From the Province of Alberta
Strong public health measures are being implemented to protect the health system and limit the spread of COVID-19.
Expanded mandatory and voluntary limits on social gatherings are now in place to help reduce growing caseloads.
New COVID-19 measures
- Effective immediately, new mandatory and voluntary public health measures will help protect the health system and limit the spread of COVID-19.
- All Edmonton and Calgary residents should stop holding social gatherings within their homes and instead socialize in structured settings where it is easier to limit risk of exposure.
- The mandatory 15-person limit on social gatherings is being expanded to all communities on the watch list.
- Voluntary measures to limit cohorts to no more than three and to wear masks in the workplace unless able to safely distance are also strongly recommended for any community on the watch list, regardless of location.
- Additional measures to bolster Alberta’s public health response:
- AHS is prioritizing the hiring of about 380 additional contact tracing staff that will expand the contact tracing team to more than 1,100 people.
- To support contact tracing, all Albertans should download ABTraceTogether, Alberta’s contact tracing app.
- Alberta will also be shifting back to daily reporting of case numbers and information, including on weekends and holidays.
- To date, 24,684 Albertans have recovered from COVID-19.
- There are currently 6,822 active cases in the province.
- Over the last 48 hours:
- 802 new cases were identified on Nov. 4
- 609 new cases were identified on Nov. 5
- Alberta labs have now performed 1,869,192 tests on 1,305,540 people.
- There were nine additional deaths since Nov. 3, bringing the total number of COVID-19 deaths to 352.
- All zones across the province have cases:
- Calgary Zone: 2,886 active cases and 10,966 recovered
- South Zone: 398 active cases and 2,216 recovered
- Edmonton Zone: 2,819 active cases and 8,713 recovered
- North Zone: 431 active cases and 1,821 recovered
- Central Zone: 255 active cases and 914 recovered
- 33 active cases and 54 recovered cases in zones to be confirmed
- Additional information, including case totals, is online.
- There are 392 active cases and 1,631 recovered cases at continuing care facilities; 221 facility residents have died.
- School case information will be updated on Monday.
Updated contact tracing approach
- Alberta is piloting a targeted contact testing approach. This will make contact tracing faster and focus on populations at greatest risk of illness and further spreading COVID-19.
- Alberta Health Services will directly notify close contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases in three priority groups only:
- health-care workers
- minors (parents will still be notified if their child has been exposed in a school setting)
- individuals who live or work within congregate or communal facilities
- AHS will no longer directly notify close contacts outside of these three priority groups, at this time.
- Albertans outside the priority groups who test positive will be asked to notify their own close contacts.
- AHS will continue to directly notify all positive cases of COVID-19 of their result, identify priority contacts that AHS will notify, and provide the case with guidance on notifying their own contacts.
Province orders dismissal of Chestermere Mayor, three councillors, and all three CAO’s
City of Chestermere/Facebook)
City of Chestermere councillors and senior staff dismissed
Minister of Municipal Affairs Ric McIver has issued a ministerial order dismissing four of the City of Chestermere’s municipal councillors and all three chief administrative officers (CAOs).
After the city failed to comply with the supervision of the official administrator and some of the minister’s directives that have been in place since March 15, 2023, Minister McIver has dismissed Mayor Jeff Colvin, Coun. Mel Foat, Coun. Blaine Funk and Coun. Stephen Hanley, as well as the three CAOs.
The directives, intended to restore good governance to the City of Chestermere, were issued following a municipal inspection. Since then, the city has continued to be managed in an irregular, improper and improvident manner.
“The directives issued by my predecessor are not onerous and represent the bare minimum that citizens ought to expect from their municipal government. However, after undertaking all reasonable efforts to have the city comply with its obligations, it has failed to do so. I am profoundly disappointed that it has come to this, but the people of Chestermere deserve better. This community should be able to have trust in its local elected government.”
While the minister determined that the city has failed to comply with its obligations, he has also determined that dismissal of Coun. Shannon Dean, Coun. Sandy Johal-Watt and Coun. Ritesh Narayan was not justified given their efforts to hold council to account and attempt to move council in a more positive direction toward proper governance practices and compliance with legislation.
Councillors Dean, Johal-Watt and Narayan remain as elected councillors but will have no role in the governance of the city until a byelection is held and council quorum is restored.
The ministerial order dismissing Chestermere council members and senior administration is effective Dec. 4. An official administrator and interim CAO are in place to oversee the City of Chestermere’s governance and operations until a byelection is held to elect new councillors for the vacant positions at a date to be determined in 2024.
- A municipal inspection was ordered by the minister of Municipal Affairs under the Municipal Government Act (Section 571) in May 2022.
- The independent inspection, which concluded in September 2022, found the City of Chestermere to be managed in an irregular, improper and improvident manner.
- An official administrator was appointed in September 2022 to supervise the municipality and its council.
- On March 15, 2023, the minister of Municipal Affairs issued 12 binding directives through a ministerial order requiring the City of Chestermere to take action to address key areas of concern.
- On Oct. 18, the minister of Municipal Affairs issued to the City of Chestermere a notice of intent to issue a ministerial order which would dismiss all seven council members from office, as well as all three CAOs.
Premier Smith reacts to Liberal Government’s announcement on new methane reduction targets at COP 28
Federal methane emissions targets: Joint statement
“Once again, the federal government is setting unrealistic targets and timelines. Infrastructure can only be updated as quickly as technology allows. For example, Alberta will not accept nor impose a total ban on flaring at this time, as it is a critical health and safety practice during production. Any regulation that completely prohibits this is putting lives at risk”
Premier Danielle Smith and Minister of Environment and Protected Areas Rebecca Schulz issued the following statement on the federal government’s proposed methane emissions regulations:
“The federal government has unilaterally established new methane emissions rules and targets to help win international headlines. Instead of building on Alberta’s award-winning approach, Ottawa wants to replace it with costly, dangerous and unconstitutional new federal regulations that won’t benefit anyone beyond Environment and Climate Change Minister Steven Guilbeault’s post-office career.
“Managing emissions from Alberta’s oil and gas industry is our constitutional right and responsibility, not Ottawa’s, and we are getting the job done. Using a province-led approach, Alberta has already reduced methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 45 per cent – hitting our target three years early – and we’re just getting started.
“Meanwhile, not only is it illegal for Ottawa to attempt to regulate our industries in this manner, Ottawa also hasn’t even hit one of its past arbitrary and unscientific emissions targets largely because it has little to no credible expertise regulating the natural resource, agricultural and other industry sectors in this space.
“Ottawa could have helped us keep reducing emissions with joint incentive programs in line with Alberta’s Emissions Reduction and Energy Development Plan. It could have listened to the Supreme Court’s declaration that the Impact Assessment Act was unconstitutional and abandoned this kind of arrogant and ineffective scheme. Instead, these new regulations threaten our successful province-led approach and impede good work that’s already underway.
“Once again, the federal government is setting unrealistic targets and timelines. Infrastructure can only be updated as quickly as technology allows. For example, Alberta will not accept nor impose a total ban on flaring at this time, as it is a critical health and safety practice during production. Any regulation that completely prohibits this is putting lives at risk. A total ban would also be costly, resulting in shut-ins and loss of production.
“This approach will also cost tens of billions in infrastructure upgrades, yet Ottawa has provided virtually no financial support to do so. Thousands of Albertans could be put out of work in the coming years due to these costly regulations. A federal government willing to invest $37.7 billion into just three battery plants in Ontario and Quebec cannot credibly refuse to provide tax credits and financial incentives for producers in Alberta and Saskatchewan to assist with achieving a carbon-neutral economy by 2050.
“For years, Alberta, not Ottawa, has done the hard work and achieved results. We strongly support reducing methane emissions and have invested tens of millions into developing these technologies. Minister Guilbeault must work with us, and not against us, to keep cutting methane emissions and charting a course for carbon neutrality by 2050.
“Given the unconstitutional nature of this latest federal intrusion into our provincial jurisdiction, our government will use every tool at our disposal to ensure these absurd federal regulations are never implemented in our province.”
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