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Region of Queens Municipality

Nova Scotia, Canada

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Current COVID-19 Information Updates

Reference this page for updates about the situation in Queens County. 

 

Media release: Region of Queens Municipality’s Administration Offices Re-Opening to the Public

May 28, 2020; Liverpool, NS: As the Nova Scotian economy begins to open up, Region of Queens Municipality is re-opening the Administration Building for public access starting on June 1, 2020.

“Our community, along with the rest of Nova Scotia, Canada and the world, has experienced challenges over the past two months. Region of Queens Municipality’s staff have continued to provide service to our community throughout the pandemic, using internet and telephone options. We are happy to be able to offer more services to our residents and the general public. Safety is at the forefront of our reopening, and we have implemented a wide assortment of protocols to observe social distancing, maximum gathering limits, and hygienic measures for the protection of the public and our staff, and will adjust our protocols as needed in response to evolving Public Health guidelines.”

Most municipal services continue to be available online, and residents are not required to conduct business in person at the Administration building; however, beginning June 1, 2020 at 8:30 a.m., public access to the municipal administration building will be available through access points at two doors only - the Finance Department entrance and the Planning & Development/Engineering & Works Departments’ entrance. There will be signage in place, and each of these entrances have parking nearby and will minimize the opportunity to block walkways.

Public members will continue to use the Finance Department entrance to pay taxes, water and sewer accounts, obtain vending permits, pay for building and planning permits, and obtain and pay for dog registrations. The second entrance at Planning & Development Service/Engineering & Works will be used to access supports and information related to building permit and development permit requests, bylaw enforcement, planning matters and municipal infrastructure information. The Recreation and Economic Development entrance will remain closed, but residents can visit one of the other entrances for these services.

Residents will be able to enter one at a time unless support is required from a family member or caregiver. Another individual will be permitted to enter however; they must immediately enter and sit in the chairs provided which will be a safe distance from the counter and the individual being served. If more individuals are present outside the door, they will be asked to remain outside until invited in and to physically distance.

In addition to the Administration Building reopening, a number of services that had temporarily been on hold will be available, effective June 1, 2020. Public market permits and vending permits will be available, with approved safety plans in place, and enforcement will resume for parking meters and timed parking lots.

“The new normal we are experiencing is different and will take some getting used to, but is necessary to help reduce the risk of spreading of COVID-19,” said Mayor Dagley. “Many in our business community will also be opening and expanding their services next week. We encourage residents to support our local businesses, as these have been challenging times for their businesses. They have adapted to the changes, as have our residents. I am proud that Queens County residents have continued to show their resilience and strength.”

Queens Place Emera Centre will remain closed at the present time and a plan for that facility will be forthcoming at a later date.

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Region of Queens Municipality
COVID-19 UPDATE

May 19, 2020:  On May 15th Premier McNeil and Dr. Robert Strang announced the relaxing of some previous Covid-19 restrictions. The warmer spring weather on Sunday and Monday were hopefully an indication that spring has finally arrived.

Another unfortunate tragedy has occurred with the crash of a Snowbird plane in British Columbia. Our hearts go out to all members of our Armed Forces, and their family and friends during this difficult time.

As of today, the Province advises of 1 new case, to now total 1,044 positive cases of Covid-19 in Nova Scotia, with 54 of those positive tests being collected in our Western Zone. Unfortunately, there have been a total of 56 Covid-19 deaths in the Province. While the Western Zone has not reported a new case since April 21st, please be considerate of the fact that Covid-19 may be anywhere, so continue to take all necessary precautions of self-distancing by at least 2 meters or 6 feet, washing hands frequently, and avoid rubbing your eyes, mouth or touching your face.

Some of the restrictions recently lifted are:
* Public beaches in Nova Scotia were opened effective May 16, 2020, including Beach Meadows Beach

* Kejimkujik National Park and Kejimkujik Seaside remain closed until at least June 1, 2020.

The following outdoor activities were allowed to resume effective, May 16, 2020:

* Golf, Sailing/boating, Paddling, Tennis, Equestrian and Archery.
These activities are able to resume with the understanding that people can safely participate in them without the need for an official sport program. Please note that there can be no practices, coaching, spectators, or tournaments, competitions, etc. Resumption of these activities is approved providing they take place outdoors and are done by an individual or by multiple people who can maintain a physical distance of at least 2 metres.

* Nova Scotian`s can also choose to create an immediate family bubble from two immediate family households, or two households of their choosing, coming together without physical distancing. This could mean parents, siblings, grandparents, however families will have to figure out who is in their bubble. The two households must be mutually exclusive. Before, during and after activities while at the location where the activity occurs, individuals must maintain physical distancing of at least 2 metres from others except when two or more individuals are in the same immediate family bubble. Activities must not include the sharing of common equipment unless the individuals are from the same immediate family bubble.

* The province-wide ban on open fires and brush burning has been extended to Monday, June 1 at 11:59 p.m. Use of backyard appliances like chimineas and fire pits will be temporarily permitted for house holds outside of the 8 AM to 2 PM burn ban time, unless a closure is in effect.

* A family may use their cottage or seasonal campsite and include their bubble household.

As the Covid-19 infection curve flattens, one can expect additional changes to be made to the safety protocols which have been put in place under the declaration of the State of Emergency. Please keep safe.

Mayor David Dagley

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Region of Queens Municipality
PROGRAM AND SERVICE UPDATES 

May 13, 2020:  The past two months have been difficult for everyone as we try to support each other and stay safe in light of COVID-19. The Municipality has endeavored to continue to provide all of the programs, services and infrastructure that our residents have expected from us in line with provincial Orders and directives. Today, we wish to provide our community with further updates as they relate to some of our programs, services, and facilities for the next 3-4 months. SAFETY always has, and will continue to be, our NUMBER ONE PRIORITY for our staff and our residents. There is no clear understanding of what the next few months will hold or what restrictions will continue to be in place. In light of this, the Municipality has made the following decisions:

1. Due to the inability of water safety instructors and lifeguards to physically distance from swimmers, small change facilities that do not allow for physical distancing, and the inability of our instructors and lifeguards to complete the required water safety and lifeguard certifications because of these restrictions and cancelled training opportunities, both Milton Centennial Pool and North Queens Aquatic Centre will not open in 2020.

2. Due to the restriction on physical gatherings being limited to small groups and for the safety of our citizens, our full Canada Day celebration scheduled for July 1, 2020, in Privateer Park, Liverpool, is being postponed. We will still consider having a fireworks display on that day if possible and permissible considering all required safety measures in place leading up to July 1st.

3. Our 2020-2021 budget included a Summer Concert Series in various community parks throughout Queens County. Due to the restriction on community gathering sizes expected to be limited to small numbers for the foreseeable future and the safety of our residents, this concert series has been cancelled.

4. Normally, the municipality conducts 2-3 tax sales a year and sells properties that are more than three years in arrears. Based on the current pandemic situation and the inability for purchasers to physically distance during these in-person sales, no tax sales will take place in the fiscal year 2020-2021 for safety reasons.

5. Province of Nova Scotia has recently announced an operating loan program for municipalities across Nova Scotia totalling up to $380 million to help pay their bills due to late payments from residents negatively impacted by COVID-19. The funding must be paid back with interest and the proposed program recommended by Nova Scotia Federation of Municipalities (NSFM) notes that the program would not be available for those not affected by COVID-19, who are unable to pay their taxes for other reasons. Council believes that it must treat all of its residents the same and therefore has chosen to not participate in this provincial loan program. We do however; have and continue to offer payment programs for any resident or business having difficulty paying their taxes on time. Our finance department staff are available to discuss each person’s unique needs every year, and not just during a pandemic. Because of past and current prudent financial planning, the Municipality has the expected cash flow in reserves to pay its bills until our residents that are having difficulty paying their taxes are able to do so. It is important that those who are able to pay their taxes on time do so.

6. Previously Council announced revised due dates for taxes, water and sewer bills, as well as several other programs and services. These delayed payments dates still stand. A full list is on our website at www.regionofqueens.com and follows on the next page. This delayed payment schedule is available to ALL residents and businesses and not just those negatively affected by COVID-19. Electronic tax bills have now been issued for those registered for that service, and paper bills will be mailed around the first week of June.

7. The Municipality is also experiencing reduced revenues because of COVID-19 and restrictions placed on our facilities to ensure public safety. To mitigate some of these losses, several staff are on lay-off and this situation is being monitored weekly to determine if future lay-offs will be required. These decisions will be made to best protect programs, services, and infrastructure services to our residents and minimize inconveniences as much as possible, while ensuring public safety.

8. While many municipalities in Nova Scotia have closed or reduced services to the public, we have done our best to continue to offer all services and infrastructure, including regular waste, recycling, organic, spring cleanup and leaf and yard waste pickup, as well as normal operating hours at our Solid Waste Management Facility in Milton. Additionally, we continue to operate our water treatment and wastewater treatment facilities safely, while continuing with required infrastructure upgrades in Caledonia, Milton and Liverpool. This has required extra safety precautions for our employees and facility users however; we recognize the importance to residents and businesses of keeping these operations open.

9. Our municipality is one of only a few in the province that own and operate a residential care facility. Hillsview Acres in Middlefield is home to 28 residents currently and they are being provided with exceptional care by our staff around the clock, keeping them occupied with activities and helping them connect with family virtually. We are following all required safety precautions for both our staff and residents and have our pandemic plans operational within the facility. Our community should be very proud of these dedicated staff that are going above and beyond during these difficult times.

Chris McNeill
Chief Administrative Officer

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Region of Queens Municipality
COVID-19 UPDATE

May 4, 2020:  On May 1st, Premier McNeil and Dr. Robert Strang relaxed some prohibitions to ease the pain of many Nova Scotians, including residents of Queens. With the warm spring weather on Sunday, it was a blessing to be able to finally stroll parks and their paths in the sunshine, and many did participate in that enjoyable opportunity. Within several weeks, fewer numbers of new Covid-19 cases may allow for further openings.
The majority of our residents are practicing social distancing and following Provincial Orders. We will eventually find an end to this deadly virus. Let us continue to be kind to one another and not abuse the recent freedom being provided, or a return of restrictions may possibly occur.

As of today, the Province advises of 14 new cases, to now total 985 positive cases of Covid-19 in Nova Scotia, with 54 of those positive tests being collected in our Western Zone. Unfortunately there have been a total of 38 Covid-19 deaths in the Province. Please be considerate of the fact that Covid-19 may be everywhere, so continue to take all necessary precautions of self-distancing by at least 2 meters or 6 feet, washing hands frequently, and avoid rubbing your eyes, mouth or touching your face.

While the Municipal Administration Building is closed to the public, our staff continue to provide regular public services. For inquiries pertaining to bill payments, please call 902-354-3453. Building and development permits are available by calling 902-354-3455.

During the May 1st update with Premier MacNeil and Dr. Strang, they announced that some restrictions of the State of Emergency were being cautiously lifted. They stressed the importance of being able to be active near home.

Restrictions that changed are:

  • Provincial and municipal parks can reopen. Playground equipment continues to be off limits.
  • Pine Grove Park, Trestle Trail, Centennial Trail, Privateer Park, Centennial Park, Fort Point Park, Meadow Pond Park and walking trail, Queens Place outdoor walking track, bicycle track, Skateboard Park, Tupper Park in Milton, and Port Medway Lighthouse Park are all open. Municipal Parks in other Municipalities may not be open.
  • Cobb Park as well as Beach Meadows Park and beach are closed, as is all playground equipment in our Municipal Parks. Summerville Beach Park and Thomas Raddall Provincial Park are also closed.
  • Sport fishing is now permitted from shore or boat.
  • Boating, yacht or sailing clubs can allow people to prepare boats for use.
  • Golf driving ranges can open, including those at golf clubs. Golf courses will remain closed, however necessary maintenance and preparations for opening may occur.
  • A family may use their cottage with that usage being restricted to one household unit.
  • Provincial and private campgrounds remain closed, but necessary maintenance and preparations for opening can be undertaken. Seasonal recreational vehicles located year-round at private campgrounds may be used under the same rules as cottages providing visitors do not require the use of onsite amenities such as washroom facilities, store, restaurant, activity center, playground or picnic tables.
  • Please note that beaches remain closed, even those located within parks.
  • Drive-in religious services will be allowed, as long as people stay in their cars, they are parked two metres apart and there are no interactions between people in cars or between people in cars and others.
  • A ban on open fires is in effect. Open fires in woods, or within 305 metres (1,000 feet) of woods will remain in effect until 15 May 2020.

A full description of the changes can be found here: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/outdoor-activities/

As the Covid-19 infection curve eventually flattens, one can expect additional gradual changes to be made to the safety protocols which have been put in place under the declaration of the State of Emergency. Please keep safe.

Mayor David Dagley

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Region of Queens Municipality
COVID-19 UPDATE

April 27, 2020:  I am proud that so many of our residents are practicing social distancing, staying home unless they absolutely have to go out, and are being extremely kind to their friends and neighbours. It is through the efforts of these residents and role models that we will eventually find an end to this deadly virus. Let us not criticize others who are not following the rules, but leave that to the RCMP to enforce, and continue to be kind to one another. 

Our staff and so many community retail workers, medical professionals, and emergency personnel are working hard each day on your behalf. Please continue to thank them for their efforts. Covid-19 will be a setback that will require tremendous attention by all to economically overcome. Our Councillors are answering resident`s questions and are pleased to be supporting constituents. While the Municipal Administration Building is closed to the public, our staff continue to provide regular public services.  For inquiries pertaining to bill payments, please call 902-354-3453. Building and development permits are available by calling 902-354-3455.

As of today, the Province advises of 27 new cases, to now total 900 positive cases of Covid-19 in Nova Scotia, with 54 of those positive tests being collected in our Western Zone. Unfortunately there have been 24 deaths. Please be considerate of the fact that Covid-19 may be everywhere, so continue to take all necessary precautions of self-distancing by at least 2 meters or 6 feet, washing hands frequently, and avoid rubbing your eyes, mouth or touching your face. 

A development which has been in the works for the past eight months has been the request of many residents to be able to pay their taxes and other bills through credit card payments. This is now setup and is being administered through a third-party payment company known as Paymentus, which provides residents with an ability to pay by credit card while charging residents a 2.5% service fee for providing this service. The Municipality does not receive any of this service fee and is simply provided with its billed amount when paid by the resident. If this service is of interest to you, more details can be found on our website at https://www.regionofqueens.com/municipal-services/finance/bill-payment-options

Nova Scotia Power is taking measures to provide immediate relief to residential and small business customers who are struggling to pay their electricity bill including suspending disconnections for nonpayment for at least 90 days, relaxing payment timelines, waiving penalties and fees on unpaid bills, and providing flexible options for bill payments. Nova Scotia Power encourages customers who need assistance to contact the Customer Care Team for personal assistance at 1-800-428-6230 and through online tools at www.nspower.ca.

Nova Scotia’s Minister of Municipal Affairs has recently issued direction advising that no “in-person” annual general meetings can take place while the state of emergency is in effect, unless it can be conducted in adherence to public health directives on social distancing. This would apply to all incorporated or non-profit community groups throughout Queens County.  

When the Covid-19 infection curve eventually flattens, one can expect gradual changes to the safety protocols which have been put in place. It is assumed that the Province will release its position on changes to the declaration of the State of Emergency protocols prior to May 3rd. We must all continue to pull together to succeed in defeating this virus.

Mayor David Dagley

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Region of Queens Municipality
COVID-19 UPDATE

April 21, 2020:  I want to begin my message and update today to share with you how proud Council is of our staff at Hillsview Acres. They are going above and beyond daily to care for and support some of our most vulnerable residents, while helping them remain active, happy and safe. Despite the great stress staff are under, they continue to show up for shifts each day, help out in all aspects of the facility that require support, while ensuring they continue to keep themselves safe. The facility is 126 years old and requires tremendous commitment from all staff to ensure it is a safe home for its residents and a safe workplace for all staff. Temperatures are checked each day of staff and residents to ensure any sign of illness is caught very early and not spread to others in the facility. The facility’s iPad is also busy each day allowing residents to FaceTime with their loved ones. It is these times of difficulty that our staff truly come together for their community and we couldn’t be prouder of our staff at Hillsview Acres.

As the impacts of Covid-19 continue, many in Queens struggle to support the necessary directives of Doctor Robert Strang, Premier McNeil and others in our Provincial government. Sadly, these directives are taking their toll on everyone, either financially or just finding it is now necessary to be restricted from what was previously viewed as normal everyday activities.

Our staff and so many community retail workers, medical professionals, and emergency personnel are working hard each day on your behalf. Please thank them for their work and be kind. There is no doubt that Covid-19 will be a setback that will require tremendous attention to economically overcome. Our Councillors are answering resident`s questions and are pleased to be supporting constituents.

As of today, the Province advises of 16 new cases, to now total 737 positive cases of Covid-19 in Nova Scotia, with 54 of those positive tests being collected in our Western Zone. Unfortunately there have been 10 deaths. Please be considerate of the fact that Covid-19 may be everywhere, so continue to take all necessary precautions of self-distancing by at least 2 meters or 6 feet, washing hands frequently, and avoid rubbing your eyes, mouth or touching your face. 

While the Municipal Administration Building is closed to the public, our staff continue to provide regular public services.  For inquiries pertaining to bill payments, please call 902-354-3453. Building and development permits are available by calling 902-354-3455.

Open fires of any kind are not permitted in or within 1,000 feet of woods under a Provincial Fire Ban Order and Private Campgrounds will be closed until May 1st, the same as Provincial Campgrounds. Nova Scotia’s sport fishing season is on hold until at least May 1st.

On Thursday I received a call from Honourable Arthur LeBlanc Lieutenant Governor of N.S. He reached out to me during a one-half hour chat to discuss the situation with Covid-19 in Region of Queens, including impacts and issues. We covered a wide range of topics including impacts to residents and businesses, as well as how individuals are coping with the requirements currently being imposed. The status of RQM, Council and financial issues impacting our operations were all part of the conversation. He was pleased to learn of existing community support being provided by Queens Transit, our Senior Safety Coordinator, the food bank and many other volunteers. It is great to know that our Lieutenant Governor cares deeply about communities in Nova Scotia such as Queens.

Our staff at Queens Place Emera Centre are now offering free virtual fitness classes for both adult and youth. Exercise is extremely important during these isolating at home times and we are attempting to allow you to exercise with us from inside your home. Please be patient with us as we work out the logistics of this new on-line platform. To find out when the classes are being held, please check out Queens Place Emera Centre’s Facebook page.

When the Covid-19 infection curve eventually flattens, one can expect gradual changes to safety protocols which have been put in place. Until that time, residents’ efforts will be critical to reduce the spread of this virus. We must be proactive and do what is in the best interest of all to ensure everyone`s safety. It will take time to reduce disease risk according to senior medical experts. Covid-19 has severely impacted activities and has become a burden for many during daily life. We must all continue to pull together to succeed in defeating this virus. Better days are coming.

Mayor David Dagley

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Region of Queens Municipality Update
Tuesday, April 14, 2020:  The Coronavirus Pandemic of 2020 has created a great deal of anxiety for many in our community and placed increased pressure on all of our community resources.

Our staff and so many community retail workers, medical professionals, emergency personnel and volunteer fire fighters are working hard each day on your behalf. Please thank them for their work and be kind. There is no doubt that Covid-19 will be a setback that will require tremendous attention by all to economically overcome. Our Councillors are answering resident`s questions and are pleased to be supporting constituents.
As of today, the province advises of 43 new cases, to now total 517 positive cases of Covid-19 in Nova Scotia, with 46 of those tested Cases occurring in our Western Zone. Unfortunately there have been 3 deaths. Please be considerate of the fact that Covid-19 may be everywhere, so continue to take all necessary precautions of self-distancing by at least 2 meters or 6 feet, washing hands frequently, and avoid rubbing your eyes, mouth or touching your face.

We ask that residents not dispose of sharps such as needles, syringes and lancets in their waste or recycling and ask that residents safely store them at home for the time being. Please do not flush sanitary wipes down the drain as they cause issues for our sewer system. Please place them in the garbage.

At a virtual Council meeting today, our 2020-2021 Budget was passed with no increase to the tax rate. Interest forgiveness on taxes was extended to July 31st in addition to a number of other budgetary items.
While the Municipal Administration Building was closed to the public on March 25th, our staff continue to provide regular public services. For bill payment inquiries, please call 902-354-3453.

Building and development permits will continue to be available, but we ask that you request by phone or submit information electronically. Please call Christine Watson at (902) 354-3455.

Our Municipality will be participating with other municipal units in a joint “Thank You to our Health Care Workers” newspaper ad in the Progress Bulletin on April 15, 2020.

I was interviewed on South Shore Community Chat produced by Simple Local Life pertaining to Covid-19 issues in Region of Queens. In that interview I suggested that Councillors would be pleased to be contacted to help address constituent concerns in their areas.
Link - https://www.facebook.com/Jensimplelocallife/videos/230125708199779/

Open fires of any kind are not permitted in or within 1,000 feet of woods under a Provincial Fire Ban Order. Enforcement efforts have occurred in Queens.

All anglers should be aware that Provincial Fisheries has announced that Nova Scotia’s sport fishing season is on hold until at least May 1st.

Ten tickets have been issued by Queens RCMP to date for people not self-distancing and/or being in closed parks or beaches. The personal fine is $1,000. and $7,500. for businesses under the Health Protection Act, and up to $697.50 under The Emergency Management Act. Please heed all Provincial Orders and warnings and continue to be safe.

Region of Queens takes our lead from daily Provincial briefings by the Premier and Nova Scotia Medical Director of Health and Orders for changes to provincial directives or protocols. The Province recently advised that Private Campgrounds will be closed until May 1st the same as Provincial Campgrounds.

When the Covid-19 infection curve eventually flattens, one can expect gradual changes to the safety protocols which have been put in place. Until that time, all of our efforts will be critical to reduce the spread of this virus.

While Covid-19 restrictions are a major inconvenience, they are necessary. We must be proactive and do what is in the best interest of residents and staff to ensure everyone`s safety. We are hopeful that these preventative measures will lessen the amount of time required to reduce Covid-19 impacts while we continue to provide essential services to our communities. It will take time to substantially reduce present disease risk according to senior medical experts. Covid-19 has severely impacted activities and has become a burden for many during daily life. We must all continue to pull together to succeed in defeating this virus.

Mayor David Dagley

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Region of Queens Municipality Update

Monday, April 6, 2020: Recently Council received a presentation from local resident Troy Smith who is spearheading a local Duke of Edinburgh International Award program for local youth. The program was started by Prince Philip in 1956 and is now in 130 countries and has 10 million participants worldwide. Local youth aged 14-25 are eligible to participate in this self-directed program. Youth are required to volunteer, be active, go on adventures, and learn new skills. The program has three levels: bronze, silver, and gold. At the completion of each level, successful participants are invited to an awards ceremony. Region of Queens Municipality as the program sponsor provides annual funding for the local awards ceremony and required program supplies. This is a great program for youth in our community to consider. For more information, please go to www.dukeofed.org/ns.

Work has begun on the planned maintenance shutdown at Queens Place Emera Centre and a full cleaning of the facility for when the facility is again open to members and the public. The ice has been removed, cleaning of 1050 arena seats is complete, the walking track that was once thought to be grey is actually white, and the community room and fitness centre have been fully cleaned. 

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The public well in Liverpool continues to receive a great deal of use by members of the public each day. After numerous complaints about people not following required self-distancing rules, the municipality has had to close off two of the taps, leaving one remaining. Please respect other people and maintain at least a 2-metre distance from others using the well or waiting in line. 

Our next Council meeting is scheduled for April 14, 2020, and will take place using Zoom software. While the public will not be able to participate, we will post the minutes on-line within 24 hours after the meeting and if the audio is audible, we will endeavour to post this on-line shortly thereafter as well. 

While our community is working hard to self-isolate and practice great hand washing practices, our staff continue to do the same. Clean water continues to come from our Water Treatment Facility, septage continues to be safely processed through our Sewer Treatment Plant, our streetsare safe, building and development permits continue to be processed, our solid waste, recycling and organic materials continue to be collected and processed, and Queens Place Emera Centre maintenance and cleaning is well underway. We also continue to plan for summer events like the opening of our two pools, and other special events. 

To help spur local imagination and thoughts about what one can do during this self-isolation time of COVID-19 in Queens County we have prepared a list of 100 fun and no cost things to do during this time in Queens County. We bet you can add others to the list. You can find the list at https://www.regionofqueens.com/emergency-measures/covid-19-information-updates/covid19-faq

We know many residents are anxious about being able to pay upcoming bills in general, including municipal taxes, water and sewer charges. Council has discussed extending due dates for all upcoming bills and we will be discussing recommend changes at our next meeting on April 14, 2020. These changes will require the municipality to draw several million dollars from dedicated reserves to use as cash flow to continue to operate a basic level of services from April to July, 2020 which will be repaid through taxes and fees collected. The proposed changes can be found on our website at https://www.regionofqueens.com/emergency-measures/covid-19-information-updates/covid19-support-programs

While restrictions enacted under the Provincial Declaration of a State of Emergency are necessary to deal COVID-19, our current situation is difficult for many residents. With your cooperation, we will be successful in winning the battle.

#flattenthecurve #stayhome #washyourhands

Mayor David Dagley

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Region of Queens Municipality Update

Wednesday, April 1, 2020: April 19-25, 2020, is Volunteer Week in Nova Scotia and each year we hold a local celebration event to recognize those who have been nominated during the year for the Ripple Effect. Due to the current pandemic, we have cancelled the event for this year. We would normally provide small thank you gifts to each volunteer nominee and have chosen to make a $50 donation in each of the eleven people’s names (or $550) to the Queens County Food Bank this year. We will host a 2-year event in April 2021 for this year and next year’s nominees together. Thank you to this year’s nominees for their understanding. 2019 Ripple Effect nominees are Kieran Clattenburg, Terry Connolly, Catherine Croft, Sylvia Hurley, Brenda Lawrence, Vina Moses, Sharon Saulnier, Natasha Slauenwhite & Cory Rodenhiser, Debbie J. Wamboldt and David Wightman. The two randomly selected volunteers to receive provincial recognition were Brenda Lawrence and Natasha Slauenwhite & Cory Rodenhiser. The provincial recognition ceremony has been postponed until September 28, 2020.

For the past two years, the Municipality has offered a Facade program for local businesses to improve the exterior of their buildings. In the first year, it focused exclusively on downtown Liverpool and Caledonia, and last year was open to the entire County. In Year One, 8 projects were approved for a total estimated upgrade value of $111,832.02. Last year saw 6 projects approved with $24,976.30 of municipal funding approved and total commercial property upgrades of $59,172.87. Applications are now available for 2020 with an extended deadline of June 30, 2020. You can access the guidelines and application form at https://www.regionofqueens.com/business/grow-your-business/business-facade-program

To help spur local imagination and thoughts about what one can do during this self-isolation time of COVID-19 in Queens County we have prepared a list of 100 fun and no cost things to do during this time in Queens County. We bet you can add others to the list. You can find the list at https://www.regionofqueens.com/emergency-measures/covid-19-information-updates/covid19-faq

We know many residents are anxious about being able to pay upcoming bills in general, including municipal taxes, water and sewer charges. Council has discussed extending due dates for all upcoming bills and we will be discussing recommend changes at our next meeting on April 14, 2020. While many due dates have been and will be extended, those that are able to pay according to the original due date are encouraged and thanked for doing so. Those changes will require the municipality to draw several million dollars from dedicated reserves to use as cash flow to continue to operate a basic level of services from April to July, 2020 which will be repaid through taxes and fees collected. The proposed changes can be found on our website at https://www.regionofqueens.com/emergency-measures/covid-19-information-updates/covid19-support-programs

COVID-19 has caused major adjustments for everyone and our local RCMP police officers have been under great pressure as well. They are receiving lots of calls about people not self-isolating, not adhering to 2 metre distancing, people simply driving around or hanging out in parking lots, people using closed parks and trails, and enforcing the burning ban. They are also dealing with an increase of break and enters lately as well. You can help prevent these issues by staying home. PLEASE stay home unless absolutely necessary and follow all provincial directives. If there are serious issues, please contact Queens RCMP at (902) 354-5721. While every call is important, they are being prioritized and more serious and urgent calls are always dealt with first.

#flattenthecurve #stayhome #washyourhands

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Region of Queens Municipality
RESPONSE TO COVID-19 PANDEMIC
Mayor David Dagley

Monday, March 30, 2020: We are living in unprecedented times. Not since the Second World War has our safety and security been more at risk than it is today. It was through working together and supporting our service men and women, being resourceful and innovative, were we successful in war. Now we are at war with a virus, but the same principle applies. If we work together and support our health care and emergency services workers, are kind and respectful to our front line retail employees at grocery stores, pharmacies, and other stores, we will become stronger as a community and help keep each other safe.

As a Municipality we are following all the directives of the Provincial Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Robert Strang and Premier Stephen McNeil. The virus is a serious health concern and the safety of our facility users, staff and citizens is of our utmost priority. While we must continue to pull together to succeed in winning this battle; Covid-19 has severely impacted our normal way of life. Residents in Queens are known far and wide for our great hospitality; something to be proud of, but we must understand and delay that for a short time so we can persevere in the long term.

As Mayor, I take the safety of our community and its residents very seriously. I also understand that there are times when others are the spokesperson for our community when it comes to non-municipal issues. Health care is a provincial responsibility and that is why we are taking our directions from the Provincial Medical Director of Health. Only he can provide you with the most accurate up-to-date information daily and in some cases hourly. We are posting that information on our website and social media pages as we are made aware. You need to take responsibility for your own safety and keep up to date on the current regulations and restrictions. We are doing our part by working to keep our staff safe and maintaining our basic core operations only, while trying to keep as many staff employed as our operations allow.

We recognize that there are many in Queens without Internet or may have unreliable service, now compounded with the Library closure. There is inaccurate information being circulated. The updates and information provided to date have mostly been on-line, and with such a huge amount of information available, residents are not able to regularly access all information. We placed ads on QCCR and CKBW last week and over the weekend advising residents that if they don’t have Internet ability, to contact Heather Cook, our Communications and Engagement Coordinator, and she will mail them the most up-to-date package of information and resources. Telephone 902-354-5741. All we require is a name and a complete mailing address.

Over the last two weeks a number of preventative and cautionary measures were implemented to slow down the spread of Covid-19, should it be detected in Queens County. Those measures continue as a result of the State of Emergency declared by the Province on March 22, 2020. It should be noted that we take our direction in such matters to support actions determined by the Province through the Premier and the Chief Medical Officer of Health. Covid-19 is a province wide threat.

Our Council meeting scheduled for March 24th was cancelled and the Municipal Administration Building continued to remain open to the public until March 25th. All members of the public are requested to submit permit requests, applications, or information requests by telephone, email, fax, or regular mail only. As always, bill payments can be made on-line, through one’s bank, or regular mail. We are working to provide extensions to due dates to assist residents and business during this period of closures and job lay-offs, and will be sharing that information shortly. Where possible, staff in our Administration building are working from home to reduce our staff contacts.

Building permits and development permits will continue to be available, but we ask that you request or submit information electronically. Please call (902) 354-3455 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Municipal operations will be restricted to basic operations and maintaining our current infrastructure safely. No new initiatives, spending, or infrastructure upgrades will take place until our 2020-2021 budget is passed and it is safe to do so. An Order has been signed by the Minister of Municipal Affairs to allow electronic or teleconference Council Meetings and we will hold a Council Meeting when appropriate.

Queens EMO has held three evening virtual Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) meetings by tele-conference with our emergency partners on the EOC Committee to solicit feedback from various agencies concerning how their preparations and planning are going, and to understand if they require any assistance, as well as future opportunities to keep our communities and residents safe. Our Volunteer Fire Departments have been participating in these meetings as well.

As we try to maintain our basic services to you, I want to advise of the following closures:
* All Municipal, Provincial and Federal Parks, and trails within them, are closed. These closures are a result of the Provincial Declaration of a State of Emergency. Please remember to walk for exercise, not to socialise, to stay close to home, and to practise social distancing of at least 2 metres. The Premier requested enforcement officers to begin issuing fines immediately.

* Queens Place Emera Centre is closed and its scheduled 3-week maintenance shutdown is now taking place. Facility members who pay for their memberships monthly through PAD will not have any payments taken by the Municipality during the month of April.

* Public Works Building is closed to the public.

* Liverpool Public Market Shelter is closed to the public.

* Hillsview Acres Residential Care Facility is closed to all members of the public. The province recently announced the purchase of 800 iPads to be given to homes like Hillsview Acres so residents can talk with family members on-line.

* No new public vending permits are being issued effective March 25, 2020.

* The Trestle Trail bridge and connection from the west end at Main Street to Bristol Avenue is open to walkers, as well as the outdoor walking trail next to Queens Place.

* While many solid waste operations in the province are closed, our Queens Solid Waste Management Facility and waste collection at roadside is continuing as usual. We are ensuring our staff are working safely and allowing our contractors the ability to continue to use this facility so they can continue to work.

The province has also recently announced a province-wide ban on burning. We understand that several people were burning this past weekend and enforcement officials were required to visit those properties. Please respect the law and do not burn. Only CSA approved devices and propane are authorized for burning and most are not CSA approved. We have many in our community with respiratory problems who are self-isolating and cannot go outside, so please do not burn in our neighbourhoods.

While many businesses have been required to close or reduce operations, we expect all residents to be respectful of others including staff in our operating businesses and medical providers, who are all working above and beyond, to continue to provide the services which we require. Our compassion is extended to those who may be laid-off including those due to a federal or provincial directive. Our economic development staff have been distributing information to local businesses about provincial and federal programs to support them. Unfortunately, other than a modest façade program, the Municipality is prohibited by law from providing any financial support to businesses.

Many local businesses are accepting phone orders and electronic payments. One can sometimes have purchases delivered by the business or picked up by a friend or relative. Queens Transit at 902-356-2670 advises that they provide pickup and delivery services, and Queens’ Senior Safety Coordinator, Shelly Walker, also has volunteers helping. Please call her at 902-354-5721 to arrange deliveries by volunteers if required.

During this time of reduced travel and self-isolation, we ask residents not to hoard food or other household items as it will only harm others in our community who may need those items. When residents do require food or household items, we ask that you maintain the 2-metre social distancing rule and support local businesses. Please select one person from your household to do grocery shopping, and adhere to safe practices by washing hands frequently and refraining from touching your face, eyes or mouth. If you feel unwell, or are self-isolating, please have others deliver required supplies to you.

The federal government has announced several financial support programs for citizens and businesses and the link can be found here. https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/03/canadas-covid-19-economic-response-plan-support-for-canadians-and-businesses.html#Income_Support_for

And lastly, if you develop a fever, with a temperature of 38 C or higher, or a cough, and you have travelled from outside of the province, or been exposed to a traveller in recent weeks and suspect you may have contracted Covid-19, you are advised to complete the online 811 Screening Tool questionnaire, to determine if you should call 811. If the results advise you to do so, please call 811 for an assessment. Covid-19 assessment centres exist across the province, including one at the South Shore Regional Hospital in Bridgewater. A referral through the 811 line is required prior to anyone being directed to Bridgewater. Self-isolating for 14 days is now mandatory for anyone who enters Nova Scotia. Those not adhering to this requirement are subject to a fine of $1000.

While Covid-19 changes are an inconvenience, they are necessary. We must be proactive and do what is in the best interest of residents and the staff of every business to ensure their safety. We are hopeful that these preventative measures will lessen the amount of time we are required to reduce services while continuing to provide essential services to our communities. It will take time to substantially reduce the disease risk, and we must all do our part to flatten the curve. We have 122 known cases of Covid-19 in N.S. as of Sunday. Evolving concerns will be monitored daily and our plans adjusted as required. With your cooperation, we will be successful in winning this battle.

Be safe, stay home, and wash your hands regularly.

 

Mayor David Dagley

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Administration Offices Closure - Effective 4:30 p.m., March 24, 2020

March 24, 2020:  Region of Queens Municipality’s  Administration Building will be closed to public access at the end of the business day today (4:30 pm, Tuesday, March 24, 2020), until further notice, to help limit the spread of COVID-19.  

Permit requests, applications, or information requests will be accepted by telephone, email, fax, or regular mail only. As always, bill payments can be made on-line, through one’s bank, or regular mail. Please contact the department offering the services you require:

* Administration Office general enquiries, Finance Department ... 902-354-3453

* Bylaw Enforcement, Building Inspection, Engineering & Works, Planning, Solid Waste Management ... 902-354-3455

* Economic Development, Recreation & Community Development ... 902-354-5741

* Administration Office Fax: 902-354-7473

We are all working together as a community to stop the spread of this virus.  Stay safe.

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Region of Queens Municipality
RESPONSE TO COVID-19 PANDEMIC
Sunday, March 22, 2020:
 Region of Queens Municipality continues to monitor the transmission and impacts of Covid-19 and are following all Nova Scotia Department of Health protocols. The virus is a serious health concern and the safety of our facility users, staff and citizens is of our utmost priority. Last week, a number of preventative and cautionary measures were implemented to slow down the spread of Covid-19, should it be detected in Queens County. Those measures continue for the upcoming week, as well as the following new measures as a result of the State of Emergency declared by the Province on March 22, 2020:

Municipal Administration Building remains open, but only for those wishing to drop off or pick up required permits or pay bills. ALL permits and bills can be transacted through email and on-line methods and we highly recommend that all residents and contractors use these methods whenever possible. Permits can be emailed, faxed or mailed, and they can be submitted the same way. Visiting the municipal building is not required.

All municipal parks and beaches are now closed including Beach Meadows Beach, Pine Grove Park, Tupper Park, Miriam Hunt Park, Milton Pool property, North Queens Aquatic Centre property, Cobb Park, Centennial Park, Privateer Park, and Mersey Skatepark.

Council Meeting scheduled for March 24, 2020, is now cancelled. Municipal operations will be restricted to basic operations and maintaining our current infrastructure safely. No new initiatives, spending, or infrastructure upgrades will take place.

No new public vending permits are being issued effective immediately, March 23, 2020.

Previous closures and cancellations continuing:

Queens Place Emera Centre is closed.

Municipal Planning Strategy and Land Use Bylaw Public Meetings have been cancelled. 

Public Works Building is closed to the public. 

Liverpool Public Market Shelter is closed to the public.

Hillsview Acres Residential Care Facility is closed to all members of the public.

Queens Solid Waste Management Facility and waste collection will continue as usual.

Building permits and development permits will continue to be available, but we ask that you request or submit information electronically. You can do this by calling (902) 354-3455 or by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

During this time of reduced travel and self-isolation, we are asking residents to not hoard food or other household items as it will only harm others in our community who may need those items. When residents do require food or household items, we ask that you maintain the 2-metre social distancing rule and support local businesses. Please adhere to safe practices by washing hands frequently and refraining from touching your face, eyes or mouth. If you feel unwell, please have others deliver required supplies to you.

While many businesses have been required to close, we expect all residents to be respectful of others including staff in our operating businesses and medical providers, who are all working above and beyond, to continue to provide the services which we require. Our compassion is extended to those who may be laid-off including those due to a federal or provincial directive.

If you develop a fever, with a temperature of 38 C or higher, or a cough, and you have travelled outside of the province, or been exposed to a traveller in recent weeks and suspect you may have contracted Covid-19, you are advised to call 811 for an assessment, or to call your local health provider for advice. Self-isolating for 14 days is now mandatory for anyone who has travelled outside of Nova Scotia and returns. Those not adhering to this requirement are subject to a fine of $1000. 

Mayor David Dagley said while these changes are an inconvenience, they are necessary. “We must be proactive and do what is in the best interest of our residents, visitors and staff to ensure their safety. We are hopeful that these preventative measures will lessen the amount of time we are required to reduce services while continuing to provide essential services to our communities. Evolving concerns will be monitored daily and our plans adjusted as required. With your cooperation we will be successful in winning this battle.”

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Region of Queens Municipality
RESPONSE TO COVID-19 PANDEMIC
Monday, March 16, 2020:  Region of Queens Municipality has been monitoring the transmission and impacts of Covid-19 for the past few weeks and we have noted the recommendations and directives of government bodies including the Government of Canada and Province of Nova Scotia. The safety of our facility users, staff and citizens is of our utmost priority. Therefore, effective immediately, the following preventative and cautionary measures will be implemented to slow down the spread of Covid-19 should it be detected in Queens:

Closures:

Queens Place Emera Centre, including the Community Room, is closed to the public effective 5:00 p.m. today. Members will have their memberships extended for the term of this closure and other paid programming such as fitness classes will be re-scheduled when it is deemed safe to do so. During this closure, staff will undertake a comprehensive cleaning of the entire facility. Additionally, the arena portion of the facility was scheduled for a 3-week shutdown from mid-June to early July in order to complete a significant maintenance program. This maintenance shutdown and work will commence shortly and continue into April, replacing the scheduled June / July 3-week closure.

Municipal Planning Strategy and Land Use Bylaw Public Meetings scheduled in various communities throughout Queens County over the next two weeks are now cancelled. These meetings will be re-scheduled when deemed safe to do so. In the meantime, we encourage residents when self-isolating to review these documents on our website and provide written comments via that method at https://www.queensplan.com/.

Public Works Building is closed to the public.
Liverpool Public Market Shelter is closed to the public.
Tax Sale Scheduled for March 18, 2020, is postponed and will be re-scheduled when it is deemed safe to do so.

Operating Changes:

Our parks, playgrounds, green spaces such as Pine Grove Park, and beaches will remain open as usual. We will endeavour to regularly clean and disinfect playground equipment, but this may be limited by the availability of cleaning supplies so we encourage families to ensure their own safe practices by washing hands immediately after use with their own supplies on-site or as soon as they get home, and refrain from touching your face, eyes or mouth when using these facilities.

Our municipal office will remain open however; some services may be limited as we provide an opportunity where possible for some staff to work from home to reduce the density of our work spaces and people interactions. We encourage residents to contact us by email and phone as a first option, and avoid visiting the municipal office unless absolutely necessary. As always, payments may be made by mail, by electronic e-post, or through on-line banking.

Building permits and development permits will continue to be available, but we ask that you call to make an appointment to ensure our staff will be available. You can do this by calling (902) 354-3455 or by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Queens Solid Waste Management Facility and waste collection will continue as usual. No disruption to collection of waste, organics and recyclables is expected and the Solid Waste Management Facility north of Milton will operate as usual with modest operational changes that will not be noticeable to the public.
Hillsview Acres Residential Care Facility is closed to the public, including family members.

We will be implementing the provincial directive that any staff member who travels outside the country during the next few weeks or has recently returned within the last few days will be required to self-isolate for 14 days upon their return to prevent any possible transmission to co-workers and the general public. We will work with our staff to ensure our sick leave policies are flexible and fair.

Mayor David Dagley said while these changes will be an inconvenience, they are necessary. “We must be proactive and do what is in the best interest of our residents, visitors and staff to ensure their safety. We hope that these preventative measures will lessen the amount of time we are required to reduce services while continuing to provide essential services to our communities that they require. We will continue to monitor the situation daily and adjust our plans as required. Your cooperation in this regard is appreciated.”

During this time of reduced travel and self-isolation, we are asking residents to not hoard food or other household items as it will only harm others in our community who may need those items. When residents do require food or household items, we ask that you maintain the 2-metre social distancing rule and support local businesses. If you feel unwell, please have others deliver required supplies to you.

If you develop a fever, with a temperature of 38 C or higher, or a cough, and you have travelled outside of the Country, or been exposed to a traveler in recent weeks and suspect you may have contracted Covid-19, you are advised to call 811 for an assessment, or to call your local health provider for advice.

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