Dear residents of the Pontiac,
Premier Legault announced today that the Outaouais region will be placed under Special Emergency Measures for COVID-19 as of tomorrow, April 14 at 8 p.m. The curfew will be brought back to 8 p.m., all non-essential businesses will have to close (curb-side pickup only), and schools will be closed and moved to online-learning as of Thursday, April 15. These measures are expected to be maintained until April 26, 2021 at 5 am. Please visit Quebec.ca/COVID19 to see all the measures that apply to our region at this time: https://www.quebec.ca/en/health/health-issues/a-z/2019-coronavirus/special-emergency-measures
I am very concerned about the growing number of young children in our schools who have tested positive recently. We, as community members, need to be more vigilant in our prevention measures (i.e. wearing a mask, keeping two-metres distance with others, staying home unless for exercise or essential reasons only, etc.). We need to be the eyes and ears of our community by speaking up to our neighbours if they are not respecting the health measures and by calling the police if necessary. This is not intended to create problems between residents; this is how we look after each other as neighbours. Since last week, the Province of Ontario has been under a stay-at-home order. This means that residents should not be going to or from Ontario at this time, unless it is for essential reasons. We are currently in a very fragile situation, especially with the fact that our MRC has the poorest base health in the entire province of Quebec. I want to encourage everyone to please stop and think before travelling between regions. Please continue to do your shopping locally, and use curb-side pickup where available. I realize that everyone is tired after 13 months of coping with this pandemic, and that we had all hoped it would be behind us by now, but unfortunately it is on the rise as it has never been before in the Pontiac. We must continue to work together to stop the spread and protect each other. I also want to emphasize the importance of booking your vaccination appointment when your age group is called. I had my vaccination last Saturday. Please remember that even if you have received your first vaccination, you still have to take all precautions. You are not yet immune to COVID-19 and can still spread it to others. You can book your appointment online at Quebec.ca/covidvaccine or by calling 1-877-644-4545.
Earlier today, I was delighted to take part in a press conference with William Amos to announce a joint funding project of $291,678 to the MRC Pontiac for upgrading the network of trails in the Cycloparc PPJ. The project aims to improve the network of paths of the PPJ by adding granular materials and stone screening, as well as the profiling of ditches on a section joining the municipalities of Shawville and Campbell’s Bay. The Government of Quebec is investing $145,839 through the Programme d’aide financière aux infrastructures récréatives et sportives, while the Government of Canada is investing $145,839 through the Community, Culture and Recreation Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada Program.
Tomorrow, we will be holding our plenary meeting of the Regional Council of Mayors and our public meeting will be held next Wednesday, April 21st at 6:30 p.m. I encourage everyone to tune-in on Facebook Live on the MRC Pontiac page.
I am very pleased with the work of the Flood Prevention Taskforce, which I felt the need to organize in November after residents had raised concerns about potential flooding. As a result, with the excellent input from our citizen representatives, and all of the organizations that have been involved as well as the mayors, we know that there is a low-risk of flooding this spring. In fact, it has been a relatively dry season so far. Please continue to keep an eye on water levels and please reach out to me if you have any concerns about flooding in your area, 819-647-8198.
Please continue to keep the health of the Pontiac in your thoughts and prayers. Together Pontiac!