Champlain Township council discussed containment of the Novel Coronavirus CO-VID 19 at its Thursday, March 12 meeting.

Mayor Normand Riopel said council’s primary concert was for the public.

While Vankleek Hill councillor Peter Barton asked about the status of events in the township, it was reiterated that while Ontario public school closures ordered by the province will continue until April 5, no such orders had been issued for day care facilities. Champlain Township Day Care Director Jennifer Drury was present at the council meeting.

Dan Holmes, who is the township’s emergence services coordinator said that a conference call was to take place on Friday morning with the Dr. Paul Roumeliotis, the Medical Officer of Health with the Eastern Ontario Health Unit.

It was his opinion that more information would be forthcoming on Friday and recommended following the province’s lead on event cancellations or further restrictions.

“Do we have to wait?” asked West Hawkesbury councillor Sarah Bigelow, who also asked if all councillors could listen in on the conference call.

Champlain Township CAO Paula Knudsen said that the municipality had re-initiated its sanitation practices and that its pandemic plan had been updated.

Holmes reiterated that Thursday had been a day of escalation, in terms of announcements and rapid changes.

Champlain Township staff is empowered to make decisions as needed, Riopel assured council, in response to a question from Bigelow about the need for meetings and consultation. The township does have a separate committee especially for emergency situations.

West Hawkesbury councillor Gérard Miner said he was not worried about staff contacting him, given the many communication paths available today.

Knudsen also reminded council that people can register on Champlain Township’s website to receive notifications of new information posted there.