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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

COVID-19 Business Update: November 3rd, 2020

In consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and other health experts, the Ontario government has developed the Keeping Ontario Safe and Open Framework.
Information on government grants, resources, and programs, as well as policies, forms, and posters for download and use, are available here.
The Government of Canada has a support page with summaries of current programs and application portals.

Vital updates:

  • In consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and other health experts, the Ontario government has developed the Keeping Ontario Safe and Open FrameworkIt aims to ensure that public health measures are targeted, incremental and responsive to help limit the spread of COVID-19, while keeping schools and businesses open, maintaining health system capacity and protecting vulnerable people. The framework takes a gradual approach that includes introducing preventative measures earlier to help avoid broader closures and allow for additional public health and workplace safety measures to be introduced or removed incrementally. It categorizes public health unit regions into five levels: Green-Prevent, Yellow-Protect, Orange-Restrict, Red-Control, and Lockdown being a measure of last and urgent resort. The Ontario government is making $300 million available to businesses required to close or significantly restrict services in areas subject to modified Stage 2 public health restrictions (Ottawa, Peel, Toronto, and York Region) or, going forward, in areas categorized as Control or Lockdown.As of November 7, 2020, the province will transition public health unit regions to the new framework. The following proposed classifications for public health unit regions are based on data for the week of October 26, 2020. Updated data will be used for final review by the Chief Medical Officer of Health and approval by Cabinet on Friday, November 6, 2020.


  • No public health unit regions


  • No public health unit regions


  • Eastern Ontario Health Unit;
  • Ottawa Public Health;
  • Peel Public Health;
  • Toronto Public Health (may be delayed in entering Orange-Restrict level until November 14, 2020); and
  • York Region Public Health.


  • Brant County Health Unit;
  • City of Hamilton Public Health Services;
  • Durham Region Health Department; and
  • Halton Region Public Health.


  • Algoma Public Health;
  • Chatham-Kent Public Health;
  • Grey Bruce Health Unit;
  • Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington Public Health;
  • Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit;
  • Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit;
  • Hastings Prince Edward Public Health;
  • Huron Perth Public Health;
  • Lambton Public Health;
  • Leeds, Grenville & Lanark District Health Unit;
  • Middlesex-London Health Unit;
  • Niagara Region Public Health;
  • North Bay Parry Sound District;
  • Northwestern Health Unit;
  • Peterborough Public Health;
  • Porcupine Health Unit;
  • Public Health Sudbury & Districts;
  • Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services;
  • Renfrew County and District Health Unit;
  • Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit;
  • Southwestern Public Health;
  • Thunder Bay District Health Unit;
  • Timiskaming Health Unit;
  • Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health; and
  • Windsor-Essex County Health Unit.
  • The Town of Lincoln is now using the bids&tenders eProcurement system to streamline procurement posting, evaluation and contract management online. Staff and suppliers can now oversee no-contact procurement projects entirely online, allowing them to comply with social distancing restrictions. Suppliers looking to find their next opportunity with the Town of Lincoln can create an account on the town’s bids&tenders portal to review opportunities and submit responses. Suppliers will receive notifications of relevant opportunities posted by the Town, as well as from hundreds of other public, private and non-profit organizations using the platform. The automated bid compliance checker ensures bids are fully compliant before they can be submitted, minimizing the risk of disqualification due to minor errors.
  • The Canadian Chamber of Commerce, speaking for the Chamber network across Canada, has welcomed the rent and CEWS legislation introduced yesterday and called upon all parties to see it passed as soon as possible. Although broadly supportive, the Chamber hopes that the government will increase the wage subsidy back to 75% for the most-affected employers, and asks that the rent program be provided on a per-location basis.
  • The Government of Canada has proposed new changes to the Broadcasting Act which would extend rules currently applied to traditional Canadian broadcasters to their online counterparts such as Netflix and Spotify.

Reading recommendations:

  • Canadian economic decision-makers press pause for U.S. election outcome, Don Pittis, CBC News

    • With a pandemic, a minority government in Ottawa and a crumbling energy sector, the Canadian economy is already in a period of great uncertainty. This week’s election in the United States only makes things more fraught. Besides the butterflies in the tummies of those who fear the victory of one side or the other, Canadians trying to make economic, investment or even government policy decisions will likely find that not knowing the final outcome as our neighbours vote has an inevitably paralyzing effect.
  • Forget the Exit Polls, Watch Florida, Ignore Pennsylvania, Derek Thompson, The Atlantic
    • The election will be weird, no matter what. If the polls are right, and Joe Biden wins the states where he’s favored, tonight could bring the most resounding defeat of an incumbent president since Herbert Hoover lost to Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932. If the polls are wrong, and Biden concedes to President Donald Trump early tomorrow morning, it would mark the most catastrophic polling disaster in modern history. If the race is close, and no clear winner emerges by midday tomorrow, it might trigger a protracted legal battle and constitutional crisis that could send the national election to the Supreme Court for the second time in as many decades.


Niagara Economic Summit Series 2020

Where are we now, how did we get here, and where do we go? This year’s summit, taking place between November 10 and November 24, brings experts and leaders together from across the country to identify where we are economically, what our future opportunities are, and how we can seize them. Find out more and get a calendar save-the-date here.

 If you are showing symptoms, contact your health care provider, call the Public Health Info-Line at 905-688-8248, or chat to Public Health online. For testing, call 905-378-4647 ext. 42819 (4-CV19) for information on test centres in Niagara and to book an appointment.

Previous updates can be accessed here.

The GNCC is here to support you. Contact us with any questions you have.

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