Ontario just extended emergency orders for another 30 days
Emergency orders in place in Ontario under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act (ROA) and Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMPCA) keep on getting extended, and will now remain in effect until Feb. 19.
Though the province got rid of its official State of Emergency in July — until last week, when it re-implemented it due to consistently high COVID-19 case counts — emergency orders have remained in effect throughout the health crisis to give the government the continued power to do things like forcibly close businesses, set gathering limits, and amend and enforce other health and safety measures as needed.
The latest extension of the orders was only due to last until Jan. 20.
The list of construction projects deemed essential under the ROA (O. Reg. 82/20 Rules for Areas in Stage One) has been updated while an order pertaining to the management of municipal drinking water (O. Reg. 75/20 Drinking Water Systems and Sewage Works) will still expire on the 20th, but all other orders will remain as they have been.
"Extending these orders ensures the necessary tools remain in place to help respond to the disturbing increase in COVID-19 cases and deaths, and provide safeguards for Ontarians, especially our vulnerable populations," Solicitor General Sylvia Jones said over the weekend in a release about the news.
"Our government will continue to take the actions needed to preserve our health care capacity and protect Ontarians until everyone can be vaccinated."
Anyone caught defying the ROA and/or EMPCA can face fines ranging from $750 to $100,000 and up to one year in jail for an individual, or a staggering $10 million for a corporation.
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