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04032020Fri
Last updateFri, 03 Apr 2020 10am

Valley Bus open for essential services

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The Valley Bus Society is taking precautions in light of the COVID-19 Pandemic

All buses used by Valley Bus are being thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.

From Wednesday, March 18 there will only be one Valley Bus available.

This bus is to be for essential use only. These uses are getting grocery staples, visiting a pharmacy  and medical appointments.

There will be janitorial staff on the bus at all times.

For more information contact the Valley Bus at 403 823 1319.


Alberta RCMP provides update on detachment services amidst COVID-19 spread – UPDATE

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Effective immediately, Alberta RCMP detachments will be modifying service delivery at front counters and restricting access to public spaces within RCMP facilities. Signage will be displayed at all exterior public entrances reflecting the following:

  • In order to prioritize essential policing services and to reduce unnecessary contact with personnel, detachments will suspend all non-critical front counter services. Fingerprinting for Criminal Record Checks will only be done in exceptional circumstances. Non-urgent fingerprinting and Criminal Record Checks will resume at a later date.
  • Before proceeding to a detachment, please consult our provincial directory and phone the listed telephone number (http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/detach/en/find/AB#wb-cont). If assistance can be provided to you over the phone, an employee or officer will do so. If your request requires personal contact with an officer, that decision will be made over the phone.
  • The decision to limit public contact in non-urgent situations was made to ensure the health of the public and our employees so that we are able sustain essential services across Alberta.
  • Please dial 911 only in an emergency.
  • Our Operational Communication Centres are open and fully functional for all emergency calls.

“A number of changes have been put in place to protect the health of our employees and the public. These decisions were made to ensure that there were no impacts to essential services, keeping our communities safe,” said Deputy Commissioner Curtis Zablocki, Commanding Officer of the Alberta RCMP. “As Alberta's provincial police service, we have sound business continuity plans in place to ensure Albertans can continue to count on us every day, including during times of public health emergencies.”

Latest from Alberta Government on COVID-19 efforts, March 18

Screenshot 2020 03 18 COVID 19 info for Albertans

New funding and supportive measures will provide immediate financial relief to Alberta’s families, vulnerable populations, local businesses and employers.

“Albertans are doing their part to keep each other safe and prevent the spread of COVID-19. We are doing ours by assisting Albertans and their families, protecting jobs and supporting workers and employers. We will help shelter Albertans from the economic disruption of COVID-19 now, and position Alberta’s industry and businesses to bounce back when the situation stabilizes. This is an initial set of measures, and more will follow in the days to come.”
Jason Kenney, Premier

Financial supports for Albertans

Albertans should be focused on their health and not worry about whether they can pay their bills, so the government has put a number of options in place for those struggling financially:

•Emergency Isolation Support: $50 million
-This will be a temporary program for working adult Albertans who must self-isolate because they meet the Government of Alberta’s published criteria for self-isolation, including persons who are the sole caregiver for a dependent who must self-isolate because they meet the public health criteria, and who will not have another source of pay or compensation while they are self-isolated.
-It will be distributed in one payment instalment and will bridge the gap until the federal emergency payments begin in April.
-We expect the program to be accessible by a simple online application through alberta.ca next week and that funds will be deposited in the accounts of eligible recipients beginning at that time.
•Utility payment holiday
-Residential, farm, and small commercial customers can defer bill payments for the next 90 days to ensure no one will be cut off from these services during this time of crisis.
This will cover electricity and natural gas, regardless of the service provider.

•Student loans repayment holiday
-The government will implement a six-month, interest-free moratorium on Alberta student loan payments for all individuals who are in the process of repaying these loans.

Banks and credit unions

•ATB Financial customers impacted by COVID-19
-Personal banking customers can apply for a deferral on their ATB loans, lines of credit, and mortgages for up to six months.
-Small business customers, in addition to payment deferrals on loans and lines of credit, will be provided access to additional working capital.
-For other business and agriculture customers, ATB will work with customers on a one-on-one basis and further solutions are being considered at this time.
-For more information on ATB’s relief program, please visit their website.
•Alberta credit unions
-Credit union members will have access to a variety of programs and solutions designed to ease difficulties with loan payments and short-term cash flow.
-Both individual and business members are encouraged to proactively contact their credit union directly to work out a plan for their personal situation.

Employers

•Alberta employers are facing significant challenges and uncertainty. To give them increased access to cash in order to pay employees, address debts and continue operations, the government will defer the collection of corporate income tax balances and instalment payments, due after today, until Aug. 31, 2020. This gives Alberta businesses access to about $1.5 billion in funds to help them cope with the COVID-19 crisis.

“In these exceptional circumstances, having cash on hand is vital to families and employers and it’s critical we give Albertans this certainty and support. This tax measure will provide timely relief and additional runway for businesses to continue operating and compensating their employees during this difficult time," Travis Toews, President of Treasury Board and Minister of Finance.

Alberta is pleased the federal government has responded to concerns and has taken the recommendation to increase supports to people receiving Employment Insurance. Alberta has contributed far more to the federal government in employment insurance (EI) premiums than it receives in EI support, so it is good to see the federal government providing the support Albertans need in these difficult times.


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