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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: June 29th, 2021

The federal and provincial governments are investing $51.2 million to protect the health of residents in 129 municipalities across Ontario.

Free rapid COVID-19 testing kits are now available to businesses

Visit to learn more and reserve kits for your organization.

Niagara municipalities receive provincial & federal infrastructure funding

The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing more than $51.2 million to protect the health, and well-being of residents in 129 municipalities across Southwestern, Midwestern and Central Ontario. Funding will support the development of modern and accessible recreational spaces, and the replacement of equipment in health and emergency facilities. Other investments include increased options for active transportation, and the renovation of municipal infrastructure and community centres to provide safe and inclusive spaces for residents across Southwestern, Midwestern and Central Ontario.

Niagara municipalities are receiving the following funding:

MunicipalityFederal ContributionProvincial Contribution
Fort Erie$243,312$60,828
Niagara Falls$1,658,782$414,696
Port Colborne$170,400$42,600
St. Catharines$1,104,749$276,187
West Lincoln$80,000$20,000

Government of Canada to require 100% of car and passenger truck sales be zero-emission by 2035 in Canada

Today, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, and the Minister of Canadian Heritage, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, announced that the Government of Canada is setting a mandatory target for all new light-duty cars and passenger trucks sales to be zero-emission by 2035, accelerating Canada’s previous goal of 100 percent sales by 2040.

To ensure Canada gets to this goal, and to provide certainty about the pathway to get there, the Government of Canada will pursue a combination of investments and regulations to help Canadians and industry transition to achieve the 100 percent zero-emission vehicle sales by 2035. It will work also with partners to develop interim 2025 and 2030 targets, and additional mandatory measures that may be needed beyond Canada’s light-duty vehicle greenhouse gas emissions regulations. For more information, read here.

Ontario releases discussion paper to improve transportation vision for greater Golden Horseshoe

Today, the Ontario government released a discussion paper for public feedback that will inform the province’s first transportation plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe. Ontario is building a better transportation system to connect communities and keep goods and people moving across the province, including in Ontario’s economic engine, the Greater Golden Horseshoe.

Online Course Provides Guidance on COVID-19 Risk Assessments and Workplace Safety Plans

The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) has developed a free online course to help organizations in Canada conduct a COVID-19 workplace risk assessment and safety plan.

COVID-19 Workplace Risk Assessment and Safety Plan is available in English and French. The course outlines the steps needed to plan and conduct a COVID-19 workplace risk assessment, and to plan and evaluate a workplace safety plan.

Managers, supervisors, and health and safety committee members or representatives will learn the work and personal factors to consider when assessing and preventing the risk of exposure, reviewing a safety plan to ensure it is effective, and keeping up to date with current COVID-19 guidelines.

COVID-19 Workplace Risk Assessment and Safety Plan is available on the CCOHS website.

Quick facts

  • The average time to complete this course is approximately 20 minutes.
  • CCOHS courses are unique in that they are developed by subject specialists in the field, and reviewed by representatives from labour, employers, and government to ensure the content and approach are unbiased and credible.

Niagara Health closing assessment centres, as demand for COVID-19 tests decreases

Despite efforts to encourage more people — even with mild symptoms — to get tested for COVID-19, Niagara Health has announced planned closures of testing locations in Welland and Niagara Falls due to a lack of demand.

Meanwhile, Niagara Region Public Health reported a record number of vaccinations for Monday, with 7,392 doses of vaccine administered by health-care workers. Only four new positive cases of COVID-19 in Niagara were reported Tuesday, while 169 cases remain active.

Niagara Health names its president Lynn Guerriero permanent CEO

Niagara Health president Lynn Guerriero has had another title added to her job description.

On Tuesday the hospital system named Guerriero its permanent chief executive officer, after having filled the position on an interim basis since January.

“Lynn is well known for her authentic leadership style, her ability to build strong relationships and her commitment to a positive workplace culture,” board chair Bunny Alexander said in a release.

“She has a deep understanding of how a more integrated health-care system benefits patient care.”

Guerriero was named president of Niagara Health in February 2020, three weeks before the global COVID-19 pandemic was declared.

Reading Recommendations

$1.9B a year to address natural disasters in Canada among 4 takeaways from federal climate report

Chris Arsenault, CBC News

With British Columbia recording its hottest temperatures on record, the federal government released its latest major report on climate change, probing how a warming planet will impact everything from infrastructure to tourism and geopolitics.

The costs of natural disasters from extreme weather are rising rapidly, averaging $1.9 billion annually, up about $400 million from a decade ago, a senior official with Natural Resources Canada told journalists on Monday.

“There is abundant research indicating that current efforts to adapt are insufficient in the face of rapidly accumulating social and economic losses from current and future climate change impacts,” according to the report, Canada in a Changing Climate: National Issues.

“Research also demonstrates that the window for taking action to reduce increasingly severe impacts is rapidly closing.”

Elon Musk’s Starlink to deliver internet nearly worldwide within weeks

Thomas Seal, BNN Bloomberg

Elon Musk’s satellite network Starlink is on track to beam broadband internet everywhere in the world except polar regions by August, he said on Tuesday.

Space Exploration Technologies Corp. has launched more than 1,500 satellites so far and has Starlink operations in about a dozen countries, Musk said during a presentation at the Mobile World Congress conference. That’s costing a lot. SpaceX’s total investment in the network will be between US$5 billion and US$10 billion before cash flow is positive, he said.

“We recently passed the strategically notable number of 69,420 active users,” Musk joked. “We’re I think on our way to having a few hundred thousand users, possibly over 500,000 users within 12 months.”

Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine is in limbo with no additional Canadian shipments planned

John Paul Tasker, CBC News

The one-dose COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson & Johnson’s pharmaceutical division, Janssen, was heralded as an easy way to fully vaccinate Canadians. But after some problems at a U.S. manufacturing plant and cratering domestic demand for the product, there are now no plans to ship this vaccine to Canada.

A government official, speaking on background to CBC News, said Canada has ordered 10 million doses of this product but “at this time, there are no additional shipments confirmed.”

Joelle Paquette, the director general responsible for vaccine procurement at Public Services and Procurement Canada, said earlier this month that Johnson & Johnson would deliver some of its shots by the end of June.

With just one day left in the month, that shipment is now no longer expected. There’s no word on when more doses could arrive, either.

Niagara COVID Stats Tracker (June 19)

December 18December 25January 1January 8January 15January 22January 29
Reproductive number1.
New cases per 100,000101.2267.3469.8575.8507.1295.5250.6
New cases per day (not including outbreaks)60.7178.7311.7376.9325.4182.7145.7
Percent of hospital beds occupied97%95.2%98.2%103.2%104.5%103.6%106%
Percent of intensive care beds occupied78.8%77.3%87.9%87.9%90.9%89.4%93.9%
Percentage of positive tests6.1%15.6%28.1%28.6%26.6%21.2%16.2%

These data show the status of the COVID-19 pandemic in Niagara. The Province of Ontario is now using a provincewide approach to reopening, and these data no longer have any influence on Niagara’s restrictions.

Data are drawn from Niagara Region Public Health.


Reproductive number: the average number of new cases each case causes. If each person infects one other person, the rate is 1; if each person infects two people, the rate is 2. Under the outdated COVID-19 response framework, the target for “green-prevent” was less than 1.

New cases per 100,000: the total number of new cases per week identified per 100,000 population. Under the outdated COVID-19 response framework, the target for “green-prevent” was less than 10.

New cases per day: the total number of new cases identified per day over seven days using a rolling average. This number does not include identified outbreaks.

Percent of hospital beds occupied: the total percentage of the Niagara Health System’s hospital beds currently in use. The average occupancy rate of both acute care beds and total hospital beds in Ontario was 96 per cent in 2018-19. It should be noted that this rate was the highest (worst) in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Percent of intensive care beds occupied: the total percentage of the Niagara Health System’s intensive care hospital beds currently in use. The average occupancy rate of both acute care beds and total hospital beds in Ontario was 96 per cent in 2018-19. It should be noted that this rate was the highest (worst) in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Percentage of positive tests: the percentage of COVID-19 tests that were positive. Under the outdated COVID-19 response framework, the target for “green-prevent” was less than 0.5%.

Niagara COVID vaccination tracker (June 29)

Niagara’s most up-to-date vaccination numbers are presented below, along with comparison data from Ontario, Canada, and G7 countries.

Total doses administered in Niagara: 439,994

Total doses administered in Niagara since yesterday: 7,392

Ontario will move into Step Two of the Roadmap to Reopen on June 30, 2021.

Step Three of the Roadmap to Reopen will begin when Ontario has vaccinated 70-80% of adults with one dose, 25% of adults with two doses, has positive public health indicators, and has been in Step Two for at least 21 days.

Percentage of population with one dosePercentage of population fully vaccinated
United States75%64%
United Kingdom78%72%

Data are drawn from Niagara Region, the Government of Ontario, and Oxford University’s Our World in Data project.

Information on government grants, resources, and programs, policies, forms, and posters for download and use, are available here.The GNCC is here to support you. Contact us with any questions you have.
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