North Cowichan has closed the municipal hall. (File photo)

Administrative offices of North Cowichan, regional district closed

Health and safety of public and employees cited

North Cowichan’s Municipal Hall and the Cowichan Valley Regional District administarive offices were both closed Tuesday afternoon in response to COVID-19.

North Cowichan took further measures to protect members of the public and staff as best as possible by indefinitely closing the Municipal Hall and the Municipal Operations Facility located at 7030 Trans-Canada Highway to the public. While physically closed, North Cowichan remains open for business.

People can call the general information line at 250-746-3100, send an email to info@northcowichan.ca, or visit www.northcowichan.ca/COVID19 to find out how to continue doing business and how staff can offer support during this unique and challenging situation.

As this situation evolves, North Cowichan will remain focused on its ability to provide critical services and continue to provide updates. Visit the website for the most up-to-date information on how North Cowichan is taking steps to address COVID-19.

“Many local governments across Vancouver Island have elected to close their facilities and city halls to the public, and we have made the challenging decision to follow suit because we feel this is the right thing to do and the best way to protect our staff and our residents,” noted Mayor Al Siebring.

North Cowichan urges residents to continue practicing social distancing and to remain at home if ill.

Meanwhile, the Cowichan Valley Regional District closed its administrative offices at 175 Ingram Street at the end of the day Tuesday in an ongoing effort to maintain the health and safety of its employees and the public.

The action is being taken in coordination with the CVRD member municipalities of Ladysmith, Duncan, North Cowichan and Lake Cowichan, each of which has also closed its administrative offices to the public.

All staff able to work from home will be doing so, and a select number will remain working from the Ingram Street offices to ensure essential service delivery and to coordinate the Regional Emergency Operation Centre.

Core land use services including building inspection, development planning, and bylaw enforcement will attempt to deliver service to the public, working remotely and in the community. There will be limited intake of new building permit and development applications for the foreseeable future.

All recycling centres and solid waste collection will continue to operate with minor modifications to protect public and staff contact, but will be subject to staff capacity.

Revised contact information for administrative services will be shared with the public as it becomes available, both through the CVRD website, social media channels and local media outlets.

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