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Collective political opinions of the community

Mayor Don’s Update

The Ontario government has expanded eligibility for booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to additional groups of high-risk individuals. Eligibility will continue to expand gradually by age and risk level to provide an extra layer of protection against the Delta variant.

Currently, the following vulnerable populations may receive their booster dose, if at least six months have passed since their last dose:

  • Individuals aged 70 and over;
  • Health care workers and designated essential caregivers in congregate settings;
  • Individuals who received a complete series of a viral vector vaccine (two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine or one dose of the Janssen vaccine); and
  • First Nation, Inuit and Métis adults and their non-Indigenous household members.

Eligible individuals will be able to book their booster dose appointment through the COVID-19 Vaccination Portal, by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900, or through Indigenous-led vaccination clinics, select pharmacies, and primary care settings.

Launch of New CivicWeb Portal

The Township is excited to launch its new CivicWeb Portal, an interactive, easy-to-use tool providing fingertip access to all Council and Committee meeting information. The portal will increase the Township’s accountability and transparency, encourage greater public involvement in municipal matters, and provide a centralized location for up-to-date agendas, minutes and records. Additional features will allow users to:

  • View upcoming and past meetings with the agendas and minutes.
  • Search for keywords included in any of the documents uploaded to the system.
  • Subscribe to receive email updates and agenda notifications for specific meetings.
  • Find contact information for Council and Committee members.
  • Review weekly Council Information Packages.
  • Find information on the 2022 municipal election (coming soon).

The CivicWeb Portal is now live and can be accessed from the Township’s website at www.springwater.ca or visited directly at springwater.civicweb.net/Portal.

Holiday Events in the Township

Although we are still unable to host our traditional Christmas events or large public gatherings, community organizations throughout the Township have once again found creative ways to celebrate the holiday season. Modified in accordance with public health guidelines, there will be tree lightings, Santa Claus visits, festive displays, Christmas light tours and more. Stay tuned for the full schedule of events, which is soon to be posted on the Township website at springwater.ca/HolidayEvents.

Winter Parking and Maintenance Guidelines

Winter parking regulations are now in effect with the arrival of the colder weather. Until March 31, parking is not permitted on municipal roads or parking lots between 2:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. This is done to make snow clearing operations as efficient as possible. We also ask that you give our snowplow drivers plenty of room to do their job. They have restricted visibility in the plows and often work in challenging weather conditions. Keep the way clear by moving anything near the road, such as garbage bins, basketball nets, metal stakes or hockey nets. Finally, please do not move or blow snow onto or across the road, into ditches or onto neighbouring properties. This can be dangerous as it may cause drifts or ruts in the road, blocked ditches and drainage routes, or salt/sand to be removed from the road which can create dangerous driving conditions. Thank you for doing your part to help keep our roadways clear and safe this winter.

Public Skating at the Elmvale Arena

Public skating has returned to the Elmvale Arena under enhanced COVID-19 protocols. Skating opportunities include shinny hockey, figure skating and skating sessions for a variety of age groups. Register for your spot today at townshipofspringwater.perfectmind.com.

Masks won’t be required on the ice, but you’ll have to wear one everywhere else inside the building. Anyone 18 and older, or those 12 and older who don’t skate, will need proof of full vaccination and ID, or proof of exemption to enter the facility. Everyone must also complete the Township’s Online COVID-19 Pre-Screening Form available at www.springwater.ca/Arena.

As we get ready for snow and cold and move indoors, please take the necessary precautions regarding masking, distancing and taking precaution if feeling sick. Stay well.

 

Council approves 2022 County of Simcoe Budget

Midhurst/ November 23, 2021 – On November 23, 2021, County of Simcoe Council approved a $638 million budget for 2022, which focuses on the resources necessary to maintain existing services, support our continued recovery from the pandemic and address significant growth in our communities. The budget also includes strategic allocations that enable the County to continue to invest in services and assets such as Infrastructure, Long-Term Care, Paramedic Services, Affordable Housing, the Lake Simcoe Regional Airport, Waste Collections, Transit, Economic Development, Tourism and enhancements to our Road network.

At the direction and approval of County Council, residents will see a two per cent increase on the County portion of their municipal property taxes in 2022. This represents an increase of approximately $5.47 per $100,000 property assessment across the region. To maintain a two per cent increase on municipal property taxes, the County will be utilizing some reserves.

The overall budget expenditures increased from 2021 to 2022 due to COVID-19 pressures, areas of growth, investment and initiatives directed by Council to enhance service levels while increasing efficiencies.

“County Council knows that since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, residents and local businesses have faced challenges,” said Warden George Cornell. “In 2021, the first budget of the pandemic, County Council committed to not raising taxes and approved a zero per cent increase on the County’s portion of municipal taxes in order to help residents, families and businesses. This 2022 budget is a responsible budget, addressing rising costs to complete vital infrastructure and capital projects and enabling us to invest in our essential services and programs as growth continues. At the County, we employ long-term care nurses, PSWs, paramedics and staff working in employment assistance and affordable housing sectors. These essential services will continue to see increased demand in 2022 and beyond. Efficiencies in our operations, combined with the County’s prudent fiscal management, ensure that we can keep supporting our residents and communities while keeping our 2022 tax rate below inflation.”

 

Te County maintains a strong financial position having received, for the eighth year in a row, an AA long-term issuer credit rating from S&P Global Ratings, a provider of high-quality market intelligence in the form of credit ratings and research. The 2022 budget ensures the County continues along this path of long-term fiscal stability and contains items that address areas of growth, as well as initiatives directed by Council to enhance and maintain service levels for the region, support infrastructure, increase efficiencies, and prepare for the future of our region.

2022 Budget Highlights include:

Total County Expenditures for 2022: $638 million:

  • LTC – Homes and Seniors Services $104 million
  • Paramedic Services $64 million
  • Children Services $46 million
  • Social Housing $102 million
  • Ontario Works $88 million
  • Transportation and Engineering $57 million
  • Solid Waste Management $77 million

Attached to this news release is the 2022 County of Simcoe Budget Overview.(see online verion Springwaternews.ca)

County of Simcoe is composed of sixteen member municipalities and provides crucial public services to County residents in addition to providing paramedic and social services to the separated cities of Barrie and Orillia. Visit our website at simcoe.ca

 

Council Meeting Highlights: November 17, 2021
Next Council Meeting: December 1, 2021

2022 Budget Tabled

Township staff presented the Proposed 2022 Draft Budget for Council’s consideration. The proposed budget outlines a 2.48% property tax increase over 2021 rates for the Township portion, including the compensation review and excluding program changes. There are fourteen program changes being proposed, which would have an additional net tax levy impact of $335,826 or 2.08%. The budget will be deliberated at Special Budget Meetings on November 22, 24 & 25 and December 15 & 16 with final approval scheduled for January 19. The meetings will be live streamed online at www.springwater.ca/live. For additional information on the 2022 budget, visit www.springwater.ca/budget.

Zoning By-Law Amendment – 45 Huron Street

Council approved a Zoning By-Law Amendment for the property at 45 Huron Street, satisfying one of the conditions of a land severance approval by the Ontario Land Tribunal. The Zoning By-Law Amendment will recognize Huron Street as the legal frontage for the retained lot and legalize the reduced lot areas of both the severed and retained lands.

Tender Award – Hasty Tract Tree Clearing & Grubbing

Council awarded the Hasty Tract Tree Clearing and Grubbing Contract to Six Nations Aecon Joint Venture in the amount of $154,058.04, including HST. The work is included in Phase 1 Development of the Community Hub at the Hasty Tract site.

This summary is not a full representation of the meeting. For the official record, please refer to the minutes in the next Council Agenda. Past Council Meetings are available for viewing on the Township’s Youtube channel.
2231 Nursery Road, Minesing, ON L9X 1A8. 705-728-4784
info@springwater.ca | springwater.ca

 

Funding Opportunities for Agri-Food Businesses

The government of Ontario is providing more funding opportunities to agri-food businesses in Barrie – Springwater – Oro-Medonte. Through two funding streams, releasing later this week, the government is committing more funding to support agri-food businesses as they navigate COVID-19 and continue to provide produce to all Ontarians.

ntario is making important changes to the Enhanced Agri-Food Workplace Protection Program (EAWPP), effective November 17, 2021. EAWPP provides support to help agri-food businesses guard against the spread of COVID-19 in agri-food workplaces so that worker and employee health and safety is protected, and the sector is supported.

 

Funding is available through two different categories:

  1. The Workplace COVID-19 Prevention category, which supports the adoption of prevention and mitigation measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 among agri-food workers/employees.
  2. The Responsive COVID-19 Outbreak Management category, which reimburses eligible applicants who have been impacted by outbreaks of COVID-19 and faced extraordinary costs related to employee wage supports and worker/employee isolation.

 

Effective November 17, the EAWPP programs application deadline will be extended to February 1, 2022, or until funding is fully allocated.

Under the Workplace COVID-19 Prevention category, an increased amount of cost-share funding will be available, for eligible expenses up to a total of $50,000 from the current $15,000 maximum. The cost-share will continue to be 60% of the eligible expenses.

 

Additionally, the Workplace COVID-19 Prevention category will expand to include food and beverage processors with three or more employees, agri-food industry organizations and associations, and poultry catchers, vaccinators and professional barn cleaners.

 

Under the Responsive COVID-19 Outbreak Management category, eligibility will be expanded to include poultry catchers and vaccinators, as well as professional barn cleaners. Eligible expenses will also be expanded to include extraordinary costs resulting from extended COVID-19 quarantine periods beyond fourteen days.

Businesses that have already applied to EAWPP will be contacted directly with instructions on how to amend their application under the expanded eligibility.

 

Through a joint partnership with the federal government, the provincial government is also providing more supports for agri-food businesses through The Canadian Agricultural Partnership’s (CAP) Meat Processor Capacity Improvement Initiative. The governments of Canada and Ontario are providing up to $7 million to rapidly increase processing capacity at meat processing plants across the province. This initiative builds on the $7.2 million invested last year through the first intake of the program, and is part of the governments’ continued investments to support this sector’s growth and strengthen the food supply chain.

 

Through this $7 million investment for provincially licensed meat processing plants, the government will provide up to $150,000 per project for equipment to increase productivity and food safety. Consulting and engineering costs are also eligible. Applications for the CAP Meat Processor Capacity Improvement Initiative will open on November 19.

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