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Complete rundown of COVID-19 restrictions in Alberta

People found not complying face fines of $1,000.

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Here’s a current list of new health regulations brought in by the province on Tuesday.

People found not complying face fines of $1,000.

No indoor social gatherings in any setting

  • Indoor close contacts must be limited to people in the same household
  • People who live alone can have up to the same 2 non-household contacts for the duration of the restriction
  • Work and support group meetings are not social gatherings, but attendance should be limited and public health measures followed
  • This does not apply to service visits from caregivers, health or child care providers and co-parenting arrangements

Outdoor gatherings max of 10

Outdoor social gatherings are limited to 10 people and must not have an indoor component

  • Backyard gatherings that require movement in/out of homes are not permitted
  • Attendees should remain distanced at all times and follow public health measures

Wedding and funeral services max of 10, no receptions permitted

  • Maximum of 10 people for wedding ceremonies or funeral services
    • This includes the officiant, bride/groom and witnesses
    • This does not include staff or organizers who are not considered an invited guest
    • This applies to any facility, including places of worship and funeral homes.
    • This includes services held indoors or outdoors, seated or non-seated.
  • Receptions are not permitted

Grades 7-12 at-home learning Nov 30-Jan 11

Grades 7-12 students

  • Move to at-home learning Nov. 30 to Jan. 8, except during winter break*
  • Resume in-person classes Jan. 11
  • Diploma exams are optional for rest of the school year. Students and families can choose to write an exam or receive an exemption for the January, April, June and August 2021 exams.

Grades K-6 students (including Early Childhood Services)

  • Continue in-person learning until their scheduled winter break (generally Dec. 18*)
  • Move to at-home learning after the winter break until Jan. 8
  • Resume in-person classes Jan. 11

*Schools have different winter break schedules, check with your school for details.

PLACES OF WORSHIP

  • Places of worship with a maximum of 1/3 normal attendance and held at normal location, including rental spaces like a community hall
  • Physical distancing between households must be maintained
  • Mask use is mandatory
  • Online services are encouraged
  • In-person faith group meetings can continue but physical distancing and public health measures must be followed

BUSINESSES

Businesses that are closed for in-person service include:

  • Banquet halls, conference centres, trade shows, auditoria and concert venues, non-approved/licensed markets, community centres
  • Children’s play places or indoor playgrounds
  • All levels of sport (professional, semi-professional, junior, collegiate/universities and amateur). Exemptions may be considered.

Most retail businesses may remain open with capacity limited to 25% of the occupancy set under the Alberta Fire Code.

  • Retail, including liquor and cannabis
  • Grocery stores
  • Pharmacies
  • Clothing stores
  • Computer and technology stores
  • Hardware
  • Automotive
  • Farmers markets approved by Alberta Agriculture and Forestry
  • Unlicensed outdoor seasonal markets

Some entertainment and event services may remain open with capacity limited to 25% of the occupancy set under the Alberta Fire Code.

  • Movie theatres
  • Museums and galleries
  • Libraries
  • Casinos, offering slots only. Table games must be closed at this time.
  • Indoor entertainment centres including amusement parks, water parks, bingo halls and racing centres.
  • Indoor fitness, recreation, sports and physical activity centres, including dance and yoga studios, martial arts, gymnastics and private or public swimming pools.
    • Facilities can be open for individual studio time, training or exercise only.
    • There can be no group fitness, group classes, group training, team practices or games.
    • Instructors can use facility to broadcast virtual fitness classes from, but there can be no group class.

BARS AND PUBS

Restaurants, bars, pubs and lounges will be open with restrictions if they follow all public health guidance in place including:

  • Maximum of 6 people from the same immediate household at a table and no movement between tables.
    • People who live alone can meet with up to 2 non-household contacts as long as they’re the same two throughout the duration of these restrictions
  • Only seated eating and drinking is permitted. No other services or entertainment will be allowed, including billiards, games or darts.
  • Liquor can be sold until 10 pm and food-serving establishments must close to in person-dining at 11 pm. Liquor sales apply to casinos, but casinos are not required to close at 11 pm.

Businesses open by appointment only are not permitted to offer walk-in services. Appointments should be limited to one-on-one services.

  • Personal services such as hair salons and barbershops, esthetics, manicure, pedicure, body waxing and make-up, piercing and tattoo services,
  • Wellness services including acupuncture, massage and reflexology
  • Professional services such as lawyers, mediators, accountants and photographers
  • Private one-on-one lessons (no private group lessons permitted)
  • Hotels, motels, hunting and fishing lodges

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard and the Vice-President: News Division of Western Standard New Media Corp. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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BREAKING: Alberta to run out of COVID vaccine Monday, Kenney says

This means the planned vaccination of First Nations and Métis individuals and seniors over age 75 has been put on hold.

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Alberta Premier Jason Kenney says while the COVID-19 vaccination program has gone well in Alberta so far, they will soon have no more shots to give.

“Due to the unexpected supply disruption the federal government announced last week, Alberta will have no more vaccine doses available to administer as first doses by the end of today or early tomorrow,” said Kenney in a Monday statement.

“Accordingly, no more new first dose appointments will be accepted and some first dose appointments already booked will be rescheduled over the coming days to accommodate limited supply. Doses have been allocated to ensure second doses are available for committed appointments.

“As I have stated several times since our vaccine rollout started, our ability to get needed vaccine in the arms of Albertans is limited by the number of vaccine doses we have on hand. It is frustrating to see this happen while other countries, like the United States, the United Kingdom, and Israel have received significantly larger quantities of vaccines.

“I am deeply disappointed at the situation we are now facing. The news on January 15 that Pfizer shipments would be cut by 20 to 80 per cent over the coming weeks only adds to our frustration and means we have had to significantly slow down our vaccination plan.

“Alberta currently has the capacity to deliver 50,000 doses per week. In March, we expect to be able to administer about 200,000 doses per week. But we do not have the supply to match. Unfortunately, this means that the planned vaccination of First Nations and Métis individuals and seniors over age 75 has been put on hold.

“I want to assure Albertans that despite this setback, we remain in position to immediately ramp-up and get back to record vaccination numbers once sufficient doses are delivered. We remain undeterred in our efforts to get vaccines to those who need them most.”

…more to come

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

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As politicians weigh in on KXL cancellation, Trudeau remains silent

“Where is the Prime Minister on this?” Scott Moe tweeted.

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Politicians from most federal and Alberta parties have thrown in their two-cents worth on the looming cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline expansion – everyone that is, except Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Trudeau has made no comment since it was reported last night that US President-elect Joe Biden would cancel the US$8 billion pipeline project the first day he’s in office on January 20.

His office said Monday morning he has no public comments planned.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney – whose UCP government invested $1.5 billion of taxpayers money in the Keystone XL pipeline expansion project – says he’s “concerned” about the reports. Along with the direct cash investment, Alberta gave TC Energy a $6 billion loan guarantee in 2021. Cancellation of the project could be potential ruinous not for both Alberta’s economy, and government finances.

And if Biden does cancel the project, Kenney said he will sue.

“The risk surrounding the Keystone XL pipeline has been very obvious for some time. Nevertheless, Jason Kenney jeopardized up to $7.5 billion of Alberta taxpayers’ money on this project and now we’re learning it may be stopped altogether,” said NDP leader Rachel Notley.

“While there’s no question that the successful completion of KXL can be beneficial to Alberta’s economy, the Premier has never come clean on the economic and risk analysis associated with his massive gamble.

“From the moment that Albertans’ dollars were put at risk, Jason Kenney has also continued to reject the importance of a strong environmental and climate policy that would help make the case for KXL.

Notley tweet

“With KXL facing critical moments in the coming days, Albertans deserve to know exactly how much of their money is at stake. Jason Kenney and the UCP need to stop hiding this deal from Albertans and finally release it in its entirety.”

Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe expressed disappointment over the news.

“Construction of this project should be a top priority for Canadian-U.S. economic relations. It is critical to North American energy security, will have a tremendous employment impact north and south of the border and has garnered significant indigenous support,” said Moe.

Moe Tweet

“Environmentally, Keystone will reach net-zero emissions when it first turns on, and will be powered by 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030.

“While I am urging the Prime Minister to leverage his relationship with Mr. Biden, Saskatchewan will continue exercising our contacts in Washington D.C. to advocate for the continuation of this project that clearly benefits both of our nations.”

During the Democratic primaries and campaign, Biden vowed to kill the pipeline, large portions of which have already been built in Alberta. He made the vow before Alberta invested it’s $1.5 billion and made $6 billion in loan guarantees.

The Democratic candidate and the vice president-elect, Kamala Harris, have also said in the past they would put an end to fracking, a promise they did not repeat during the campaign.

The Keystone pipeline runs from Alberta to refineries in Illinois and Texas.

The new pipeline would run from Hardisty, Alberta to Steele City, Nebraska.

And Moe asked a final question Monday morning.

“Where is the Prime Minister on this?” Moe tweeted.

…. more to come

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

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Kenney ‘concerned’ of reports Biden to cancel KXL

And if Biden does cancel the project, Kenney said he will sue.

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Alberta Premier Jason Kenney – whose UCP government invested $1.5 billion of taxpayers money in the Keystone XL pipeline expansion project – says he’s “concerned” about reports from south of the border that President-elect Joe Biden is set to cancel the project.

And if Biden does cancel the project, Kenney said he will sue.

Reports from Washington Sunday night said Biden will cancel the project on the first day he is in office, January 20.

Biden was vice-president and stood by President Barack Obama on November 6, 2015, in the Oval Office when he cancelled Keystone. President Donald Trump overturned that decision and granted a permit.

Kenney’s statement was critical of the pending decision, but made no mention of the $1.5 billion ownership stake his government took in the project. Biden publicly committed to killing the pipeline project along before the decision to purchase a portion of the pipeline was made by the UCP government.

“I am deeply concerned by reports that the incoming administration of President-elect Joe Biden may repeal the Presidential permit for the Keystone XL border crossing next week,” Kenney said in a statement.

“Doing so would kill jobs on both sides of the border, weaken the critically important Canada-U.S. relationship, and undermine U.S. national security by making the United States more dependent on OPEC oil imports in the future.

“In 2019, the United States imported 9.14 million barrels per day of petroleum, 3.7 million of which came from Canada. The rest comes from countries like Venezuela and Saudi Arabia, none of whom share the commitment of Canada and the United States to environmental stewardship, combatting climate change, or North American energy security.

“As President-elect Biden’s green jobs plan acknowledges, Americans will consume millions of barrels of oil per day for years to come. It is in perfect keeping with his plan that the United States energy needs should be met by a country that takes the challenges of climate change seriously.

“The Keystone XL pipeline also represents tens of thousands of good-paying jobs that the American economy needs right now. That is why major American labour unions who supported President-elect Biden’s campaign strongly back the project, as do First Nations who have signed partnership agreements, and all state governments along the pipeline route.

“Prime Minister Trudeau raised the issue with President-elect Biden on their November 9, 2020, telephone meeting, agreeing ‘to engage on key issues, including … energy cooperation such as Keystone XL.’

“We renew our call on the incoming administration to show respect for Canada as the United States’ most important trading partner and strategic ally by keeping that commitment to engage, and to allow Canada to make the case for strengthening cooperation on energy, the environment, and the economy through this project.

“Should the incoming U.S. Administration abrogate the Keystone-XL permit, Alberta will work with TC Energy to use all legal avenues available to protect its interest in the project.”

During the Democratic primaries and campaign, Biden vowed to kill the pipeline, large portions of which have already been built in Alberta. He made the vow before Alberta invested it’s $1.5 billion.

The Democratic candidate and the vice president-elect, Kamala Harris, have also said in the past they would put an end to fracking, a promise they did not repeat during the campaign.

The Keystone pipeline runs from Alberta to refineries in Illinois and Texas.

The new pipeline would run from Hardisty, Alberta to Steele City, Nebraska.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

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