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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

All Council meetings will be held electronically until further notice. Meetings will be live streamed to the Township of Essa's Youtube Channel .

Skip Navigation LinksTownship of Essa > covid19 enforcement FAQs

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​COVID-19 Enforcement FAQs 


UPDATED!!  COVID19 ​Response Framework - How do I know which zone the Township of Essa is in with respect to the COVID-19 Response Framework?

The Province of Ontario and the Simcoe Muskoka Dist​rict Health Unit have information on their websites​ to assist residents in determining which zone and which restrictions apply to their municipality in respect of the COVID-19 Response Framework.  If you are unsure which zone the Township currently falls in, or if you are unsure of the restrictions that apply to the zone, please ​click here​.  

NOTE: Effective April 3 2021 at 12:01 a.m., the Province is in Shutdown.

​What restrictions apply​ within each zone of the COVID-19 Response Framework?​

The Province has outlined enhanced measures and restricti​ons that apply to municipalities falling within  each Zone.  Please click the link above for more information.

UPDATED!! Organized Public Events - How many people c​an I have in attendance at an organized public event?

Effective April 3, 2021 INDOOR organized public events are restricted to persons residing within the household only.  

Organized Outdoor Public Events are permitted to have a maximum of 5 people, ​and MUST comply with all public health advice on physical distancing and mask-wearing (unless exempt).​ ​​  To learn more about the enhanced measures that accompany this restriction, please see the link in the previous section.

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.

UPDATED​!!  - Can I gather with my friends or neighbours in my home?

Under the COVID-19 Response Framework and in accordance with the SHUTDOWN rules, indoor events are restricted to the persons residing within the household only, and outdoor events are ​restricted to a maximum of 5 persons EXCEPT for gatherings with members of the same household OR gatherings of members of one household and ONE other person from another household who lives alone. 

UPDATED!!​ ​Can Guests attend Religious Services, Weddings or​ Funerals?

Effective April 3​, 2021 capacity for religious, wedding and funeral services taking place indoors is limited to 15% capacity of the room.  2 metre physical distance and mask-wearing is required.

Ceremonies taking place outdoors are limited to the number of people that can maintain two metres physicial distance from each other.  

Drive-in services, rites or ceremonies are permitted, subject to certain conditions.

For both indoor and outdoor ceremonies physical distancing must be maintained and masks must be worn (unless exempt).


 Will I get a fine if I have an outdoor social gathering of more than 25 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 a private outdoor social gatherings of more than 25 people or any private indoor gathering of more than 5 people.  People found to be violating Provincial Orders may receive a ticket with a set fine of up to $10,000.00 per charge.  Officers may also lay a charge by way of a summons in which case the penalties 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 imprisonment.​

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 does not currentl​y have a burn ban in place.​  However, you must have a Burn Permit. 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 (including play structures)​, Recreation fields and greenspaces that are maintained by the municipality are open to the public.  The Don Ross Fishing Park and the Nottawasaga Fishing Park are both now open, an Access Pass is required to fish in Essa Township fishing parks.  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 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 and non-essential businesses that are permitted to be open during the COVID-19 Pandemic at each colour coded stage of the Ontario Re-opening Framework.  The list of essential and non-essential businesses ​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 Orders for​ Essential Businesses​

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.​