MPP optimistic area can be released from lockdown 

Brockville

The MPP for the Brockville-area is hopeful the region can re-open faster than some areas of the province because of its low COVID-19 case numbers. 

The entire province has been in an emergency lockdown since Dec. 26., a 28-day order that was extended in January and will remain in place until at least Feb. 9. 

Steve Clark, PC MPP for Leeds-Grenville-Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes and Municipal Affairs Minister, said in an interview 104.9 MOVE FM he is optimistic that low cases and an low infection rate in the Tri-County area will mean it could be returned to the 'green zone' of the province's colour-coded framework. 

"Certainly we've talked to the Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. [David] Williams about how we're going to move from the lockdown hopefully back into the colour-coded area, which would mean for us we'd be back in green," Clark said. adding the region was one of six in the province that would be in the green based on current numbers. 

He said he was "optimistic and hopeful that once the emergency order ends" that the area would see restrictions eased. 

Clark said one wild card for a potential timeline is the new variants of the virus, both the South African and U.K. variants, which have made their way into the province. Clark said officials are watching the situation with the new variants closely. No cases of either variant have so far been confirmed in Leeds, Grenville and Lanark.