more…


March 12

Ontario schools to shut down for two weeks after March Break to fight the spread of COVID-19
Ontario schools will be shut down for two weeks following the March Break to help fight the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


COVID-19 can “completely overwhelm” hospital, health system
The medical officer of health at Thunder Bay District Health Unit warned that COVID-19 has the potential to “completely overwhelm the health system and the hospital.” Read more…


Toronto to activate emergency operations centre amid COVID-19 outbreak
The City of Toronto says that it will create a task force and activate its emergency operations centre amid the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. Read more…


Mayor holds off on COVID-19 motion at council meeting
After discussions with administration, Mayor Don Scott decided to hold off a motion proposing a municipal response plan to COVID-19 after reviewing steps already undertaken. Read more…


County prepping for COVID-19 potential impact
With waves of international news about the spread of the coronavirus, and its declaration from the World Health Organization  as a pandemic illness, Prince Edward County is preparing for potential impact. Read more…


Enhanced measures to protect Ontarians from COVID-19
As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to evolve globally, Ontario is taking further action to ensure the province’s health care system is positioned to continue to safeguard the health and well-being of Ontarians. Read more…


Still no confirmed COVID-19 cases in N.L.
Newfoundland and Labrador’s health minister says there are still no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the province as of March 12. Read more…


B.C. forestry convention cancelled due to coronavirus
The B.C. Council of Forest Industries has cancelled its annual convention due to concerns about COVID-19. Read more…


COVID-19 worries prompt Saskatoon Catholic churches to remove holy water, common communion cup
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon has that it’s temporarily restricting some liturgical practices in its parishes across the city due to growing concern about the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


NYC mayor says new virus restrictions will be announced soon
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said he will announce new restrictions on gatherings to halt the spread of the new coronavirus in the coming days. Read more…


30 percent of Winnipeg firefighters could become exposed to COVID-19
The president of the United Fire Fighters of Winnipeggers said upwards of 30 percent of the firefighting force could be exposed to COVID-19 and will need to be quarantined. Read more…


Coronavirus: Hamilton public health confirms 2nd positive test for COVID-19
Hamilton Public Health has confirmed that a 52-year-old man is the second case of COVID-19, the novel coronavirus disease, in the city. Read more…


Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief statement on coronavirus disease pandemic
Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Glen Hare states that the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the global coronavirus disease outbreak a pandemic. Read more…


Air Canada halting service to Lethbridge, Medicine Hat
Air Canada is suspending service at airports in Lethbridge and Medicine Hat at the end of this month. Read more…


Windsor groups raising money for Chinese cities hit by coronavirus
A pair of local Chinese associations have joined with the City of Windsor to send supplies to two cities in China hit hard by the coronavirus. Read more…


March 11

City of Calgary outlines plans to “flatten the curve” of COVID-19
Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi said the city would be making a number of determinations on how to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak and its plans to attempt to “flatten the curve.” Read more…


As COVID-19 hits pandemic status, Kamloops taking cues from health experts
While there is no need to panic, City of Kamloops CAO David Trawin said the municipality is meeting with Interior Health and has a pandemic plan in case of an emergency. Read more…


Chicago, other cities, cancel St. Patrick’s Day parades
Chicago has joined the ranks of cities around the world to scrap St. Patrick’s Day parades over concerns about spreading the new coronavirus. Read more…


“This isn’t a sprint,” city manager tells Edmonton committee on COVID-19 prep
While Edmonton is making preparations to control the coronavirus outbreak, it isn’t currently planning to shut down any facilities or cancel events. Read more…