Newswatch COVID-19 Digest: Wednesday April 8, 2020

Cornwall Human Resources Manager Geoff Clarke speaks to a sparse, physically-distanced council while other councillors participate on the phone on Tuesday, April 7, 2020. (YouTube/City of Cornwall via Newswatch Group)

Here are the latest local, regional and national headlines on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) for Wednesday, April 8, 2020:

  • There have been 4,726 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across Ontario, an increase of 379 cases (or 8.7 per cent) from the previous day. There are 1,802 people recovered from the virus while 153 people have died. The number of Ontario people tested is 81,364 of which 691 have pending results.
  • Canada’s confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 case total is 17,897. The country has 380 COVID-19 related deaths – 43 in British Columbia, 26 in Alberta, three in Saskatchewan, three in Manitoba, 153 in Ontario, 150 in Quebec and two in Newfoundland & Labrador.
  • Cornwall, SD&G and Prescott-Russell added another positive COVID-19 case (1) to its tally on Tuesday, bringing the total number of cases to 45 (previously 44).
  • Cornwall Police Chief Danny Aikman told city council Tuesday they have responded to 56 calls to enforce orders under the Emergency Management Act. Aikman said a retail location, which he didn’t name, was given a “significant fine” over the weekend for failing to comply with orders from the local medical officer of health. The chief said they are consulting with the Crown attorney’s office about laying charges in “one of the earlier events that gained a lot of social media attention” – alluding to a Montreal Street bar that stayed open for a St. Patrick’s Day party despite a provincial order to close immediately that morning.
  • If no new cases of a respiratory illness at Glen-Stor-Dun Lodge show up between now and Saturday, the outbreak will be declared over, Administrator Steven Golden told council. All tests came back negative for COVID-19.
  • The City of Cornwall’s help line, set up on March 18, has received 520 calls so far. The number is 613-933-6282 extension 3129.
  • Despite all the provincial restrictions on construction, Cornwall Planning General Manager Mark Boileau told city council the amount of building applications remains steady as builders get ready to swing the hammers post-COVID-19.
  • There have been Cornwall ratepayers taking advantage of the tax deferral option. “Just under 5,000 properties” deferred their April tax payment – about $6 million delayed getting into city coffers, CFO Tracey Bailey said. Those taxes, originally due March 31, will now be payable by May 15 (no interest penalty).
  • Ontario has launched a website to match medical workers with employers to staff hospitals, clinics and assessment centers. “If you have medical training, we need you,” Premier Doug Ford said Tuesday. You can find the Health Workforce Matching Portal here.
  • The observation area next to the the Iroquois Lock has been closed. The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation did it “in keeping with the spirit” of the provincial emergency order and there were “multiple instances of people failing to respect social distancing” and “congregating closely together.”
  • Cruise ships along the St. Lawrence River have restrictions. The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation says, under Transport Canada rules, cruise ships carrying more than 12 passengers are not allowed – until at least the end of June.
  • The Canadian Football League has postponed the upcoming season until the beginning of July, namely because a lot of the football games are played in cities where events are not being permitted until the end of June. The original start date was June 11.

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