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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

Skip Navigation LinksTownship of Essa > covid19 enforcement FAQs

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


What is the Roadmap to Reopen Ontario? 

The Roadmap to Re-open is a ​three-step plan to safely and cautiously reopen the province and gradually lift public health measures.

The Plan is based on:​

  • the province-wide vaccination rate; and
  • improvements in key public health​ and healthcare indicators​

Orders and Regulations are still in effect.

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

The Province has outlined the sector-specific re-opening in three stages.  

Please click the links above for more information.

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

Effective July 16, 2021 Indoor​ social gatherings and organized public events can be permitted up to 25 people. 

​Effective July 16, 2021 ​outdoor social gatherings and organized public events are restricted to 100 people, ​and all public health advice on physical distancing and mask-wearing (unless exempt) MU​ST be adhered to.​ ​​

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.

Can I have a yard sale?​

Yes, yard sales are permitted.  Yard sales are limited to 10 people at a time with social distancing and masks are​ to be worn.

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

Effective July 16, 2021 indoor events are restricted to 25 persons only. 

Effective July 16, 2021, outdoor social gatherings are limited to 100 people.

Can Guests attend Religious Services, Weddings or​ Funerals?

Effective July 16​, 2021 the government is limiting the capacity of indoor funerals, weddings and religious ceremonies or  rites to the capacity of the room to permit physical distancing of 2 metres and masking required.  

Outdoor funerals, weddings and religious ceremonies or rites are permitted with capacity limited to permit physical distancing of 2 metres.

Outdoor social gatherings associated with these services such as receptions are permitted with 100 people. 2 metre physical distance and mask-wearing is required.

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 100 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 100 people or any private indoor gathering of more than 2​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 permitted to be used, subject to Ontario Government Regulations.  

All Fishing Parks are open to all access pass-holders, however are to be used at your own risk.  An Access Pass is required to fish in Essa Township fishing parks.  

​The Thornton-Cookstown Trail and the Angus Rippon-Pine River Trail are open for use, however users are to follow all COVID Orders. 

​Can I commence/continue a construction project on my house?

Yes, residential construction activities or projects and related services are considered essential and​ can continue. Please click here​ for more information.

​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 sector-specific businesses that are permitted to open during Steps 1 through 3 in the Roadmap to Reopening.  The list of sector-specific businesses ​can be found he​​re.​

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.​