May 25, 2020 - COVID-19 Update

26 May 2020

Colleagues,

As many of you know, there was a wild fire in the Porters Lake area over the weekend. I want to commend Halifax Regional Fire & Emergency crews - including career and volunteer firefighters, logistics staff and senior officers - along with Ground Search & Rescue, emergency management volunteers, RCMP and the Province for tremendous work during a very scary time for residents of this community.

Earlier today we held a media briefing, and so I’d like to update you on a few highlights I shared as we move into the beginning of the COVID-19 recovery stages.

While we look toward next steps, municipal staff and Regional Council have continued discussions regarding a revised budget to account for the financial impacts of COVID-19.

Thank you to all involved for your diligence throughout the revised budget process. Your ability to adapt and work as a team through this unpredictable time has been exceptional.

There is one more virtual Special Budget Committee meeting scheduled for May 26. The final budget will be presented to Regional Council on June 9. Once these discussions have finished, we will have a clear picture of the impacts to capital and operating budgets.

In the meantime, we have begun to plan for the first stage of recovery and are exploring and developing safe ways to help reopen our economy.

As the need for social distancing will remain in place for the foreseeable future, and transportation patterns evolve throughout the recovery phases, it’s important we identify the necessary changes to our streets, sidewalks and bike lanes as part of our collective effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Today we announced phase one of theHalifax Mobility Response Plan. This plan includes measures that can be deployed quickly, while also considering what will be needed over the coming months in response to public health directives.

For further details from today’s announcement, please visit Halifax.ca/coronavirus.

It goes without saying that the past few months have been challenging on us all, as it feels like nearly every aspect of daily life is impacted by COVID-19.

We’ve seen some positive signs regarding reduced community spread of COVID-19 over the last couple of weeks and I can sense an improvement to our collective morale. It feels good to see more smiling faces walking down our streets and enjoying trails and parks while practicing social distancing.

Please continue to stay safe and follow public health directives. We’ve made a lot of progress and don’t want to take any steps back as we continue through the recovery phases.

Kind regards, amitiés, wela’lioq,

Jacques

Recognizing that the duration of this situation is unknown, and to streamline your access to information, below is list of important links.

Employee updates: hrmmatters.ca/coronavirus

Municipal service adjustments: halifax.ca/coronavirus

hfxALERT, the municipality’s mass notification system: halifax.ca/hfxalert

Municipal media briefings: Follow @hfxgov on Twitter for details regarding live streaming

Public health information: Public Health Agency of Canada and Nova Scotia Health and Wellness

Human Resources: MyHR@halifax.ca or 902.490.6145

Homewood Health’s Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP): 902.466.3327 or 1.800.663.1142

Halifax Regional Police Association EFAP: 902.430.8295 or 902.430.8296

International Association of Fire Fighters FFAP: 902.483.6068 or 902.237.9087

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