The Town of Ponoka has closed the arena and pool, effectively immediately and have cancelled programming.
In a release issued March 13, town administration made the move in response to the directive from the provincial chief medical officer of health to limit large gatherings of people as a way to slow the spread of coronavirus.
“The Town of Ponoka places the safety of its citizens, staff and visitors as its top priority. As the number of Coronavirus (COVID-19) cases continues to grow, administration is closely monitoring the situation,” the release said.
“Reports from Alberta Health indicate the risk to Alberta residents of contracting the COVID-19 virus is still currently low.”
In addition to the closure of the Ponoka Culture and Recreation Complex and the Aquaplex, the town has said the curling rink will close as of March 17 and that all programming at those facilities have been cancelled until further notice.
The town office will remain open during regular office hours with some preventative measures in place for staff and the public, including people being asked to use hand sanitizer when showing up at the town office reception desk.
Meanwhile, the operations and electrical department facilities will be closed to the public until further notice.
Residents are being encouraged to make any bill payments either online or through the mail, with town noting late payment penalties will not be applied to payments due in March.
Town staff will continue with the ongoing delivery of essential town services such as water, electrical and solid waste management. Maintenance will still be done at the various outdoor recreation facilities.
Anyone not feeling well or with flu-like symptoms are asked not to attend any public buildings or the town office.
As well, the town has increased cleaning and sanitzation measures at town facilities with more focus on high-touch surfaces and common areas.