COVID-19

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Please note that Interior Health should remain your primary source of information in the COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) outbreak. Please visit their website for the latest information.

The City of Kamloops recognizes that there is significant concern in the community around COVID-19. This page has been set up to provide local information to our community about COVID-19. We regularly update this page with any changes to our operations which may affect our residents.

The City is encouraging all residents and businesses to follow the direction of public health officials, including limiting public gatherings and practicing physical distancing.

The global management of the situation is evolving daily. We care about the public’s health and wellbeing, as well as the health and safety of our employees and are actively working with our Emergency Program Manager and Health and Safety Department.

We are following the recommendations of the Federal and Provincial Government agencies before any changes are made to our operations.


Please note that Interior Health should remain your primary source of information in the COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) outbreak. Please visit their website for the latest information.

The City of Kamloops recognizes that there is significant concern in the community around COVID-19. This page has been set up to provide local information to our community about COVID-19. We regularly update this page with any changes to our operations which may affect our residents.

The City is encouraging all residents and businesses to follow the direction of public health officials, including limiting public gatherings and practicing physical distancing.

The global management of the situation is evolving daily. We care about the public’s health and wellbeing, as well as the health and safety of our employees and are actively working with our Emergency Program Manager and Health and Safety Department.

We are following the recommendations of the Federal and Provincial Government agencies before any changes are made to our operations.

  • Budget Impact Report

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    4 months ago

    April 22, 2020 - Budget Impact Report

    Kathy Humphrey, the City's Corporate Services Director, presented a report to address several new issues related to the approval of the 2020–2024 Five-Year Financial Plan that have arisen since the provisional budget was approved in December 2019.

    View the report here.

    The provisional budget planned for an increase of $3 million after growth (2.97%). With the anticipated changes in revenue expectations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 budget is showing a revenue shortfall in the range of $7–12 million.

    The report and the recommendations addressed two key issues—protecting the City’s cash flow security and supporting the community’s residents and businesses during this difficult economic time. In order to balance the budget and reduce the tax increase, the following considerations were made by Administration:

    • deferring many of the new tax-funded items that were initially approved as part of the 2020 provisional budget and supplemental items
    • reducing various operating line items that will not be required in 2020 due to the restrictions in place as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic
    • deferring capital funding and capital projects that are not urgent or cannot be completed in 2020, including tax-funded and grant-funded (Gaming, Community Works, etc.) activities
    • using reserves to fund operations and other capital projects as needed or as assumptions change


    Council authorized Administration to remove the following tax funded items from the 2020–2024 Five‑Year Financial Plan to reduce the overall tax increase for 2020:

    • Asset Management Reserve increase ($550,000)
    • one of two new RCMP municipal employee full-time equivalent (FTE) positions ($42,750)
    • new Arborist FTE position ($47,250)
    • transit expansion for September 2020 ($82,000 in 2020, $258,000 in 2021, $270,000 in 2022, and $161,000 in 2023)
    • new service agreement funding ($33,000)


    With the removal of these items, the tax rate increase for 2020 is estimated to be 2.29%.

    Council authorized Administration to prepare a revised 2020–2024 Five‑Year Financial Plan for Council’s consideration that reflects the assumptions that the COVID-19 pandemic will impact the City’s operations through September 2020 (Scenario 2). Council provided direction to reduce the operating expenditures, as presented in Table 3 of the report, and deferring funding for capital projects as listed in Table 6 of the report.

    Council authorized Administration to defer the RCMP Battle Street Detachment Renovations and Improvements Project ($750,000 funded from General Reserve).

    Council directed Administration to defer the replacement of the track at Hillside Stadium ($600,000) to 2021.

    Council also authorized adoption of Revenue Anticipation Borrowing Bylaw No. 16-321, which will allow the City to short-term borrow up to $15 million to protect the City’s cash flow from a possible delay in receiving property tax and utility bill payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


  • City of Kamloops Continues to Urge Physical Distancing in Parks

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    4 months ago

    April 9, 2020 - The City of Kamloops is implementing extra measures at McArthur Island Park today to help people abide by physical distancing restrictions.

    • Ring Road: The ring road on McArthur Island will be closed to public vehicle traffic and remain open to pedestrians and cyclists. This will provide extra space for pedestrians and cyclists to maintain the required 2 m physical distance.
    • Skateboard Park: The City will install construction fencing around the skateboard park to limit the number of people using the park at one time. City staff will monitor the number of people and encourage physical distancing.

    “City parks will remain open as long as people comply with public health orders regarding physical distancing,” said Mayor Ken Christian. “If physical distancing measures are not adhered to, further action may be required.”

  • Financial Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the City of Kamloops Budget

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    4 months ago

    April 8, 2020 - Preliminary Financial Impacts of COVID-19 Pandemic on the City of Kamloops Budget

    With the COVID-19 pandemic and declaration of a provincial state of emergency, the City must review the 2020 provisional budget and the 2020–2024 Five-Year Financial Plan in order to factor in the previously unforeseen financial impacts that the COVID-19 pandemic has on the budget.

    While the ultimate economic impact of the pandemic will not be fully understood until we are well past the state of emergency, the City must consider the preliminary financial picture in order to make strategic decisions today that are in the best interest of the organization and community for the long term.

    At the April 7 Regular Council Meeting, Kathy Humphrey, the City's Corporate Services Director, highlighted the City’s current financial challenges in addressing the impacts of the pandemic, as we plan for the recovery phase of the emergency. To comply with the various orders from public health authorities across the country, the City has closed many of its facilities and reduced service levels.

    Based on the current information, Administration has assessed the potential impact of extending the existing facility closures and service reductions for two scenarios—a three-month period to the end of June 2020 and a six-month period to the end of September 2020. Read the full report.

    In order to address immediate budget shortfalls while ensuring sufficient cash flow to continue with City operations, Administration recommended taking an approach that defers projects to future years, reduces service levels as needed, and supplements additional budget shortfalls with funding from reserves.

    Council directed Administration to bring forward a budget report to the April 21, 2020, Council Meeting that balances the 2020 budget and the 2020–2024 Five-Year Financial Plan by:

    • delaying non-essential supplemental items
    • identifying projects, based on risk, that cannot or should not proceed in 2020 and defer these to a future year
    • adjusting the operating and capital budgets, including service levels, to reduce costs to reflect the impact of COVID-19 on City services and planned projects
    • identifying appropriate reserves to balance the budget after operating and capital adjustments have been made
    • providing options, based on expected provincial direction, for delaying property tax payment deadlines and penalties and providing incentives for early payment
    • providing options for delaying utility payment deadlines and penalties and providing incentives for early payment


    For other budget-related information and resources, visit the Budget Consultation 2020 Let's Talk page.

  • BC Transit and the City of Kamloops Implement Service Changes

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    4 months ago

    April 3, 2020 - In order to continue offering Kamloops Transit System customers with critical transportation solutions, BC Transit and the City of Kamloops are making adjustments to transit services as part of our response to COVID-19, starting April 5, 2020.

    Read more...

    https://www.bctransit.com/kamloops/news?nid=1529708761266

  • City Council Resuming Council Meetings April 7

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    4 months ago

    April 1, 2020 - Kamloops City Council will resume regular Council meetings on Tuesday, April 7, 2020, at 1:30 pm. The meetings will continue to be streamed online; however, the following changes will be implemented to ensure the health and safety of Council and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic:

    • The public and media are not able to attend in person or call in at this time.
    • The Mayor and a maximum of four Councillors will be present in Council Chambers, practising physical distancing. The remaining Councillors will join the meeting via electronic means.
    • Staff will only be present as required and will practise physical distancing in the gallery.

    “Our focus is on the health and safety of our staff and residents as well as the economic impact of this pandemic,” said Mayor Ken Christian. “Council needs to meet to make decisions to help the city move forward through the pandemic and beyond.”

    The Council meeting schedule will be posted on Kamloops.ca.

  • City Coordinating with Province to Protect Vulnerable Populations During COVID-19 Pandemic

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    4 months ago

    April 1, 2020 - The City of Kamloops is collaborating with BC Housing, Interior Health, and various social agencies to provide support during the COVID-19 pandemic for vulnerable populations in our community, including people experiencing homelessness, under-housed people, people with complex care needs, and/or people with mental health and substance use needs.

    “We’re focused on the safety and health of all residents of our community,” said Mayor Ken Christian. “We know that this population is particularly vulnerable to infection and may not have the ability to follow best practices for prevention or treatment on their own.”

    The Province has identified several possible solutions to address the significant challenges faced by shelter and congregate housing sites to minimize the spread of COVID-19 in the community. These solutions include identifying alternative locations for shelter residents that allow for proper physical distancing as well as the isolation of high risk or symptomatic individuals. In addition, the Province has requested support from municipalities for people who choose to reside outdoors by providing access to amenities and relaxing bylaw restrictions on temporary overnight shelters.

    In response, the City is reviewing facilities and park spaces that could be used to facilitate these requests and provide safe shelter options.

    “This is an unprecedented time in our community, and it’s not business as usual,” said Christian. “Our primary objective at this point is to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and minimize its impact on our community.”

  • Burning Restrictions Issued for Kamloops

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    4 months ago

    Update April 14, 2020 – The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy has extended this ban until June 15, 2020. Read the full release here.

    ---
    March 27, 2020 - Effective March 27, the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy in collaboration with provincial public health partners has issued burning restrictions for all High Smoke Sensitivity Zones in British Columbia until Wednesday, April 15, 2020.

    As a result, Kamloops Fire Rescue (KFR) will no longer be issuing burning permits. KFR will contact anyone who has been provided a permit and issue refunds.
  • COVID-19 Awareness for the Safety of Frontline Sanitation Workers

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    4 months ago

    March 27, 2020 – The City is ensuring that it protects its frontline garbage and recycling staff by reinforcing proper social distancing and hygiene protocols.

    Landfills
    The City recognizes that in this time of social isolation, many residents are working hard in their homes and their yards, which results in increased trips to the landfills. In order to ensure the safety of the public as well as staff, the Mission Flats Landfill will be implementing social distancing protocols by limiting access to the drop-off bins. This may result in extended delays for customers. The City also encourages infrequent but efficient trips—for example, make sure you have a full truckload before visiting the landfill. When visiting the landfill, please respect other customers and staff by maintaining social distance and practicing good hygiene. The landfill is no longer accepting cash; payment is by credit, debit, or on-account only.

    Residents are also reminded that the Barnhartvale Landfill is currently closed, although yard waste and diversion remain open.

    Curbside Collection
    There are no changes to garbage and recycling collection at this time, but residents are encouraged to download the Waste Wise Kamloops app to stay up-to-date with any changes in collection should the need arise.

    Residents should take extra precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and protect our sanitation workers by:

    • bagging all personal hygiene products, used tissues, cleaning cloths, face masks, gloves, and similar items
    • securely tying garbage bags shut
    • wiping down the handles of your collection carts
    If you’re sick or caring for someone who is sick, please do the following:
    • double-bag all personal waste in plastic garbage bags
    • securely tie all bags shut and dispose of them as regular residential garbage
    Unbagged or loose items will not be collected.

    Waste Wise App
    The Waste Wise app is the most comprehensive and up-to-date resource for anything related to curbside collection or service level changes. Pertinent information can be pushed out to subscribers via the app, so residents are once again reminded to download the app for their best source of waste-related information. Visit kamloops.ca/wastewise for more information.
  • City of Kamloops Continues to Respond to COVID-19

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    4 months ago

    March 27, 2020 - The City of Kamloops continues to support the Province’s response to COVID-19 following the March 26 ministerial orders from Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth. Through these orders, the City has the ability to respond more quickly to the evolving situation and hold more flexible Council meetings to expedite decisions.

    The City's Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) is continuing to operate in order to help support the Province's directions, meet the needs of our community, and ensure our essential services—such as police, fire, water, sewer, solid waste—continue through this pandemic.

    The City has evaluated staffing levels by balancing the need to maintain minimum service levels and the need to meet the direction from the provincial health authorities. Yesterday, the City delivered temporary layoff notices to close to 100 on-call and part-time staff, and a large part of the remaining workforce is working from home. In addition, all current vacant positions have been put on hold.

    With minimal staffing levels, the City is not able to address each request for service in the same timeline as normal. As such, staff are prioritizing the incoming requests for service using criteria based on public and employee safety.

    Bylaw Services, in particular, has received an overwhelming number of calls from concerned residents. While we understand residents’ concerns, Bylaw Officers are only able to provide education, and do not have the authority to issue fines or other enforcement measures. Officers are routinely patrolling the city to educate residents about how and why to implement physical distancing measures.

    For the safety of City sanitation employees, the City is reinforcing proper physical distancing and hygiene protocols at Mission Flats Landfill, which may result in extended delays for customers.

    The City is also reviewing transit, with a view to further reduce service levels as well as limit the number of passengers on each bus to adhere to physical distancing. The City will provide more information next week as decisions are made.

    On March 20 at noon, the City of Kamloops put a State of Local Emergency (SOLE) into effect because, at that time, there was a lack of information, direction, and supports for the City of Kamloops to implement Dr. Henry's public health orders. The City believes that those concerns have been addressed with the announcements from the Minister Farnworth yesterday. The City's SOLE was set to expire at noon today, March 27, as it was in place for only a seven-day period. The City also believes that various British Columbia local governments putting these SOLEs in place over the last week helped the Province understand the challenges that local governments were facing in exercising Dr. Henry's orders. Going forward, the City of Kamloops will continue working collaboratively with the Province.

    Watch the Mayor's March 27 video address.

  • Annual Delegation Visit from Uji Japan Postponed Due to COVID-19

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    4 months ago

    March 25, 2020 – The City of Kamloops and our Sister City of Uji, Japan, have decided to postpone the official delegation visit to Kamloops. Kamloops was scheduled to host the delegation at the end of June.

    Our Sister City relationship with Uji was officially formalized on July 1, 1990 by Mayor Phil Gaglardi. This year, the City of Kamloops was planning a 30th anniversary celebration of cultural awareness, economic development, and tourism between the two municipalities.

    “It’s important for everyone to stay safe during this period of uncertainty,” said Mayor Ken Christian. “We wish Mayor Yamamoto and the people of Uji City safety and good health, and we look forward to celebrating this important relationship together in 2021.”

    To stay up to date on the City’s response to COVID-19, visit Kamloops.ca/COVID.