Mayor Jeff Genung feels both relieved and cautiously optimistic with the announcement that health restrictions are being lifted on Canada Day.

"I'm cautiously optimistic because we've been in these good news situations before, and I don't want to be Mr. Doomsday today at all. This is a good day. We're certainly trending in the right direction," says Mayor Genung.  

"The words that I'm sharing with people today are, no matter what our individual journey through the pandemic has been for each of us, we must now focus our energies on the future and rebuilding, coming back together, building community, and putting Cochrane back on the map in the right direction." 

Airdrie-Cochrane MLA Peter Guthrie says it's great news for all Albertans.

"Everybody is pretty stoked to be opening back up again, and for us to be hitting 70 per cent 14 days ahead of July 1st makes it pretty exciting that Canada Day will be opening day. I'm very excited, very happy for everybody in Airdrie-Cochrane and throughout the province."

He believes the vaccine program is progressing well, with first and second doses of the vaccine continuing to be disbursed. Guthrie will receive his second dose on July 30.

"If we can keep that going throughout the summer, I think we'll be in really great shape in the fall."

While stressing it will continue to remain a personal choice for Albertans as to whether or not they get vaccinated, he says it has been proven that those that do so have better protection against the emerging variants of the virus.

Mayor Genung agrees with Health minister Tyler Shandro's comments on the transition we will now be making. 

"While it was such a change for people to adapt and start to come to terms with what the pandemic was at the beginning, we're going to have the same type of change and anxiety and maybe nervousness. Change in itself is sometimes strenuous on people, so I think we're going to have to careful that we don't just think they're just switching a switch and everything is going back to normal. 

"I hope we've learned a few things. I think we should take advantage of opportunities that have presented themselves from COVID, and that we remain mindful of being kind, understanding, and open to understanding what other people have gone through, or are still going through, for that matter."