Officials remind the public that we are still in the midst of a global pandemic. File photo

Comox Valley leaders urge community not to become complacent

Comox Valley local governments are supporting the Government of British Columbia in the effort to contain the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) by assisting with public education on new enforcement orders.

Local bylaw officers are not empowered to ticket or detain people over public health enforcement orders. Any enforcement will be conducted by the RCMP or provincial enforcement officers. Bylaw officers will pass along any complaints provided to the RCMP for follow-up.

Effective Friday, Aug. 21, people acting in unsafe or aggressive ways at large gatherings or in businesses can be issued a fine or violation ticket by police and other provincial enforcement officers:

• $2,000 for hosting a private party or public event with 50-plus people;

• $2,000 for hosting a gathering without hand sanitation, enough space for physical distancing or washroom facilities;

• $2,000 for having more than five guests attend an event at a vacation rental;

• $200 for anyone who refuses to leave a gathering or event when directed to do so;

• $200 for anyone who refuses to follow COVID-19 safety rules at a restaurant, gathering or event, and becomes abusive or belligerent towards employees.

“Unsafe behaviour by a minority of people puts all of us at risk,” said CVRD board chair and EOC spokesperson Jesse Ketler. “As COVID-19 cases continue to rise globally, every single one of us has an important role to play. With the increase in cases in B.C. over these past few weeks, and new cases on Vancouver Island, we must remain vigilant. I urge our community not to become complacent – we are still in the midst of a global pandemic. We can all lead by example by practising the safety measures the Provincial Health Officer has put into place.”

Local bylaw officers can help follow-up on concerns and engage the RCMP, health officers and WorkSafeBC as necessary. Contact the Courtenay RCMP non-emergency line at 250-338-1321 to report a concern.

Local Government Bylaw Office Contact Information:

Hours of operation: Monday to Friday (8:30 -4:30 p.m.)

CVRD: bylawenforcement@comoxvalleyrd.ca | 250-334-6000 | www.comoxvalleyrd.ca/bylaw

City of Courtenay: bylaw@courtenay.ca |250-334-4441 |www.courtenay.ca/bylaw

Town of Comox: 250-339-2202 | www.comox.ca/contact

Village of Cumberland: 250-336-2291 | www.cumberland.ca

Residents are encouraged to follow the CVRD social media channels @comoxvalleyrd on Facebook and Twitter, as well as visiting the CVRD website www.comoxvalleyrd.ca/covid19 to remain up to date on accurate information. All Comox Valley local governments are centralizing regional COVID-19 information through these channels.

The Emergency Operations Centre is standing by to support the lead agencies, Ministry of Health and Island Health, if requested at the federal and provincial level. The Emergency Operations team with representatives from the DND/19-Wing Comox, K’ómoks First Nation, CVRD, City of Courtenay, Town of Comox, Village of Cumberland, Fire Chiefs Association, and other external agencies and organizations are working together to collaborate on response measures and best practices for the region.

FMI: www.comoxvalleyrd.ca/covid19

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