The City of Winnipeg is temporarily suspending non-essential services and in-home appointments as public health officials recommend people practice social distancing to limit the spread of COVID-19.
The cancellations cover a wide range of services, from city hall weddings, which are suspended until further notice, to animal services crews, who will now only respond to calls for emergencies or strays.
People can still get wedding licences from the city clerk’s department, on the main floor of the Susan A. Thompson Building at 510 Main St., and can still reach animal services by contacting 311, the city said in a news release.
Manitoba Hydro also has suspended all non-essential work, and won’t disconnect people from power or do meter readings inside homes.
It also has suspended meter exchanges, residential electrical inspections, residential natural gas appliance inspections and public building leak surveys.
Manitoba Hydro will continue responding to outages, emergency response work and safety-related calls, and crews will wear the personal protective equipment recommended by public health authorities.
If your meter is inside your home, submit your reading online or follow the directions on a card a meter reader might leave in your mailbox.
Inspection work will continue on new buildings and unoccupied structures, Manitoba Hydro said in a news release.
Hydro asked people with flu-like symptoms to call or pay their bills online instead of going to Hydro’s offices.
Inspections cancelled, archives closed
Starting Wednesday, the city’s archives building at 50 Myrtle St. will be closed to the public, although people can still access archives services online.
The city will no longer give open fire or fireworks permits in person at the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service headquarters, the news release says. People can still get permit applications and renewals by calling the service’s fire prevention branch at 204-986-8200.
The service also has cancelled all station tours and in-classroom presentations until further notice, and will no longer collect book donations for the April Children’s Hospital Book Market, which has been cancelled.
Starting Thursday, the city’s bylaw enforcement services will be suspending interior residential and commercial inspections, since most of this work can be done through other means, such as via photos or over the phone, the news release says. The city also will suspend all water meter inspections, on-site readings, removals and replacements starting Thursday.
Water meter readings can still be given over the phone at 204-986-4445 or online. Customers are still responsible for providing regular meter readings to avoid estimated bills.
Winnipeg Transit will suspend in-office and community assessments for people applying for Transit Plus starting Thursday.
People can still make payments for certain city services online or through 311.
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