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$2 Billion COVID-19 Aid for Municipalities

In response to COVID-19, the federal government will make available $2.2 billion in accelerated funding through the federal Gas Tax Fund. Normally paid in two installments a year, the funding will be made available in one payment this month.

Trudeau said early delivery of the full funding allotment for 2020-21 will help communities quickly move forward with infrastructure projects that will improve quality of life and help restart local economies.

Municipalities can use the money for projects under 18 different categories, including public transit, wastewater infrastructure, roads and bridges, disaster mitigation, broadband and connectivity, and culture, tourism and recreation.

The goal is to support essential municipal services as well as public transit systems, which have been hard hit by low ridership amid the pandemic.

“We know that the cities and municipalities need these funds right away. And that is why the federal government is making the full 2020-21 funds available immediately,” Trudeau said.

This funding comes after the Federation of Canadian Municipalities appealed for at least $10 billion in emergency funding.

 

$650 million in Funding for Indigenous Peoples and Communities

The Prime Minister announced that the federal government is dedicating new funding to provide critical support to Indigenous families and communities during the pandemic. This funding has three components and includes the following:

  • $285.1 million to support the ongoing public health response to COVID-19 in Indigenous communities. The investment will fund community-led responses to the pandemic, and provide targeted increases in primary health care resources for First Nations communities
     
  • $270 million to supplement the On-Reserve Income Assistance Program, which will help individuals and families meet their essential living expenses.
     
  • $44.8 million over five years to build 12 new shelters, which will help protect and support Indigenous women and girls experiencing and fleeing violence. This will help build 10 shelters to support Indigenous women and children in First Nations communities and two in the territories. The government will also provide $40.8 million to support operational costs and an additional $1 million a year ongoing, to support engagement with Métis leaders and service providers on shelter provision and community-led violence prevention projects for Métis women, girls, and LGBTQ and two-spirit people.

 

Extending the cruise ship ban through the summer

The Prime Minister also announced that any cruise ship that carries more than 100 people will be prohibited from operating in Canadian waters until at least Oct. 31, pushing off the possibility of a summer cruise ship season. As of July 1, any cruise ships that have overnight capacity for fewer than 100 passengers or day cruise vessels will be subject to provincial, territorial, and municipal health authority rules as to whether or not they’ll be able to operate.

The PM ended his remarks on large cruise ships by noting that the decision “extends the one we made in March which was taken to protect our coastal communities. Covid-19 is still a serious threat. But with the right plan and the right investments – we will whether this storm together.”

 

City of Calgary

Calgary is in the second phase of Stage 1 of Alberta’s Relaunch Strategy.

The final phase of Stage 1 is expected to occur on June 1 with the opening of:

  • Day camps, including summer school, with limits on occupancy.
  • Post-secondary institutions will have more flexibility to include in-person course delivery. • Places of worship and funeral services, if they follow sector-specific guidance. • As of yesterday, playgrounds will be able to operate in Calgary.

– The Emergency Order restricting their use was rescinded, on May 28.

More than 1,100 City owned playgrounds will re-open with regional playgrounds opening first, then community playgrounds second. It will take several days to open all of these playgrounds, but the City aims for this to be completed by Wednesday, June 3.

The Order restricting Organized and Team sports will remain in effect until further notice.

Only pedestrian and cyclists will be allowed on Stephen Avenue after 11:00 am.

The City is removing all 30-minute free parking on June 1. This was a temporary initiative being lifted as part of Calgary’s reopening.

Starting May 30, The Calgary Folk Festival is airing free virtual concerts on Saturday nights.

The City of Calgary reminds everyone to maintain social distancing while we undertake Calgary’s relaunch. Exercise kindness and understanding with businesses and fellow-citizens, and continue to maintain good hygiene and the wearing of face coverings in public areas.

 

Edmonton

This information is coming from our local Ward 4 MLA, Jason Copping. If you need support from Edmonton, email him at Calgary.Varsity@assembly.ab.ca. If you do not know who your MLA is, visit www.assembly.ab.ca

 

Helpful Guidelines for BusinessesGrocery stores: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/covid-19-relaunch-guidance-grocery-stores.pdf
Malls & shopping centres: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/covid-19-relaunch-guidance-malls-shopping-centres.pdf
Interpretive attractions: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/covid-19-relaunch-guidance-interpretive-attractions.pdf
Hunting and fishing lodges: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/covid-19-relaunch-guidance-hunting-fishing.pdf
Hotel, motel, BnB, vacation rentals: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/covid-19-relaunch-guidance-hotels-motels.pdf
Day care and out of school care: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/covid-19-relaunch-guidance-daycare-out-of-school-care.pdf
For further information on the relaunch please visit http://alberta.ca/RelaunchStrategy
If businesses have specific questions on reopening, they can email http://bizconnect@gov.ab.ca 
If you have any questions related to occupational health and safety you can go to https://www.alberta.ca/occupational-health-safety.aspx
 

20 million masks to be distributed to Albertans


A&W, McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada Ltd. and Tim Hortons are partnering with our government to distribute non-medical masks at no cost through their drive-thru locations across the province to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Distribution will start in early June.

  • Masks are provided in packages of four.
  • Masks will be available at almost 600 restaurant partner locations across Alberta.
  • Masks will be available only at drive-thrus, and only while supplies last. No purchase is necessary.
  • About 95 per cent of Albertans are located within 10 kilometres of these drive-thrus.
  • Mask use is not mandatory; they are an option for situations where maintaining a physical distance of two metres is not possible.
  • The mask distribution program is intended to supplement an individual’s efforts to acquire non-medical masks. Albertans who wish to use non-medical masks are encouraged to purchase their own supply from local retailers in addition to using those provided by government.
  • Instructions for proper care and use of non-medical masks is available on alberta.ca/masks.


AB TraceTogether App


With the lifting of some restrictions as we move towards the potential of phase two of our government’s relaunch, I would urge you to download the AB TraceTogether App. Having the app installed on your phone will decrease the workload of AHS in terms of the process for identifying who you may have been in contact with if you contract the virus.  Rather than AHS having to call everyone and try to identify those you may not even realize you were in contact with, the application would send a push notification. 

This is a voluntary, secure contact tracing mobile application to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. As protection of personal privacy is crucial to Albertans and to our government this app will not track the user’s physical location and will not use GPS.  All TraceTogether data is stored only on the user’s phone, and is automatically deleted after 21 days.
 

 

Mental health and Addictions Support


Addiction Helpline  

https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/findhealth/Service.aspx?id=1008399&serviceAtFacilityID=1047128


Mental Health Helpline https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/findhealth/Service.aspx?id=6810&serviceAtFacilityID=1047134


Kids Help Phone

https://kidshelpphone.ca/get-involved/contact-us


Community and Social Services Helpline at Alberta 211 

https://www.ab.211.ca/

 

Province Wide Testing Available

Dr. Hinshaw announced, effective immediately, province wide asymptomatic testing is available to include any Albertan whether they have Covid-19 symptoms or not. This will give AHS a better understanding of the virus in the communities. Alberta has surpassed the 250,000 mark for Covid-19 tests done in the province.

 

Places of Worship

Expanded guidance of places of worship is available on the alberta.ca/bizconnect webpage.

 

Pre-Schools Opening

Alberta Children’s Services Minister announced preschools will be allowed to open on June 1, if they follow AHS guidelines.

 

Stage 3

Dr. Hinshaw stated that AHS is reviewing several measures planned for Stage 3 Relaunch to see if they could safely be moved into Stage 2. In particular they are looking at fitness, sports, and recreation centres.

 

 

Sean Chu

Sean Chu

Sean Chu arrived in Calgary from Taiwan in 1985 speaking not a word of English, and within 7 years he was a sworn officer with the Calgary Police Service. From that point on Sean worked with the Calgary Police Service as on Officer for 21 years in a number of roles until 2013.

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