10 fines issued in Niagara to businesses for not following COVID rules over 3-week period

covid me

After a week of criticism that Niagara is not doing enough to enforce COVID-19 rules, Niagara Public Health is releasing information on what the Business Licensing unit is doing.

According to Niagara Public Health, between September 18th and November 7th, regional by-law officers conducted 126 inspections of businesses in every municipality, including bars and restaurants, retail locations and others. 

Those inspections have resulted in 7, $750 fines, and 3 summons (elevated fine) being issued for infractions under the Reopening Ontario Act.

Officials say the aim of new rules implemented for bars, restaurants, wineries and bars, is not to punish local businesses, but rather to ensure that they are able to stay open safely. 

New rules will come into effect Saturday morning in Niagara, limiting people seated at tables to dine only with household members or essential caregivers.

New provincial rules also come into effect on Monday, limiting people to 4 people per table, closing at 10pm, and cutting alcohol service off at 9 p.m.

Public Health offered some other reminders:

Residents are able to submit complaints regarding COVID-19 measures by contacting their local municipality’s by-law office, or calling Niagara Region’s dispatch line after hours at 905-984-3690 or 1-877-552-5579.  

Niagara Region reminds residents and businesses that our personal actions are the biggest determinant of COVID-19 spread, and our choices of how we interact socially with others will determine if we control COVID-19 and save lives, or if we will allow COVID-19 to spread further and necessitate more provincially-imposed restrictions on our social lives and economy.