VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Vancouver council unanimously approved a local state of emergency Thursday due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The declaration, effective immediately, gives front-line municipal workers special powers to ensure essential services are protected.
Mayor Kennedy Stewart says the declaration also allows the city to take action against businesses defying orders to close, and to halt hoarders by setting limits on the sale of certain products.
Stewart also told councillors he decided to move forward with the motion after police identified “over 20” bars and restaurants that defied an order to close on St. Patrick’s Day.
The decision was made via a virtual meeting at city hall. Councillors were able to dial in by phone to ask questions before voting on the order.