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Ontario extending state-of-emergency orders

Ontario is extending all state-of-emergency orders to May 19, two weeks from today. In addition the province is keeping lower electricity prices in place until May 31.

The extensions come even as Premier Doug Ford has signalled his government is getting closer to easing restrictions and opening up segments of the economy as the daily rise in new cases of the coronavirus is slowing.

“Although we are making progress in our fight against this COVID-19 outbreak, we are not out of the woods yet,” Ford said Wednesday. May 19 is the Tuesday after the Victoria Day long weekend.

Emergency orders were extended on the advice of Ontario’s chief medical officer, Dr. David Williams.

Electricity rate relief was first brought in March 24 to save the average household $20 monthly with so many Ontarians at home all day with TVs and computers on, working and doing online learning or binging on Netflix.

Since then, ratepayers on time-of-use rates have been charged the evening, overnight and weekend price of 10.1 cents per kilowatt hour for 45 days in a measure costing $162 million in foregone revenue. That rate is half the peak daytime price of 20.8 cents. It’s estimated the extension will cost another $90 million.

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