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The growing impact of COVID-19 is being felt around the world, both personally and economically. During these unprecedented times, we understand that new challenges arise each day. As the situation continues to evolve, we want to assure you that we are taking steps at Lawson Lundell to meet these challenges head on. We recognize that our clients are being faced with increasingly difficult hardships, whether they be financial, legal, commercial, regulatory or other. We want you to know that we are ready to support you. Our COVID-19 Response Team is made up of practice group leaders and subject matter experts, who are here to help you navigate through these unchartered waters. 

We have also created this online resource centre to help address some of the issues that you may be facing during this uncertain time. Please do not hesitate to contact our COVID-19 Response Team for any questions you may have, on these topics or any other. We recognize that this is a trying time for everyone and assure you that we are committed to help in any way we can.


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China

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Corporate

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Corporate Governance

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Employer Health and Safety Obligations

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  • Duty to Notify Workers of Workplace Hazards
  • Ensuring a hazard free workplace
  • WHMIS 2015 and SDS (I can spell this out)
  • Work Refusals
  • WCB Compensation Coverage for Workers

Environmental

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Indigenous

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Labour, Employment and Benefits

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Labour and Employment Daily COVID-19 Updates

Last updated: may 27, 2020
Federal
  • No major news on May 27.
BRITISH COLUMBIA
  • The provincial government has further extended the current state of emergency to June 9, 2020.
    • The latest Order-in-Council renewing the state of emergency may be found
  • See the notices from the BC Court of Appeal, the BC Supreme Court and the BC Provincial Court below:
    • BCCA: the BCCA has replaced its previous guidance.  The most significant change is that the suspension period has been extended to June 15 (from June 1).
    • BCSC: as of May 26, 2020 and until further notice, parties not appearing in person before the Court as a result of measures put in place during the public health emergency are required to file their affidavits of service or delivery.
    • BCPC:  as of June 8, 2020, the court will resume in person proceedings to hear priority matters in two courtrooms in 6 locations.  As of June 15, 2020, the court will be opening one courtroom for in-person appearances in the locations listed in Appendix “A” of the linked notice.  These will only be available for priority matters that cannot otherwise be accommodated remotely.   There is information in the notice about small claims settlement conferences and pre-trial conferences.
  • During her briefing on May 26, Dr. Henry said that face masks will be optional for students returning to class part-time on June 1. See the news article.
ALBERTA
  • The Law Society has been advised by the Minister of Justice and Deputy Solicitor General that Ministerial Order 27/2020, which suspended limitations and time periods for numerous enactments, will not be extended.
    • The limitations and time periods affected by the order will resume running as of June 1, 2020.
  • The Law Society has published an article with recommendations for loss prevention in light of the pandemic.
  • The government has introduced Bill 7, the Responsible Energy Development Amendment Act, which will authorize the government to establish maximum timelines for the Alberta Energy Regulator to review applications if the regulator fails to do so. The regulator will also be required to establish a red tape regulation task force to identify unnecessary regulator processes.
SASKATCHEWAN
  • No major updates on May 27.
MANITOBA
  • The Manitoba government announced on May 27 that Phase Two will begin on June 1, 2020.
    • The plan for Phase Two has been revised since its initial draft release on May 21 in response to feedback from the public and businesses.
    • As of June 1, the following changes will be implemented:
      • limited access will be permitted to educational facilities, where physical distancing can be maintained, will be allowed for additional tutorial days, such as one-on-one learning, assessment and specific programming;
      • increasing child-care centre occupancy to up to 24 children plus staffing;
      • increasing day camp group sizes to 24;
      • resuming sports, arts and cultural activities for children and adults;
      • lifting occupancy limits at outdoor recreation facilities and golf courses outdoors, as long as physical distancing can be maintained and allowing limited access to indoor spaces;
      • allowing direct travel to northern parks, campgrounds, cabins, lodges and resorts while ensuring physical distancing;
      • allowing public/private swimming pools, spas, fitness clubs, gyms and community/service centres to reopen with some limitations;
      • allowing religious or other organizations to hold outdoor services or events without limitation on numbers if people stay in their vehicles;
      • reopening manicurists and pedicurists, tattoo parlours, estheticians, cosmetologists, electrologists and tanning parlours at 50% capacity;
      • allowing restaurants to reopen indoor spaces at 50% capacity and continue to offer patio services at that capacity level; and
      • allowing bars, beverage rooms, micro-brewers and similar businesses to operate patio service at 50% of site capacity and to reopen indoor spaces at 50 per cent capacity.
    • Mass gatherings such as concerts, festivals and major sporting events will not be considered before September 2020.
    • Detailed information on the plan for Phase Two of service restoration and workplace guidance for businesses can be found at manitoba.ca/restoringsafeservices.  It includes
    • Businesses can submit questions about how the plan will apply to them by visiting https://engagemb.ca.
ONTARIO
  • The Ontario government has extended all emergency orders currently in force until June 9, 2020. For a list of all orders, see the news release.
QUEBEC
  • Camping, cottage rentals, and marinas will be permitted to re-open on June 1.
TERRITORIES
  • No major updates on May 27.
MARITIMES
  • New Brunswick:
    • Zone 5 (Campbellton region) is transitioning back to Orange level under the province’s COVID-19 recovery plan effective immediately in response to three recent confirmed cases in that area. All other zones in New Brunswick are currently transitioning to the Yellow level. For details, see the news release.
    • The following rules now apply to Zone 5 only:
      • A two-household bubble is permitted. Your household can join up with one other household, if both households mutually agree. You must not have close contact with anyone else. You cannot join up with more than one household or bubble.
      • Non-regulated health professionals and businesses such as acupuncturists and naturopaths cannot operate at this time.
      • Personal services businesses such as barbers, hair stylists, spas, estheticians, manicurists, pedicurists, and tattoo artists cannot operate at this time.
    • The government has announced that it will not be proceeding with proposed property tax reductions contained in its 2020-21 Budget in light of the financial impact of COVID-19.
  • Newfoundland: no major updates on May 27.
  • Nova Scotia:
    • On May 27, the province announced the next steps for re-opening.
      • Businesses will be permitted to re-open in accordance with the protocols in the plan tailored to their sector or as provided by their college/association’s plans beginning June 5. These businesses include the following:
        • restaurants for dine-in, as well as takeout and delivery
        • bars, wineries, distilleries and taprooms
        • lounges are not permitted to reopen at this time
        • personal services, such as hair salons, barber shops, spas, nail salons and body art establishments
        • fitness facilities, such as gyms, yoga studios and climbing facilities
        • veterinarians
        • dentistry and other self-regulated health professions such as optometry, chiropractic and physiotherapy
        • unregulated health professions such as massage therapy, podiatry and naturopathy
    • Eligible businesses, non-profits, charities and social enterprises will be able to access the new Small Business Reopening and Support Grant, a $25 million fund that will provide grants to help them open safely and business continuity vouchers for advice and support.
    • The child care sector opening date will be confirmed once the plan is fully approved. The province’s goal is June 15.
    • The province also announced a $230 million investment for stimulus spending that will go toward roads, bridges, school repairs, and museum, courthouse and hospital renovations.
  • PEI: no major updates on May 27.
Areas of Expertise:
  • Workplace contingency planning
  • Temporary and permanent layoffs of non-union workers
  • Layoff and recall of union workers
  • Sick leave
  • Sick leave benefits
  • Short term disability benefits
  • Refusals to work
  • Maintaining an OHS compliant workplace
  • Alternative work arrangements
  • Reductions or freezes in pay or benefits
  • Leaves of absence
  • Rights of quarantined or isolated employees
  • Temporary loan arrangements with employees
  • EI SUB plans
  • Revised employment agreements

Litigation and Dispute Resolution

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Mining

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Northern Canada (Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Yukon)

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Table of Regulatory/Legal Service Updates in the Territories

Northwest Territories

Minister of Health and Social Services, Public Health Act

May 26, 2020

  • Territorial Public Health Emergency and State Of Emergency have been extended until June 9, 2020.

April 10, 2020

  • Remote Mine and Oil and Gas camps are required to use the absolute minimum amount of workers required to continue operations, implement social distancing measures, conduct health screenings and implement workplace risk assessments to be kept on file with WSCC. This order excludes the Giant Mine Remediation project in Yellowknife.

April 10, 2020

  • All indoor gatherings are banned, the Chief Public Health Officer has defined a gathering as when any amount of people get together in the same indoor space who don’t live in the same household.

March 18, 2020

  • Public Health Emergency was declared in NWT.
Travel Restrictions and Self Isolation Protocols

April 27, 2020

  • Travel Restriction Order and Self-Isolation Protocol, effective April 27, 2020 at 4:00pm and remains in effect for the duration of the Public Health Emergency, unless otherwise rescinded. Travel into NWT is prohibited, other than for NWT residents and the listed exceptions. Returning residents must self-isolate for 14 days in Yellowknife, Inuvik, Hay River or Fort Smith and complete and submit a resident self-isolation plan to ProtectNWT@gov.nt.ca.
  • Transient workers in the mineral and petroleum resources sectors are an exception, but must abide by all applicable guidance.
Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board (MVRB)

March 18, 2020

  • The Board’s office is closed effective March 19, 2020. The Board continues to operate as staff work remotely. Individuals with questions regarding interruptions are encouraged to reach out to Mark Cliffe-Phillips at mcliffephillips@reviewboard.ca or by phone at (867) 766-7055.
Land and Water Boards of the Mackenzie Valley (GLWB, SLWB, WLWB, MVLWB)

Advisory

  • The Board’s office is closed effective March 19, 2020. The Board continues to operate as staff work remotely. All requests, submissions, and applications will continue to be received; however, timelines for public reviews and proceedings may be affected.
Workers’ Safety and Compensation Commission Workers' Compensation Act

April 8, 2020

  • Effective retroactively to April 1, 2020, the WSCC has suspended late payment interest charges and further extended the assessment payment deadline to August 1, 2020.
Mining Recorders Office

Altered Service Notice (Undated)

  • The office is continuing to process all payments by phone (credit card) and electronic funds transfer.
  • The Mining Recorder’s Office advises that mineral claims are being protected for 90 days, and that work reports and simplified reports are being accepted but do not need to be submitted during this period. (Staff of the office have advised via telephone that this 90 day period ends on June 26th, but we have not seen any written order or confirmation yet.) 
  • The Mining Recorder’s Office advises that Mineral leases are being protected for 90 days, and that lease payments are being accepted but are not required during this period.
  • Prospector’s licence applications will continue to be processed.

Until further notice, client visits to the Mining Recorder’s Office will only be accommodated based on need and by pre-arranged appointment. Call 867-767-9210 ext. 63464.

Department of Lands; various statutes

May 11, 2020

  • Department of Lands to waive rent on existing surface dispositions on public land, for the fiscal year 2020-21. This applies to all holders of existing recreational, residential, and commercial and mining surface dispositions on public land.

Altered Service Notices (Undated)

  • Applications for commercial, recreational, residential and industrial leases (Postponed)
  • Applications for land use permits (Postponed)
  • Land Use Planning Forum - May 5-6, Yellowknife (Postponed)
  • Land Use Planning GIS Workshop - March 25-26, Yellowknife (Postponed)
  • Quarrying permits (Postponed)
Northwest Territories Courts

Supreme Court Directive

  • Civil Matters shall proceed, but by telephone.
  • All Judicial Settlement Conferences scheduled between June 1st and June 30th are cancelled, unless they can proceed by phone.
  • Civil hearings where witnesses are to be called and are scheduled to proceed between June 1st and 30th are cancelled, subject to other directions that may be given by the assigned judge after a case conference with counsel.

Territorial Court Directive (April 28)

  • The Court will automatically adjourn all Civil Proceedings including trials and interlocutory applications of a non-urgent nature to the first available scheduled date in the community where the proceedings were previously scheduled that follows May 31st
  • All Civil Proceedings including trials and interlocutory applications of a non-urgent nature scheduled before June 1st will be automatically adjourned by the Court to the first Monday at 9:30am that follows a twelve week period following the previously scheduled court date.
Corporate Registries Business Corporations Act

April 6, 2020

  • Corporate Registries office will be open for limited services between 9:30 a.m. and 12:00 noon, but will not be facilitating in-person services. submissions may be made by placing the documents in the drop box in the lobby of the Stuart M. Hodgson Building.
Environment and Natural Resources

April 3, 2020

  • Department of Environment and Natural Resources regional offices closed

April 23, 2020

  • RE Water Licence Holders: Inspectors will be minimizing, but not eliminating, onsite inspections of industrial sites to monitory compliance and enforcement of water licences and required management and monitoring plans.
Nunavut

Minister of Health, Public Health Act

May 14, 2020

  • State of Public Health Emergency (originally declared on March 20, 2020) is extended until the end of May 28, 2020.

April 24, 2020

  • Previous order respecting social distancing, issued on March 20, is rescinded and replaced with this April 24 Order.
  • Subject to specific closures, all businesses and organization may continue to operate in Nunavut if they implement social distancing of two metres. Subject to specific exceptions, if businesses cannot maintain this distance between customers they must limit customers to five people on the premises at a time.

April 2, 2020

  • State of Public Health Emergency (originally declared on March 20, 2020) is extended until the end of April 16, 2020

Travel Restrictions and Self Isolation Protocols

April 26, 2020

  • Travel Restriction Order #3, effective 12:01 am April 26, 2020, in effect for the duration if the Public Health Emergency, unless otherwise rescinded.
  • All travel within Nunavut that originated from across any inter-jurisdictional border is prohibited subject to some exceptions.
  • Transient workers in operating mines who enter Nunavut on private flights operating directly to and from the mine site are an exception – they must remain at the mine site and not enter any community or populated area of Nunavut. Exempted persons must comply with all recommendations and directions of Medical Health Officers.

Nunavut Impact Review Board, Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act

March 16, 2020

  • The Board’s office will be closed to the public, but staff members will be responding to emails from home and the toll-free number (1-866-233-3033) and general email account (info@nirb.ca) will continue to be monitored.

Nunavut Water Board, Nunavut Waters and Nunavut Surface Rights Tribunal Act

March 24, 2020

  • The Board’s office will be closed to the public; but staff will be maintaining the public registry at ftp://ftp.nwb-oen.ca and will continue addressing the Board’s various responsibilities and duties throughout this period. Staff are reachable by their emails, but not office phones.

Mining Recorder’s Office (within Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada), Nunavut Mining Regulations (Canada)

April 2, 2020

  • The Mining Recorder’s Office is continuing to provide essential services, prioritizing:
    • Filing recorded documents (including liens, assignments etc.)
    • Assessment reports and grouping requests
    • Annual rental payments for mineral leases
    • Applications for mineral leases
    • Requests for mineral lease renewals
  • Requests for licences to prospect (or renewals thereof) may take longer than usual or be processed at a later date, depending on the circumstances;

May 1, 2020

  • Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the MRO recognizes that exploration programs will not be able to proceed this upcoming field season and would like to extend the offer of applying for relief of the reporting requirements contained within the Nunavut Mining Regulations.
  • Permit and claim holders do not have to wait until the anniversary date of your tenure to submit a request for relief pursuant to either Section 16 (prospecting permits) or Section 51 (mineral claims). For more information, proponents are asked to contact Karen Dunphy at karen.dunphy@canada.ca or phone at 867-222-3051.

Nunavut Legal Registries

March 23, 2020

  • Legal Registries office will be closed to the public. Individuals can still access services by contacting 867 975-6590 or emailing Corporate.Registries@gov.nu.ca.
  • The Nunavut POLAR land titles system will remain operational and submissions will continue to be reviewed and signed.
Yukon

Civil Emergency Measures Act

Limitation Periods and Legislated Time Periods Order

  • No limitation period established in a provision of a Yukon law for bringing a civil or family action, appeal or proceeding in a court expires during the state of emergency or during the 30-day period immediately after the termination of the state of emergency.

April 2, 2020

  • Civil Emergency Measures Health Protection (COVID-19) Order (2020/14), effective until the date of termination of the state of emergency (including any extension of that state of emergency) that was declared on March 27, 2020. Covers several topics, including critical services and essential services in Yukon, and self-isolation requirements for travelers entering Yukon. Certain entries from some BC-Yukon border areas are under different rules regarding self-isolation requirements.

Notice to Miners arriving in Yukon for work

  • Everyone arriving in Yukon must self-isolate for 14 days, including workers arriving to work at a placer or hard rock mine, an exploration camp, or any other business or duty associated with the mining and exploration industry. Self-isolating workers cannot conduct regular duties in camp or at a mine.

Interim Guidelines for Work Camps During COVID-19

  • Covers support and advice for  camp residents, and travel restrictions.

March 27, 2020

  • State of Emergency is declared in Yukon (Order 2020/61)
Employment Standards Act

May 26, 2020

  • The Leave (COVID-19) Regulation is made, under the new regulation, an employee is entitled to a leave without pay for a period of up to 14 days if they require it.

Travel Restrictions and Social Distancing

April 17, 2020

  • Travel into the Yukon is restricted to only residents of the Yukon traveling home, family of a resident, those providing critical or essential services in Yukon or in the BC-Yukon border area, or as other orders permit.

Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Board

March 18, 2020

  • The office is open but YESAB asks parties to call ahead before visiting the office.
  • YESAB has asked that employees who are able to work from home do so. Public engagements and business meetings will be either postponed or conducted by teleconference or videoconference.
  • Participants in the assessment process will be notified via the YESAB Online Registry of extensions to project assessment timelines.

Yukon Court Registries

April 7, 2020

Whitehorse Court Registry

  • Remains open but are asking visitors to access services remotely or by appointment. To make an appointment phone 867-667-5441, or fax 1-800-661-0408, extension 5441.

Dawson City Court Registry

  • Will be providing services by appointment only. To make an appointment phone 867-993-5070, or fax 1-800-993-5311.

Watson Lake Court Registry

  • Will be providing services by appointment only. To make an appointment phone 867-536-7551, or fax 1-800-536-7564.

Privacy and Cybersecurity

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Private Equity and Venture Capital

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Real Estate

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Regulatory

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Regulator response to COVID-19

British Columbia

Entity

Description

Government of British Columbia – Ministerial Orders

April 8, 2020

  • Ministerial Order No. M098 is issued, replacing Ministerial Order No. M086
  • The power given to persons, tribunals and other bodies with statutory powers of decision to waive, suspend or extend mandatory time periods relating to the exercise of that power under Ministerial Order No. M086 is continued under Ministerial Order No. M098

March 26, 2020

  • Ministerial Order No. M086 is issued
  • A person, tribunal or other body that has a statutory power of decision may waive, suspend or extend a mandatory time period relating to the exercise of that power.

March 26, 2020

  • Ministerial Order No. M085 issued, permitting public bodies to disclose personal information through the use of third party tools and applications (such as software) for reasons related to COVID-19 (for example, disclosure via software is necessary to facilitate social distancing and working remotely)
Office of the Ombudsperson

April 8, 2020

  • The Office of the Ombudsperson person writes to tribunal chairs concerning Ministerial Order No. M098, suggesting that tribunals ensure that all waivers, suspensions, or modifications of mandatory time periods are carefully considered with rationale set out in a formal record of the tribunal

British Columbia Utilities Commission

April 29, 2020

  • BCUC approves Corix Multi-Utility Services Inc. Application for Tariff Changes due to COVID-19

April 9, 2020

  • BCUC issues statement encouraging utility customers to be respectful of essential utility service workers

April 7, 2020

  • BCUC approves COVID-19 Customer Relief Programs for BC Hydro, Fortis Energy, and FortisBC after a web-based Streamlined Review Process on April 6, 2020

April 2, 2020

  • Order in Council 159/2020 issuing Direction to the BCUC Respecting COVID-19 Relief, requiring BCUC to issue order amending BC Hydro’s electric tariff re: COVID Relief Fund

March 31, 2020

  • BCUC issues order granting regulated utilities relief from meter reading

March 27, 2020

  • Letter to regulated utilities re: working to determine path forward

March 23, 2020

  • BCUC directs public utilities to stop disconnections

March 19, 2020

  • BCUC advises regulated entities that the BCUC will consider the impact of COVID-19 on certain mandatory reliability standard requirements

March 15, 2020

  • Commissioners/staff working remotely

March 13, 2020

  • All public events (oral hearings, workshops, stream lined review processes) cancelled

Ongoing

  • Various proceedings adjourned, postponed, or cancelled
  • Regulatory timetables for ongoing proceedings being adjusted (ex: BCH RRA)
  • BCUC requests information about impact of COVID-19 on projects under BCUC jurisdiction (ex: Site C Clean Energy Project)

British Columbia Oil and Gas Commission

April 16, 2020

  • OGC announces adjustments to its business practices in response to COVI9-19, including postponing invoicing of the Orphan Liability Levy and exercising discretion under Ministerial Order 98/2020 to suspend the application timeline to extend a permit or authorization, which postpones expiry of a permit while the suspension is in effect

April 15, 2020

  • OGC issues order suspending the period in which a permit holder may apply for an extension of a permit pursuant to the Oil and Gas Activities Act

April 8, 2020

  • OGC extends deadline for payments of annual levies for pipelines from 30 days to 90 days

April 2, 2020

  • FAQs for industry issued
  • Commission continuing to review and make decision on applications
  • Commission continues to conduce proactive site inspections with modified protocols for physical distancing

March 19, 2020

  • Remaining OGC offices closed
  • Operations and emergency services continue to operate

March 17, 2020

  • Terrace, Kelowna, and Prince George OGC offices closed
  • All non-essential travel suspended
  • Inquiries and meetings to be held by phone
  • Staff and commissioners working remotely

Workers Compensation Appeal Tribunal

May 5, 2020

  • WCAT announces that it will use email rather than regular mail for sending correspondence

March 25, 2020

  • All in person hearings through May 31, 2020 postponed – WCAT’s goal is to have hearings proceed by teleconference or in writing but not required (can wait for in-person hearing)
  • Regular timelines for filing notice of appeal remain but can file notice by phone
  • Notify WCAT if having difficulty meeting submission deadline due to COVID-19

March 17, 2020

  • All in-person hearings postponed through April 10, 2020 – parties with hearings scheduled in this time frame will be contacted by WCAT with option to proceed virtually or reschedule
  • Encourage email correspondence with staff, who are working remotely
  • Documents can be served on WCAT via email

Workers Compensation Board - Review Decision

March 26, 2020

  • Effective immediately, all oral hearings are cancelled – parties with scheduled oral hearings scheduled will be contacted re: next steps
  • Review Division will extend their own statutory time limits for making decisions and will be flexible in granting time extensions to parties seeking reviews

March 22, 2020

  • WorkSafeBC offices closed to visitors, staff and officers continuing to work

Mineral Titles Branch, Mineral Tenure Act, Coal Act

March 27, 2020

  • The time limit for registering: a statement of exploration and development, payment in lieu of work, a revised expiry date or a rental payment, is extended until December 31, 2020 for all mineral and placer mineral titles (where the expiry date or rental date is prior to December 31, 2021);
  • The time limit for applying to extend the term of a coal licence, and for making a rental payment on a coal lease, is extended until December 31, 2021.

March 25, 2020

  • To apply for or renew a Free Miner Certificate, please see the updated process.

March 20, 2020

  • The Vancouver Mineral Titles Branch office is temporarily closed to all in-person service. Service is still provided by email (Mineral.Titles@gov.bc.ca) and voice-mail (1-866-616-4999 - must leave a message)
Alberta

Entity

Description

Government of Alberta

May 12, 2020

  • The Utility Payment Deferral Act, which allows Albertans experiencing financial hardship directly related to COVID-19 pandemic to work with their utility company to defect electricity and natural gas bills until June 18, 2020, came into effect

April 9, 2020

  • Alberta Energy defers all public offerings (i.e. land sales) and direct purchase of PNG and oil sands mineral rights for a minimum of 90 days

April 6, 2020

  • Ministerial Order 219/2020 issued, suspending certain reporting requirements under the Coal Conservation Act, the Oil and Gas Conservation Act, Oil Sands Conservation Act on the basis that they are not in the public interest during the COVID-19 public health emergency

March 30 and 31, 2020

  • Ministerial Orders 15/2020, 16/2020, 17/2020 issued
  • Certain reporting requirements under the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act, Water Act, Public Lands Act, Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction Regulation, and Renewable Fuels Standard Regulation are suspended on the basis that these reporting obligations are not in the public interest during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

March 23, 2020

  • Alberta energy offers one year extensions for PNG agreements, oil sands agreements and metallic and industrial mineral permits expiring from March 20, 2020 to December 31, 2020

Alberta Energy Regulator

April 16, 2020

  • AER announces that extensions to complete exploration programs under the Mines and Minerals Act can be requested and will be granted on a case-by-case basis

April 15, 2020

  • AER releases webpage providing clarification on application of Ministerial Orders 219/2020 and 17/2020

April 14, 2020

  • AER announces that timing for collection of the 2020/2021 orphan fund levy is under review (update expected in June)
  • AER announces it is working with the Government of Alberta to determine implications of the government’s $113 million in relief to the industry on the industry levy

April 9, 2020

  • AER issues bulletin notifying industry of Ministerial Order 219/2020 (see above) and Ministerial Order 17/2020 (see above)

March 31, 2020

  • AER announces delay in disclosure of AER expenses

March 20, 2020

  • AER’s emergency response line having technical difficulties – new local phone number provided

March 17, 2020

  • AER offices open but staff working remotely
  • Meetings with stakeholders will be held virtually, instead of in-person
  • Oral portions of AER hearings will not be held - AER is reviewing current and future adjudicative functions to determine future process

Ongoing

  • Various hearings, preheating conferences cancelled
  • AER announces limited hours including for Core Research Centre and Calgary mailroom

Alberta Utilities Commission

May 13, 2020

  • AUC announces that it is accepting applications from service providers under the Utility Payment Deferral Program, announced by the provincial government in March 2020

May 12, 2020

  • Commission requests comments on the Consumers’ Coalition of Alberta’s request that the Commission direct regulated utilities to record and report on decisions, positions and actions due to the impact of COVID-19

May 8, 2020

  • AUC announces changes to industry impact assessment in relation to regulatory burden and lag, including changes to composition of the next roundtable

May 6, 2020

  • In light of impact that COVID-19 may have on participant’s ability to appear before another for the purpose of having a document sworn or witnessed, AUC suspends requirement to have affidavit of fees and disbursements and confidentiality undertaking witnessed or sworn before a commissioner for oaths

April 27, 2020

  • AUC approves deferral of payments for Alberta Electric System operator tariff transmission charges

April 17, 2020

  • AUC issues general update on COVID-19, emphasizing a flexible approach to regulation including a pragmatic approach to compliance and delay of the AUC’s operational plan while they revisit the plan in light of COVID-19

April 14, 2020

  • AUC announces intention to focus ongoing review of AUC Rule 027: Specified Penalties for Contravention of Reliability Standards on placement of new and revised reliability standards in the penalty table as a result of the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic

April 7, 2020

  • AUC announces interim changes to AUC participation involvement program for electric and gas facility applications, including requiring applicants and project proponents to give stakeholder increased time to respond to project notifications and discouraging face to face consultations, open houses, and town halls

March 31, 2020

  • AUC announces support for Market Surveillance Administrator’s relaxation of certain reliability standards

March 27, 2020

  • AUC announces suspension of specified penalties program for self-reported contraventions

March 18, 2020

  • AUC announces support for implementation of 90-day utility bill payment deferral option

March 17, 2020

  • AUC offices closed but staff continue to work remotely
  • AUC to lead industry consultation to coordinate customer relief efforts

March 12, 2020

  • AUC defers live proceedings (public hearings, consultations, or information sessions)
  • AUC will explore remote options if there is an economic requirement to proceed with hearing or public proceeding

Ongoing

  • Various regulatory proceedings deferred

Market Surveillance Administrator

March 30, 2020

  • MSA announces that COVID-19 is acceptable reason (case-by-case) for non-compliance with reliability standards (limited to self-reports between March 1/20 to July 31/20)

March 17, 2020

  • MSA offices close, staff working remotely
Ontario

Entity

Description

Mining Lands Administration System, Mining Act

April 17, 2020

  • Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines announces that Ontario claim holders with claim anniversary dates on or before December 31, 2020 may receive exclusion orders for their claims due to COVID-19

March 31, 2020

Federal

Entity

Description

Canadian Energy Regulator

May 12, 2020

  • CER issues update to adjudicative processes during COVID-19, including a summary of recent procedural guidance issued for specific active hearing processes, and states that it expects to meet all of its time limits in its review of the applications before it

April 29, 2020

  • CER announces that it is supporting administrative flexibility during COVID-19, including continuation of inspection and compliance verification activities, postponement of some financial audits and management system audits, and deferring external engagement for regulatory framework improvement initiatives

April 24, 2020

  • CER publishes two news releases (here and here) highlighting how it is continuing to fulfill its mandate to protect people and the environment during COVID-19 as well as keeping energy moving safely during COVID-19
  • CER summarizes regulatory oversight of Trans Mountain Expansion Project during COVID-19

April 21, 2020

  • CER announced procedural changes to remaining detailed route hearings for the Trans Mountain Expansion Project – oral portions of all detailed route hearings replaced with alternate formats not requiring in-person attendance and oral cross examination replaced by written information requests
  • CER exploring alternate ways for sharing of Indigenous knowledge

April 15, 2020

  • CER extends time limit for planning phase for proposed Gazoduq Project at the request of the province of Quebec in light of the impact of COVID-19

March 17, 2020

  • Regulatory filings adjusted - continue to file electronically but requirement to file hard copies postponed

March 16, 2020

  • Oral portions of hearings will not be held as planned. All current adjudication processes are being looked at to determine future processes.
  • Meetings between CER staff and company representatives to be conducted virtually
  • Compliance verification will continue but will be modified to reduce in-person interactions
  • Information sessions, technical conferences, working groups, and committee meetings to be conducted virtually or postponed
  • CER workforce working remotely
  • All international travel suspended; domestic travel limited to critical activities

Ongoing

  • Deadlines for written components of hearings being extended
  • Elements of regulatory hearings being postponed

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