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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.

Last updated: May 17 at 9 a.m.

May 17

Toronto’s vaccine engagement teams could be scrapped after Canada Day
A key part of Toronto’s hyper-local vaccine rollout strategy could be scrapped as soon as Canada Day, without additional funding from the provincial government to help pay for it. Read more…


May 16

Yukon municipal elected official’s term could be extended to four years
The Association of Yukon Communities met in-person for the first time in two years, adopting three resolutions focusing on extending municipal elected-officials’ term, electricity, and COVID-19 relief funds. Read more…


May 12

City of Winnipeg considers permanent remote working plan for employees
The City of Winnipeg is beginning to roll out a flexible workplace program which would keep some city employees at home permanently, even once the pandemic is a thing of the past. Read more…


Researchers probe COVID-19’s uneven impact in Peel Region
After than two years and six waves, COVID-19 continues to affect Canadians – but it has taken a particular toll on residents of Peel Region, which last year emerged as a nationwide pandemic hotspot. Read more…


How employee well-being may improve with a four-day workweek
Leaders are also considering more permanent flexibility with remote or hybrid work arrangements based on what they learned from the “forced work experiment” during COVID-19, according to a new report. Read more…


May 11

Hamilton terminates its COVID-19 emergency declaration
Hamilton has lifted its COVID-19 emergency declaration, becoming just the latest municipality in the Greater Toronto Area to do so. Read more…


May 10

Toronto’s mayor terminates city’s COVID-19 emergency declaration
Toronto Mayor John Tory announced on Monday an “important milestone” that the city is terminating the municipal emergency first declared in March 2020 to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Saskatoon COVID-19 levels see increase in latest wastewater study
Researchers at the University of Saskatchewan say COVID-19 levels in Saskatoon have increased again, signalling that the sixth wave is not over yet. Read more…


Tourist communities hopeful for busy summer with no COVID restrictions
With COVID-19 still a factor worldwide, beachfront communities in southwestern Ontario expect another busy summer as people continue staycations. Read more…


May 6


Slight uptick in sick days taken by city employees, but below pre-COVID levels 
City of London employees took slightly more sick days in 2021 than the year before, as time lost due to illness remained far below the pre-pandemic benchmark. Read more…


Welland vaccination policy remains in effect
The City of Welland’s COVID-19 vaccination policy remains unchanged and in place. The policy applies to all city employees, councillors attending in-person meetings, contractors, and vendors. Read more…


Lifting of COVID restrictions boosts Didsbury participation “significantly”
Recreation facilities, as well as parks and other amenities in Didsbury, have seen a steep increase in use since most COVID-19 restrictions were lifted in February. Read more…


May 5

Voters will have final say on city councillor who dodged reprimand: Expert
A London city councillor who cast the deciding vote to spare himself from a formal reprimand didn’t break municipal conflict of interest laws, experts say. Read more…


COVID not likely to stiffle further economic growth in Hamilton: report
An economist with a not-for-profit think tank is suggesting Hamilton benefit from continued recovery in 2022, despite a resurgence in COVID-19 transmission. Read more…


May 4

Coun. van Holst saved from reprimand for code of conduct violation
London city council has decided not to reprimand one of its members, despite a recommendation from the integrity commissioner to do so. Read more…


City of Calgary eases rules for outdoor dining as patio season arrives
Calgary has changed some of its regulations around outdoor patios as the weather begins to warm and people look for places to eat and drink al fresco. Read more…


Yellowkife continues COVID caution with larger financial “cushion”
The City of Yellowknife’s finances appear promising following an audit conducted for 2021, however, the municipality is keeping a little bit extra tucked away to deal with lingering effects from COVID-19. Read more…


Saint John plans interim patios for Market Slip
With summer around the corner, many are looking forward to hitting up a patio. But developments in Saint John are forcing the city to rethink how some businesses will setup for the busy season. Read more…


May 3

Yellowknife offers businesses new grant of up to $5K
The City of Yellowknife has announced new funding to help small and medium-sized businesses as they recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York City raises COVID-19 alert level as case numbers rise
The recent uptick in COVID-19 cases across New York City has prompted increased caution from the city. The latest figure of 209.02 cases per 100,000 is the highest since early February. Read more…


May 2

New York City aims to keep outdoor lifestyle post-COVID
As New York City continues on its path of recovery, the pandemic could be leaving a lasting imprint on how the city uses its roadways – more space for people and less room for cars. Read more…


China’s strict zero-COVID approach cripples May Day holiday travel
Many Chinese are marking a quiet May Day holiday this year as the government’s zero-COVID approach restricts travel and enforces lockdowns in multiple cities. Read more…


April 29

Crime holding back downtown Vancouver from economic recovery: BIA
Advocates for downtown Vancouver businesses are blaming the spike of crime in the city’s core for holding back progress toward an economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Study: Canadians’ use of digital technologies before and during COVID-19
As the COVID-19 pandemic moved many activities online, did Canadians’ Internet proficiency increase? A new study documents the changing distribution of Canadians across internet user groups prior to and during the pandemic. Read more…


April 28

Vaccine mandate for Hamilton city workers remains in place after tied vote
The COVID-19 vaccine mandate for city workers will remain in place for now, despite a staff report saying Hamilton should do away with the measure to bring it in line with provincial directives. Read more…


Data shows rebound in vehicle traffic in downtown Calgary
Traffic is beginning to return to the downtown core as more Calgarians go back to in-person work, according to new data released by the city. Read more…


April 26

COVID spike in Yellowknife wastewater “anticipated”
Yellowknife hasn’t seen a rise in severe COVID-19 cases in the last three weeks despite a spike in the viral load in the city’s wastewater. Read more…


Ottawa police brace for new convoy protest, ban vehicles from downtown
Ottawa police are bracing for another protest, called Rolling Thunder, which could see protestors flood into the city’s downtown core between April 29 and 30. Read more…


April 25

Number of homeless people in Edmonton expected to grow, city report says
The number of people experiencing homelessness has doubled since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and is expected to increase, according to the City of Edmonton’s new homelessness and encampment strategy. Read more…


Backyard hens still in high demand amid New Brunswick’s third COVID-19 spring
The spring of 2021 still saw many New Brunswickers cooped up on their own properties. Homesteading and backyard activities like gardening took off, along with the popularity of backyard hens. Read more…


April 22

Richmond extends temporary outdoor restaurant patios to 2023
Eating a meal on a makeshift outdoor patio in the middle of a restaurant parking lot was a common scene during the pandemic and the City of Richmond is considering making outdoor patios a permanent fixture. Read more…


Proof of vax pushed to fringe of Winnipeg’s business sphere
The vast majority of Winnipeg businesses – even those that kept rules in place after the province’s March 1 removal of the proof of vax requirement – have slowly but surely dropped use of the Manitoba card and app system. Read more…


Lethbridge outdoor patio and parklet program a big win for local businesses
So far this year, the City of Lethbridge has permitted seven businesses to set up patios and parklets in the downtown core, with more permits pending. Read more…


The battle to provide a Yellowknife day shelter during the pandemic
Some of Yellowknife’s most vulnerable residents struggled to access basic services during the Covid-19 pandemic. Red tape, conflicts and discrimination were at the heart of the issue. Read more…


April 21

Hamilton backs off mandatory COVID shots for city staff
After debate that was sometimes heated, the general issues committee of Hamilton city council voted Wednesday to remove mandatory COVID shots and testing for the majority of its workers. Read more…


City of Peterborough employees ordered to wear masks at work
The City of Peterborough ordered all city employees to wear face coverings while working indoors or in vehicles as more COVID-19-related deaths and new outbreaks were reported Wednesday. Read more…


April 19

Hamilton looks to scrap COVID vaccination requirement for city workers
A new report is recommending Hamilton council suspend the mandatory COVID-19 vaccine policy for municipal employees “given the changes in the current environment” of the pandemic. Read more…


Vancouverites flocking back to downtown
Vancouverites are returning to the city’s downtown office towers, restaurants, and bars at the highest rate in nearly a year, according to a new report. Read more…


Hong Kong zero-COVID policies create mountains of plastic waste
Hong Kong’s strict quarantine policies – intended to halt COVID-19 at the border and in the community – have been criticized by environmentalists for generating excess waste. Read more…


The Twin Cities skyways face an uncertain future
With miles of second-floor walkways, Minneapolis and St. Paul have struggled to make them appealing without hurting retail businesses at street level. Then the pandemic hit. Read more…


April 18

Saint John plans to waive sidewalk café permit fees
The City of Saint John plans to waive sidewalk café fees for a second year in a row due to COVID-19 impacts. Last year, 17 businesses participated in the Sidewalk Café Rebate Initiative. Read more…


Remote options to be discussed by Elliott Lake for fall municipal election
With a significant percentage of the electorate continuing to exercise COVID-19 protocols, there are plans to make casting ballots more convenient, but not by adding e-voting to the mix this time out. Read more…


Out-of-towners urged to stay away from southwestern Ontario beaches
Elgin County Warden Tom Marks is urging people to avoid southwestern Ontario beaches outside their home residences as the province continues its battle with COVID-19. Read more…


April 15

Full in-person council meetings off the agenda in St. Catharines
St. Catharines is postponing its plan to return to full in-person city council meetings later this month as COVID-19 cases in the community continue to climb. Read more…


City of Saint John proposes extending Sidewalk Café Rebate Initiative
The City of Saint John plans to waive sidewalk café permit fees for the second year in a row due to COVID-19 impacts. Last year, 17 businesses participated in the Sidewalk Café Rebate Initiative. Read more…


Staff report recommends suspending City of Hamilton vaccination policy
Staff are recommending that the City of Hamilton suspend its mandatory COVID-19 vaccination verification policy. More than 500 city employees have been facing a June 1 dismissal date, related to their vaccination status. Read more…


Cote Saint-Luc asking Quebec to let city councillors attend meetings virtually
Côte Saint-Luc city councillors are asking the province to let them meet virtually amid coronavirus concerns as Quebec compels municipalities to resume in-person council meetings. Read more…


Mississauga mayor urges Ontario to prioritize help to COVID-19 hotspots
Mayor Bonnie Crombie is urging the provincial government to prioritize the hardest-hit communities in Mississauga and across Ontario as it makes COVID-19 antiviral treatments available to people. Read more…


April 14

Iqaluit drops vaccine mandate, but masks still required in city buildings
People in Iqlaluit no longer have to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to enter city buildings, but they will still have to wear a mask. Read more…


Leamington ending temporary outdoor patio program
A temporary outdoor patio program in Leamington is being ended by the municipality. The program was launched in 2020 and continued in 2021, to support the local business community through COVID-19 economic recovery. Read more…


April 13

Philadelphia brings back masks. Will other American cities follow?
Philadelphia’s return to a masking mandate is unlikely to catch on in other U.S. cities, highlighting a split among public health officials over how to contain future outbreaks of the virus. Read more…


April 12

City of Kamloops no longer requiring testing for unvaccinated employees
The City of Kamloops has changed parts of its vaccination policy in step with the province lifting the COVID-19 vaccine card mandate. Read more…


April 11

Sarnia council may keep Zoom meetings post-pandemic
Politicians in Sarnia will decide Monday whether or not to extend the use of online videoconferencing for council meetings. A motion will ask councillors to endorse a one-year trial period. Read more…


April 8

Toronto to decommission five temporary COVID shelters, extends all others
Five of Toronto’s temporary COVID-19 shelters will be decommissioned by the end of the year, while the leases on the remaining 23 facilities will be extended. Read more…


Edmonton looking at different options to address increase in homelessness
The number of people experiencing homelessness in Edmonton has now doubled since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Some options up for discussion to address the probem may not sit well with everyone. Read more…


Drug users in Vancouver respond to targeted effort to ramp up vaccination rate
Efforts to provide COVID-19 vaccines to as many drug users as possible in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside have paid off, prompting one advocate to urge other communities to learn lessons from this targeted, well-resourced approach. Read more…


April 7

Essex County looks to take over operation of COVID-19 isolation site
Essex County council unanimously passed a resolution in favour of taking over operation of the COVID-19 isolation and recovery centre for migrant workers from the City of Windsor. Read more…


As COVID spikes in wastewater, Halifax project hopes for funding renewal
As average levels of coronavirus found in Ottawa’s wastewater hit record highs and case numbers climb across the country, a wastewater surveillance project in Nova Scotia may soon see its funding renewed. Read more…


April 5

Saint John curbside recycling program costs grow thanks to COVID-19 pandemic
The City of Saint John’s effort to bring curbside recycling to its residents had to jump another hurdle created by the COVID-19 pandemic Monday night. Read more…


MOH encourages Toronto residents to put their masks on
Dr. Eileen de Villa, the Medical Officer of Health for the City of Toronto, is urging residents to wear masks in public indoor settings as COVID-19 indicators point to increasing spread. Read more…


April 4

Six complaints filed with integrity commissioner over “Crybabies Caravan” song
The city councillor behind Crybabies Caravan, a song written as his response to the now-dispersed weeks-long protest in Ottawa, says it has generated six code of conduct complaints against him. Read more…


Survey suggests Canadians becoming more divided over COVID-19, politics
A new survey suggests more Canadians are becoming divided, with some saying issues have led them to reduce contact with friends or family. Read more…


Kitchener mayor hopes in-person events will spark community spirit
Get ready to see classic cars, hear the blues, eat ribs and attend festivals in person in the coming months at public events that will “spark our Kitchener community spirit once again,” the city’s mayor says. Read more…


April 1

Sault library drops mask mandate due to public pressure
Sault Ste. Marie’s public library has removed its masking mandate, with executive director Matthew MacDonald saying one of the factors behind its decision was the threat of backlash and protest that could put staff in danger. Read more…


Coronavirus levels in Ottawa’s wastewater hit new high
The average level of coronavirus detected in Ottawa’s wastewater has reached a record high, surpassing the peak reached during a previous wave in January. Read more…


March 30

Ottawa AG to take on review of police, city response to convoy protest
The City of Ottawa’s auditor general has agreed to review the municipal response to the truck convoy, and take over reviews requested by both city council and the police services board. Read more…


Red Deer city council immunization policy repealed
Red Deer city council withdrew their immunization policy at Monday’s meeting. The policy entailed providing proof of double vaccination or a negative rapid antigen test within 72 hours of attending an in-person event. Read more…


March 29

Masking requirement to end at city facilities but not for Saskatoon buses
City council has voted to end mandatory masking at municipal facilities, but masks will still be required on Saskatoon buses. Read more…


Winnipeg wastewater testing reveals mixed picture of COVID transmission
Wastewater testing for the virus that causes COVID-19 reveals a mixed picture of the way the disease may have been circulating in Winnipeg earlier in March. Read more…


Toronto live venues to get permanent tax break as music scene revs back up
At a time when live music is making a comeback across the city after two years of COVID-19 restrictions, Toronto will reduce property taxes for eligible concert venues permanently, Mayor John Tory said on Monday. Read more…


March 28

New COVID-19 memorial to help Edmonton move forward from pandemic
As the pandemic slowly moves to the past, the City of Edmonton has decided to commission a piece of public art that will ensure citizens remember the impact of COVID-19 and those who died because of it. Read more…


Saskatoon city council vote for masks, return to chambers on Monday
Saskatoon city council will discuss the timing of resuming in-person council meetings. City administrations have previously suggested recommending councillors be back in chambers in April. Read more…


Shanghai starts China’s biggest COVID-19 lockdown in two years
China began its most extensive lockdown in two years Monday to conduct mass testing and control a growing COVID-19 outbreak in Shanghai as questions are raised about the economic toll of the nation’s “zero-COVID” strategy. Read more…


March 25

Mayor Watson urging residents to be vigilant over COVID-19 in community
As restrictions continue to ease, the mayor of Ottawa is calling on residents to remain vigilant over COVID-19 within the community. Read more…


Greater Sudbury COVID-19 wastewater data available on city website
Greater Sudbury residents can now visit the city’s website to view the latest COVID-19 wastewater data for the municipality. Read more…


March 24

Jasper mayor asks for public input on sidewalk seating
Council will discuss how the municipality should proceed with patios on sidewalks in relation to Parks Canada’s guidelines about maintaining a specific architectural motif in the townsite of Jasper. Read more…


Ottawa city council calls for new policing model in Canada’s capital
A month after the so-called Freedom Convoy was cleared out of downtown Ottawa, city council is pressing the federal government for a new model of policing for the core of the nation’s capital. Read more…


Fredericton hopes ACOA money will revitalize COVID-weary downtown
The Fredericton Chamber of Commerce is hailing an Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency program that would see additonal money invested in downtown areas in the region. Read more…


March 23

New employees with City of Saint John will need proof of COVID-19 vaccination
As of March 21, the City of Saint John will require new employees to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19. Read more…


Local municipalities begin lifting states of emergency, other pandemic protocols
Several municipalities in the Essex County region have started rolling back COVID-19 protocols including mask mandates and states of emergency. Read more…


Easing of pandemic restrictions stokes fears of grass fires in CBRM
Firefighters across Cape Breton Regional Municipality went from battling as many as 2,000 grass fires a year before the pandemic to just 200 in both 2020 and 2021. Read more…


Edmonton council votes down new mask bylaw for city buildings
By a vote of 8-5, Edmonton councillors decided not to make masking mandatory in city-owned and operated facilities like city hall and rec centres. Read more…


Yukon expands distribution of COVID-19 rapid tests
The Yukon government is making COVID-19 rapid tests available at three new locations in Whitehorse and one in Haines Junction as it winds down distributing the tests through two pickup locations in Whitehorse. Read more…


March 22

City of Mississauga mask bylaw remains in place as provincial mandate lifts
The City of Mississauga has issued a reminder that masks still need to be worn in indoor public settings in the municipality even as Ontario’s mandate has lifted. Read more…


Stratford city employees to continue wearing masks indoors
While members of the public are no longer required to wear masks inside city buildings, employees at city facilities will continue wearing masks and practising safe social distancing. Read more…


Toronto’s world-leading vaccination rate will help protect the city, de Villa says
Amid concerns over the end of most COVID-19 restrictions, Toronto’s public health chief is reassuring residents their world-leading vaccination rate gives them strong protection against the virus. Read more…


March 21


Waterloo Region’s seven mayors reflect on pandemic during community update
Waterloo Mayor Dave Jaworsky shared a hopeful message during Friday’s community COVID-19 update – the last scheduled update hosted by the Region of Waterloo after two years. Read more…


Toronto to hold 24 pop-up COVID-19 vaccine clinics in new spring campaign
The City of Toronto will be holding 24 pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics around the city through its new ‘Vax and Spring’ campaign. Read more…


Reduced yet revelrous St. Patrick’s Day parade returns to Montreal
The sound of bagpipes and drums filled the streets of downtown Montreal Sunday as the St. Patrick’s Day parade graced the city’s streets after a two-year hiatus because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


March 18

Regina councillor calls colleagues “hypocrites” for wearing masks in meeting
Mayor Sandra Masters said on Thursday that councillors should not be calling other councillors names on the floor of council after Coun. Terina Shaw criticized colleagues for wearing masks. Read more…


City of Orillia, hospital to keep vaccination policies in place
As COVID-19 restrictions ease across the province, vaccination policies will remain in place at the City of Orillia and Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital. Read more…


Preparing for the next pandemic
Although pandemics are a fact of human life, the world was blindsided by the impact and devastation of COVID-19. What we do now could make this pandemic the last of its kind. Read more…


Red Deer dropping employee vaccine, mask mandates – except for transit
The internal immunization policy that applies to all City of Red Deer staff is suspended, except for transit services. This means riders over 13 years and transit operators must continue to mask when on buses. Read more…


Public welcomed back to Mississippi Mills council meetings
Mississippi Mills council says that as the province moves forward with re-opening, the municipality has also started to open council chambers to the public. Read more…


March 17

Victoria to urge province to keep temporary patio liquor licences for summer
The City of Victoria is establishing a process for restaurants to apply to make outdoor seating areas created during the pandemic permanent. Read more…


Region of Waterloo council repeals bylaw requiring face coverings
Region of Waterloo council has voted to repeal a bylaw requiring face coverings in indoor public places. Face coverings will still be required on public transportation, in bus shelters and on transit platforms across the region. Read more…


Toronto extends Vax and Read library clinics
The City of Toronto has extended its Read and Vax campaign until the end of March, allowing the public to get their COVID-19 vaccine at library branches. Read more…


First Nations in Manitoba keeping COVID-19 rules despite easing in province
Manitoba has lifted the last of its pandemic-related restrictions this week, but First Nations in the province say they live under different social circumstances and will continue to implement their own rules. Read more…


March 16


Whitehorse city council consider reducing fees for pop-up patio program
The City of Whitehorse is considering waiving fees for the bagged parking meter fees associated with its pop-up patio program, which allows restaurants in the downtown core to expand their capacity outdoors. Read more…


Hamilton school board chair asks city’s top doc for order to keep mask mandate
Hamilton’s public school board chair has requested an order from the city’s medical officer of health to implement a directive keeping students and staff masked until mid-April. Read more…


Halifax updates COVID-19 protocols for municipal services
Halifax Regional Municipality has announced its mandatory mask policy will no longer be in effect. However, wearing a mask while indoors and while using Halifax Transit is “recommended.” Read more…


March 15

Calgary police chief says officers in no-win situation at weekend protest clash
Calgary’s police chief says officers were in a no-win situation when anti-vaccine, anti-mask protesters got into a “standoff situation” with residents and other counter-protesters on the weekend. Read more…


Niagara lifting state of emergency nearly two years after it was declared
A state of emergency declared in the Niagara Region during the COVID-19 pandemic will officially end on Tuesday, nearly two years after it began. Read more…


City of Barrie introduces hybrid work pilot as staff get back to the office
A return to normalcy is what some Barrie city employees felt on Monday as they returned to the office for the first time in two years. Around 250 city staff are now working three days in the office and two at home. Read more…


March 14

Hamilton waiting on at least $80K in unpaid COVID-19 fines
Hamilton is waiting on at least $80,700 in unpaid tickets from people and businesses that broke COVID-19 rules. Read more…


Calgary mayor calling for police action against continued COVID protests
Calgary Mayor Jyoti Gondek is calling for enforcement against anti-mandate marches through a downtown neighbourhood. Police say approximately 2,000 people took part in opposing protests Saturday. Read more…


March 11

Mandatory COVID-19 testing ends for unvaccinated York police officers
York Regional Police has ended mandatory testing of unvaccinated officers, which could lead to the resolution of a union grievance over the requirement that officers pay for the tests. Read more…


Mississauga’s mayor raises concerns on timing of lifting mask mandate
Premier Doug Ford is defending his government’s decision to lift the mask mandate in most settings in less than two weeks, even as one GTA mayor questions the timing of the move. Read more…


March 10

Alberta municipal leaders oppose bill overruling local mask laws​
Legislation preventing cities from creating their own mask mandates without the provincial government’s permission is the “exact opposite” of collaboration, says the president of Alberta Municipalities. Read more…


Toronto city council votes to lift mask bylaw alongside province
Toronto council amended the city’s mask bylaw so it will expire on March 21 – the same day the provincial government will lift masking requirements in most public settings. Read more…


Memorial to honour Winnipeggers lost to COVID-19
As the pandemic reached the two-year mark, Mayor Brian Bowman announced a temporary memorial will honour the Winnipeggers lost to COVID-19. Read more…


March 9

Alberta municipalities will need province’s OK for face mask, vaccine passports
Alberta’s UCP government introduced amendments to the Municipal Government Act Tuesday, limiting local governments’ ability to have face-covering or vaccine passport bylaws outside of the province’s rules. Read more…


Mask mandates will soon be lifted in Canada – and further divide Canadians
The future of masking will look very different across Canada in the coming weeks as mandates continue to lift, but experts say some people will likely continue using them. Read more…


University of Regina wastewater study shows COVID-19 levels remain volatile
The latest COVID-19 study from the University of Regina says viral levels in the city’s wastewater have risen again, but researchers haven’t been able to predict a sustained trend. Read more…


Edmonton council repeals city’s mask bylaw but pitches new one
People in Edmonton are no longer required to wear masks in indoor public places, after city council agreed Tuesday to repeal its face-covering bylaw. Read more…


Hong Kong puts mass testing on hold as COVID-19 deaths rise
Hong Kong officials say reducing the skyrocketing number of deaths in the latest coronavirus surge is the city’s priority, putting a plan to test the entire population on hold. Read more…


Why LA could be the last school district in America to lift its mask mandate
America’s largest public school district – New York City – finally lifted its COVID-19 mask mandate. Meanwhile, the nation’s second-largest public school district – Los Angeles – seems likely to require masks for the rest of the school year. Read more…


March 8

City moving forward with multi-phased return-to-work plan
With the easing of COVID-19 public health and safety measures, the City of Ottawa is moving forward with a multi-phased return-to-work plan. Read more…


March 7

Here are some of the places where you will still need to wear a mask in Calgary
While the province dropped its requirement for masking inside public buildings and businesses as of March 1, there are a number of locations in Calgary who say they’re not ready to go ahead just yet. Read more…


March 4

Toronto among municipalities keeping vaccine policies for employees
The City of Toronto says that despite other public health measures being lifted, its policy that employees need to be vaccinated isn’t being removed. Read more…


Industry associations criticize City of Vancouver patio program red tape
Restaurant and brewery operators are slamming Vancouver’s new guidelines for sidewalk and curbside patios, calling them “more red tape” for struggling small businesses. Read more…


Border city mayors “urgently ask” feds to drop land border testing requirements
More than a dozen mayors from across Canada have written an open letter to the Canadian government, “urgently asking” the feds to drop all testing requirements for fully-vaccinated travellers at the Canada-United States land border. Read more…


“Can’t live in fear” tweet from Brampton mayor blasted by hospital executive
The top executive of the Ontario Hospital Association tore into Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown on Twitter on Wednesday night, suggesting the politician’s greater ambitions may “undermine” public health efforts. Read more…


Ottawa mayor, former chief concerned over police donations to convoy
Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson says it’s concerning that active police officers allegedly donated to an illegal protest, though it’s up to the police chief to determine whether disciplinary action is warranted. Read more…


March 3

Several Ontario municipalities keep COVID vaccine policies in place for staff
Many Ontario municipalities are keeping COVID-19 vaccine mandates for their staff even as they lift the proof-of-vaccination requirement at facilities such as community centres. Read more…


Kenney asked to back down on blocking Alberta municipal mask rules
Alberta’s premier defended his plan to prevent cities and towns from bringing in their own mask mandates Wednesday, as a municipal leader accused him of doing a “180” flip-flop on the issue. Read more…


Toronto’s new campaign brings COVID-19 vaccination clinics to libraries
Toronto is launching a new two-week campaign, bringing COVID-19 vaccine clinics to 12 Toronto Public Library branches. Read more…


Rapid transit pandemic hit could take “multiple years” to rebound
Completing the southwest rapid transitway was meant to drive up Winnipeg Transit ridership, but the COVID-19 pandemic forced it to plummet instead. Read more…


March 2

Yellowknife city council censures councillor for racially charged comments
Yellowknife Coun. Niels Konge was formally censured by his colleagues for comparing COVID-19 vaccine mandates to racial segregation, and comparing the challenges faced by local business owners to the Sixties Scoop. Read more…


Winnipeg considers waiving rent to keep some tenants impacted by pandemic
Tenants in city-owned facilities could get a boost through a City of Winnipeg proposal to waive their rent for a six-month period in order to keep the tenants the city already has and prevent more downtown space from becoming vacant. Read more…


Alberta to force municipalities to lift mask bylaws
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced Tuesday the province will introduce legislation as early as next week to prevent municipalities from enforcing their own face covering mandates. Read more…


“Remain vigilant,” Orillia mayor urges as COVID-19 pandemic restrictions ease
Orillia’s mayor is urging community members to “remain vigilant” in the fight against COVID-19, as Ontario eases public health measures and the city ends its state of emergency after two years. Read more…


City of Lethbridge eases COVID measures for staff
The City of Lethbridge is easing COVID-19 requirements for its staff following the Alberta Government’s action to lift public health measures. Read more…


March 1

Saskatoon Transit extends mask requirement after city council approval
City council has approved a plan to continue requiring Saskatoon Transit riders to wear face masks to slow the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. Read more…


City of Calgary implementing enhanced safety measures on transit system
In an effort to reduce a rise in social disorder on the city’s transit network, the City of Calgary is implementing enhanced safety measures for the next several weeks. Read more…


Hong Kong mulls city-wide lockdown amid record COVID-19 spike
Hong Kong reported a record 34,466 new COVID-19 infections Monday, as deaths continued to climb, with authorities assessing the possibilities of locking down the city. Read more…


City of Edmonton wants resident input on mandatory mask bylaw
One day before the province lifts nearly all of its COVID-19 health measures, the City of Edmonton is asking residents to weigh in on its mandatory mask bylaw. Read more…


February 28

Pandemic cost Manitoba municipalities nearly $92-million in 2021: survey
Manitoba’s municipalities experienced a combined $91.8-million operating loss in 2021, and are anticipating a $53.3-million shortfall this year. Read more…


Vaccine rules to be dropped, but municipalities hoping for official blessing
As the Ontario government drops proof of COVID-19 vaccine requirements on March 1, Windsor-Essex municipalities are navigating the new path forward. Read more…


City staff ask for continued COVID-19 homeless relief funding in London
A city committee is recommending that the mayor of London pen a letter to federal and provincial ministries to continue funding for COVID-19 homeless relief. Read more…


Alberta masking rules end March 1, Edmonton maintains face-covering bylaw
As Albertans prepare for the lifting of nearly all provincial health measures on Tuesday, Edmontonians will still have to abide by the city’s face covering bylaw. Read more…


Masks still important when NL repeals mandate, doctor says
While Public Health plans to drop COVID-19 restrictions in Newfoundland and Labrador in two weeks, a medical school professor says face coverings are still valuable to contain the spread of the virus. Read more…


Montreal’s St. Patrick’s Day parade returns after pandemic pause
Montreal’s St. Patrick’s Day parade is back after a two-year break due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Estimates predict there will be about 500 participants in lieu of the usual 3,000 to 4,000 people. Read more…


Northeastern Ontario health units fear provincial funding cuts post-pandemic
Some health units in northeastern Ontario asked for extra money from town and city councils this year, others are fearing a cut in provincial funding post-pandemic. Read more…


February 25

Toronto holds the line on masks as COVID-19 numbers drop
The City of Toronto is in no rush to relax mandatory mask rules despite a significant drop in Torontonians being hospitalized for COVID-19. Read more…


Waterloo Region waits for direction from province before lifting restrictions
Municipalities across Waterloo region will likely have to wait until early next week to hear the province’s guidance on reopening recreational facilities and indoor public spaces. Read more…


Cruise ship season a go, says Port Saint John CEO
After two years off because of COVID-19, cruise ships are expected to be back at Port Saint John this spring, according to CEO Craig Bell Estabrooks. Read more…


Pincher Creek Council divided over suspension of COVID-19 testing policy
In response to the Alberta government’s recent decision to lift pandemic restrictions, Pincher Creek town council has decided to temporarily suspend COVID testing for town employees. Read more…


February 24

City of Winnipeg plans to drop mask, vaccine requirements for public
Members of the public will soon be allowed to enter City of Winnipeg facilities and participate in programs without having to wear masks or show proof of vaccination against COVID-19. Read more…


Brampton mayor won’t fire unvaccinated staff, claims Hamilton councillor
Hoping Hamilton will “follow suit,” a city councillor claimed Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown told her that his city will not fire municipal employees who fail to verify their COVID-19 vaccination status. Read more…


City of Ottawa to review keeping Wellington Street closed, uploading to feds
Ottawa city council has approved a plan that could fundamentally change Wellington Street in front of Parliament, including possibly having it become federal jurisdiction and closing it to vehicular traffic. Read more…


Denver to lift its COVID vaccine requirement for municipal workers
Denver is lifting a public health order requiring COVID-19 vaccines for municipal employees and contractors, effective March 4, officials announced. Read more…


Outdoor patio provisions extended in Tecumseh
Tecumseh is extending to the end of 2022 the guidelines it set allowing for the extension of liquor licences for outdoor patios. Read more…


Liability, enforcement among concerns during North Battleford masks vote
The debate over continuing mask restrictions was a spirited one at North Battleford city council, but moving forward, both council and administration will be following the province’s lead. Read more…


Toronto to pivot COVID-19 vaccine strategy, focus on “hyper-local” approach
The City of Toronto says it is shifting its COVID-19 vaccination resources and will be focusing on a “hyper-local” and “equity-focused” approach. Read more…


February 23

No plans to lift City of Hamilton mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy for staff
There are no plans for Hamilton to lift its mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy for city staff, even as the province’s top doctor suggests that the time for those policies is in the rearview. Read more…


Alberta municipality will no longer hire businesses with vaccination policies
Mackenzie County, Alberta’s largest and most northern county, says it is no longer working with local businesses that have a mandatory vaccination policy. Read more…


Ottawa council to discuss aftermath of “Freedom Convoy” occupation
Ottawa City Council meets today for the first time since the “Freedom Convoy” occupation was removed from the downtown core. Read more…


Saskatoon committee recommends keeping mask mandate on transit
A Saskatoon city committee voted to keep masks mandatory on public transit even after the COVID-19 public health order ends at the end of the month. Read more…


February 22

Regina brew pub introduces vaccine-only section
Bushwakker Brewpub in Regina has a separate 50-seat room for patrons who have “immunodeficiency concerns, family health concerns, or simply are not comfortable with the latest easing of health restrictions.” Read more…


Schools cancel activities in Iqaluit municipal buildings over vaccine passport
Starting March 31, people ages five and up will have to show their proof of COVID-19 vaccination to use Iqaluit city facilities. Read more…


City of Ottawa warns of text messaging scam promising convoy compensation
Do not reply to text messages that look like they may have been sent by the City of Ottawa. That’s what the City is telling residents after it has become aware of a scam hitting up people’s phones. Read more…


Saskatoon wastewater data shows rise in coronavirus levels
According to the University of Saskatchewan researchers tracking coronavirus RNA in Saskatoon’s wastewater, the viral load has jumped by 98 per cent compared to the previous week. Read more…


Hong Kong orders mandatory COVID-19 tests for all residents
Hong Kong will test its entire population for COVID-19 in March, the city’s leader said Tuesday, as the city grapples with its worst outbreak driven by the omicron variant. Read more…


February 18

Ontario councillor taking part in anti-mandate protests attends virtual meeting
When West Lincoln councillor Harold Jonker attended a committee meeting online Monday evening, he wasn’t in the Niagara-area township in Ontario that elected him. He was more than 500 kilometres away, in Ottawa. Read more…


St. Albert to follow province on easing COVID-19 measures
St. Albert will not be pursuing its own vaccine passport program, or instating a mask bylaw, Mayor Cathy Heron says. Read more…


City council facing calls to improve budget, but Tory defends spending plan
Councillors are debating the city’s newest budget, which the mayor is defending as a responsible plan amid the COVID-19 pandemic but also one critics say isn’t enough to deal with Toronto’s big problems. Read more…


Kingston city council to consider return to in-person meetings
Mayor Bryan Paterson has given Kingston council notice he intends to bring a motion at the next meeting on March 1 calling for council to return to in-person format for its March 22 meeting. Read more…


Mass testing paves way for Hong Kong reopen, stock watchers say
Market watchers are optimistic that Hong Kong’s plans for mass COVID-19 testing could stem the resurgence of virus cases, with stocks tied to economic reopening advancing in a volatile session Thursday. Read more…


February 17

Ottawa police board chair ousted in dramatic city council meeting
Council voted to replace the chair of the Ottawa Police Services Board during an emotional meeting that saw Mayor Jim Watson faced angry criticism from councillors, including one calling for him to resign. Read more…


Quebec City gives local police more powers ahead of COVID-19 protest
Quebec City’s mayor says he’s giving more powers to local police as protesters opposed to COVID-19 health measures are preparing to descend on the provincial capital again this weekend. Read more…


Winnipeg mayor would support continued mask mandate in city buildings
Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman says he wants to see face masks required for city facilities and transit buses even after the province drops its mandates next month. Read more…


Petition asks City of Victoria to enforce noise, traffic bylaws during protests
An online petition has been created calling on the city of Victoria to enforce noise bylaws during weekend Freedom Convoy protests at the BC Legislature. Read more…


February 16

Edmonton mayor supports masking as Calgary moves toward ending bylaw
On a day that Calgary voted to end the city’s mask mandate at the same time as Alberta, there is still no firm timeline for the same to happen in Edmonton. Read more…


More than $14 million spent on convoy protests: Ottawa Police Services Board
As the “Freedom Convoy” protests reach its third week of occupation, the Ottawa Police Services Board estimates that police and the municipality have spent more than $14 million in recorded costs to mitigate the crisis. Read more…


Innisfail mayor wants better provincial consultation on COVID
Innisfail mayor Jean Barclay says the province did not offer adequate consultation opportunities with municipalities before “swiftly” moving into its three-step plan on Feb. 8 to phase out current COVID restrictions. Read more…


Inukjuak locks down with 105 COVID-19 cases, as other communities reopen
While the rest of Nunavik has begun easing COVID-19 restrictions, Inukjuak has entered a local lockdown as it accounted for more than half of all the active cases in Nunavik. Read more…


Strathcona County mask bylaw amended to follow provincial policy
Strathcona County council voted unanimously to align with the provincial COVID-19 policy and will remove requirements for youth aged two to 12 in any setting, which came into effect on Feb. 14. Read more…


February 15

COVID-driven exodus out of big cities could fuel wage inflation, experts warn
With many people working remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic, employees are considering moving away from big cities to smaller towns with more affordable housing options. Read more…


Study finds Winnipeg’s COVID-19 hotspots not as high as other urban centres
A new study analyzing COVID-19 hotspots in major Canadian cities found Winnipeg’s concentration was not as high as some of its counterparts. Read more…


City of Windsor declares state of emergency over Ambassador Bridge protests
Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens has declared a state of emergency in the city to support ongoing security efforts in the aftermath of a multi-day protest that blocked access to the Ambassador Bridge. Read more…


COVID protesters misdirecting their anger, mayor says
Fort St. John Mayor Lori Ackerman says protesters are misdirecting their anger with COVID-19 mandates and restrictions at the city. Read more…


February 14

City brokers deal for trucks to leave Ottawa’s residential neighbourhoods
The City of Ottawa has come to an agreement with one of the leaders of the weeks-long demonstration that could see hundreds of vehicles roll out of the residential areas in the downtown core. Read more…


Hwy 402 blockade a “hazard to economy and transportation,” Sarnia mayor says
The ongoing blockade on Highway 402 in southwestern Ontario is a hazard to the region’s economy and transportation, says Mayor Mike Bradley of Sarnia. Read more…


Winnipeg police rapped for counter protest detainments
The Winnipeg Police Service is under fire for detaining two Indigenous counter-protesters at an anti-mandate demonstration outside the legislature. Read more…


Calgary looks to repeal mask bylaw to align with provincial measures
With provincial mask measures changing on Monday, there will be inconsistencies with the City of Calgary’s mask bylaw. As a result, some city councillors are looking to align with provincial measures. Read more…


February 11

City of Ottawa committee meeting disrupted by security breach
Just one day after Ottawa council voted to beef up its in-house IT staff, a virtual meeting began with a security breach that shared an unapproved message over YouTube. Read more…


Fredericton police chief won’t allow “Freedom Convoy” to gridlock the city
Fredericton Police Force Chief Roger Brown says he supports peaceful protests, but will not be allowing the convoy to “gridlock” the city, as it’s been advertised. Read more…


Regina city council to discuss vaccine, mask restrictions on Friday
Regina city council will convene for a special meeting on Friday to talk about whether the city will follow the province’s lead and cut all COVID-19 restrictions, or develop its own plan. Read more…


Wastewater monitoring offers effective surveillance of coronavirus outbreaks
With many public health departments days or weeks behind in reporting infection numbers, countries like Canada are better off because they test wastewater, allowing them to quickly detect outbreaks as they unfold. Read more…


District of Sparwood formally requests municipal health orders be struck
In a letter to BC Premier John Horgan, on behalf of himself and district councillors, Sparwood Mayor David Wilks formally requested all mandatory health orders that affect municipal operations be lifted. Read more…


Charlottetown warns of delays with “convoy-style” protest set for Saturday
The City of Charlottetown is warning businesses and residents to expect delays because of a “convoy-style protest” scheduled for Saturday. Read more…


Lifting restrictions could cause anxiety for many as unknowns persist: experts
As provinces begin lifting COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, psychology experts expect stress and anxiety to run high among those who remain wary of letting their guards down. Read more…


February 10

Despite COVID-19, census shows Canada’s population grew at fastest rate in G7
Canada’s population grew at a faster rate than many of its peers, rising to over 36.99 million on census day last year despite a historic slowdown caused by COVID-19. Read more…


City of Edmonton explores its own COVID-19 proof of vaccination program
Edmonton is exploring options to create its own proof of vaccination requirement after the province ended the Restrictions Exemption Programy. Read more…


Calgary committee votes against exploring vaccine passport program for city
The City of Calgary will not be implementing its own vaccine passport program, at least for now, after a committee voted against exploring the idea. Read more…


Premier’s comments ‘puzzling and troubling’ to municipalities
Wetaskiwin’s mayor is joining others in raising concerns over comments made by Premier Jason Kenney indicating Alberta could amend the Municipal Government Act if municipalities implement their own COVID-19 mandates. Read more…


February 9

Follow-through on MGA changes unlikely from Kenney: Mayor Heron
Mayor Cathy Heron expressed confusion Tuesday morning over statements from the premier suggesting the province could prevent municipalities from implementing local COVID-19 health measures. Read more…


Saskatoon votes to lift proof of vaccine requirements, keeps masking
In a special session, Saskatoon’s city council voted to stop requiring proof of vaccination because the city lacks the legal standing to do so without the provincial health order. Read more…


Bus union to fight City of Hamilton’s mandatory COVID-19 vaccination stance
The union representing Hamilton’s bus drivers have voted in favour of proceeding to arbitration over the threat of mass terminations for what they call an unfair vaccination policy. Read more…


Winnipeg mayor calls for special meetings over handling of convoy protest
Winnipeg police are under pressure from municipal leaders to answer questions about their handling of the ongoing convoy protest against COVID restrictions. Read more…


Halifax’s mayor on protests, housing and the city’s transit budget problem
Halifax’s mayor says city officials are preparing for more protests against public health mandates while also learning what they can from the disruptive demonstration that’s taken over downtown Ottawa for nearly two weeks. Read more…


City of Grande Prairie employee COVID-19 testing requirements to be lifted
Unvaccinated City of Grande Prairie employees will no longer be required to complete rapid tests every three days once the provincial government’s Restrictions Exemption Program has been lifted. Read more…


February 8

Ottawa police call for more personnel to “regain control” of the city
Ottawa Police Chief Peter Sloly says he needs 1,800 more personnel from provincial and federal sources to sustain a push started over the weekend to rout the so-called “freedom convoy.” Read more…


Three City of Nanaimo employees on unpaid leave due COVID mandate
Just three City of Nanaimo permanent full-time employees are currently on unpaid leave for not being vaccinated and refusing to take part in their rapid testing program. Read more…


Medicine Hat mayor supports call for municipal input on COVID-19 measures
Medicine Hat Mayor Linnsie Clark is supporting a call for municipalities to have a say on easing pandemic restrictions in Alberta. Read more…


Saskatoon proposes lifting some COVID-19 protocols
Some COVID-19 protocols in Saskatoon could be lifted soon if the Saskatchewan government ends current public health orders. Read more…


February 7

Ottawa declares state of emergency as police boost enforcement
The City of Ottawa declared a state of emergency Sunday afternoon in response to ongoing protests in the downtown core. Read more…


Quebec City convoy ordered to leave the National Assembly
Large trucks and cars were seen honking and driving away from the National Assembly after Quebec City police ordered them to leave the area by 5 p.m. on Sunday. Read more…


Toronto’s summer festivals expected to return this year
After two years of COVID-related cancellations or virtual events, many of Toronto’s major festivals have confirmed plans to come back live and in-person for the summer of 2022. Read more…


Montreal mayor demands Quebec government present reopening plan
Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante is calling on the Quebec government to present a reopening plan so concert, festival, conference and other event organizers can start planning. Read more…


Workplace vaccine mandates being upheld as challenges largely tossed out
Legal challenges of employer vaccine mandates and health measures are being tossed out as arbitrators in Canada largely side with the need to maintain safe workplaces during a pandemic, legal experts say. Read more…


February 4

Edmonton may bring in COVID-19 restrictions if Kenney drops Alberta’s
Mayor Amarjeet Sohi urged the Alberta government to reconsider the relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions, adding that Edmonton may bring in municipal rules if provincial restrictions are relaxed or removed. Read more…


Hamilton has spent over $1.5M on extra security guards during pandemic
Hamilton has spent $1,529,216.98 on extra security guards since the start of the pandemic to keep places like city-run vaccine clinics, testing centres, shelter programs, and recreation centres safe. Read more…


February 3

Quebec City police prepare for “Freedom Convoy”
Quebec City police say they are communicating with a so-called “Freedom Convoy” heading to the city this weekend and intend to keep peace and order in the city. Read more…


Ottawa police under pressure to take action as COVID-19 protest strains city
Ottawa police face mounting pressure to take stronger action against the protest of COVID-19 measures that has taken over the capital city. Read more…


Municipal vaccine policy stands in West Nipissing
Residents who have not received a COVID-19 vaccination can still run in future municipal elections, West Nipissing council clarified last night, but emphasized that its municipal vaccination policy still stands. Read more…


Vancouver’s population declined for the first time in 40 years
After decades of steady growth, Vancouver’s population took its first downturn since the 1970s. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the COVID-19 pandemic has been found to play a large part in the city’s population decline. Read more…


February 2

City of Ottawa considering legal action to recoup protest costs
Ottawa’s mayor says the city is contemplating legal action against GoFundMe, arguing that taxpayers shouldn’t be left to pay costs associated with the convoy protest now snarling traffic in Canada’s capital. Read more…


Quebec City mayor worried, urges respect ahead of planned COVID-19 protest
Quebec City’s mayor says he is concerned about a COVID-19 protest expected to roll into the region and perhaps to disrupt the world’s largest winter festival. Read more…


Prince Albert will follow provincial lead on COVID restrictions
Restrictions put in place to slow the spread of COVID-19 will remain until the province erases provincial guidelines, Prince Albert Mayor Greg Dionne said. Read more…


Community workers keen to tackle Montreal’s pockets of unvaccinated
Last April, Sylvain Pilote and his team hit the streets of Montreal’s LaSalle borough to spread the word about the benefits of getting vaccinated against COVID-19. Read more…


Red Deer city council approves immunization bylaw policy
Red Deer city council has approved an immunization policy that applies to members of council and volunteers appointed to council boards and committees. Read more…


February 1

Denmark scraps most COVID-19 restrictions
Denmark on Tuesday became one of the first European Union countries to scrap most pandemic restrictions as the Scandinavian country no longer considers the COVID-19 outbreak “a socially critical disease.” Read more…


Municipal facilities reopen across Northwest Territories
As some public health measures have ended, municipalities across the Northwest Territories have begun to reopen administrative and recreation facilities. Read more…


Saskatoon suspends COVID-19 Risk Framework
Saskatoon councillors voted to suspend the city’s COVID-19 risk framework but also charged administration with researching what measure they could implement. Read more…


Office vacancy rate in Calgary declines for 1st time since start of pandemic
There is a sign of optimism in Calgary’s downtown core, as the office vacancy rate has begun to decline for the first time since the start of the pandemic. Read more…


January 31

After two days of protests, Ottawa residents are feeling the effects
Ottawa’s downtown core has echoed with the sound of blaring horns and chanting crowds for two days now, and with protesters and transport trucks choking off access, many in the city are beginning to feel the effects. Read more…


Vancouver to reduce green bin collection as it deals with staffing shortage
The City of Vancouver says green bins will be collected every two weeks temporarily as it deals with staffing shortages due to COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto mass vaccination sites now accepting walk-ins
In an effort to expand vaccine coverage, the City of Toronto says people will no longer be required to book an appointment for a first, second, third, or pediatric dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Read more…


New York City to deliver free antiviral pills to COVID patients
New York City will provide free antiviral pills, home-delivered, to people who test positive and are at higher risk from Covid-19, Mayor Eric Adams announced on Sunday. Read more…


January 28

Omicron-fuelled wave nearly triples Calgary police COVID-19 count
The fifth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Calgary has hit police as hard as the greater community. In the last two months, 428 members tested positive. Read more…


North Okanagan First Nation struggling with increase in COVID cases
Chief Doug Thomas is urging Splatsin residents to stay home as the North Okanagan First Nation grapples with a COVID outbreak. Read more…


COVID-19 text scams targeting Quebecers by offering prizes, information
It seems several COVID-19-related text message scams have been hitting Quebecers’ phones lately, offering anything from information to money. Read more…


Greenland widens alcohol bans in order to control spread of COVID-19
Alcohol bans went into effect in three additional Greenland municipalities on Wednesday after requests from their respective mayors. Read more…


“Urgent need” prompting COVID isolation centre for Fredericton’s homeless
Prompted by “urgent needs in the Fredericton region,” plans are in the works for the opening of a COVID-19 isolation centre for homeless people on the city’s north side. Read more…


Saskatoon shelters dealing with Omicron outbreaks
Nearly all facilities that provide shelter to Saskatoon’s vulnerable population are experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks, but representatives say they’re still able to provide services. Read more…


January 27

Richmond County council presses pause on mandatory vaccination policy
A mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy for municipal staff and council is on hold while councillors seek more information on the legality of the rule. Read more…


City of Kamloops saw 100 employees absent last Friday due to COVID-19 impacts
The City of Kamloops has been short-staffed due to the spread of the COVID-19 Omicron variant, with about 100 staff calling in sick last Friday, according the city. Read more…


Celebrating Lunar New Year amid the ongoing pandemic
The Lunar New Year falls on Feb. 1, marking the begining of the Year of the Tiger. Chinese authorities have called on the public to stay where they are during the celebration instead of traveling to their hometowns. Read more…


January 26

Airdrie mask bylaw remains after expiry date removed
Airdrie’s masking bylaw is staying in place after amendments made on January 17 removed a December 31, 2021 expiry date. Read more…


St. John’s “COVID Hotel” sees spike in guests looking for a safe space
As COVID-19  began its dramatic rise in Newfoundland and Labrador with record setting case counts in December, a safe space many people in St. John’s didn’t even know about began seeing more visitors. Read more…


City of Hamilton plans to reopen facilities, resume programs in coming weeks
As the latest round of COVID-19 restrictions is scheduled to start loosening on Jan. 31, the City of Hamilton has announced that some municipal services will also restart in the coming weeks. Read more…


January 25

City of Saskatoon confident services won’t be disrupted by COVID-19 wave
As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to grow across Saskatchewan, the City of Saskatoon believes its services won’t be dramatically impacted. Read more…


Winnipeg economic group prepares for post-pandemic growth
A Winnipeg group that works to grow and promote the city’s economy is staying focused on long-term plans it hopes will help businesses bounce back after COVID-19. Read more…


January 24

COVID-19 outbreak affecting homeless population in St. John’s
An outbreak of COVID-19 is affecting the homeless population in St. John’s, according to the executive director of The Gathering Place. Read more…


Edmonton-area schools facing worst staffing crunches of COVID-19 pandemic
The Omicron variant has left Edmonton-area classrooms dealing with the most challenging staffing issues in the pandemic. Read more…


Nearly 1,700 get doses at city’s COVID-19 vaccination clinic in northwest Toronto
Nearly 1,700 people received COVID-19 vaccine doses at a one-day mega-clinic organized by the city in northwest Toronto on Sunday. Read more…


January 21

Moncton wastewater testing helps track more accurate look at COVID-19 spread
As New Brunswick scales back on widespread PCR testing, wastewater surveillance in the province’s largest city is helping to provide a clearer picture of COVID-19 transmission. Read more…


The City of Vernon lifts some recreational services restrictions
The City of Vernon has eased recreational services restrictions following the amended Provincial Health Order. Patrons with still have to follow existing COVID-19 provisions. Read more…


West Nipissing council unites to pass vaccination policy
West Nipissing has adopted a vaccination policy requiring all staff, contractors, volunteers, and council members to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Read more…


Brooks not being reimbursed for more than $140,000 in COVID costs
The City of Brooks will not be compensated by the province for a $143,497 bill from early in the pandemic when they paid for hotels as isolation centres. Read more…


January 20

City of Wetaskiwin COVID-19 cases continue to rapidly climb
Active COVID-19 cases in the City of Wetaskiwin continue to climb rapidly. As of the most recent provincial numbers update, the city has 272 active cases. Read more…


COVID-19 wastewater data suggests London past the peak of Omicron
While the data certainly stinks, a local wastewater surveillance project is spelling good news for London when it comes to containing the spread of COVID-19. Read more…


Toronto launches pilot project to collect COVID-19 data from wastewater
Toronto is hoping wastewater will be used as an additional tool to track the spread of COVID-19 in the community. Read more…


94% of City of Regina employees fully vaccinated
The City of Regina’s vaccination policy, implemented in September of last year, appears to be working, according to data shared at a council meeting Wednesday. Read more…


January 19

City of Iqaluit implementing vaccine mandate next month
Iqaluit residents will need to be fully vaccinated if they want to access city facilities as the city is implementing a vaccine mandate that begins on Feb. 7. Read more…


Omicron could cost City of Winnipeg more than expected in 2022
The City of Winnipeg’s financial staff are once again putting their heads together to manage the unexpected financial costs of COVID-19. Read more…


Saskatoon, Regina to hit Omicron peak in one to two weeks
Saskatchewan’s chief medical health officer says Saskatoon and Regina could reach their Omicron case peak in the next two weeks, with the rest of the province expected to see a peak two weeks after that. Read more…


COVID-19 forces Chatham-Kent to extend closure of municpal centres
The Municipality of Chatham-Kent is extending the closure of three municipal service centres in Ridgetown, Tilbury and Dresden until at least Jan. 26. Read more…


Ottawa council meetings to remain virtual through winter
Ottawa mayor Jim Watson will continue to be the only person at his seat in the council chamber for at least another few months. Read more…


Red Deer city council passes first reading of immunization bylaw
Red Deer city council has unanimously passed first reading of its “Council COVID-19 Immunization Policy” bylaw on elected officials. Read more…


Toronto to distribute COVID-19 rapid test kits to child care providers
The City of Toronto says it will distribute rapid antigen COVID-19 tests to licensed child care programs in the community. Read more…


January 18

Wastewater testing for COVID-19 continues in Lethbridge
More and more communities across Alberta are being monitored for COVID-19 through wastewater. Lethbridge is experiencing a major spike in people infected with the virus. Read more…


Moncton OKs temporary rent discount for market vendors
Moncton councillors approved a rent discount of 25 percent for the city’s downtown market vendors in an effort to ease losses following the province implementing new pandemic restrictions. Read more…


Windsor approves small business supports to counteract COVID-19 restrictions
Windsor council has approved a slate of supports for small businesses impacted by the latest COVID-19 restrictions and closures. Read more…


Greece begins fining those over 60 who are unvaccinated
Older people in Greece that are not vaccinated are now facing monthly fines. Those over the age of 60 and without the jab will have to pay a €50 penalty in January, rising to €100 in February. Read more…


Beijing locks down office building with workers inside after single Omicron case
At an office building in China’s capital on Sunday, masked COVID-19 control personnel lugged boxes of pillows and bedding through the closely guarded entrance for white collar workers stuck inside. Read more…


January 14

City of Winnipeg sticks with full 10-day self-isolation requirement
Though the province has lowered the self-isolation requirements for people who have tested positive for COVID-19, the City of Winnipeg says it will be sticking with the full 10 days. Read more…


Hamilton city workers who aren’t “fully vaccinated” by May 31 will be fired
Hamilton city workers who have not provided proof of full vaccination or a valid medical exemption have until May 31 to do so, or lose their job. Read more…


City of Victoria puts 25 staff on unpaid leave due to vaccination status
More than two dozen City of Victoria staff members were put on unpaid leave after failing to meet the city’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for all municipal workers. Read more…


Some Nunavut hamlets producing own COVID-19 counts amid testing backlogs
While the Government of Nunavut’s COVID-19 case count no longer provides an accurate picture of its spread in the territory, some municipal leaders are taking reporting numbers into their own hands. Read more…


Chatham-Kent closes three municipal offices due to COVID-19
The Municipality of Chatham-Kent has announced three of its municipal offices will be closed effective immediately due to COVID-19. Read more…


Hanover makes decision on vaccine mandate for staff
Despite 15 percent of its staff being unvaccinated, council for the Rural Municipality of Hanover has decided against mandating vaccination against COVID-19. Read more…


Centre Wellington councillor’s motion to rescind staff vaccine policy rejected
A councillor’s motion to repeal the Township of Centre Wellington’s COVID-19 vaccine verification policy was rejected by council in a 4-3 vote. Read more…


January 13

Fort St. John introducing testing program for unvaccinated staff
The City of Fort St. John is looking to make its workplace more inclusive when it comes to COVID-19 vaccinations by providing an alternative for staff. Read more…


Unvaccinated City of Hamilton employees face new deadline
The clock is ticking for about seven percent of the municipal workforce – 552 City of Hamilton employees. Read more…


Brampton Transit to temporarily cut routes, reduce service due to COVID-19
Brampton Transit is temporarily cancelling service on some 20 routes, citing COVID-19 related staffing shortages and reduced ridership. Read more…


St. Albert plans to redeploy employees should COVID cases rise
Seventy-two St. Albert employees tested positive for COVID-19 from Dec. 22 to Jan. 10. The city is accordingly planning to redeploy employees to maintain critical services by suspending or slowing other services. Read more…


“No vaccine, no ride”: Limits imposed on Manila public transport
The Philippine government has banned unvaccinated residents of the capital Manila and surrounding districts from public transport amid a new surge of COVID-19 cases due to the Omicron variant. Read more…


January 12

Hamilton may make COVID-19 vaccination mandatory for city workers
Hamilton will likely give the 500-some city employees who are not vaccinated against COVID-19 until the end of May to get two jabs. Read more…


City of Cambridge staff not fully vaccinated but no one shown the door
Cambridge, which launched its vaccine policy in October, said no one has been fired, to date, for not being vaccinated, despite having just 84 percent of active staff fully vaccinated. Read more…


TTC, City of Toronto terminating unvaccinated employees
The Toronto Transit Commission and the City of Toronto are among the latest employers to fire workers for not complying with a mandatory coronavirus vaccination policy. Read more…


Service disruptions at City of Red Deer due to rising COVID cases
The City of Red Deer is advising citizens of service disruptions over the course of several weeks caused by a steep rise in staff illness. Read more…


City of Thunder Bay ramps up wastewater COVID testing as cases rise
The City of Thunder Bay is increasing its rate of testing wastewater for COVID-19 as cases of the virus in the community climb. Read more…


January 11

Montreal emergency services short-staffed as COVID-19 takes its toll
Montreal ambulance, fire and police services are all feeling the pressure of the pandemic, which is forcing hundreds of first responders to stay home if they catch the coronavirus. Read more…


Kitchener encourages cool eats with expedited winter patio approvals
Kitchener city officials say they’re moving quickly to approve patio licences for restaurants, hoping people will dine al fresco in the middle of winter. Read more…


Kelowna city councillor scolds BC gov’t for COVID-19 rapid testing failure
A Kelowna city councillor has scolded the B.C. government for what he says is its failure to provide enough COVID-19 rapid testing kits. Read more…


Politicians slam colleague’s “exceptionally misleading” COVID claims
London Mayor Ed Holder and five councillors delivered their strongest rebuke yet to a colleague pushing anti-vaccine claims during a committee meeting on Monday. Read more…


Saskatoon decides not to add any new restrictions to civic facilities
Saskatoon city councillors held a special meeting on Monday afternoon to get an update on the COVID-19 situation in the city and decided not to bring in any new restrictions at civic facilities. Read more…


January 10

Winnipeg missions feeling the strain
A highly contagious COVID-19 variant, tighter public restrictions, and extreme cold have combined to make life even tougher for Winnipeg’s homeless community. Read more…


Toronto holds 2 COVID vaccination clinics for education workers as cases climb
In a push to vaccinate all education workers ahead of back-to-school, the city of Toronto is holding two COVID-19 immunization clinics on Sunday. Read more…


Unions call for action from city, police over disorder on Edmonton transit system
Two Edmonton unions say scaled back police patrols and COVID-19-related staffing shortages are leading to a rise in crime and social disorder on public transit. Read more…


Chinese city begins COVID-19 testing of all residents after Omicron detected
The major port city of Tianjin began mass testing of its 14 million residents on Sunday after a cluster of 20 children and adults tested positive for COVID-19, including at least two with the Omicron variant. Read more…


Parking-ticket cancellation program could be reinstated for takeout pick-up
The city could once again be serving up a program that cancels parking tickets for those picking up takeout food at Barrie restaurants. Read more…


Local events feeling the hit from latest provincial restrictions
Another COVID-19 wave is forcing people – both those closely tied to the local entertainment industries and those supporting them – to quit and find jobs elsewhere to make ends meet, an Ottawa concert promoter says. Read more…


January 7

City of Kingston to offer emergency child care
Now that schools have temporarily shifted to online learning, the City of Kingston is working with childcare providers to offer services for school-aged children. Read more…


Winnipeg police chief declares emergency due to COVID-19 staff shortage
Staff shortages due to COVID-19 have led Chief Danny Smyth to announce a state of emergency for the Winnipeg Police Service. Read more…


City of Windsor to fire 104 employees over vaccine mandate
The City of Windsor is firing 104 employees over their refusal to get vaccinated against COVID-19 or get a medical or human rights exemption. Read more…


Toronto to hold COVID-19 vaccine clinics for teachers, students as cases climb
The city of Toronto says it is ramping up its efforts to offer COVID-19 vaccines to education workers and students as the virus continues to spread widely across the province. Read more…


City of Parksville latest municipality to require proof of vaccination for staff
The City of Parksville announced they will implement a mandatory vaccination policy for all employees, contractors, volunteers and on-call firefighters. Read more…


COVID-19 causing staffing shortages, service impacts at City of Calgary
COVID-19 has caused Calgary to shut down some city-led programs for the year while other city departments face staffing shortages. Read more…


Staffing challenges from surging COVID cases affecting police, transit services
Surging cases of COVID-19 driven by the rapidly transmissible Omicron variant are pushing the health-care system to the brink and putting pressure on some police and transit services. Read more…


January 6

Toronto fires 461 employees for failing to comply with COVID-19 vaccine policy
Hundreds of City of Toronto employees have been fired for failing to meet the city’s vaccination deadline, either because they weren’t immunized at all or didn’t report their vaccine status on time. Read more…


Deadline passes on City of Penticton’s vax mandate
It’s still unclear how many municipal employees in Penticton are complying with the city’s COVID-19 vaccination mandate under threat of losing their jobs. Read more…


Fort Erie Mayor not happy with closure of town’s urgent care centre
Fort Erie Mayor Wayne Redekop is not pleased with Niagara Health’s decision to shut down his town’s urgent care centre and redeploy its staff elsewhere to combat Omicron. Read more…


Long lineups for COVID-19 testing kits in Cape Breton
After concerns were raised over a lack of COVID-19 testing, residents of the Cape Breton Regional Municipality can now pick up kits at several drive-thru events. Read more…


January 5

City of Ottawa planning booster shot clinics for education workers
Ottawa Public Health and the City of Ottawa are working on COVID-19 booster clinics for education workers in the coming days as schools remain closed. Read more…


Toronto planning for staff shortage with Omicron peak likely weeks away
The Omicron peak is not expected to arrive for another four to six weeks and will likely lead to widespread city staffing shortages, according to Toronto officials. Read more…


200 City of Edmonton employees off work with COVID-19
The City of Edmonton says 200 of its employees are off work after testing positive for COVID-19, about 25 percent of which are firefighters who are a part of an outbreak. Read more…


St. Catharines shuts down nearly every city facility
With Omicron cases on the rise, St. Catharines already has a region-leading 1,263 active cases in its community. To that end, nearly all city facilities will be shut down to the public. Read more…


Yellowknife closes recreational facilities in response to new public health order
The City of Yellowknife has closed its recreation facilities in response to a new public health order. Read more…


January 4

Barrie mayor “frustrated” with new restrictions, calls for immediate plan
With schools closed for at least two weeks starting Wednesday, indoor dining off limits for three weeks, gyms and other facilities closed as well, Barrie Mayor Jeff Lehman says something’s got to give – or be given. Read more…


Regina police change proof of vaccination policies for officers
Employees with the Regina Police Service will need to be vaccinated – and share their status with the RPS – or provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test before the start of their work week. Read more…


Saskatoon mayor says revitalized downtown, COVID-19 remain priorities
Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark acknowledged that continued waves of COVID-19 have made governing the city a challenge. However, the mayor said there are still a number of positive signs ahead for 2022. Read more…


No vaccine mandate for City of Steinbach staff
Municipal governments in Winnipeg and Brandon have implemented vaccine and testing mandates for staff, but Manitoba’s third-largest city has no plans to follow suit. Read more…


City of Cornwall extends closure of buildings and facilities
As of Jan. 4, public access to City of Cornwall buildings and facilities, including city hall, municipal works, Benson Centre, Cornwall Civic Complex and Aquatic Centre, will be closed to the public until Jan. 21. Read more…


January 3

Yellowknife COVID-19 testing clinic offering walk-ins on Monday
Yellowknife residents in need of a COVID-19 test will be able to attend a walk-in clinic Monday morning. Read more…


Quebec City CHU prepares for major load shedding, cuts surgeries
Load shedding is beginning at the CHU of Québec-Université Laval, where medical appointments and operating room activities will be nearly cut in half. Read more…


City of Trail clarifies vaccine requirements for pool users
The City of Trail is reminding all pool users aged 12 years and older that by order of the Provincial Health Officer, proof of full vaccination is now required for all swimming activities in the aquatic centre. Read more…


How the pandemic has some Ontario employers switching to a 4-day work week
The concept of a four-day work week is gaining traction as the COVID-19 pandemic wears on, with some employers re-evaluating their priorities. Read more…


NYC’s incoming mayor vows the city won’t be “controlled by crises”
New York City “will not be controlled by crises,” Eric Adams declared in his first speech as the city’s 110th mayor, during a frenetic first few days in office. Read more…


Regina mayor’s first full year in office dominated by COVID-19, homelessness
2021 would’ve been a difficult year for any elected official with the challenges posed by COVID-19 in Saskatchewan, but for a newly-elected mayor it was a year full of growth. Read more…


Calgary minor sport groups will continue play, adapt to COVID-19 restrictions
Calgary minor sports organizations are going ahead with their seasons in the New Year while adapting to the growing presence of the Omicron variant. Read more…


Remote communities locking down, banning outsiders as COVID-19 spreads
The latest wave of COVID-19 is bringing health-care resources in some remote communities in Canada to the breaking point as case numbers explode. Read more…


December 24

Regular service will resume on Jan. 3, 2022. From all of us at Municipal World, we wish you a wonderful holiday season.

Toronto opens up 14,000 new vaccine appointments over New Year’s weekend
The city has released thousands of new COVID-19 vaccine appointments as officials report that more than 25 percent of eligible Toronto residents have already received their booster shot. Read more…


Travel restricted, salons close in Iqaluit over likely COVID-19 community spread
Nunavut is tightening COVID-19 public health restrictions in Iqaluit, including restricting travel in and out of the capital city to essential purposes only. Read more…


Provincial aid uncertain after Kenora’s COVID-19 emergency declaration
The City of Kenora is facing its worst COVID-19 crisis since the pandemic began, according to officials, but it remains uncertain whether its declaration of emergency will succeed in securing help from the province. Read more…


Mandatory vaccination policy for staff will remain in Centre Wellington
The vaccination mandate for Centre Wellington Township staff will remain in place after council voted 4-3 to oppose a motion that would have removed it. Read more…


Winnipeg suspends several in-home inspections until further notice
The City of Winnipeg has suspended several in-home inspections until further notice due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the municipality. Read more..


Montreal public health warns it is a “critical time” as hospitalizations, cases rise
Hospitalizations in Montreal have jumped by more than 60 percent as the number of COVID-19 cases in the city continues to grow exponentially, notably in the younger population. Read more…


Grey Highlands town hall closing for two weeks in January
With concerns for the rising number of cases of COVID-19, the Municipality of Grey Highlands is preparing to close its doors to the public for two weeks following the Christmas Break. Read more…


December 23

Toronto ready to deploy more staff to help shelters with COVID-19 outbreaks
Toronto Public Health has declared COVID-19 outbreaks at three homeless shelters, and the city says it will deploy more staff to the shelters if need be to curb virus spread. Read more…


Kamloops’ mayor looks back on a year filled with emergency responses
Throughout the course of 2021, Kamloops has been ground-zero for many big events – fires, floods, residential school findings, and the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Edmonton New Year’s Eve fireworks cancelled after initial plan to return in 2021
After hoping for a grand return this New Year’s Eve, the City of Edmonton has cancelled its downtown fireworks display due to the recent increase in new COVID-19 cases. Read more…


Gananoque councillor suspended over Holocaust comparison
A Gananoque town councillor has been found in breach of council’s code of conduct because of comments made about the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccine policy. Read more…


Home of Ontario city councillor latest to be targeted by hateful vandalism
Police are investigating an incident of vandalism at the home of a St. Catharines city councillor, an action the victim says “crossed the line.” Read more…


Kenora declares local state of emergency over surge in COVID-19 cases
The City of Kenora has declared a local state of emergency due to COVID-19 cases increasing in the area, shuttering several of its facilities to the public for at least two weeks. Read more…


Cornwall closes indoor recreational facilities amid rise of COVID-19 cases
On Wednesday, the City of Cornwall announced they would be closing municipally operated indoor recreational facilities at the end of that day due to rising cases of COVID-19. Read more…


December 22

Montreal reinstates state of emergency due to rising cases, Omicron variant
The City of Montreal has declared a local state of emergency in an effort to curb the spread of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus. Read more…


Toronto opens thousands of vaccination slots over holiday weekend
The City of Toronto is opening thousands of appointment slots for COVID-19 vaccine clinics on December 25, 26, and 27. Read more…


Infrastructure, COVID-19, crime on Bowman’s mind as 2021 winds down
Relations between the city and province under a new premier have improved dramatically, resulting in progress on critical infrastructure projects, said Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman in a year-end interview. Read more…


New COVID-19 restrictions imposed in Nunavut hamlet
Pangnirtung saw its first two cases of COVID-19 on Monday, according to Nunavut’s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Michael Patterson, bringing Nunavut from zero active cases to two. Read more…


Brampton announces new COVID-19 safety measures for city facilities
As a result of the province implementing additional restrictions to curb the spread of the Omicron variant, the City of Brampton is adhering to new safety measures. Read more…


City of Kenora declares state of emergency over rising COVID-19 cases
The City of Kenora has declared a state of emergency in response to rising COVID-19 case counts, requesting provincial assistance to manage the situation. Read more…


Chicago to require vaccine proof for patrons of indoor venues
Chicago will require patrons of indoor venues like restaurants and gyms to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination, and employees who haven’t been inoculated must show a negative test starting in 2022, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced. Read more…


December 21

City of London adds new testing measures to staff vaccine policy
The COVID-19 vaccine policy for municipal staff in London has been strengthened with measures targeting those who have successfully applied for exemptions. Read more…


Halifax bus, ferry service facing cancellations due to staffing levels
Halifax Transit has announced it is expecting more cancellations and service loss over the coming weeks because of staff availability. Read more…


City of Winnipeg expands COVID-19 vaccine mandate to all staff
The City of Winnipeg is expanding its COVID-19 vaccine mandate, requiring all city employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by mid-February. Read more…


How work perks are shifting during the pandemic
A move toward a digital-first or a hybrid-work environment is prompting questions about how a thriving culture can be built alongside a COVID-era rearranging of where millions of people do their work. Read more…


Windsor asking country for help to operate COVID-19 isolation centre
Windsor is asking the County of Essex for support in operating the COVID-19 Isolation and Recovery Centre designed to accommodate temporary foreign workers. Read more…


City will take “further action” if needed to protect public: Orillia mayor
Orillia Mayor Steve Clarke said the city is taking steps to curb the spread of COVID-19 and its highly transmissible Omicron variant, in line with provincially mandated safety measures. Read more…


December 17

Toronto to ramp up COVID-19 clinics ahead of expected demand for 3rd doses
Toronto officials say they are ramping up city-run immunization clinics to meet expected demand for third doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. Read more…


City closing community centres, arenas to redeploy staff to vaccination effort
The City of Hamilton is closing facilities and cancelling programs as part of an effort to fight the “rapidly” spreading Omicron variant of COVID-19. Read more…


Montreal public health says Omicron variant spreading rapidly
Montreal’s public health director is encouraging people to cancel parties at schools and at workplaces ahead of Christmas, as the city faced the threat of rising COVID-19 infections. Read more…


Elizabethtown softens vaccine policy, allows testing
As Omicron becomes the dominant COVID-19 variant in the province, Elizabethtown-Kitley council flipped back to allowing testing as an option for municipal employees who remain unvaccinated. Read more…


December 16

Citing concerns over case numbers, council extends Toronto’s COVID-19 bylaws
Toronto’s city council has decided to extend its COVID-19 bylaws until April 2022, citing increasing cases and hospitalizations in recent weeks. Read more…


A pandemic silver lining: Public meetings have become more public
It’s difficult to imagine that there have been any silver linings surrounding the deadly Covid-19 pandemic. But there has been one: Public meetings in which attendees can participate remotely. Read more…


City of Guelph to strengthen vaccine requirements at indoor facilities
The City of Guelph says it is stepping up its proof of COVID-19 vaccination requirements for people entering certain high-risk facilities. The new rules go into effect on Dec. 20. Read more…


Kingston closing amenities, reinstating capacity limits as COVID-19 cases surge
Kingston is taking additional steps to curb the spread of COVID-19, including new capacity limits in restaurants and cancelling its New Year’s Eve event. Read more…


Arviat brings in vaccine passport
On the heels of Rankin Inlet, the Hamlet of Arviat has now implemented a vaccine passport system for municipal buildings in the community. Read more…


December 15

City of Ottawa pauses return-to-office plan for employees
The City of Ottawa is pausing its plan to bring employees back to the office amid a surge in COVID-19 cases and the spread of the new Omicron variant. Read more…


North Battleford to stay with COVID enhanced measures
A North Battleford councillor who hoped to rescind the city’s added COVID-19 restrictions wasn’t successful in her bid at council’s online meeting Monday. Read more…


Guelph changes proof of vaccination for high-risk indoor facilities
The City of Guelph is updating its proof of COVID-19 vaccination requirements for people entering high-risk indoor facilities to meet provincial requirements announced on Dec. 10, 2021. Read more…


Mayor calls on silent majority to speak up as COVID looms again
The mayor of Prince Albert is calling on what he said is the silent majority of people who are vaccinated to speak up when the noisy minority speak up against vaccinations or restrictions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Saskatoon votes in favour of returning to in-person meetings in February
City councillors in Saskatoon have voted in favour of holding in-person meetings starting in February, in a response to low COVID-19 case numbers. Read more…


December 14

Return-to-work plans for Toronto city office staff on hold
Based on changes to provincial public health guidelines, Toronto has advised some of its city employees to continue working from home wherever possible. Read more…


City sets guidelines for when Edmonton’s COVID-19 mask bylaw to be reviewed
On Monday, Edmonton council voted on new parameters that will trigger a review of the city’s COVID-19 face covering bylaw. Read more…


City of Saskatoon eyes return of staff to workplace
All City of Saskatoon staff, except those approved to permanently work from home, will return to the workplace no later than Feb. 1, 2022, according to an administration report. Read more…


Philadelphia will require vaccination to eat or drink indoors starting Jan. 3.
Customers and workers at bars and restaurants in Philadelphia, where new cases of coronavirus infections are rising rapidly, will have to be fully vaccinated starting next month. Read more…


North Bay mayor stands by municipal vaccination policy
Mayor Al McDonald faced questions about the City of North Bay’s workplace COVID-19 vaccination policy that has resulted in the union filing grievances over the firing of 11 municipal employees. Read more…


Chatham-Kent cancels holiday events in support of recent rule changes
Chatham-Kent has now cancelled all indoor holiday events, including staff parties, to show support for public health officials facing backlash in the wake of new COVID-19 restrictions. Read more…


December 13

All City of Saskatoon employees expected to start back-to-office this week
After more than a year and a half, all workers at the City of Saskatoon are expected to begin an in-person return-to-work plan starting this week. Read more…


Yellowknife Chamber of Commerce reacts to city’s “cautious budget”
COVID-19 uncertainties, inflationary pressure and lower user fees were cited as some of the reasons for a property tax increase in a presentation by city staff to Yellowknife council. Read more…


TransLink records biggest single day usage since pandemic began
On Nov. 26 TransLink recorded 571,000 trips on the transit system. While that’s not an all-time record, it is a record for most trips on a single day since March 2020, when COVID-19 restrictions began in earnest in Vancouver. Read more…


December 10

Ontario health units issue new COVID-19 recommendations as cases rise
Several Ontario health units are recommending stronger precautions against COVID-19 as infections rise, including to limit indoor holiday gatherings to fully vaccinated guests other than young children. Read more…


Rogers Hometown Hockey heading to Saint John
The City of Saint John is in agreement with Rogers Media Inc to become a host city for Rogers Hometown Hockey. City officials mentioned in a report Rogers will deliver a COVID-19 safe festival and host a broadcast of an NHL game. Read more…


Kelowna’s airport hailed as inspiration for pandemic recovery
The post-pandemic renaissance of Kelowna’s airport symbolizes the city’s continued recovery from the financial effects of COVID-19, municipal officials say. Read more…


Union fighting for jobs of fired City of North Bay employees
The union representing 11 employees of the City of North Bay fired over the municipality’s workplace COVID-19 vaccination policy has quickly moved to advocate for their jobs. Read more…


Continuation of Safe Restart pact “essential” for municipalities: Lehman
Ontario’s Big City Mayors met last week to discuss the pressing issues facing municipalities, including building more affordable housing, COVID-19 recovery, child care, and climate change. Read more…


December 9

Union pushback leads to extension of vaccine mandate deadline for Vancouver
The City of Vancouver’s vaccine mandate for staff was supposed to come into effect on Dec. 6, but on Dec. 1, an internal notice announced the deadline was extended by a month. Read more…


Masks returning to elementary classrooms in Quebec City, surrounding regions
As of Friday, students from grades one to six in Quebec City and surrounding regions will be required to wear masks in the classroom, the Quebec government announced Wednesday. Read more…


City of North Bay fires 11 over vaccination policy
The City of North Bay confirms 11 of its employees have been terminated in relation to its workplace COVID-19 vaccination policy, to date. Read more…


December 8

Tory says city has no plans to delay broad return to work for city employees
Toronto Mayor John Tory says that the city has no plans to delay a broader return to the office for thousands of its employees next month, despite concerns related to the Omicron variant. Read more…


Majority of City of Red Deer employees comply with COVID-19 policy
The City of Red Deer provided a one-week update on the implementation of its COVID-19 Immunization Policy for City employees at Monday’s council meeting. Read more…


December 7

600 COVID cases can be prevented if Hamilton waits to reopen: public health
Hamilton public health data estimates the city can spare more than 600 people from getting COVID-19 if current restrictions don’t loosen until at least April. Read more…


Calls for more public washrooms in Edmonton after COVID-19 funding approved
Edmonton city councillors and business leaders are making the case to build more permanent public washrooms as the city prepares to install more temporary toilets next year. Read more…


15 city employees on unpaid leave due to vaccination status: City of Winnipeg
The City of Winnipeg says while the majority of its front-line workers have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, 15 have been placed on unpaid leaves of absences. Read more…


Chatham-Kent introducing limit on indoor gatherings as cases rise
Chatham-Kent is following along with Windsor-Essex and introducing new COVID-19 restrictions. Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Colby said indoor social gatherings must be limited to 10 people. Read more…


December 6

Public health unit in Windsor reinstates COVID-19 measures amid surge of cases
Windsor-Essex County Health is reducing gathering limits, and encouraging work-from-home measures, as the region faces a surge of COVID-19 cases. Read more…


New York mayor to issue private sector COVID-19 vaccination mandate
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Monday he plans to issue a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for private sector employers that will go into effect on Dec. 27. Read more…


December 3

UN chief: Global vaccination plan is “only way out” of the pandemic 
With more people dying due to COVID-19 this year than in 2020, the UN Secretary-General argued on Tuesday that “the only way out of a global pandemic … is through a global vaccination plan.” Read more…


“Accept that coronovirus will always be with us”: Niagara Falls mayor
After nearly two years of the pandemic, Niagara Falls Mayor Jim Diodati believes that some form of COVID-19 will always be within society from this point on. Read more…


Chicago drops police union lawsuit over vaccine mandate
The City of Chicago has dropped its lawsuit against the police union in its fight over city employee COVID-19 vaccine orders, saying the complaint became unnecessary as more officers complied. Read more…


Urban exodus: Data don’t support the popular pandemic narrative
Riordan Frost presents the latest change-of-address data from the United States Postal Service to shed a little more light on one of the dominant narratives of the pandemic. Read more…


December 2

Mayor pushing for St. Catharines kids vaccine clinics to be held sooner
Mayor Walter Sendzik is pushing Niagara Region Public Health to move up its St. Catharines COVID-19 vaccination clinics for kids to an earlier date, saying mid-December is too late. Read more…


Montreal to take “aggressive approach” in staving off omicron variant
Most COVID-19 cases in Montreal are linked to unvaccinated five- to 11-year-olds and their parents, according to Montreal’s public health director. Read more…


City of Calgary keeps offering free COVID-19 tests for unvaccinated employees
Calgary’s mayor says a move by the police service has forced the city to change its vaccine policy. Unvaccinated employees would’ve began paying for their own COVID-19 tests on Thursday, but that is no longer the case. Read more…


Clerk will decide whether Ottawa council returns to in-person meetings in 2022
Ottawa’s city clerk will decide in mid-January whether to resume in-person council meetings in 2022, as health officials keep an eye on the new Omicron COVID-19 variant of concern. Read more…


December 1

Toronto to reopen office buildings, hopes to send “signal” to other employers
The City of Toronto will be reopening all of its office buildings at maximum capacity in January and asking its employees to return to the office at least part-time, despite the new COVID-19 variant of concern in the province. Read more…


92 percent of City of Regina employees vaccinated against COVID-19
The City of Regina says 92 percent of employees have been vaccinated for COVID-19. Active city employees have been required to provide either proof of vaccination or a negative result since October. Read more…


Calgary’s third COVID-19 pandemic state of local emergency to expire
Three months after declaring one, the City of Calgary will allow the state of local emergency (SOLE) to expire on Dec. 2. The SOLE was declared on Sept. 3, following an unprecedented surge in COVID-19 cases. Read more…


Yellowknife has no active Covid-19 cases for first time since August
For the first time since Aug. 15, Yellowknife is reporting no active cases of COVID-19. Tuktoyaktuk is the only NWT community with active infections. Read more…


Town of Wasaga Beach slams social media posts about COVID-19 outbreak
The Town of Wasaga Beach is dispelling false information posted online about a COVID-19 outbreak among its employees. Read more…


Five and older will need vaccine proof at City of Prince Albert facilities
Children aged five and older will need to have their parents provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test if they enter a City of Prince Albert facility after Feb. 28. Read more…


COVID-19 vaccinations mandatory for Clarington council
In an effort to support pandemic public health and safety requirements, Clarington council voted unanimously for member to disclose their vaccine status and provide proof to the manager of human resources. Read more…


November 30

City of Whitehorse staff must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by Feb. 20
The City of Whitehorse has a new mandatory vaccination policy for employees. The city hasn’t determined whether workers who don’t get the vaccine will be fired or suspended. Read more…


New Toronto initiative to support small businesses recovering from COVID-19
Local business owners who have faced financial struggles due to the pandemic are now eligible to apply for a grant from the City of Toronto. Read more…


Northeastern Ontario municipalities brace for “challenging” budget meetings
Municipalities across northeastern Ontario are in budget deliberations this week, and they say the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has posed some extra challenges. Read more…


As cases rise in Elgin-Oxford, some capacity limits reinstated
Several municipalities in Elgin and Oxford counties will have capacity restrictions reintroduced this week in a bid to curb rising COVID-19 case-rates in the region. Read more…


November 29

City of Welland’s vaccination rate at 90 percent
There are about 500 city employees in Welland, and 90 percent of them have provided proof of being double-vaccinated against COVID-19. Read more…


City of Steinbach implements vaccine incentive program for staff
A vaccine incentive program has been implemented for City of Steinbach employees. Mayor Earl Funk says this is for employees who have been or will be vaccinated against COVID-19. Read more…


Santa Claus parade returns to downtown St. John’s
Mild, sunny weather made for an extra-special Santa Claus parade in downtown St. John’s on Sunday, after COVID-19 restrictions forced a hiatus in 2020. Read more…


November 25

Burlington extends mask, distancing bylaws to June 30
With mask and distancing bylaws in Burlington set to expire on Dec. 31, City Council extended them to June 30 at yesterday’s council meeting. Read more…


City of Ottawa moving to “hybrid” office model, but no remote-only option
Municipal government employees in Ottawa will have a degree of flexibility in their work settings after the COVID-19 pandemic but won’t be able to work from home indefinitely. Read more…


City of Kingston ready to bolster workforce after pandemic hiring freeze
The City of Kingston is getting ready to spend about $4.5 million to rehire city workers who were either laid off or had their jobs put on a freeze during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


November 24

Nanaimo announces mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for staff
On Tuesday, the City of Nanaimo announced that all municipal workers and contracted employees will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Jan. 10. Read more…


Wasaga Beach mayor tests positive for COVID, urges openness about status
At the outset of council’s Nov. 23 meeting, Mayor Nina Bifolchi said she was one of several members of the municipal operation who have tested positive for the virus. Read more…


North Battleford hears from opposing sides on new COVID policy
North Battleford city council once again looked at the city’s new enhanced COVID-19 restrictions, for the public entering a number of city-owned facilities starting at the end of the month. Read more…


Northern Ontario mayor quits in opposition to COVID vaccine mandate
Laurier Falldien has resigned after 11 years as the mayor of Nairn Centre, partly because he is opposed to vaccine mandates. Read more…


Toronto relaxes COVID-19 rink rules as winter activities move “toward normal”
Toronto is shelving last winter’s pandemic measures that saw skaters having to book appointments at outdoor city rinks with locked change rooms. Read more…


November 23


Niagara will host town hall meeting for parents concerned about COVID vaccine
Niagara parents who have questions or concerns about their child receiving the COVID-19 vaccine are invited to register for a virtual town hall being held tomorrow night. Read more…


Melville, SK mayor pleased to hear about high COVID-19 vaccine uptake
Melville Mayor Walter Streelasky said he was pleased to hear about high COVID-19 vaccination uptake in his community last week. Read more…


More “health and safety” lobbying at Ottawa city hall during COVID-19 pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic appears to have affected lobbying activities at Ottawa City Hall, with more people trying to influence municipal decisions in areas of health and safety compared to previous years. Read more…


Rankin Inlet to bar unvaccinated people from municipal buildings
As of Nov. 30, people in Rankin Inlet will need to show proof of vaccination to enter municipal buildings, and attend events such as weddings and church services. Read more…


November 22

Fort Erie considering post-pandemic cap on capacity at Bay Beach
Beachgoers seeking a little more elbow room for a day in the sand could get their wish when visiting Bay Beach in the coming years, even once the COVID-19 pandemic is declared to be over. Read more…


Wasaga Beach staff members test positive for COVID-19, public alert issued
A few Wasaga Beach staff members have tested positive for COVID-19, and the town is advising the public of the situation. Read more…


Inflation, pandemic putting squeeze on City of Kelowna’s budget
Inflation is putting added pressure onto costs associated with Kelowna’s 10-year capital plan. Figures show infrastructure costs have risen nearly $100 million over where it was a year ago. Read more…


November 19

City of Winnipeg reveals percentage of fully vaccinated front-line workers 
Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman has revealed nearly all of the 5,500 employees in front-line positions who are required to be fully vaccinated have confirmed their vaccination status with the city. Read more…


COVID-19 worsens northern housing shortage: CMHC report
A new report has found that the need for new, affordable and quality housing throughout the territories continues to rise – in part because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Toronto relaxes COVID-19 rink rules as winter activities move “toward normal”
Toronto is shelving last winter’s pandemic measures that saw skaters having to book appointments at outdoor city rinks with locked change rooms. Read more…


November 18

Most City of Greater Sudbury employees fully vaccinated; 139 on leave
Almost 140 City of Greater Sudbury employees are on leave for failing to become fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or for refusing to disclose their vaccination status. Read more…


Yellowknife Santa Claus parade makes rockin’ return
Yellowknife’s Santa Claus Parade is back this weekend, and this year it’s going to look a lot more like the parades Yellowknifers enjoyed before the pandemic. Read more…


No plans to end virtual council meetings amid rising COVID-19 cases
In August, Orillia Mayor Steve Clarke noted the goal was to move to hybrid council meetings in October, but the ever-evolving COVID-19 pandemic has continued to put those plans on pause. Read more…


Workplace return to begin for employees at Hamilton City Hall
The City of Hamilton’s return to the workplace strategy is in motion. Director of emergency operations Jason Thorne says general managers and directors will begin a “phased and gradual return” to the office on Dec. 6. Read more…


November 17


“Vast majority” of City of Lethbridge staff vaccinated against COVID-19
As of Nov. 15, City of Lethbridge policy states all staff must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 – a policy many have complied with. According to the city, 95 percent of all staff have reported their vaccination status. Read more…


96% of Aurora staff fully vaccinated against COVID-19, town says
More than 95 percent of Town of Aurora staff have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the municipality says. All employees were required to show proof of full vaccination by Nov. 1. Read more…


Sask. wastewater analysis sees COVID-19 trend downward in two cities
Two of the three cities being monitored by researchers at the University of Saskatchewan have shown a drop in the amount of the virus that causes COVID-19 in sewage samples taken during the latest testing period. Read more…


November 16

Calgary extends mask bylaw, aligns vaccine passport bylaw with province
A clause to automatically repeal Calgary’s mask bylaw was removed Monday afternoon. And the city’s vaccine passport bylaw was revised to fall closer in line with the provincial vaccine passport requirements. Read more…


Almost 600 Ottawa staff to be placed on leave under vaccination policy
The City of Ottawa says nearly 600 employees will be placed on leave for failing to comply with the city’s mandatory vaccination policy. Read more…


COVID-19 triggers additional mandatory measures in Algoma, Sault Ste. Marie
In response to rapidly rising COVID-19 cases in Algoma, and especially in the municipality of Sault Ste. Marie, Algoma Public Health is taking further action to curb the spread of the virus. Read more…


City of Fort St. John staff required to be fully vaccinated by Jan. 14
The City of Fort St. John announced its COVID-19 vaccine mandate on Monday, requiring all staff, contractors, and volunteers to be fully vaccinated by Jan. 14. Read more…


Windsor forms COVID-19 recovery task force as city emerges from pandemic
It’s been nearly two years since COVID-19 hit Windsor, but the city is now starting to look beyond the pandemic. The city has formed a COVID-19 recovery task force to guide and coordinate the recovery process. Read more…


November 15

Winnipeg’s economic recovery plan heads to executive policy committee
Winnipeg city councillors will have a chance to vote this week on a far-reaching two-year strategy to boost economic activity and support businesses dealt a blow by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…\


Steinbach mayor says our city is in a much better place than last November
Though Steinbach is not immune to COVID-19, provincial data shows a much different story than November of 2020. When active case counts were in the hundreds for Steinbach a year ago, they are in the dozens today. Read more…


Austria locks down unvaccinated as COVID cases rise across Europe
Austria slapped a lockdown on people unvaccinated against the coronavirus on Monday as winter approaches and infections rise across Europe. Read more…


Vaccination deadline arrives for Ottawa employees, federal public servants
As of today, City of Ottawa staff, like transit workers, bylaw officers, and those working at city hall, must show proof they are fully vaccinated or risk consequences. Read more…


Grand Valley staff to prepare vaccination policy
Council has approved a motion to direct the town to prepare a policy for town staff and another policy for council, and committee members to be doubled vaccinated. Read more…


November 12

One in Five Windsor staff haven’t declared COVID-19 vaccination status
The City of Windsor is making contingency plans because hundreds of its staff could soon be off the job – unless they declare their COVID-19 vaccination status. Read more…


November 11

CBRM council overrules office protocol, demands mandatory staff vaccination
Cape Breton regional councillors have overruled an administrative protocol and voted in favour of a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy for municipal employees. Read more…


Fort Smith’s new council backs proof of vaccination
Fort Smith’s newly elected council has unanimously passed a motion endorsing continued proof-of-vaccination checks at municipal facilities. Read more…


November 10

“This fight isn’t over”: Edmonton mask bylaw here to stay indefinitely
Edmonton’s mask bylaw will remain in effect indefinitely, despite new COVID-19 case numbers falling for weeks in the capital city. Read more…


November 9

Border-town mayors call for end to Canada’s COVID-19 test requirement
Several border-town mayors on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border held a virtual news conference to call on Canada to nix its COVID-19 test requirement for fully vaccinated travelers. Read more…


No free COVID-19 testing for unvaccinated Chatham-Kent firefighters
Unvaccinated Chatham-Kent firefighters will have to continue to pay for frequent COVID-19 testing, which is a requirement of a policy implemented last month by the Municipality of Chatham-Kent. Read more…


Yellowknife councillors narrowly approve proof of vaccination
Yellowknife city councillors narrowly voted to require proof of vaccination at city facilities to increase capacity after the majority had expressed opposition a week earlier. Read more…


November 8

Lockdown of New Zealand’s largest city to end this month
Auckland has been in lockdown for almost three months after an outbreak of the delta variant. The outbreak has grown to more than 4,500 cases with about 150 new infections reported each day over the past week. Read more…


Inuvik school closed after 11 in community test positive for COVID-19
Public health officials in the N.W.T. have ordered an elementary school in Inuvik to close, and all extracurricular activities for youth under 12 to stop after 11 people tested positive for COVID-19 in the town. Read more…


COVID restrictions easing, but border town Sault Ste. Marie not back to normal
Canadian border officials in Sault Ste. Marie are expecting some snowbirds heading south on the first few days of lifted restrictions, but not many day-trippers. Read more…


New York border town eagerly welcomes Canadians as travel restrictions lift
For almost 20 months, Canadian visitors haven’t been allowed to make the drive because of pandemic restrictions that blocked the border. Under normal circumstances, hundreds of Canadian travelers would cross each week. Read more…


November 5

Moncton to require proof of vaccination for public meetings
Moncton city council has approved a motion that requires proof of full COVID-19 vaccination for any person to attend meetings in council chambers in person. Read more…


Victoria police announce COVID-19 vaccine mandate for all officers, staff
The Victoria Police Department says it has implemented a COVID-19 vaccine mandate that will require all staff to be fully vaccinated – or undergo regular testing. Read more…


West Nipissing adopts municipal COVID-19 vaccination policy
West Nipissing council has adopted a municipal Covid-19 vaccination policy. It details that all municipal staff must have their first vaccination by Nov. 19 and must have their second dose by Dec. 17. Read more…


Draft 2022 Ottawa budget includes $161.6M tied to COVID response
For the most part, the City of Ottawa’s draft 2022 budget is a lot like the 2021 budget, relying heavily on upper governments to send bailout money to fill holes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


November 4

Mayor Rebecca Alty on Yellowknife city council’s vaccine mandate divide
Plans to introduce a proof of COVID-19 vaccine policy to access City of Yellowknife facilities took a 180 degree turn this week and Mayor Rebecca Alty is speaking out. Read more…


Over 300 Hamilton city workers facing unpaid leave over COVID vaccine policy
The City of Hamilton is estimating some 300 employees will be put on unpaid leave for not meeting one of three criteria in keeping with the city’s COVID-19 vaccination verification policy. Read more…


Toronto opening up 40,000 new COVID-19 booster appointments at five clinics
The City of Toronto is opening up 40,000 new vaccination appointments for third doses at its immunization clinics after the province expanded eligibility for COVID-19 booster shots. Read more…


November 3

Regina drive-thru COVID-19 testing and vaccination clinic is moving
There will be a new site for COVID-19 testing and vaccinations in Regina. The drive-thru testing and vaccine mass clinic will have different reopening dates. Read more…


Town of Oakville reports 96 percent of workers vaccinated
More than 95 percent of all municipal workers have met the Oct. 31 deadline to be vaccinated, the Town of Oakville reports. Less than four percent have been placed on unpaid leave. Read more…


Yellowknife councillors oppose proof of vaccination at facilities
Several Yellowknife city councillors don’t support implementing a proof-of-vaccination requirement to increase capacity limits at city facilities. Read more…


43 unvaccinated City of London employees on unpaid leave
The City of London is planning to put 43 unvaccinated employees on unpaid leave unless they comply with the municipality’s vaccine policy. This includes 19 full time and 24 casual employees. Read more…


City of Prince George implements vaccine mandate
Effective December 20, 2021, all City of Prince George staff and contractors will be required to be fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus. Read more…


November 2

Sask. gov’t says Saskatoon overstepped in aborted gathering limits
The Saskatchewan government is responding to criticisms that it blocked local efforts by Saskatoon’s city council to bring in more measures to blunt the effect of the fourth wave of COVID-19. Read more…


Rapid testing allowed for unvaccinated City of Kamloops staff
The City of Kamloops has secured rapid COVID-19 tests free of charge from the provincial government as it plans to implement its new vaccine policy mid-December. Read more…


City council changes Calgary mask bylaw repeal clause
Calgary city council has tweaked the city’s mask bylaw ahead of the holiday season, changing the threshold at which masks won’t be required indoors in the city. Read more…


Hamilton to open two large-scale COVID-19 vaccination clinics in November
With over 100,000 residents earmarked for COVID-19 vaccine shots in November, Hamilton public health will return to a large fixed vaccination clinic model next month. Read more…


Nearly 1,300 Toronto workers unvaccinated or have refused to disclose status
Nearly 1,300 City of Toronto workers are either unvaccinated or have refused to disclose their status and could be put on an unpaid leave as soon as this week. Read more…


COVID-19 vaccine requirement expanded to all City of Regina facilities
Effective Monday, all City of Regina facilities will require proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test. Regina city council voted unanimously to expand its existing requirement on Oct. 25. Read more…


November 1

Calgary now requires regular negative COVID tests from its unvaccinated staff
The City of Calgary’s mandatory vaccination policy is now in effect. It’s requiring all city employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19, regardless of whether they work in the office, at home or elsewhere. Read more…


Mayor: 9 in 10 NYC workers vaccinated as deadline nears
Nine in 10 New York City municipal workers received COVID-19 vaccinations as a Monday deadline loomed under a city mandate, according to Mayor Bill de Blasio. Read more…


Ages 12+ require vaccine proof to use London indoor recreation
Beginning Sunday, Oct. 31, proof of COVID-19 vaccination will be required for anyone age 12 or older entering London’s sports or recreation facilities. Read more…


Rankin Inlet mulls proof of vaccination to enter municipal buildings
The Hamlet of Rankin Inlet is considering a bylaw that would bar unvaccinated residents from entering municipal buildings. Read more…


October 29

City of Ottawa extends deadline for employees to get fully vaccinated
City of Ottawa employees have an additional two weeks to get fully vaccinated, as the city extends the deadline for mandatory COVID-19 vaccination in the workforce. Read more…


Why Mississauga is concerned about Ontario’s plan to lift COVID-19 restrictions
Mississauga’s mayor says she has serious concerns about the province’s projected timeline for lifting all remaining COVID-19 restrictions as the city deals with growing strain on its hospital system. Read more…


Municipality of Lakeshore looking to address recruiting challenges
The Municipality of Lakeshore is dealing with some recruiting challenges. Mayor Tom Bain says a lot of this has to do with COVID, but there are other lingering issues that need to be addressed. Read more…


Burlington delays releasing numbers of city employees who are vaccinated
Weeks after local organizations like Joseph Brant Hospital and both school boards released their staff vaccination numbers, there’s still silence coming from the City of Burlington. Read more…


Pandemic restrictions fuel recall efforts on fall ballots
Hospitals in Missouri were inundated with COVID-19 patients last summer when a group opposed to a mask mandate that had already expired gathered enough signatures to trigger a recall vote against the mayor who enacted it. Read more…


Abbott tied their hands. But this Texas mayor is fighting back
Last month, in the middle of a dramatic surge of COVID cases across the country, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner ordered city employees to either get vaccinated or face a twice-monthly testing requirement. Read more…


October 28

Saskatoon city council divided over COVID-19 gathering limit bylaw
A proposed bylaw designed to limit social gatherings in Saskatoon has councillors divided on the role the city should be playing during the pandemic. Read more…


Cornwall council says no to removing COVID-19 testing at border
A resolution, which called on Ottawa to remove COVID-19 testing requirement for Canadians returning from the United States at land borders, was swiftly defeated by Cornwall city council. Read more…


COVID-19 vaccination required for City of West Kelowna employees
The City of West Kelowna is the latest municipality to introduce a COVID-19 vaccination policy for its employees. All city employees will need to be fully vaccinated by Jan. 4. Read more…


Brampton mayor pushing for outdoor New Year’s Eve celebrations
With the COVID-19 pandemic showing signs of easing, Brampton’s mayor is pushing for the return of outdoor celebrations, including a traditional New Year’s Eve gathering. Read more…


City of Penticton workers’ union backs vax mandate
Following the approach of senior governments, the City of Penticton will require all of its employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or face dismissal. Read more…


New York fire, police scrambling to cover staff shortages with vaccine mandates
With New York City’s vaccine mandate for employees set to go into effect this week, officials at the fire and police departments are scrambling to deal with potential staff shortages. Read more…


October 27

City of Charlottetown makes vaccine mandatory for staff, volunteers
As of Nov. 30, all City of Charlottetown employees, council members, volunteer firefighters, other volunteers, students and contractors will be required to be fully vaccinated. Read more…


Sohi sworn in as Edmonton mayor, commits to tackling COVID-19, opioid deaths
The Alberta capital’s first racialized mayor paused during his swearing-in speech Tuesday to voice pride in one of the most diverse councils elected in Edmonton’s history. Read more…


City of Weyburn facilities to require proof of vaccination
The City of Weyburn has announced that proof of Covid-19 vaccination or a negative test will be required for adults in city facilities. The proof of vaccination will come into effect on Nov. 8. Read more…


October 26

COVID-19 vaccine mandate coming to City of Brandon front-line staff
As of Nov. 1, a vaccine mandate will be in effect for all City of Brandon employees who have direct and ongoing or prolonged contact with vulnerable populations. Read more…


City of Saskatoon considering limited gatherings bylaw
Councillors voted 8-3 on Monday in favour of asking the City of Saskatoon administration to look into the feasibility of putting gathering limits in place as a bylaw. Read more…


Penticton implementing COVID-19 vaccine mandate for city staff
The City of Penticton is joining its larger counterpart to the north, the City of Kelowna, in implementing a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy for city staff. Read more…


Mapleton ends local state of emergency
The Township of Mapleton has ended a local state of emergency declared in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Regina rinks to require proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test
Hockey players at Regina’s rinks will need more than just their sticks and jerseys to hit the ice this winter. Starting Nov. 1, they will also need proof of their COVID-19 vaccination or a recent negative test. Read more…


October 25

Council to expand proof of vaccination requirement for City of Regina facilities
Regina city council is set to expand proof of vaccination or negative test requirements to all city facilities at a special meeting on Monday. Read more…


Santa Claus is coming back to town with return to traditional parades
Santa Claus will be coming back to London’s city streets as the annual Santa Claus Parade returns to its traditional route, along with other area parades. Read more…


October 22

City of Winnipeg looks at testing unvaxxed front-line staff
Winnipeg’s mayor expects all front-line city staff who don’t obey the municipal requirement to get vaccinated against COVID-19 would be able to submit to frequent testing for the virus instead. Read more…


Toronto launching info campaign ahead of child COVID-19 vaccinations
Toronto Public Health is rolling out resources to help parents of young children prepare for the approval of COVID-19 shots. Read more…


Santa Claus Parade cancelled due to COVID-19
For the second year in a row, the City of Kingston has announced that it will be canceling the Nighttime Santa Claus Parade due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…  


Nunavik faces new COVID-19 restrictions as virus spreads
A third Nunavik community is under “red alert” and airports are facing tight restrictions as the Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services imposes new COVID-19 measures across the region. Read more…


All St. Thomas police workers comply with COVID-19 vaccine policy
All St. Thomas police employees have complied with the force’s COVID-19 vaccination policy, police say. Read more…


October 21

Vaccinations not mandatory at City of Prince George
“We haven’t that conversation at all.” That was the response from Mayor Lyn Hall when asked if the City of Prince George would be following suit with the City of Vancouver in mandating vaccinations for civic employees. Read more…


City of Toronto staff recommend CafeTO become permanent
City of Toronto staff recommended the CafeTO program, which allows for restaurants and bars to have expanded outdoor dining areas, become permanent. Read more…


Yellowknife schools to reopen Monday as COVID-19 cases decline
Schools in Yellowknife and surrounding areas are to reopen Monday after a six-week closure during a widespread outbreak of COVID-19 in the Northwest Territories. Read more…


October 20

Kamloops implements vaccination mandate for city employees
The City of Kamloops is requiring its employees, contractors, and volunteers to provide proof of vaccination status by Dec. 15. Read more…


Van Holst’s “creed of convenience” target of mayor’s integrity complaint
London Mayor Ed Holder is taking aim at Coun. Michael Van Holst’s promotion of his Order of Freedom, a creed posted online in which the Ward 1 councillor believes provides an exemption to COVID-19 vaccination policies. Read more…


Vancouver councillors support vaccine mandate for city staff
Multiple Vancouver councillors are showing support for the city’s new vaccine rules for staff, even as elected officials don’t fall under the mandate. Read more…


New York City to require COVID-19 vaccinations for all public employees 
New York City will require that all of its municipal workforce get vaccinated against COVID-19 by Oct. 29 or potentially risk losing their jobs. Read more…


Lack of communication between Saskatoon, province “troubling”: premier
Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe says he first heard through the media about a City of Saskatoon motion to look at the possibility of a city bylaw restricting gathering sizes. Read more…


City of Winnipeg unveils COVID-19 economic recovery plan
The City of Winnipeg has its eye on economic recovery and it has a massive two-year strategy in place to make that happen. Read more…


City of Fort St. John updates vaccine passport rules
The City of Fort St. John has made adjustments to its BC Vaccine Card requirements based on new circuit breaker restrictions announced on Oct. 14. Read more…


October 19

Mayor filing complaint over city councillor’s role at anti-vaccine protest
London’s mayor is condemning a city councillor for speaking at an anti-COVID vaccination rally during the weekend, saying he intends to file a complaint to the integrity commissioner over his colleague’s conduct. Read more…


City of Vancouver issues vaccine mandate for municipal employees
The City of Vancouver said Monday municipal employees are expected to be fully vaccinated by Dec. 6 or they will not be permitted in the workplace. Read more…


More than 100 fines handed out after raucous weekend in Kingston
The City of Kingston, Ont. says at least 100 partygoers could be facing permanent police or court records as a result of large gatherings in the city’s University District over the weekend. Read more…


Saskatoon investigates gathering size limits because province won’t
Saskatoon city councillors want to know if they can implement gathering size limits to stop the spread of COVID-19 – because the Saskatchewan government won’t. Read more…


October 18

Hamilton public health to open mobile testing in area with high rates of COVID
Hamilton public health will rollout a new mobile COVID-19 assessment site in an area identified as having high rates of the virus and barriers to testing centres. Read more…


No Winkler school COVID-19 vax clinics due to concern for parents
Garden Valley School Division trustees have gone out of their way to request their facilities in the Winkler area be excluded from COVID-19 vaccine clinics. Read more…


October 15

Patios approved for another year by Victoria city council
There are currently 95 patios for bars, pubs, and restaurants in Victoria. Council moved one step closer to making them permanent by voting to extend the existing permits until October 31, 2022. Read more…


Queen’s to pay Kingston $350,000 to cover costs for pandemic enforcement
Mayor Bryan Paterson said the City of Kingston is receiving a large sum of money from Queen’s University to help pay for extra enforcement costs incurred by the city for parties in the University District this year. Read more…


Vaccination mandated in Tweed
Council for the Municipality of Tweed is following the lead of many others and setting a mandatory vaccination policy for its employees and others. Read more…


Chicago mayor stands by vaccine order amid police union standoff
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Thursday stood by a mandate requiring city employees to submit their Covid-19 vaccination status by Friday, extending her standoff with the police union. Read more…


Sudbury, outreach groups supporting unhoused amid COVID-19 outbreak
Days after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared in connection with an encampment in a downtown Sudbury park, a number of agencies in the city are working to support those affected. Read more…


Saugeen Shores staff asked to volunteer COVID vaccination status
The Town of Saugeen Shores is asking staff to voluntarily disclose their COVID vaccination status to determine if a mandatary vaccination policy is required for health and safety. Read more…


October 14

Let’s drive the recovery: Big City Mayors
Canada’s big city mayors met Oct. 14 with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and others to advance constructive proposals to drive the strong, inclusive recovery Canadians are counting on through federal-municipal partnership. Read more…


London unveils framework for post-pandemic recovery
A network compromised of more than 30 organizations that represent a variety of local perspectives has unveiled its plan to help London recover from the socioeconomic toll of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


October 13

Moose Jaw approves city vaccination and negative test policy
The City of Moose Jaw vaccination policy will have employees show a proof of vaccination or be subject to weekly COVID-19 testing, with the city paying for the tests. Read more…


Applications open for City of Calgary COVID-related business grants
The Calgary Covid Business Support Program, which was approved by city council in early September, is aimed at helping businesses impacted by the provincial Restrictions Exemption Program. Read more..


Vaccine deadline for city and provincial staff fast approaching
The deadlines for City of Winnipeg and provincial workers to get fully vaccinated is quickly approaching, but what happens if the workers aren’t fully vaccinated? Read more…


Sault Ste. Marie to increase COVID-19 protection for all indoor sports facilities
Effective Oct. 14, the City of Sault Ste. Marie will require that additional groups provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19 in facilities where indoor sports are played or practiced. Read more…


Prince Albert staff, public, council required to vaccinate, show proof of testing
Members of the public and City of Prince Albert staff working at city facilities will be required to provide proof of full vaccination or a negative COVID test effective Oct. 25. Read more…


CBRM council bows to public pressure, seeks mandatory staff vaccination
Cape Breton regional councillors say some constituents have made it clear they are in favour of mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for municipal staff, so council has directed the chief administrative officer to draft a policy that reflects that. Read more…


October 12

City council to continue meeting remotely
Sarnia councillors and staff won’t be gathering for in-person council meetings any time soon. Read more…


What does the future hold for Calgary’s empty office towers
Nearly one-third of Calgary’s downtown office towers have emptied out over the past few years – but some are seeing that as an opportunity to transform the city’s core. Read more…


October 8

City of Calgary announces vaccination policy for all employees, including police
City of Calgary employees have just less than a month to complete their COVID-19 vaccination and provide proof to their employer. Read more…


Toronto rolling out mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics ahead of Thanksgiving
The City of Toronto is rolling out several mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics in an effort to boost immunization rates over the Thanksgiving weekend. Read more…


Saskatoon waits on request to province for COVID-19 measures: deputy mayor
Saskatoon’s deputy mayor had hoped the provincial government would grant council’s request for temporary public health orders limiting gathering sizes to help curb the spread of COVID-19 in the city. Read more…


Red Deer implements COVID-19 immunization policy for staff and volunteers
The City of Red Deer has implemented a policy aimed at relieving pressures on the healthcare system and protecting the health and safety of staff and volunteers. Read more…


Halifax will require all municipal employees to be fully vaccinated by Dec. 15
All employees of the Halifax Regional Municipality will be required to be fully vaccinated by Dec. 15 or they will face employment consequences, including unpaid administrative leave. Read more…


City of Weyburn explains proof of vaccination policies for leisure facilities
The City of Weyburn has clarified what the situation currently is for proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 tests in order to access leisure facilities. Read more…


Province won’t force vaccine mandates on N.S. municipalities
The Province of Nova Scotia doesn’t have any plans to force vaccine mandates on municipalities, saying it’s not the province’s place to tell local officials how to run their business. Read more…


October 7

Majority of Toronto staff now vaccinated, holdouts to be suspended next month
The vast majority of Toronto city workers have gotten vaccinated against COVID-19, the city announced in a news release Wednesday – and those who haven’t done so have until the start of next month to do the same or face suspension. Read more…


Swift Current city staff required to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination
Staff who report to work at City of Swift Current offices are now required to provide proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or undergo a rapid test on-site. Read more…


Small-town B.C. council meeting became a source of COVID-19 disinformation
The city of Dawson Creek, B.C. has removed a previously published portion of a recent city council meeting video after it began circulating in COVID-19 disinformation groups worldwide. Read more…


October 6

Wastewater studies show COVID-19 decrease in Saskatoon, increases in Regina
The latest study of Saskatoon’s wastewater has noted a drop in coronavirus particles, which could mean a reduction in new cases. Meanwhile similar studies in other cities in the province saw increases. Read more…


City of Red Deer implements COVID-19 immunization policy for staff
The City of Red Deer has implemented a new policy aimed at relieving pressures on the healthcare system and protecting the health and safety of staff and volunteers. Read more…


Victoria making positive economic recovery from COVID-19 pandemic: report
The City of Victoria is out with the second of its quarterly reports called “Building Back Victoria.” It paints a rosy picture of downtown Victoria’s economic recovery after a dismal 2020. Read more…


Dalhousie researchers release study on homelessness, COVID-19 “disaster”
Social science and humanities researchers from Dalhousie University have been studying the homelessness situation in Nova Scotia and the COVID-19 pandemic, and how the two affect each other. Read more…


Premier denies Saskatoon mayor’s request for gathering size limits
The Saskatchewan government says it will not introduce limits on gathering sizes in the province’s COVID-19 hotspot as requested by Saskatoon’s mayor and city council. Read more…


Vaccine policy for London, Ont. councillors earns final approval
A COVID-19 vaccination policy for city councillors in London, Ont., has received final approval, giving the group of politicians until next month to become fully vaccinated if they haven’t already, unless they can prove a valid exemption. Read more…


N.B. municipal bus services continue to feel pandemic pinch
More than a year after the COVID-19 pandemic started, transit buses in New Brunswick cities are carrying far fewer people and bringing in less money than before. Read more…


Unions file grievances over city’s mandatory vaccination policy
Four local unions are taking aim at the City of Ottawa’s COVID-19 vaccination policy, which requires employees to be fully immunized by Nov. 1. Read more…


October 5

Halifax municipal employees are not mandated to get a COVID vaccine
Halifax Regional Municipality will not require its employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19 as the province moves into Phase 5 of its reopening plan. Read more…


Kelowna mayor must okay councillors’ ongoing virtual participation
Kelowna’s city council has adopted a new policy requiring councillors who want to participate electronically after missing two in-person meetings to get approval from the mayor. Read more…


Town ends declaration of emergency for COVID-19 pandemic
The Town of Georgina has officially ended the declaration of emergency that was declared on March 19, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Montreal to lose out on $7M after 35,000 tickets tossed out due to court delays
The outcome of a case of a Montreal resident being fined for taking their recycling out to the curb too early has resulted in almost 35,000 tickets across the city being tossed out for taking too long to get before a judge. Read more…


Quinte West council approves mandatory COVID-19 vaccination for city staff
Quinte West council has approved mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for all city staff. That includes council, committee members, city staff, and volunteers. Read more…


October 4

Calgary restaurant suspended for failing to comply with COVID-19 restrictions
A Calgary restaurant has had its permit suspended for not complying with COVID-19 restrictions. Several Calgary-area restaurants are opposed to the vaccine passport rules and are concerned about backlash. Read more…


Vaccines urged, not mandatory for Scugog employees, council
Scugog councillors have approved a policy that encourages – but does not mandate – township staff to get a COVID-19 inoculation shot. Read more…


Health orders for unvaccinated Manitobans creating “animosity,” says mayor
Manitoba’s new health orders, which come into effect Tuesday, are targeting those who are unvaccinated, but the mayor of Winkler, Man. says these restrictions are just creating more division. Read more…


COVID vaccine mandate takes effect for NYC teachers, staff
New York City teachers and other school staff members are supposed to be vaccinated against COVID-19 when the bell rings Monday morning. Read more…


October 1

COVID vaccinations mandatory for Winnipeg councillors and their staff
Winnipeg city council has voted to make vaccination mandatory for councillors and their staff. Individuals will need to be fully immunized by Nov. 15. Read more…


Havana reopens its beaches, citing high vaccination rate
Beaches and recreation centers have reopened in Cuba’s capital after authorities in Havana said 90 percent of the city’s residents are vaccinated against the coronavirus and the number of new cases has been declining. Read more…


Kingston hesitant to resume face-to-face meetings during fourth wave
After a year and a half of holding virtual meetings, Kingston city councillors appear in no rush to see each other in person any time soon. Read more…


September 29

County passes mandatory vaccination policy for employees
Prince Edward County employees and councillors will be required to be vaccinated by the middle of November after council approved a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy. Read more…


All Lethbridge city staff must be fully vaccinated by Nov. 15
The City of Lethbridge has announced it will be mandating full COVID-19 vaccination for staff by mid-November as a way to protect the health and safety of its employees. Read more…


Proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test required for council meetings
Moose Jaw city council has passed a motion to require proof of COVID-19 vaccination for council meetings and any other public meetings or hearings. Read more…


Social media influencers to promote Nickel City as part of COVID recovery
The City of Greater Sudbury is enlisting travel bloggers and social media influencers to help spread the word about what the region has to offer. Read more…


September 28

COVID-19 certificate enforcement falls on Mississauga, Brampton bylaw officers
While the provincially mandated COVID-19 vaccine certificate program has been in effect for almost a week, questions have arisen about who will enforce the program in Mississauga and Brampton. Read more…


Saskatoon now under “orange” COVID-19 risk rating
The City of Saskatoon will now use a colour-coded alert system for COVID-19. Right now, Saskatoon is considered orange, which is considered high risk. Read more…


COVID restrictions implemented in Fairview facilities
After reviewing current provincial regulations, and in consultation with provincial health authorities, Fairview council has implemented a number of changes to its COVID restrictions at town facilities. Read more…


Halifax mayor says university partiers lacked common sense in light of COVID-19
Halifax Mayor Mike Savage said last Saturday’s big street party near Dalhousie University – which led to several arrests – reflected unacceptable behaviour that won’t be tolerated. Read more…


Transit union concerned over Winnipeg’s mandatory vaccination policy
The union representing Winnipeg Transit staff is expressing concern as the City’s deadline for mandatory COVID-19 vaccination for frontline workers approaches. Read more…


September 27

City of Oshawa mandates all employees must be fully vaccinated by Nov. 12
It’s now official: All City of Oshawa employees must disclose their COVID-19 vaccination status beginning Oct. 1 and must be fully vaccinated by Nov. 12 in order to work for the city. Read more…


September 24

Vancouver city council decides summer patio program is here to stay
The increased number of outdoor patios at Vancouver bars and restaurants, one of the few good things to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic, is here to stay. Read more…


City council approves vaccine passport bylaw for Calgary
A city council decision Wednesday means Calgary restaurants, bars, movie theatres and other businesses must ask patrons for proof of COVID vaccination or a recent negative test. Read more…


Woolwich township staff must disclose vaccination status
As with employees of the Region of Waterloo and its lower-tier municipalities, Woolwich employees had until Wednesday to disclose their vaccination status. Read more…


Edmonton businesses not asking for help enforcing vaccine passport: Iveson
Mayor Don Iveson said Thursday Edmonton businesses are already widely opting in to the province’s Restrictions Exception Program and haven’t reported experiencing the same challenges Calgary businesses have. Read more…


September 23

City of Calgary launches vaccine vans, outreach program
After waiting for Calgarians to go get their vaccinations, the City of Calgary is taking vaccines to citizens. A new mobile vaccination station has been dispatched within the city and will soon be joined by four more. Read more…


Vancouver, province disagree on advisory committees meeting virtually
Advisory committees in the City of Vancouver might be forced to either start meeting in person or go on hiatus due to a disagreement between the city and provincial government. Read more…


Brampton mayor worried vaccine certificate costs being put on municipalities
Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown says that he is concerned that costs related to enforcing Ontario’s new vaccine certificate system when disputes arise will inevitably be “put on the backs of municipalities.” Read more…


September 22

FCM welcomes new federal government
Joanne Vanderheyden, president of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, recently congratulated Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on his election win, but also called for greater government cooperation in the pandemic recovery. Read more…


City of Prince George denounces hospital protests in B.C.
Prince George’s city council members took an opportunity at the start of their Monday meeting to discuss the harassment healthcare workers across the province have been subjected to. Read more…


Brockton lifts COVID-19 state of emergency
Mayor Chris Peabody officially lifted the state of emergency in the Municipality of Brockton in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The municipality declared a state of emergency on March 23, 2020. Read more…


Winnipeg policy committee supports vaccine requirement for councillors
Members of Winnipeg city council’s executive policy committee have voted unanimously in support of a COVID-19 vaccine requirement for all councillors and their staff. Read more…


Windsor mayor expects push back for new city vaccination measures
Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens is expecting push back after city council’s decision to require anyone over the age of 12 to provide proof of full COVID-19 vaccination to enter any indoor city recreational venue. Read more…


Vancouver city council now meeting in person
Vancouver council has voted in favour of bringing a hybrid model to council meetings, even after some members (including the mayor) recently said they would not likely be returning due to the current number of COVID-19 cases. Read more…


September 21

Saskatoon implementing colour-coded classifications for COVID-19 risk level
City council has approved a new colour-coded COVID-19 mitigation framework in the wake of increasing case rates and hospitalizations in Saskatoon. Read more…


Nearly 90 percent of municipal employees fully vaccinated: City of Toronto
City of Toronto officials say 23,730 of their employees profess to be fully vaccinated – or 88 percent of the 26,904 city workers who completed vaccination status disclosure forms. Read more…


New York City to conduct weekly COVID-19 tests in schools
New York City will begin conducting weekly, random COVID-19 tests of unvaccinated students in the nation’s largest school district in an attempt to more quickly spot outbreaks in classrooms. Read more…


City of Edmonton to require all employees be vaccinated against COVID-19
The City of Edmonton is giving its employees just under two months to get fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Read more…


September 20

Vancouver city councillor pushes for return to in-person council meetings
A Vancouver city councillor is pushing for a speedy return to the council chambers and plans on attending all future meetings in person – even if they’re still officially being conducted virtually. Read more…


Lacombe implements new measures for municipal facilities
The City of Lacombe is taking a number of new measures in light of announcements made this week by the provincial government related to COVID-19. Read more…


City to require proof of vaccination at select indoor rec centres in London
Starting Wednesday, Londoners looking to access select municipal recreation facilities and programs will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and provide proof of their vaccination status in order to do so. Read more…


Winkler police chief denounces “anger and resentment” over COVID-19 orders
The chief of the Winkler Police Service has issued an online statement on tensions in the community surrounding COVID-19 public health orders and vaccines. Read more…


September 17

Vaccine passports required to access city rec facilities
Following the order of the Provincial Health Officer (PHO) around proof of vaccination cards for COVID-19, the City of Cranbrook requires proof of vaccination to access all city-operated recreation facilities for all adult sports and activities effective immediately. Read more…


Windsor approves new mandatory vaccine policy for municipal employees
Windsor city council approved a controversial mandatory vaccine policy for all municipal workers Thursday night, despite opposition from a string of employee representatives. Read more…


Montreal public health, Black community partner to boost vaccination rates
With COVID-19 vaccination rates still lower among Montreal’s Black communities, the city’s public health department teamed with local organizations to host an online town hall for residents this week. Read more…


P.E.I.’s new public health measures come into effect Friday
The recent outbreak of COVID-19 in P.E.I. has prompted the provincial government to implement new restrictions starting Friday. Read more…


Calgary to take own measures on COVID-19 crisis, saying province “doesn’t care”
Calgary’s mayor says the city will explore measures it can take to protect residents from the flood of COVID-19 cases overwhelming the province’s health-care system. Read more…


City of Regina delays proof of vaccination target date by two months
Regina city council is pushing back its target date to require proof of vaccination from people entering city facilities. Read more…


COVID-19 vaccine rollout costing Ottawa Public Health, city millions of dollars
Ottawa Public Health and the City of Ottawa are spending millions of dollars to make sure all Ottawa residents can receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Read more…


St. Albert to implement vaccine passports in city facilities
St. Albert city facilities will sign on to a vaccine passport system following the province’s newly announced health restrictions, council heard during a special meeting Thursday morning. Read more…


Montreal to open more clinics, use rapid tests to curb lineups for COVID tests
Montreal public health says it will expand its COVID-19 testing network after being inundated with people seeking tests this week as caseloads continue on an upward trend following the return to school. Read more…


N.W.T. residents who are immunocompromised to soon get 3rd COVID-19 shot
Some people in the Northwest Territories with compromised immune systems will be able to get a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine starting this month. Read more…


Pandemic costs may top $70M in 2021, but London still in the black
City Hall is more than just weathering the financial impacts of the pandemic – a new report projects a multi-million dollar surplus for 2021. Read more…


September 16

Calgary city council makes extended patios permanent feature for 2022
Patio extensions – which popped up across the city to support social distancing during the pandemic – will continue to be seen in the city into 2022, Calgary city council voted in favour of Wednesday. Read more…


City of Toronto holding “Days of Vaxtion” in bid to boost COVID-19 vaccination
The City of Toronto is launching a campaign this week involving a series of pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics aimed at helping residents get first or second doses. Read more…


Greater Sudbury makes COVID-19 vaccines mandatory for city staff
Greater Sudbury has announced all employees are required to disclose their vaccination status by Sept. 30 and to be fully vaccinated with an accepted vaccine by Nov. 15. Read more…


City of Kingston releases names of those charged for nuisance parties
The City of Kingston has started releasing the names of people charged with failing to comply with an order from the mayor during a declared emergency – specifically, holding aggravated nuisance parties in the university district. Read more…


Cambridge introduces mandatory vaccine policy for city employees
The City of Cambridge will require city staff, council members, volunteers, part-time workers and contractors to provide verification of full COVID-19 vaccination. Read more…


September 15

City of Kamloops outlining public facilities that will require proof of vaccination
On the verge of vaccine passports being introduced across B.C. to combat the COVID-19 pandemic the City of Kamloops is outlining what public facilities will be affected by the new rule. Read more…


City of Orillia latest municipality to implement vaccine policy for staff
The City of Orillia is joining several other municipalities implementing a vaccine policy for employees, requiring staff to provide proof of vaccination. Read more…


Kitchener, Waterloo, Wilmot implement mandatory vaccine policy for staff
The cities of Kitchener and Waterloo, as well as Wilmot Township, will be implementing a mandatory vaccine policy asking employees, volunteers, and students to show proof of vaccination. Read more…


City of Regina slows return to workplace plan amid fourth wave
The City of Regina is slowing down its plan to get employees back into the office as Saskatchewan grapples with the fourth wave of the pandemic. Read more…


Lt-Gov. applauds British Columbia municipalities for pandemic work
B.C. Lt. Gov. Janet Austin saluted the work of B.C. local governments in a year where British Columbians have faced the hardships of the pandemic, forest fires, and the opioid overdose crisis. Read more…


September 14

Some N.S. municipalities adopting rules for staff who aren’t fully vaccinated
Some municipalities in Nova Scotia are getting set to adopt proof-of-vaccination protocols after the province lifts COVID-19 restrictions Wednesday that will see gathering limits and mask mandates dropped. Read more…


City, town temporarily mandating masking for their facilities
Both the City of North Battleford and the Town of Battleford have temporarily mandated masking for their facilities due to increasing COVID-19 concerns in the province and the region. Read more…


City of Fort St. John releases info for proof of vaccination requirements
The City of Fort St. John has released information regarding where residents will be required to verify proof of vaccination at its facilities. Read more…


Oakville council mandates COVID-19 vaccines for municipal workers
After a fiery special meeting, Town of Oakville council unanimously voted on Monday to mandate vaccines for municipal workers as well as the municipal council. Read more…


Masks to be mandatory in City of Moose Jaw facilities next week
Moose Jaw city council voted 5-1 to make non-surgical masks mandatory in city facilities, which will come into effect on Sept. 20 at the earliest. Read more…


Toronto city staff given more time to reveal vaccination status
City of Toronto employees now have until Friday to divulge their vaccination status after being granted an extension from the original Monday deadline. Read more…


Regina delays date for requiring vaccination at facilities by two months
After announcing a target of September 20 to begin requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination at city facilities, the city of Regina is delaying the plan’s launch date until mid-November. Read more…


Kincardine lifts pandemic state of emergency
Kincardine has lifted its pandemic state of emergency. The order had been in place since March 24, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


September 13

Edmonton amends COVID-19 mask bylaw to clarify rules
Edmonton city council has tweaked its face-coverings bylaw to provide clarity on when and where masks are required and exempt in public indoor settings. Read more…


Potential COVID fourth wave has Winnipeg concerned about finances
As the City of Winnipeg begins its review process for the 2022 budget, civic officials are concerned about finances as a potential fourth wave of COVID-19 approaches. Read more…


Watson won’t put up with protests that interfere with health-care workers
Protests rejecting vaccine passports and COVID-19 public health measures are planned for Monday, but Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said he will not stand for anything that gets in the way of work being done by health-care professionals. Read more…


City of Quesnel postpones public feedback event due to rising COVID-19 cases
The City of Quesnel postponed its “Let’s Connect Community Tour” on Saturday due to the rise of COVID-19 cases in the area. Read more…


How B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccine card will affect access to city-run facilities
B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccine card system goes into effect on Monday. The City of Vancouver says its staff is working to determine what civic facilities will fall under the new provincial health order. Read more…


September 10

Greenland announces COVID-19 reopening plan
Greenland’s government announced its reopening plan, saying it would gradually increase travelers to the island at the same it bolsters its vaccination program. Read more…


City council makes masks mandatory at city-owned facilities
Prince Albert city council voted unanimously to make masks mandatory at all city-owned indoor facilities, including city transit, by September 10. Read more…


City facilities, programs scale back services under health orders
Several City of Yellowknife programs, facilities, and services are changing in line with public health orders announced on September 8 by chief public health officer Dr. Kami Kandola. Read more…


New policy requires city staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or tested regularly
The City of Barrie has introduced and is implementing a COVID-19 vaccination policy for its employees. Read more…


Chatham-Kent mandated to enforce province’s vaccine passport law
Chatham-Kent’s active COVID-19 cases reached 112 on Thursday as the push for more people to get vaccinated grows through such measures as vaccine passports and new workplace policies. Read more…


September 9

Unvaccinated Torontonians more likely to get COVID-19
Unvaccinated Torontonians are seven times more likely to become infected with COVID-19 than those who are vaccinated, the city’s medical officer of health says. Read more…


Toronto moves ahead with plan for “gradual” return of employees as Peel’s top doc calls for remote work to continue
The City of Toronto is moving ahead with plans to have some of its workers return to the office this week, even as public health officials in nearby Peel Region encourage residents to continue telecommuting as much as possible amid a Delta-driven fourth wave of the pandemic. Read more…


No proof of COVID-19 vaccination required at Vancouver city hall
When Vancouver city council returns to in-person meetings possibly this fall, citizens attending city hall will not be required to produce proof of vaccination against COVID-19. Read more…


Moe puts faith in Sask. municipalities to control COVID-19
Premier Scott Moe says provincial COVID-19 restrictions would affect each municipality the same way – regardless of their case rates and vaccination rates. Read more…


September 8

12 Edmonton-area mayors call for COVID-19 vaccine passport, other measures
A dozen mayors in and around Edmonton have written a letter to Alberta’s premier and health minister, urging the province to adopt a vaccine passport similar to those in other Canadian provinces. Read more…


Saint John approves COVID-19 vaccine and testing policy
City of Saint John employees will have to prove they’re fully vaccinated or undergo regular testing and wear a mask under a new policy approved by city council. Read more…


City implements mandatory vaccine policy for employees
The City of Ottawa implemented its mandatory vaccine policy requiring all city employees, contractors, volunteers, and students be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by November 1. Read more…


Saskatchewan’s 4th wave response: wait and delegate
The Saskatchewan government’s response to the fourth wave of COVID-19 in the province has been restrained compared to other provinces, even as cases climb and vaccinations lag. Read more…


Bulgaria, EU’s least vaccinated nation, faces deadly surge
Bulgaria has one of the highest coronavirus death rates in the 27-nation European Union and is facing a new, rapid surge of infections due to the more infectious delta variant. Read more…


September 7

Vaccine passports: Scotland’s new rules are toughest yet in U.K.
The proposed “certification scheme” – which will be voted on in Holyrood in the coming days – states that a phone app displaying your record of double vaccination will be required to enter certain places. Read more…


September 3

Saskatoon drive-thru testing centre struggles to meet spike in demand
On Tuesday the drive-thru testing centre in Saskatoon closed three-and-a-half hours earlier than its 7:30 p.m. closing time because it had reached capacity. Read more…


New vaccine policy for city employees about to get tougher
The ink is barely dry and London City Hall is already updating its new COVID-19 vaccination policy for municipal employees, consultants, and volunteers. Read more…


Durham working through COVID-19 mandates for staff in municipalities
Ontario has mandated a vaccine certificate for the general population that will go into effect come Sept. 22, but until then, it’s a patchwork of what’s happening in various Durham municipalities for vaccine mandates for their own employees. Read more…


September 2

Ottawa council will continue to meet virtually this fall, city clerk recommends
Ottawa city council and committees will continue to meet virtually this fall due to concerns about the COVID-19 Delta variant. Read more…


Battlefords communities yet to discuss return of mask mandates
Amid budget season creeping up on both Battleford municipalities, the potential return of COVID-19 restrictions will be a key discussion in the coming weeks. Read more…


Minto implements vaccination requirement for municipal employees
Vaccination against COVID-19 will be a condition of employment with the municipality under a new infectious diseases and vaccination policy established by the Town of Minto. Read more…


Gatineau closes beaches, pools after workers test positive for COVID-19
The City of Gatineau says health officials recommended the “preventive closure” of all municipal pools and beaches after a few employees tested positive for COVID-19. Read more…


September 1

City of Regina requires proof of vaccination for city facilities, employees
The City of Regina is working toward requiring proof of vaccination for employees while also working toward requiring proof of vaccination from all members of the public who access indoor city facilities. Read more…


Vaccination passport required for certain activities in the Pointe-Claire
The City of Pointe-Claire, in accordance with the Québec government, has decided those 13 years and over will have to show their vaccination passport as of September 1 to take part in certain activities organized by the city. Read more…


City of Yellowknife waives licence fee for some businesses
The City of Yellowknife is waiving licensing fees for some businesses to help them recover from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Grande Prairie committee rejects sending mask bylaw for council debate
The City of Grande Prairie’s Protective and Social Services Committee has voted down a motion to bring back the Mandatory Mask Bylaw to city council for debate at next week’s meeting. Read more…


Masks mandatory for rural Wood Buffalo students
Students in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo will see different approaches to COVID-19 safety when they return to class, depending on where they live. Read more…


Saskatoon’s hands tied on introducing stronger COVID-19 measures: mayor
Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark says the city simply doesn’t have the jurisdiction to expand COVID-19 measures beyond a certain level. Read more…


August 31

Calgary city council candidates back mask bylaw, vaccine mandate
A coalition of council candidates, led by mayoral candidate Jan Damery, has joined the call for city council to take action amid a surge in COVID-19 cases. Read more…


Newmarket requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for staff
Newmarket will require COVID-19 vaccinations for all staff members, but council has yet to decide about vaccination requirements for the public using its facilities. Read more…


Saskatoon passes motion to make masks mandatory again at civic facilities
As of Wednesday masking will once again be mandatory at Saskatoon’s indoor city facilities and when riding buses while city employees will soon need to be tested on a regular basis for COVID-19. Read more…


Edmonton makes masks mandatory indoors starting on Friday
Starting Friday, Edmontonians will have to wear masks again in all public spaces, privately-owned businesses and municipal spaces as COVID-19 cases continue to rise across Alberta. Read more…


Politicians don’t push to strengthen “super cautious” COVID vaccine policy
London politicians made no push for a vaccine mandate at city hall, despite a meeting that stretched nearly five hours on Monday. Read more…


August 30

Police federation calls for more officers to enforce B.C. vaccine passport
The B.C. chapter of the National Police Federation is calling for more resources for officers to adequately enforce the province’s vaccine passport, which comes into effect on Sept. 13. Read more…


Ontario to announce COVID-19 vaccine passport
The Ontario government will unveil a COVID-19 vaccine passport system this week, after calls from medical officers of health and the business community for a vaccine certificate system. Read more…


August 27

Nenshi calls for province to do more as Alberta’s COVID-19 numbers surge
Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi is calling on the province to provide a clearer picture about the COVID-19 situation as infection numbers continue to rise. Read more…


COVID-19 vaccine policy to be implemented for City of Mississauga workers
The City of Mississauga says it will require all employees and volunteers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by the end of October. Read more…


COVID-19 vaccine demand in B.C. surges with “passport,” mask mandates
One doctor in B.C.’s hard-hit Interior Health region has seen demand for the COVID-19 shot skyrocket as new restrictions – including a so-called “vaccine passport” – are introduced, and the trend is province-wide. Read more…


Regina, Saskatoon hospitals facing pressure in ICUs: SHA
Regina and Saskatoon hospitals are feeling pressure in emergency rooms and intensive care units, according to the Saskatchewan Health Authority. Read more…


Council makes COVID-19 vaccinations mandatory for Hamilton city workers
City council has approved a mandatory vaccination policy for municipal employees to help Hamilton fight a rising tide of COVID-19 infections. Read more…


Campbellton, N.B. mayor calls ICU closure “unacceptable”
The ICU at the Campbellton Regional Hospital is closed for two weeks with staffing shortages to blame. The city’s mayor calls the closure “unacceptable.” Read more…


August 26

Saskatoon mayor calls for vaccine passports as COVID-19 surges
The mayor of Saskatoon is calling for measures including “vaccine passports” in the wake of rising COVID-19 rates in the city. Read more…


Sarnia mayor suggests making pandemic patio rules permanent
Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley wants the city to look into making its relaxed pandemic-prompted rules for extending restaurant patios into something more permanent. Read more…


Pressure mounts on City of Winnipeg to impose vaccine mandate
The City of Winnipeg is facing growing pressure to impose a vaccine mandate on its front-line workers as it reviews a provincial plan to do so. Read more…


Thunder Bay city council approves work-from-home pilot project
The City of Thunder Bay is preparing to bring its employees back to their offices, but some may have the opportunity to work from home on an ongoing basis. Read more…


Montreal public health director says city seeing steeper rise in cases 
The majority of new COVID-19 cases in Montreal are now linked to the highly contagious delta variant, and Montreal’s public health director says that’s leading to the virus spreading faster and more aggressively than last fall. Read more…


City of Windsor launches COVID vaccine lottery to boost rates
Property tax holidays, full-ride tuition grants and free rent for a year are among the prizes Windsor-area officials are dangling to entice more people to get COVID-19 vaccines. Read more…


Questions for Dawson Creek mayor following B.C. vaccine card announcement
Starting on September 13, all residents and visitors in British Columbia will require proof of a COVID-19 vaccination in order to participate in certain events, but Dawson Creek’s mayor thinks the system could lead to lots of confusion. Read more…


August 25

City of Saskatoon postpones return to work plan as COVID numbers increase
A plan to bring workers back to city hall in Saskatoon starting Sept. 1 is being put on the back burner after a spike in COVID-19 cases. Read more…


Lethbridge event venues won’t require COVID-19 vaccination “at this time”
Following announcements from several organizations across Canada that proof of COVID-19 vaccines or negative COVID-19 tests will be required for audiences and fans, the City of Lethbridge hasn’t made any decisions regarding its venues. Read more…


City of Burlington preparing COVID-19 vaccination policy for all its employees
The City of Burlington will require all staff to show proof of vaccination, and provide reasonable time for staff who are not yet fully vaccinated to do so, with some exceptions for those who are legally entitled to accommodation. Read more…


Swift Current spreads some love to local non-profits
The City of Swift Current has set aside grant funding that could be used to help out non-profit and volunteer-based organizations as they struggle to get operations back to normal after the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Mask mandate reintroduced in indoor public settings in B.C.
The B.C. government is bringing back its mask mandate for indoor public settings to combat the province’s ongoing surge in COVID-19 cases. Read more…


Toronto police issue mandatory COVID-19 vaccine policy, union opposes
The Toronto Police Service has announced it will require all staff, both uniform and civilian, to be vaccinated against COVID-19. But there’s already push back from the union that represents officers. Read more…


August 24

Iveson supports vaccine mandate for city employees in Edmonton
Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson wants a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for city staff with most employees set to return to the workplace next month. Read more…


Montreal to end local state of emergency in place since start of pandemic
Despite an increase in COVID-19 caseloads in recent weeks, the City of Montreal announced it will not be renewing the local state of emergency that has been in place since the start of the pandemic. Read more…


Niagara Falls becomes second municipality in region with a fully-vaxxed council
Mayor Jim Diodati said he and the eight councillors serving the border city have now all been fully immunized. The announcement comes three days after the City of St. Catharines announced its council is double-dosed. Read more…


In-person meetings delayed for Saskatoon city council
The return to in-person meetings for Saskatoon council has been delayed indefinitely after a recent spike of active cases in the city. Read more…


Proof of vaccine to be required for some non-essential businesses in B.C.
Hoping to curb the fourth COVID-19 wave in B.C., proof of vaccination status will be required for some non-essential businesses starting next month, health officials announced Monday. Read more…


Saskatchewan municipalities consider vaccine mandates
The City of Toronto and Town of Banff have both confirmed their municipal employees will be required to get the COVID-19 vaccine. The announcements are stirring Saskatchewan’s municipal leaders to begin discussions as well. Read more…


City of Ottawa mask bylaw to expire, but masks still required indoors
More than a year after it was enacted, the City of Ottawa’s temporary mandatory mask bylaw will expire this week. But that does not mean masks are no longer required in enclosed spaces in the city. Read more…


Vanderhoof vaccinations “sad”
Civic officials in Vanderhoof are becoming increasingly disturbed over the local vaccinations rates in that community and immediately around it. Read more…


P.E.I. releases “nearly normal” back-to-school plan
Students and teachers in Prince Edward Island schools can prepare for a “nearly normal” return to school in September. Read more…


August 23

Southern Alberta school boards grapple with masking policy
Calgary’s public and Catholic school boards have mandated mask use in indoor spaces to begin the new school year, but other districts across southern Alberta are taking different approaches. Read more…


Toronto to close four city-run COVID-19 mass vaccination clinics
The City of Toronto is closing four of its COVID-19 mass vaccination clinics at the end of the day on Sunday as it redeploys more than 300 staff to its mobile vaccination teams. Read more…


New Orleans tourism industry worries as coronavirus rages
The hospitality industry, which drives the New Orleans economy, has been hammered by the pandemic. As a result, many bars, restaurants, and music venues have been forced to close or limit their operations. Read more…


August 20

Calgary not currently planning to mandate COVID-19 vaccines for workers
While a vaccine mandate has been ruled out for now, the City of Calgary is expected to announce it will postpone the planned return of municipal workers to offices amid rising COVID numbers. Read more…


City of Toronto, TTC to require all employees to be fully vaccinated
COVID-19 vaccinations will be mandatory for all City of Toronto employees and TTC workers in the next two months as cases continue to rise during the fourth wave of the pandemic. Read more…


Mayor backs mandatory vaccinations for city staff – awaits talks with unions
Public sector unions may have a big role in deciding if London city hall mandates COVID-19 vaccinations for all municipal employees. Read more…


South Algonquin Township closes offices
Effective immediately, the township offices of South Algonquin are closed. The township says they are closing their offices to minimize the potential for COVID-19 spread in the community. Read more…


Nelson mayor calls for more restrictions as COVID-19 cases rise
As nearby hospital beds fill with COVID-19 patients, the mayor of Nelson wants increased restrictions enacted in his city, including an indoor mask mandate. Read more…


Ontario COVID-19 vaccine passport would be “useful”: Ottawa’s top doctor
Having a provincially accepted proof of COVID-19 vaccination would be “useful” for Ottawa residents and businesses trying to navigate through the impending fourth wave of the virus, the city’s medical officer of health said. Read more…


August 19

Town of Banff mandates COVID-19 vaccines for employees
Six weeks from now, any employee of the Town of Banff who hasn’t gotten their COVID-19 vaccine will be out of a job, due to a new administrative policy instated by the municipality. Read more…


Kelowna facing double whammy as wildfires, COVID-19 crushes tourist season
Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran says the wildfires and COVID-19 combined have been hard on residents and businesses. Read more…


As COVID-19 cases mount, province cancels Quebec City “test concerts”
Quebec City planned to host post-pandemic concerts organized by researchers at Laval University, but the Quebec government has cancelled the event. Read more…


August 18

City gets $2.7 million to help keep vulnerable people safe during pandemic
The province is giving the City of Brantford almost $2.7 million to help deliver services, create longer-term housing solutions, and keep vulnerable people safe during the pandemic. Read more…


Regina mayor pushes for city to get to 85% vaccination rate with lip-sync video
The cities of Regina and Saskatoon have had an ongoing vaccination lip sync challenge. In a video, Regina Mayor Sandra Masters dances along and lip-syncs to the song “It Takes Two” to encourage COVID-19 vaccinations. Read more…


Thompson no longer requires face masks in city-owned buildings
Face masks are no longer required in City of Thompson-owned buildings and buses after council rescinded a resolution from last October at their August 16 meeting. Read more…


City and AHS encouraging 20 to 40 years old to get vaccinated
With cases of COVID-19 rising rapidly in Medicine Hat, the city and Alberta Health Services are launching a communication campaign aimed at driving up vaccination rates. Read more…


Mayor wants new COVID-19 vaccine policy for City of Ottawa staff
Mayor Jim Watson wants all City of Ottawa staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and he’s asked the city’s manager to develop a plan to implement the new rules, according to a memo sent Tuesday afternoon. Read more…


Lincoln: Economic recovery support for craft wineries and restaurants
Town of Lincoln council and staff are continuing their advocacy efforts during the AMO 2021 Virtual Conference in support of the local craft beverage and tourism industry. Read more…


August 17

Ford promises greater pandemic support during AMO speech
In his comments at the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) 2021 virtual conference, Premier Ford celebrated the efforts of municipalities, with a focus on how local governments have overcome many pandemic-related obstacles. Read more…


August 16

Ontario’s Big City Mayors call for proof of vaccination, childcare plan
Ontario’s Big City Mayors are urging the province to establish a COVID-19 proof of vaccination system, along with calling for an agreement on the $10 per day federal childcare plan. Read more…


Greater Sudbury working to support local businesses through recovery plan
The City of Greater Sudbury and the Greater Sudbury Development Corporation developed an economic recovery plan which helps local businesses that have struggled during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


New York becomes first major U.S. city to introduce COVID-19 vaccine passport
New York on Monday becomes the first major U.S. city to launch a vaccine passport system, marking a new phase in its efforts to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Read more…


August 13

Toronto mayor calls for provincewide proof of vaccination system
Mayor John Tory is calling for a “provincewide proof-of-vaccination system,” arguing that it is the “best thing we can do right now” to ensure businesses remain open during the fourth wave of the pandemic. Read more…


City of Windsor considering a policy for vaccinated employees
Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens said council is looking at a return to work policy that would provide a pathway for city staffers who are fully vaccinated to come back to work. And those who aren’t, might have to get testing. Read more…


Chatham-Kent’s public health officer worries about another COVID wave 
Chatham-Kent’s medical officer of health said the COVID-19 case count in the region is going in the wrong direction. Read more…


San Francisco becomes second U.S. city to mandate vaccines for bars, gyms
San Francisco announced on Thursday that proof of full vaccination would be required for entry to restaurants, gyms, and other indoor venues, aiming to curb a new wave of COVID infections. Read more…


August 12

Accessibility changes are coming to Halifax patios this summer
There are more than 80 establishments in Halifax with licences allowing temporary patios on the sidewalk or road. By Aug. 30, these patios will be required to have a barrier at ground level that a cane can detect. Read more…


Mandatory masking in place at Calgary public schools
Some Calgary parents have more clarity on what a return to school will look like as COVID-19 cases start to mount due to a more transmissible Delta variant. Read more…


Hamilton councillors pushing for provincial COVID-19 vaccine passport
Hamilton city councillors unanimously approved a motion to push Ontario to institute a mandatory COVID-19 vaccine policy and vaccine passport program. Read more…


City of Toronto backtracks on closure of North York COVID-19 vaccination clinic
City of Toronto officials have backtracked on the planned closure of a North York COVID-19 vaccination site. It would have been one of five city-operated clinics ceasing operations as of Aug. 22. Read more…


Guelph/Eramosa council sets date for in-person meetings
Mayor Chris White has proposed a date to return to in-person council meetings. That said, any councillors uncomfortable with in-person meetings could connect remotely. Read more…


Australia’s capital Canberra to enter COVID-19 lockdown
Australia’s capital city of Canberra is expected to go into a snap lockdown after the first locally acquired COVID-19 case in more than a year. Read more…


August 11

Region of Waterloo to consider making COVID-19 vaccines mandatory for staff
Staff with the Region of Waterloo will develop a policy about whether regional employees will be mandated to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Read more…


Charlottetown Airport activity rebounding amid ease of restrictions, new routes
The Charlottetown Airport is looking a bit livelier these days, with the easing of provincial travel restrictions coinciding with the launching of new flight routes to the city. Read more…


Lag in vaccinations means weeks before Hamilton COVID restrictions ease
Hamilton’s top doctor is suggesting it may be another “couple to three weeks” before the city’s COVID-19 vaccination rate reaches the province’s standard for easing more health measures amid the ongoing pandemic. Read more…


Delta now “dominant” COVID-19 strain in Saskatoon sewage samples
The latest update from researchers shows both increase in the presence of COVID-19 and the continuing rise of the Delta variant. Read more…


Quebec restaurant and gym to test province’s new vaccine passport system
With Quebec’s new vaccine passport system set to launch Sept. 1, test runs will be conducted this week and next to fine tune what will be a first for the province – allowing only fully vaccinated people into non-essential businesses. Read more…


August 10

Halifax police ticket man for exceeding COVID-19 social gathering limits
A man in Halifax has been ticketed for exceeding the provincially mandated COVID-19 gathering limits after police responded to a social event in the city on Saturday. Read more…


Regional restrictions “the future of COVID” in B.C.: expert
As B.C. faces a fourth wave of COVID-19, an expert thinks regional restrictions will be part of the province’s response to the pandemic moving forward. Read more…


Moncton residents disappointed in some younger people’s COVID-19 response
New Brunswick public health is seemingly blaming younger generations for the recent uptick in COVID-19 cases in the province. Read more…


COVID’s impacts – and upsides – revealed in council CEO survey
Nearly six in 10 local government CEOs in Australia say the financial sustainability of their councils was negatively impacted by COVID-19, a new survey shows. Read more…


Newmarket lifts pandemic state of emergency
After 17 months of battling the COVID-19 pandemic, the Town of Newmarket has officially lifted its state of emergency. Read more…


August 9

B.C. tourism operators optimistic as clock ticks down to U.S. border reopening
The organization representing B.C.’s tourism operators says it’s cautiously optimistic as the clock counts down to the reopening of the border to U.S. tourists. Read more…


Waterloo Region closing in on 75 percent of population fully vaccinated
Waterloo Region is slowly getting closer toward its COVID-19 immunization goal of seeing 75 percent of residents be fully vaccinated. Read more…


Workers returning to downtown Edmonton expected to add to vibrancy this fall
Downtown Edmonton is bouncing back to life after almost 17 months of near-empty office buildings as thousands of people worked from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more…


Toronto City Hall, civic centres start to open in August  slowly
The two-towered Toronto City Hall has been closed to the public since 2020, and on Aug. 9 will begin to reopen with some counter services along with five civic centres across the city. Read more…


Hamilton council stands firm: No COVID rent relief for market vendors
The City of Hamilton City Manager’s Office says the Hamilton Farmers’ Market vendors do not qualify for COVID rent assistance as municipal tenants. Read more…


August 6

Ontario’s governments are set to run deficits until the year 2095
The Parliamentary Budget Officer released a troubling report earlier this summer that shows that, when Ontario’s provincial and municipal finances are looked at together, Ontario will be running deficits indefinitely, until at least the year 2095. Read more…


City of Leduc’s outdoor patio policy expanded to all local businesses
Updates to the City of Leduc’s seasonal outdoor patio policy were approved by council on July 5, allowing businesses across the city to open seasonal patios between April 15 and Oct. 15. Read more…


Ottawa lacks legal ability to impose mandatory vaccine policy, mayor says
As the federal government considers making COVID-19 vaccines mandatory for federal workers, Mayor Jim Watson says the city of Ottawa does not have the legal power to make vaccines mandatory for municipal employees. Read more…


In New York City, impending vaccination rules prompt concern
New York City will soon begin requiring anyone dining indoors at a restaurant, working out a gym, or grabbing cocktails at a bar to show proof they’ve been inoculated. Some see the move as an example of governmental overreach. Read more…


Mobile COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Edmonton Elks home opener
The Edmonton Elks home opener is this Saturday, and the organization will be hosting a mobile COVID-19 vaccination clinic before kick-off. Read more…


Schools sue and mayor defies Arkansas mask mandate ban
Arkansas’ ban on mask mandates faced new legal challenges – including from a school district where more than 800 staff and students are quarantining because of a COVID-19 outbreak – and defiance from the mayor of the state capital. Read more…


August 5

City facilities to require masks, regardless of health orders: Bowman
Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman says the city will continue to require face masks inside its facilities and on transit regardless of new provincial public health orders that no longer require masks indoors. Read more…


Many New Brunswick businesses practising caution as COVID-19 cases rise
On Saturday, New Brunswick entered its Green phase of its COVID-19 reopening plan, meaning all restrictions were lifted. However, some businesses in downtown Moncton are still having their employees wear masks. Read more…


Markham mayor declares Aug. 4 “Andre De Grasse Day”
Markham’s Andre De Grasse has more than Olympic gold to celebrate after Mayor Frank Scarpitti declared Aug. 4 “Andre De Grasse Day.” Read more…


Spurred by pandemic, Barcelona backs greener, car-free future
When Spain lifted its strict pandemic lockdown in the middle of last year, residents of Barcelona found some of their streets were not as they remembered them. Read more…


City officials keeping an eye on COVID numbers, locally and provincially
At the same time active cases of COVID-19 are rising in Medicine Hat and Alberta-wide, the province is making significant changes to how it’s managing the pandemic going forward. Read more…


City of Regina sees increase in reserves in 2020 thanks to pandemic supports
The City of Regina’s reserve balance grew by 16 percent in 2020 thanks mostly to financial support from senior levels of government to weather the pandemic. Read more…


Moncton adding public washroom outside city hall sought by businesses
Moncton is adding a new public washroom to the plaza outside city hall after years of requests for more public facilities, including by downtown businesses that have dealt with damaged bathrooms. Read more…


New COVID-19 cases peak in Sydney as Australia battles Delta variant
Sydney reported a record daily number of new coronavirus cases on Thursday and the state of Victoria announced a one-week lockdown as Australia tried to contain the highly infectious Delta variant. Read more…


August 4

Cities consider mask mandates as Alberta set to cancel most pandemic tracking
Some Calgary city councillors and mayoral candidates are publicly suggesting a return to mask mandates as COVID cases climb yet again. Read more…


Mask mandate on Winnipeg Transit to continue for “foreseeable future”
Despite the province planning to lift its mask mandate this weekend, the City of Winnipeg says residents should expect to wear masks in city facilities and on Winnipeg Transit for the “foreseeable future.” Read more…


Lip sync vid coming from Regina mayor after losing July vaccination challenge
Regina’s mayor will be creating a lip sync video after losing a COVID-19 vaccination challenge between Saskatoon and the Queen City. Read more…


Medicine Hat utility customers to get rebate as part of COVID-19 support
Medicine Hat council approved a second COVID-19 relief fund valued at $4.5 million. The money will be used as part of a rebate to help residents pay their utility bills. Read more…


Touchless technology coming to 18 city buildings to reduce COVID threat
Eighteen of the busiest City of Windsor buildings will have their entrances and washrooms outfitted with touchless technology thanks to $3.2 million in government funding announced Tuesday. Read more…


Latest analysis of city sewage shows big COVID-19 surge in Saskatoon
The most recent analysis of the City of Saskatoon’s wastewater shows a 253 percent increase in the COVID-19 viral RNA load compared to the previous week. Read more…


COVID-19 another blow to passenger traffic at Fort McMurray airport
The COVID-19 pandemic tightened the squeeze on the Fort McMurray International Airport, which had already been seeing fewer passengers travel through its gates for several years. Read more…


Transit fees waived for riders attending vaccine appointments in Chatham-Kent
The Municipality of Chatham-Kent is waiving transit fees for riders on their way to or back from getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Read more…


August 3

Calgary councillor asks city to reinstate mask bylaw
A Calgary councillor is asking the city to do what it can to protect public health, as the provincial government begins to end COVID-19 health measures. Read more…


Some pre-pandemic government services in N.B. return to normal
In Moncton, Fredericton, and Saint John, city transit riders will no longer be required to wear masks when taking public transit. Read more…


NYC mayor strongly recommends masks, stops short of mandate
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said he is “strongly” recommending that even those who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 wear masks indoors, stopping short of mandating such face coverings. Read more…


Colombian municipality imposed detention on those who were not vaccinated
A municipality in northwestern Colombia on Monday imposed a fine and mandatory eight-day detention on residents who do not wish to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Read more…


Jasper mayor urges more COVID-19 protection with mobile vaccination clinic
The Alberta government and a coalition of businesses have partnered to launch a mobile vaccination clinic that will focus on providing vaccines at worksites and rural and hard-to-reach communities. Read more…


Denver mayor orders all city workers vaccinated against COVID-19
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock ordered all of the city’s 10,000 municipal workers to be vaccinated by the end of September as Covid-19 delta variant infections accelerate. Read more…


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