We will no longer be supporting IE7 and below as a web browser effective June 1st 2020. Click here for more information.

Sign In

Essa Township logo

Welcome to Essa Township

Township of Essa Administration Centre

5786 County Road 21 | Utopia, ON L0M 1T0

Phone: 705-424-9917 Fax: 705-424-2367

Office Hours: Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm

Skip Navigation LinksTownship of Essa > covid19 enforcement FAQs

​​​​​​COVID-19 Enforcement FAQs 


Can residents have garage or yard sales during the Pandemic?

No.  Garage and Yard sales are not permitted at this time.  They do not fall under exemptions for essential services and businesses.​

My neighbour keeps inviting people into their home, who do I contact?

If your neighbour is violati​ng the Provincial Order and inviting people into their home you can contact the OPP non-emergency line at 1-888-310-1122.

Can I gather with my friends or neighbours in my driveway?

No, you may not have social gatherings of more than 5 people at your home.  You must maintain a physical distance of at least 2 metres from other people who do not live with you under the same roof. 

If you are having a social gathering in excess of 5 pe​ople, then you are not complying with Provincial Orders. You run the risk of being fined under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (minimum $750.00 fine).

If you are not practicing social distancing, you run the risk of being charged in accordance with the fines set out in 2020-33 COVID-19 Emergency Measures-Social Distancing.

Will I get a fine if I have a social gathering of more than 5 people?

Yes you may.  Charges may be laid by either the OPP or the By-law Enforcement Officer for those who choose to violate Provincial Orders including having social gatherings of more than 5 people.  People found to be violating Provincial Orders may recieve a ticket with a set fine of $750.00 to $1,000.00 per charge.  Officers may also lay a charge by way of a summons in which case the penalities are more severe and can range from $100,000 for individuals, $500,000 for Directors or Officers of a Corporation and up to $10,000,000 for a corporation.  Also offenders may be subject to up to one year imprisionment.

Additionally, for persons not practicing social distancing may be fined $500.00 per occurrence under the Township's Social Distancing By-law 2020-33.

I want to have a recreational camp fire with my family, are we allowed to have a camp fire?

Yes, the Township of Essa has lifted the fire ban as of May 1, 2020.  However, you must have a Burn Permit. Burn Permits are available online ONLY during the COVID-19 Pandemic.  To purchase a Burn Permit please click here.

I want to purcha​se a Burn Permit.  Where can I do that?

Burn permits are available online ONLY​, to purchase a Burn Permit please click here.

Can we still walk through the Township parks, or can I fish at the Fishing Park?

All parks, Recreation fields, greenspaces and fishing parks that are maintained by the municipality have been closed to the public in accordance with the Order sent down by the Province of Ontario.  Persons found to be using parks or fishing parks may be fined under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (minimum $750.00). AS OF MAY 1, 2020 - The Thornton-Cookstown Trail and the Angus Rippon-Pine River Trail have re-opened. Please remember to continue to social distance and help us to fight Covid-19.

​At this time, County of Simcoe Forests re​​main open to the public​.  Please visit the County of Simcoe Website for more information about trails under their jurisdiction.

Who do I call if I see someone using the municipal parks or fishing parks?

If you observe people using the parks in Es​sa Township during regular working hours (Mon-Fri 8:30 am to 4:30 pm) please contact By-law Enforcement at (705)424-9917 extension 122.  Persons caught in parks and/or fishing parks that are closed to the public may be subject to fines set forth in Provincial Orders (minimum fine of $750.00).

If you observe people in the parks​ in Essa Township after hours or on weekends, please call 1-888-310-1122.​

Who can I contact if an essential business is not complying with social distancing?  

Complaints with respect to social distancing in essential businesses can be directed to the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit at (705) 721-7520​.  

Who do I call if someone is not self-isolating after travel?

You can contact the Federal government directly at 1-866-225-0709 or the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit at (705) 721-7520.

How do I know what businesses are permitted to be open?

The Ontario Government has issued a list of essential workplaces that are permitted to be open during the COVID-19 Pandemic.  The list of essential workplaces can be found here.​

The Province has provided the public with a breakdown of FAQs in regards to essential businesses​.  Click the link provided to access these FAQs.

I am a business owner - I have questions about the Provincial Order for​ Essential Business

Businesses with questions about the or​​der are encouraged to call the Province's toll-free Stop the Spread Business Information Line at 1-888-444-3659.​​

Who can I contact if a non-essential business is still operating when they're not supposed to be, per the Provincial Orders issued?

You can contact the OPP at 1-888-310-1122.

Who do I contact if a business is price gouging?

If you are aware that a business is price gouging you can contact the Consumer Protection Ontario Call Centre at 1-800-889-9768.