Legal Review of Essential Workplaces List - What Work Can Continue
Published on: 05/04/2020
Following on the government release of the updated Essential Workplaces List on Friday, April 3rd, attached is a legal review of the list to provide clarity on what infrastructure work can continue.
In effect, the repair and maintenance work relating to existing capital infrastructure to permit sewage treatment and disposal; the collection, transportation, storage, processing, disposal or recycling of waste; and potable drinking water can continue (section 34(i)-(iii)). Further, any repair and maintenance of critical infrastructure including roads, dams and bridges can continue (section 34(iv)).
As the review notes, while there are some exceptions for where work can continue on private residential and ICI developments sites, for the most part, this work is no longer considered "essential."
It is important to note that it is ultimately the owner's project, and the owner may have other reasons for concluding it is appropriate to shut down the project even if the owner is legally permitted to continue the project under the Essential Services List Regulation. So, we are recommending that you reach out to your project owners and provide them with the attached information, but recognize it is ultimately their decision whether to allow work to continue.
It is also important to note that the exemptions for essential businesses would be interpreted narrowly by an adjudicator, so taking loose interpretations of this List is being advised against. Its also important to note that the fines for not following this legislation are quite significant (as outlined on page 2 of the attached review), so compliance is very important.
If you have any questions please contact Patrick McManus (905-629-7766 ext. 222 or firstname.lastname@example.org).
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