• COVID-19: Important Information and Business Resources

    We will continue to keep our Chamber members up to date with new information on this page as we navigate through this challenging time.

     


     

  •  September 15th, 2021 - State of Emergency

    Starting September 20th, eligible businesses have two options:
    1. Implement the Restriction Exemption Program (REP) by requiring proof of vaccination or negative rapid test result to continue operating as usual
    2. Follow capacity and operating restrictions as outlined here

    New measures went into effect this Thursday at 12:01am, including a work-from-home requirement for businesses that do not require a physical employee presence for operational effectiveness. Visit the Government of Alberta website for more information. 

    New card-sized COVID-19 vaccination record
    As of Sept. 16, Albertans are able to print a copy of their card-sized COVID-19 proof of vaccination or show it on their phone or tablet.
     
    Vaccination incentive launches
    Eligible Albertans can now register to get a $100 debit card for receiving a first or second dose of COVID-19 vaccine. 


    Frequently Asked Questions

    Q. Are all businesses eligible to participate in REP? 
    The Restriction Exemption Program does not apply to:

    • businesses or entities that need to be accessed for daily living
    • employees of businesses participating in the program
    • children under 12
     
    Q. Do I have to apply for the Restriction Exemption Program (REP)? 
    No, you will be automatically enrolled in the program.
     
    Q. If I decide not to or cannot participate in REP based on the nature of my business, what restrictions will my business be subject to? 
    The timing and variation on restrictions for businesses not participating in REP are wide ranging. We encourage any business that is evaluating their participation in REP, to visit the Alberta Government’s website to view a list of full restrictions, timelines and industry-specific requirements.
     
    Q. To be eligible for REP, do I need to require my employees to be vaccinated or provide a recent, negative rapid test result? 
    No. REP is intended to provide businesses with a mechanism to screen patrons for vaccination status. REP does not apply to employees of businesses participating in the program. 
     
    Businesses are still welcome and encouraged to implement vaccine requirements and/or rapid testing for employees, however, this is outside the current scope of REP.
     
    Q. How will the government ensure businesses are implementing REP or complying with restrictions? 
    The REP will be enforced through audits and fines for non-compliance.
     
    Q. How can my business check vaccination status of patrons? 
    Right now, there are several options patrons can use to prove vaccination status:
     
    As of October 1, we expect a QR code option to be introduced with additional information for businesses on how to use this option.
     
    Q. What can businesses expect from government to support implementation, including ability to check vaccination status using QR code technology? 
    We understand further guidance from the Government of Alberta will be available in coming days on what will be available for businesses to support implementation.
     
    Q. How should businesses participating in REP work with those who are ineligible for vaccination (eg. children and people with medical exemptions)? 
    Children and those with medical exemptions are not subject to vaccination requirements through REP.
     
    Q. How do I screen customers who are partially vaccinated? 
    From September 20 – October 25, proof of a single dose is acceptable as long as the dose was given more than two weeks before time of service.
     
    After October 25, proof of double vaccination is required.
     
    Q. Will employees be expected to provide and administer rapid tests to patrons who cannot or choose not to prove vaccination status? 
    This is currently unclear. We are working with the province to determine how rapid testing administration and verification will work.
     
    Q. What are the metrics the province is using to assess need for continued restrictions? What metrics can I look for to better understand when restrictions will be lifted? 
    This is currently unclear. We have asked the province for clarification on key metrics needed to relax restrictions and business participation in REP.
     
    We know there is still much to work through as businesses respond to the changes. We will continue to seek answers and share information on unanswered questions in the coming days and weeks.
     
    If you have questions or require support at this time, please email us.
     

    We are Advocating for More Clarity from GOA

    The Alberta Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with municipal chambers, is advocating for clarity on many issues with the new health measures. Here are examples of issues we are working on:
     
    • Restriction exemption process for businesses is not defined with clear decision criteria. ACC has been advocating for such a process to be established with letters to Premier Kenney, Ministers Shandro and Schweitzer, on April 7, September 2, and September 15 of this year.
     
    • A standard means of identification to signal to patrons that an operation requires proof of vaccination to provide service. A standard means of communication (e.g. a decal, key messaging) would reduce the risk of conflict in enforcing proof of vaccination by communicating expectations prior to entry.
     
    • How will restrictions be applied to business operating with a common entrance and distinct operating spaces.
     
    • Definitions of businesses that need to be accessed for 'daily living'.
     
    • Do hospitality businesses continue operating under current protocols until new protocols take effect on September 20th. Masking and physical distancing will be in place and alcohol curfew still applies until the 20th, then its operations will be limited to outdoor dining unless the exemption program is in place.
     
    We will continue to work on getting clarity on these issues and provide updates to our membership as new information becomes available.
    We are gathering questions and concerns from our members and will continue to advocate for the needs of business and seek clarity on the new restrictions and exemption program in a timely manner. Please reach out to info@airdriechamber.ab.ca.
     

     
     
    In conjunction with GOA guidelines, businesses can stop the spread of COVID-19 by utilizing rapid testing for employees. In partnership with the Alberta Chambers and the provincial government, the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce continues to offer complimentary COVID-19 rapid tests to eligible businesses with less than 150 employees. By testing employees, businesses can stop outbreaks before they happen.
     
    There is no cost to these tests and any business or non-profit can request tests.
     
    IMPORTANT NOTE - the program and kits are intended to be used only for employees of a business, NOT for patrons to show proof of vaccination when entering a business venue.

     

    Click here for more information


     

  • Temporary Measures - September 4th, 2021
     
    These measures took effect September 4, at 8 a.m.  Please see the Government of Alberta website for the announcement. 
     
    Restrictions for businesses include:
    Masking - mandatory restriction
    • Masks are mandatory in all indoor public spaces and workplaces.
    • Employees must mask in all indoor work settings, except in work stations.
     
    Restaurants, cafes, bars, pubs and nightclubs – mandatory restriction
    • Alcohol service must end at 10 p.m. in all licensed establishments.
     
    Working from home – recommended measure
    • Employers are recommended to continue work-from-home measures, and to pause or revert plans to have staff return to work where possible.
    • If employees are working on location, they must mask in all indoor settings except work stations.
     
    For questions related to these measures, please contact the Government of Alberta.
    If you would like a mandatory mask poster for your business, click here.

     

  • Alberta's Open for Summer Plan
     
    "Three weeks ago, we asked Albertans to stop the spike," Kenney said. "The diligence and sacrifices of Albertans hasn't just stopped the spike but crushed it."
     
    Albertans have been working hard to stop the spike over the last few weeks. Active cases are going down and vaccination rates are going up.
     
    Albertans have an incentive to continue following public health measures and get vaccinated as soon as possible. Alberta's Open for Summer Plan safely eases restrictions in 3 stages as vaccination targets are reached and hospitalizations decline. If Albertans continue doing their part, all restrictions could be lifted by late June or early July.
     
    Alberta will enter Stage 1 on June 1. Until then, all current province-wide restrictions remain in place, with additional restrictions in high case regions.
     
    This 3-stage roadmap outlines how restrictions will ease while protecting the health-care system and increasing vaccination rates in the province.

     

  • May 5th, 2021: New COVID-19 Restrictions to Stop the Spike
     
    On May 5, additional restrictions came into effect for regions with at least 50 cases per 100,000 people, and at least 30 active cases. These restrictions will be in place for at least 3 weeks and will be extended if necessary. Province-wide restrictions remain in effect for all other communities.
     
    View Premier Kenney's announcement in the May 4 news release.
    The following is a resource to see the affected regions in Alberta.
     
    Everyone 12 and older can get vaccinated now. Book your shot at a participating pharmacy, through the AHS online booking tool or call 811. More appointments will be added as we get more doses. Book your vaccine.
     
    Increasing Access to Rapid Testing for Employers
    The Government of Alberta recently announced that businesses and service providers, who want to access free rapid tests, will no longer be required to have a health-care provider to oversee their screening program. More information.
     
    New Payment Available from Provincial Grant Program
    To support businesses affected by the public health measures introduced in April 2021, a spring application period for the Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant program opened April 23. The spring payment is calculated as 15% of the eligible organization's revenue from the chosen month to a maximum of $10,000. More information.
     
    Canada Emergency Business Account Extension
    Applicants now have until June 30, 2021 to apply for a $60,000 CEBA loan or the $20,000 expansion at their financial institution. The Government of Canada announced that the deadline for new Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) applications is extended to June 30, 2021.
     
     New Rent Support for Albertans Between Jobs
    On May 1, Alberta’s government launched a new Temporary Rent Assistance Benefit paid directly to tenants for up to 2 years for eligible Albertans who are below the local income thresholds and are currently employed or have been employed in the last 24 months and are not receiving social assistance.
     
    The Rent Assistance Benefit, formerly the Direct to Tenant Rent Supplement, reopened on April 1. This long-term benefit provides stable support for Albertans with the lowest income across the province.

     

  • Alberta's Path Forward
     
    New health measures are in place to protect the health system and reduce the rising spread of COVID-19 province-wide. A Path Forward is a roadmap to help Albertans understand how restrictions will be eased in steps over the coming months. It outlines the sectors that will see gradual restriction changes at each step based on hospitalization benchmarks. Growth of cases and variants of concern will also guide decisions to further ease or increase restrictions.
    Alberta returned to Step 1 on April 6. Additional restrictions for restaurants took effect April 9. Step 1 restrictions will remain in place until further notice.


     

  • More COVID Recovery Aid for Alberta’s Small Businesses
     
    Alberta’s government is expanding the small business relaunch grant to put more money in the hands of job creators when they need it to survive the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.
    The Alberta government is offering small businesses affected by the most recent public health orders another payment of up to $10,000 from the Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant. Alberta businesses affected by the latest public health orders will be eligible to apply for another payment in the second half of April. This additional payment will also be available to new businesses that began operating between March 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021, as well as hotels, taxis and ride-sharing services. More information
     
     

     

  • April 6th, 2021 Moving back into Step 1

    Alberta is returning to Step 1 of the four-step framework to protect the health system and reduce the rising spread of COVID-19 provincewide.

    Click here for more information.


  • March 8th, 2021 - Step 2

    Albertans can now enjoy reduced public health restrictions while strong measures remain in place to protect hospitals and limit the spread of COVID-19. Completing Step 2 of Alberta’s Path Forward, updated health measures are now in place for retail, hotels and community halls, performance groups, and youth sports, performance and recreation. These changes are effective immediately. They are in addition to the Step 2 measures announced on March 1, as pressure eases on the health system and hospitalizations remain well below 450. More information.

    For details on how this affects you and your business visit the Government of Alberta website.

    See a list of resources below and stay up to date with the latest information regarding local, provincial, federal and international Covid-19 news, financial resources and mental health. Please reach out if there is anything your Chamber can do for you or if you have any questions. We are stronger together.

     

  • CRITICAL WORKER BENEFIT

    Hundreds of thousands of workers who continue to provide critical services to Albertans during the COVID-19 pandemic will receive a one-time payment in recognition of their hard work and sacrifice.
    The Critical Worker Benefit is a joint federal-provincial program that will see $465 million go to approximately 380,000 Alberta public and private sector workers in the form of $1,200 cash payments.


    Eligible public sector employees do not need to apply to receive the benefit. Employers will automatically receive the payment through the Government of Alberta to distribute to their eligible employees.
    Private sector employers can apply on behalf of eligible employees as of Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021. Employers have until Friday, March 19, 2021 to apply.


    For detailed information on eligibility and how to apply, please visit: alberta.ca/workerbenefit.

  • SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISE RELAUNCH GRANT

    New businesses and unregistered sole proprietors can now apply for Alberta's small business relaunch grant.

    Expansions to the Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant program announced in January are now included on the Government of Alberta’s application portal. New businesses that began operating between March and October 2020, as well as unregistered sole proprietors, can now apply for COVID relief funding.

    Click here for more information.

  •  


    February 8th, 2021 - Step 1

    Alberta is bending the curve to protect our health system, but we must be careful not to lift restrictions too quickly. A Path Forward is a roadmap to help Albertans understand how restrictions will be eased in steps over the coming months. It outlines the sectors that will see gradual restriction changes at each step based on hospitalization benchmarks.
    Step 1 restriction changes came into effect February 8.

    For details on how this affects you and your business visit the Government of Alberta website.

    See a list of resources below and stay up to date with the latest information regarding local, provincial, federal and international Covid-19 news, financial resources and mental health. Please reach out if there is anything your Chamber can do for you or if you have any questions. We are stronger together.

     

  • HASCAP Loans are now available as of February 1, 2021 through your primary financial institution.

    After being teased back in November, the Canadian Government has officially launched the HASCAP Loans program. HASCAP, or officially known as the Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program is designe to provide loan guarantees and pandemic support to the hospitality and tourism markets and other ‘highly-affected sectors’.

    $25,000 to $1 Million HASCAP Loans – Learn more at the BDC website.

    Click here to apply for a $1,000 to $500,000 P2P Loans for Canadian Businesses from Lending Loop

  •  

     


    December 8, 2020 - New restrictions

    Alberta declared a state of public health emergency. Stronger mandatory measures are in effect as of Dec. 8 to help reduce case numbers and protect the health system.

    For details on how this affects you and your business visit the Government of Alberta website.

    See a list of resources below and stay up to date with the latest information regarding local, provincial, federal and international Covid-19 news, financial resources and mental health. Please reach out if there is anything your Chamber can do for you or if you have any questions. We are stronger together.

     

     


     

  • November 6, 2020 - Mandatory face coverings bylaw now in effect

    Airdrie has moved to "Enhanced" status, meaning the City of Airdrie's mandatory face coverings bylaw was triggered on November 6. Additionally, voluntary measures are strongly  recommended to wear masks in all indoor workplace settings unless able to safely distance.

    Please hang up a poster in a location that is visible immediately upon entering your business.

    More information on the bylaw including frequently asked questions is available at airdrie.ca.

    Resources & FAQ >