As the coronavirus pandemic continues, the provincial government has extended all emergency orders currently in place for another two weeks until May 19.
Announced Wednesday morning under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, the extension comes on the advice of the chief medical officer of health, the government said.
Premier Doug Ford first announced a state of emergency on March 17 under the act and ordered all non-essential businesses to close due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The emergency order was then extended again on April 14.
When in effect, the emergency act gives the provincial government the power to enforce emergency orders, which currently includes the closure of all non-essential workplaces, outdoor amenities such as parks and recreational areas, public places, and bars and restaurants, as well as restrictions on social gatherings of more than five people, and prohibitions against price-gouging.
The provincial government also announced Wednesday that residences, farms, and small businesses will continue to be billed at the lowest price for hydro — known as off-peak pricing — 24 hours a day, seven days a week, until May 31.
This electricity rate relief, which initially provided a 45-day relief period starting on March 24, 2020, has also been extended under the act.
“During this extraordinary period, many people are struggling to pay the bills as they do the right thing by staying at home, as well as our farmers and those whose businesses have closed or suffered reduced customer traffic,” said Premier Doug Ford.
“Although we are making progress in our fight against this COVID-19 outbreak, we are not out of the woods yet. The extension of this electricity rate relief will leave more money in people’s pockets until businesses can start to reopen and people can get back to work.”
A full list of all emergency orders currently in place can be found here.