What has happened this past week in Ontario which impacts our condo communities?
Extension of the declared emergency period
Ontario has extended the period of emergency until June 2. The emergency period has been extended a number of times since March and we will have to wait until closer to June 2nd to see whether there is a further extension.
Lifting of some restrictions in Ontario
The reopening of Ontario has entered “Stage 1” of its “Second Phase”, with some restrictions being lifted.
The most relevant change for condo corporations is the lifting of restrictions on “general maintenance and repair services”. These can now resume and are no longer limited to “strictly necessary” maintenance.
Here’s the complete list of Stage 1 Openings.
Our view on whether to open amenities or not at this point in time is – keep them closed! Fitness/gym facilities, change rooms and pools/spas are still captured by prior and existing emergency orders and therefore should remain closed to residents.
Again, a reminder, that the fact Ontario is permitting the reopening of some services does not mean that condo corporations are required to reopen them. Ultimately, it is up to each condo corporation to do their own risk analysis and to take any required precautions.
Changes to the Condo Act extended- Bill 190
The Condominium Act has been amended to extend the period during which condo corporations can hold virtual AGMs and other owners meetings (with electronic voting). Condo corporations are still exempt from obtaining owners agreements to receive notices electronically for the period of extension- so no hard copies of notices need to be mailed if you have an email address for an owner. The exemptions will be permitted for up to 120 days following the end of the declared emergency period. As of today that means 120 days from June 2 which is on or before September 30th, 2020.
These are your options with respect to AGMs:
- You can postpone them by 90 days (in some cases by 120 days);
- You can hold them virtually, now or in the 120 days following the end of the declared emergency.
You can read more about this here.
This week’s webinar (Wednesday at 5pm) will focus on “Next steps”. We will cover, amongst other items:
- The reopening of amenities;
- Whether making your amenities Covid-19 compliant is a Reserve Fund expense;
- Whether to allow in-suite work and under what conditions;
- How to ensure your contractors are Covid-19 ready;
- What provisions should be included in a virtual meeting and electronic voting by-law