Province Expanding Enforcement Efforts on COVID-19 Restrictions, Education Still Priority on Local Measures

If you don’t follow the new COVID-19 provincial measures there is a good chance you’ll now be fined.

Minister of Justice and Solicitor General Kaycee Madu announced on Friday they’re temporarily giving 700 additional peace officers the ability to ticket Albertans for breaking the restrictions.

“This is not by preference but because of the reality we face as a province,” added Madu.

Fines can be as low as $1,000 and as high as $100,000 through the court system.

The biggest focus is on individuals who host social gatherings over the mandatory limits. These gatherings reportedly account for around 40 per cent of cases across the province.

“We’re simply making sure more enforcement is available to respond quickly and decisively to situations where groups are breaking public health measures and thereby endangering the health of their community,” added Madu.

Education Still Priority in RMWB

In the RMWB, education remains top of mind over fines.

Those caught not following municipal measures will first get a warning.

At this time, the mandatory mask bylaw is the only local measure currently approved by Wood Buffalo council.

“We believe you should educate people before you take other steps,” added Mayor Don Scott who spoke earlier this week on Fort McMurray Matters.

No fines have been issued in the RMWB.

However, Scott notes he understands the province’s stance as many won’t follow specific measures if there aren’t any consequences.

Under the local mask bylaw, people can be fined $100 and $200 for repeatedly not following the measure.

While education remains a priority for the RMWB, Scott is reminding residents to follow all measures put in place.

“It’s absolutely critical that people comply.”

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