COVID-19 regional snapshot as of May 29
NEW updates surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic (as of Friday, May 29), as compiled by the Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK).
Current Situation in B.C. (as of 3 p.m. PDT May 29).
As the gradual reopening continues around the region, some municipal offices are opening back up to the public. It’s important to remember that each local government or band office has different circumstances and will re-open to the public as they are able to.
For those offices that remain closed to the public, services are still being provided by phone and online. For those offices that are opening, the public is asked to use phones or electronic means as much as possible as opposed to visiting in-person as space and staffing within offices is limited.
Here is the regional round-up on local and First Nation government offices heading into next week:
- Cranbrook – Reception areas at City Hall, Building and Bylaw Services and Public Works will open to the public Monday June 1.
- Kimberley – City Hall will open June 1 for payments of utility bills and property taxes as well as license fees, permit fees and transit passes.
- Canal Flats – The Village office will be reopening for regular business hours starting June 1. A maximum of three clients in the office at any time.
- Invermere – The District office remains closed to the public.
- Radium – The Village office remains closed to the public.
- Fernie – City Hall remains closed to the public at this time.
- Sparwood – the District office is open to the public. Fire Hall 1 and 2 and Public Works offices are closed to the public.
- Elkford – the District office, Conference Centre and Visitor Centre will open June 1. Only one customer at a time will be permitted in the District office.
- Regional District of East Kootenay – remains closed to the public.
- Ktunaxa Government Building – remains closed to the public, but will begin opening to some staff starting June 1. All urban services are continuing.
- Aqam Band Office – remains closed to the public, will begin slowly increasing staff in building starting June 1.
- Tobacco Plains Band Office – remains closed to the public.
- Akisqnuk Administration Office – remains closed to the public.
- Shuswap Band Office – remains closed to the public.
School Districts No. 5 and 6 are will be welcoming students back starting June 1 and will have a number of protocols in place to maintain a safe and healthy environment for students, families and staff.
A host of municipal open spaces, parks, playgrounds, sports courts and other amenities are open or will be opening by early next week. Visit your local government website or contact them directly for a full list of open amenities, facilities and services.
WEEKEND WARM WEATHER, RAIN COULD INCREASE MELT AND WATER LEVELS
In addition to the warmer weather the past few days (and into tomorrow), the forecast is calling for rainfall starting late Saturday night and through Sunday. The warm temperatures will accelerate the higher elevation snow melt and rain-on-snow will increase the melt further, so local waterways will likely start to see increases over the next few days. Please ensure you stay away from rivers and creeks.
- Cranbrook Public Works Yard – Cobham Avenue
- Old Barn – Mountainside Golf Course – Fairmont Hot Springs Road
- Windermere Fire Hall parking lot – Highway 93/95
- RDEK Pump House in Moyie – 9289 Tavistock Street
- Centennial Hall – 100 4th Avenue, Kimberley
- Fernie Public Works Yard – 1492 Railway Avenue
The sandbag stations have sand and bags; however, residents need to bring their own shovels and gloves.
There is signage at the stations indicating safe practices during the COVID-19 pandemic including keeping safe physical distancing, refraining from sharing equipment, and washing hands before and after visiting the site. All stations are open to the public to use and additional sites will be added as needed.
NEW PROVINCIAL UPDATES
- There are 228 active cases of COVID-19 in BC.
- 188 of the people in Interior Health (IH) who’ve tested positive have now recovered.
There will be an IH Town Hall hosted by MLAs Katrine Conroy and Doug Clovechok this Monday, June 1 at 7:15 p.m. PST. IH CEO Susan Brown and Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Sue Pollock will answer questions about COVID-19 in BC. Submit questions in advance at: www.gov.bc.ca/covid19townhalls
- There have been no new health-care facility outbreaks.
- Public health teams continue to provide support for community outbreaks at federal corrections facilities, processing facilities, and cases connected to Kearl Lake.
- WorkSafeBC continues to update workplace information and guidance. Check www.worksafebc.com frequently or call the WorkSafeBC Prevention Information Line at 1 888 621-SAFE, as new information is added daily.
- Changes to the Residential Tenancy Act come into effect on May 30 to include all renters experiencing violence within or outside of the home. If staying in the rental home threatens their own safety or the safety of another occupant, such as a roommate, they will now be eligible to end their tenancy.
- Starting today, May 29, the B.C. air quality alert subscription service is expanding beyond email notifications to allow people to receive real-time air quality advisories and smoky skies bulletins by text.
- The province has commended the federal government’s decision to maintain the restrictions on cruise ships in Canadian waters until October.
NEW FEDERAL UPDATES
Prime Minister Trudeau has announced $285.1 million to support the ongoing public health response to COVID-19 in Indigenous communities, $270 million to supplement the On-Reserve Income Assistance Program, and $44.8 million over five years to build 12 new shelters to protect Indigenous women and girls experiencing and fleeing violence.
- Cruise ships with overnight accommodations allowed to carry more than 100 persons will be prohibited from operating in Canadian waters until October 31, 2020. As of July 1, 2020, all other passenger vessels must follow provincial, territorial, local and regional health authority requirements for timelines and processes to resume operations.
Canada’s Chief Medical Health Officer focused comments today on a worrying trend amidst the COVID-19 response: an increase is drug overdoses, with reported spikes across the country, including B.C.
- In April, the government announced a temporary moratorium on solvency special payments to provide relief for regulated pension plan sponsors impacted by COVID-19. Today, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced the coming into force, on May 27, of the Solvency Special Payment Relief Regulations, which formally establish the moratorium.
Important Phone Numbers:
1- 888-COVID19 (1-888-268-4319). The line is for non-health COVID-19 information.
811 – for health-related information on COVID-19
211 – seniors looking for help (or volunteers willing to help), can call 211 or visit: http://www.bc211.ca/
Crisis Line: 1.888.353.2273
Kids Help Phone: 1-800-668-6868
COVID-19 Self Assessment Tool & App – use this online tool to complete a self-assessment & get updates.
BC Centre for Disease Control – includes information on their testing protocols.
Interior Health – links to the latest Interior Health information.
Government of Canada – statistics, travel info and economic and financial supports available federally.
Province of BC Information Hub – links to Provincial supports for non-health information