COVID-19 Industry Update May 11, 2020

Provincial Update

Industry Legal Opinion on Permitted Construction Activities

OHBA, RESCON and BILD have secured an industry legal opinion to provide guidance and clarity in regards to the permitted construction activities under the new Residential Construction regulations posted last week. O. Reg. 200/20 was filed Friday morning which sets forth the language of the revisions that were made to O. Reg. 82/20, as amended.

Read the Legal Opinion here.

Paragraph 30 the Essential Services list now states the following:

  1. Residential construction projects where,
  • a footing permit has been granted for single family, semi-detached and townhomes,
  • the project is a condominium, mixed use or other residential building, or
  • the project involves renovations to residential properties and construction work was started before April 4, 2020.

Please review the legal opinion and Attachment A that outlines the related construction activities connected to the change to the essential services list under section 30.1, which now permits construction to prepare a site for residential development including excavation, grading, roads or utilities infrastructure.  

This industry legal opinion will assist members in determining what construction activities are permissible under the new regulations and should help to confirm those activities when in discussion with your local municipal building officials.

As always, our industry members should consult with their local building departments, own legal counsel, and any additional professionals before proceeding under the current state of emergency regulations, and always document and prepare to defend their decision to continue construction activities as the penalties under the State of Emergency are significant.


Federal Update

Wage Subsidy Program to be Extended Past June

On Friday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that the government’s wage subsidy program for employers will be extended past June.

The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program allows businesses affected by COVID-19 to receive a subsidy of 75 per cent of an employee’s wages for up to 12 weeks. It was originally set to end on June 6.

The prime minister said that employers have applied for subsidies for almost 2 million workers. The move to extend CEWS passed June is intended to ‘to help kickstart our economic reopening and boost jobs’.

Details about the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy can be found here.