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News Releases and Advisories

​​​​​​​View recent News Releases and Advisories issued by the County of Simcoe.​

 

 

County of Simcoe partnering with Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit to encourage the use of masks and face coveringshttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/county-of-simcoe-partnering-with-simcoe-muskoka-district-health-unit-to-encourage-the-use-of-masks-and-face-coverings.aspx7/31/2020 6:12:12 PMCounty of Simcoe partnering with Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit to encourage the use of masks and face coverings<p>​<strong style="font-size:1em;">​Midhurst/July 31, 2020 – </strong><span style="font-size:1em;">The County of Simcoe and Simco</span><span style="font-size:1em;">e Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) are partnering to promote health and safety in our communities through a regional awareness campaign to encourage residents and visitors to wear face coverings or masks. The new #WearIt campaign will support the SMDHU's instruction requiring face coverings in publicly accessible indoor spaces and remind both residents and visitors to do their part to work towards our regional pandemic recovery.</span></p><p>A growing body of scientific evidence indicates that the widespread use of face coverings by all persons decreases the spread of respiratory droplets, which can contain the COVID-19 virus of an infected person. With new regulations requiring the public to wear a mask or face covering in stores and other indoor places, we can help to stop a second wave of COVID-19. If we all make our best effort to #WearIt, we'll get through this pandemic together. <br></p><p>In addition to wearing a mask or face covering, these additional public health measures remain in effect in all indoor and outdoor settings:</p><ul><li>Maintain physical distancing of at least two metres (6 feet) from others who are not in your household or social circle<br></li><li>Stay home if ill and get tested for COVID-19</li><li>Wash your hands often with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer</li></ul><p></p><p>Children under the age of 2 should not wear a mask or face covering, and those under 5 who cannot be persuaded are not required to wear a face covering, as well as individuals whose health or ability, or cultural or religious reasons would prevent them from doing so. No proof of exemption is required, and people should not be judged or mistreated in any way if they do not wear a face covering. Businesses and organizations are required to have a policy and measures in place requiring face coverings in indoor public places, however they are only required to apply their best effort in enforcing this. </p><p>Have questions about when and where to wear a face covering or mask? Please find helpful tips below: <br></p><p><em>What indoor public spaces are </em><span style="text-decoration:underline;"><em><strong>NOT</strong></em></span><em> included in the mandatory mask/face covering instruction?</em></p><p>The following indoor spaces are not covered by the mandatory mask instruction from the Medical Officer of Health because they each have their own specific directives from the province:</p><ul><li>Schools, licensed child care centres and indoor/outdoor day camps</li><li>Indoor areas of a building accessible to only employees</li><li>Areas that are outside, whether or not the areas are covered (e.g. restaurant patios)</li></ul><p><em style="font-size:1em;">Do employees at a business, organization or public transit service need to wear a mask/face covering?</em><br></p><p>Yes, employees need to wear a face covering when working in indoor public spaces unless the employee is within or behind a physical barrier (e.g. plexiglas barrier) or is in an area of the premises that is not designated for public access. Employees who also have one of the other exemptions (cited above) do not have to wear a face covering. </p><p>​​To learn more about how to protect yourself and others, including frequently asked questions about wearing face coverings, click <a href="http://www.simcoemuskokahealth.org/Topics/COVID-19#a5a16119-5363-4543-961e-ff9510827460">here</a>.  </p><p>To follow the County's efforts to support of our communities through the COVID-19 pandemic, like or follow County of Simcoe on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/CountyofSimcoe/">Facebook</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/simcoecounty">Twitter</a> and <a href="https://www.instagram.com/countyofsimcoe/">Instagram</a>. </p><p><strong>Quotes</strong></p><p>“This pandemic has truly changed the way we all live our daily lives," said Warden George Cornell. “In order to limit transmission and protect ourselves and others, particularly our frontline workers and most vulnerable populations, it's important that when it comes to a face covering or a mask that we #WearIt when entering indoor public spaces. We thank and support the SMDHU for stepping up, working with our municipalities and enhancing our regional efforts to keep everyone safe." </p><p>“We have all worked incredibly hard to flatten the curve of COVID-19 and wearing a face covering or mask will help ensure we hang on to those gains we have made," said Dr. Charles Gardner, SMDHU's medical officer of health. “Wearing a face covering is important for the continued successful reopening of our local economy and to safeguard our residents against the virus now, as well as into the fall and beyond."<br></p><p><strong>About County of Simcoe</strong></p><p>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 <a href="/"><strong>simcoe.ca</strong></a>.</p><p><strong>About SMDHU</strong></p><p>The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit works with individuals and families, agencies and communities in Simcoe Muskoka to promote and protect health, and to prevent disease and injury. Visit our website at <a href="http://www.smdhu.org/"><strong>smdhu.org</strong></a>.</p><p style="text-align:center;"><strong>- 30 -</strong></p><p><span style="font-size:1em;"><strong>Media Coordinators</strong></span></p><p>Kathy Dermott: 705-721-7520 x 7864/8533)<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Cell: 249-877-4625<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">Leslie Gordon (x7551)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit</span></p><p><span style="font-size:1em;"></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Collin Matanowitsch<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Manager, Public Relations<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><a href="mailto:Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca" style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a><br></p>
Donation to help protect clients and staff at Simcoe County sheltershttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/donation-to-help-protect-clients-and-staff-at-simcoe-county-shelters.aspx7/31/2020 2:31:19 PMDonation to help protect clients and staff at Simcoe County shelters<p><strong>Midhurst/July 31, 2020 – </strong>Vulnerable populations within Simcoe County continue to be heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. As demands on community services including social and affordable housing increase, the County is pleased to have received a gift of $28,000 from the Canadian Medical Association Foundation (CMAF) to purchase enhanced Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) supplies for area shelters. The funds will be delivered to the County thanks to the COVID-19 Community Response Fund for Vulnerable Populations, the result of a collaboration between the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and the CMAF.</p><p>Over the past several months, municipalities have seen first-hand how vulnerable populations have been affected by this pandemic. Demand on County services has increased, and staff have been on the frontlines since the beginning, channeling financial aid to service providers and clients to support our communities. <br></p><p>The County of Simcoe provides leadership to local homelessness prevention community planning<br></p><p>and funds numerous related programs and services. The County currently provides funding to support several programs including eight Homeless Shelters, which offer lodging and personal needs to people experiencing homelessness on a short-term basis. In March, the County re-acted swiftly to the Coronavirus, authorizing shelters to move their residents to local motels, providing more than 720 unique individuals with continued access to shelter from March 20, 2020 to July 20, 2020 while mitigating the risk of community transmission. On average, the motel model shelter system supports approximately 200 individuals nightly.</p><p>As approved by County Council, these additional funds will be strategically targeted to have a significant impact at area shelters. The gift will support homelessness prevention, funding vital Personal Protective Equipment and enhanced sanitization measures currently in effect at area shelters to protect vulnerable residents and staff, while limiting the opportunity for community transmission of the virus. <br></p><p><strong>Quotes:</strong></p><p>“County Council is very grateful to the CMAF for this kind donation and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities for their support in facilitating this critical initiative. As a result of the coronavirus, we are facing rising service costs across the board. We recognize the growing needs of our communities, particularly among vulnerable populations, as a result of the pandemic. This gift through the COVID-19 Community Response Fund for Vulnerable Populations will help support the purchase of vital PPE equipment to serve staff and clients at area shelters."– <em>Warden George Cornell</em></p><p>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 <strong>simcoe.ca</strong>.</p><p style="text-align:center;"><strong>- 30 -</strong></p><p><strong>CONTACTS</strong></p><p><strong></strong><span style="font-size:1em;">Chris Hedley<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Consultant<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch​<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-715-7654 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Chris.Hedley@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">Chris.Hedley@simcoe.ca</a></span></p><p><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Collin Matanowitsch<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Manager, Public Relations<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><a href="mailto:Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca" style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;"> </span></p>
County set to reopen more public services and facilitieshttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/county-set-to-reopen-more-public-services-and-facilities-20-7-30.aspx7/30/2020 8:05:44 PMCounty set to reopen more public services and facilities<p><strong>Midhurst/July 30, 2020 – </strong>Effective August 4, 2020, the County is reopening additional services and facilities to support our residents and work towards a regional recovery.   <br><br>The County's Health and Emergency Services team and Return to the Workplace Task Force have worked closely with our partners at the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit to ensure enhanced and thorough procedures and protocols are in place for a safe and sustainable recovery.</p><p>The following services and facilities will reopen as of August 4:<br> <br><strong>Service Simcoe Contact Centre (Administration Centre)</strong><br><strong> </strong>As of August 4, 2020, the Service Simcoe Contact Centre will be open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Public access will be restricted to the atrium area via the Administration Centre's front entrance. </p><p>Safety measures have been installed to ensure the safety of both staff and the public. These measures include:</p><ul style="list-style-type:disc;"><li>Plexiglass barriers</li><li>Floor social distancing markers</li><li>Designated visitor washrooms</li><li>Touchless POS </li><li>Roped barriers</li><li>Directional signage </li></ul><p>Guests are reminded to adhere to safety precautions when visiting the Administration Centre, including wearing a face covering at all times when in common areas inside the building and exercising proper hand sanitization. Additional sanitization stations have been set up to accommodate this.<br></p><p><b>​Simcoe County Museum<br></b><span style="font-size:1em;">As of August 4, 2020, the Simcoe County Museum will be open seven days a week, with reduced hours between 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. to allow for enhanced cleaning. Residents will be required to reserve a time in advance of their visit. Bookings can be made through the Museum's website at </span><strong style="font-size:1em;">museum.simcoe.ca</strong><span style="font-size:1em;"> no earlier than five days prior to the visit and can be completed the day of if space remains. When booking, residents will be required to answer screening questions for their entire group. If the screening test is failed, the time slot will be cancelled to ensure safety of staff and other guests.</span></p><p>Groups are limited to a maximum of 10 people, and time slots are bookable in 30-minute increments, allowing time between visitors for adequate physical distancing, but tours may take between 1 to 2 -hours.  All guests are required to wear a face covering when indoors.</p><p>Admission is by donation only; all donations are to be made through debit or credit card as cash is not accepted at this time.  </p><p>Select outdoor buildings and interactive displays, including the cottage, green barns, Red Pine House, and the Longhouse will not be accessible.           </p><p>As the provider and manager of emergency services, paramedic services, social and community services, long term care and seniors services, waste management, tourism and economic development programs, the County has responded during COVID-19 to offer recovery initiatives, continue program delivery, keep residents safe and offer program expansions during the pandemic. County staff quickly adjusted to virtual work from home options and continued to provide services and programs to residents, clients and partners at a high level. Close to 80 per cent of the County's 1,900 staff work in, or directly support, service and program areas deemed essential by the Government of Ontario, and more than 90 staff members working in non-essential roles during the pandemic have been redeployed to support critical needs in the County's long term care and seniors services division – a sector greatly impacted during the pandemic.</p><p>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 <strong>simcoe.ca</strong>.<br></p><p style="text-align:center;"><strong>- 30 -</strong></p><p><span class="ms-rteThemeFontFace-1 ms-rteFontSize-2"><strong>CONTACTS:​</strong></span></p><p>Collin Matanowitsch<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Manager<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><a href="mailto:Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">​Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a></p><p style="text-align:center;"></p><p>Jennifer Straw<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Consultant<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-790-5979 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca</a></span><span style="font-size:1em;"> ​</span></p>
LINX Transit Service rolls into south Simcoe Countyhttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/linx-transit-service-rolls-into-south-simcoe-county-20-7-30.aspx7/30/2020 2:59:07 PMLINX Transit Service rolls into south Simcoe County<p>​<strong style="font-size:1em;">Midhurst/July 30, 2020</strong><span style="font-size:1em;"> – Beginning August 4, 2020, the County is launching LINX Transit Route 5, connecting the Towns of New Tecumseth and Bradford West Gwillimbury and providing enhanced access to health, recreation and employment opportunities in the southern area of Simcoe County.</span></p><p>The route includes three stops in Alliston; two stops in Beeton; a stop in Bond Head and three stops in Bradford. For more information, ​visit the <a href="/Transit/Pages/Routes-Schedule.aspx">Routes and Schedules page.​</a><br></p><p>Ridership on the new route is <em>free</em> from August 4 to September 8, with regular fare rates starting after Labour Day. *<em>The free fare is not applicable to other existing routes - routes 1 through 4. </em>As with all LINX routes, fares are determined by zones and are either $2 or $4 depending on zones travelled along Route 5. <br></p><p>The County will be introducing Route 6 later this fall connecting the communities of Penetanguishene, Midland, Tay, Severn and Orillia.<br></p><p>The accessible door to door LINX+ (plus) transit service for individuals who have a disability which prevents them from being able to use the conventional LINX service, service will also be available along Route 5 upon the launch of Route 6, once additional buses are delivered. Residents wishing to utilize the LINX+ service are asked to complete a registration form to access the service by visiting linx.simcoe.ca or by calling 1-800-263-3199. <br></p><p>The LINX Transit system experienced strong ridership in 2019 with the introduction of Route 2-3 and the assumption of Route 4, and ridership has continued to grow into 2020 exceeding estimates in January and February by an average of 86 per cent. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted ridership and to ensure reliable transportation options remained during the pandemic, the County offered free fares between March and the start of July. Staff continue to monitor these levels and will plan for reintroduction of service hours as required.<br></p><p>“The launch of Route 5 connecting Alliston to Bradford West Gwillimbury is another important step towards linking our residents to important service and business hubs throughout Simcoe County," said Warden George Cornell. “It is exciting to now provide this vital service to our residents in south Simcoe County, where growing populations and an increasing number of students and workers are seeking affordable, reliable and environmentally responsible transportation options."<br></p><p>In 2017 County Council approved a five-year, $5-million plan to create a regional transit service as part of the County's Transit Implementation Plan. With the launch of Route 5 and the planned launch of Route 6 later this year, the County has almost completed its initial five-year launch plan and looks forward to further direction from County Council and opportunities to work with other levels of government to potentially further enhance the LINX system in the future. ​</p><p><span style="font-size:1em;">Visit </span><a href="http://www.simcoe.ca/Transit/Pages/Home.aspx" style="font-size:1em;"><strong>linx.simcoe.ca</strong></a><span style="font-size:1em;"> to learn more about the LINX and LINX+ service. </span><br></p><p><strong>Quick Facts:</strong></p><p><em>Fares:</em> <br>Fares will operate on a zone system based on distance travelled – fares for Route 1, 2, 3 and 5 range from $2 to $6 depending on zones travelled. Exact cash fares only will be accepted on the bus. The County offers a LINX reloadable card that users can purchase for convenient access to the LINX. <span style="font-size:1em;">Fares for Route 4 (Collingwood to Wasaga Beach) are $2.</span></p><p><br><em>COVID-19 Temporary Schedule Change</em> (Effective May 11, 2020)<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Route 1 (Penetanguishene/Midland to Barrie) LINX service will operate Monday to Friday with the first bus starting at 7:30 a.m. and the last drop off occurring at 5:45 p.m.</span></p><p>Route 2 (Wasaga Beach to Barrie) LINX service will operate Monday to Friday with the first bus starting at 7:30 a.m. and the last drop off occurring at 7:25 p.m. </p><p>Route 3 (Orillia to Barrie) LINX service will operate Monday to Friday with the first bus starting at 6:45 a.m. and the last drop off occurring at 7:05 p.m. </p><p>Route 4 (Collingwood to Wasaga Beach) will operate Monday to Saturday with the first bus starting at 7 a.m. and the last drop off occurring at 9 p.m. </p><p>Route 5 (Alliston to Bradford) will operate Monday to Friday with the first bus starting at 7:20 a.m. and the last drop off occurring at 6:10 p.m. <br></p><p><em>Locating Your Bus:</em> <br>Alerts and real-time bus tracking will be available on linx.simcoe.ca. The County has also partnered with an existing app company to link real-time bus and route information through the popular app. Residents are encouraged to download the “Transit app" on their Apple and Android devices.  <br></p><p><em>Bus Details:</em> <br>LINX conventional buses are equipped with features to make them fully accessible: low floor, pre-boarding announcements, digital sign and audio announcements for next stop information, can accommodate two wheelchair/scooter customers at the same time. The bus also has a kneeling feature which allows the bus to be lowered, passenger signal stop request, high colour contrast grab bars and stanchions, low glare, and slip floor covering and LED lighting. </p><p>LINX+ buses have low floors and oversized entrance doors to allow for two larger-size wheelchairs and scooters at the same time. Buses are air-conditioned with entrance and ramp lighting, and anti-slip floor covering.  </p><p>LINX conventional buses are equipped with low emission engines with current clean diesel technology.<br></p><p><em>Bus Operation: </em><br>The County continues to work with First Canada ULC to operate and maintain LINX buses. First Canada has transit operating agreements across Canada and also provides school bus transportation services.<br></p><p>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 <strong><a href="https://simcoe.ca/">simcoe.ca​</a></strong>.<br></p><p style="text-align:center;"><strong>- 30 -</strong></p><p><span class="ms-rteThemeFontFace-1 ms-rteFontSize-2"><strong>CONTACTS:​</strong></span></p><p>Collin Matanowitsch<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Manager<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><a href="mailto:Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">​Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a></p><p style="text-align:center;"></p><p>Jennifer Straw<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Consultant<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-790-5979 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca</a></span><span style="font-size:1em;"> </span></p>
Simcoe County Federation of Agriculture makes generous donation to provide boost to long term care and seniors serviceshttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/simcoe-county-federation-of-agriculture-makes-generous-donation-to-provide-boost-to-ltcss-20-7-29.aspx7/29/2020 5:32:30 PMSimcoe County Federation of Agriculture makes generous donation to provide boost to long term care and seniors services<p><strong>Midhurst/July 29, 2020 – </strong>On July 29<sup>th</sup>, the County of Simcoe recognized the Simcoe County Federation of Agriculture, which recently provided a $10,000 donation in support of the County's four long term care and seniors services facilities located in Beeton, Collingwood, Orillia and Penetanguishene. </p><p>“We are so grateful and truly humbled by the thoughtfulness and generosity of our partners at the Simcoe County Federation of Agriculture during this challenging time," said Warden George Cornell. “As the COVID-19 pandemic has progressed, our long term care and seniors services staff have met the challenge head on, working long hours and under extensive health protocols to continue to provide quality care and support to the seniors who live in our facilities."</p><p> “Agriculture has a long heritage in Simcoe County; the Federation of Agriculture owes much to our forefathers who worked so hard to make agriculture in our County a successful industry," said John Morrison, President, Simcoe County Federation of Agriculture. “Our contribution of patio furniture to the four County of Simcoe long-term care homes is a small token of our appreciation and recognition of the work of all the residents, including retired farmers, who live in the homes now and worked in the County to make it what it is today."</p><p><strong>About the Simcoe County Federation of Agriculture</strong><br><strong> </strong>The Simcoe County Federation of Agriculture is one of 52 county and regional federations across the province that advocates on behalf of farm families in Simcoe County on local agricultural issues. To learn more, visit <a href="https://www.simcoecountyfa.org/">https://www.simcoecountyfa.org/</a></p><p><strong>About County of Simcoe Long Term Care and Seniors Services (LTCSS)</strong><br><strong> </strong>The County of Simcoe provides a broad range of long term care and seniors services to residents living throughout the region. These include four long-term care homes accredited with “Exemplary Standing" by Accreditation Canada, retirement living, assisted living, adult-day programming, and an entire suite of home support services. LTCSS supports a wide spectrum of needs, helps residents to age in place, and assists in a seamless transition as individuals move across the continuum of care. </p><p>To follow the County's efforts to support our communities through the COVID-19 pandemic, like or follow County of Simcoe on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/CountyofSimcoe/">Facebook</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/simcoecounty">Twitter</a> and <a href="https://www.instagram.com/countyofsimcoe/">Instagram</a>. </p><p>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 <strong>simcoe.ca</strong>.​<br></p><p style="text-align:center;"><strong>- 30 -</strong><br></p><p><span class="ms-rteThemeFontFace-1 ms-rteFontSize-2"><strong>CONTACTS:​</strong></span></p><p>Collin Matanowitsch<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Manager<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><a href="mailto:Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">​Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a></p><p style="text-align:center;"></p><p>Jennifer Straw<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Consultant<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-790-5979 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca</a></span><span style="font-size:1em;"> </span></p><p><br></p>
County to celebrate new LINX Transit routehttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/County-to-celebrate-new-LINX-Transit-route-20-7-27.aspx7/27/2020 7:01:08 PMCounty to celebrate new LINX Transit route<p><strong>​Midhurst/July 27, 2020 – </strong>Media are invited to attend the official launch of the new LINX Transit Service route connecting the communities of New Tecumseth and Bradford West Gwillimbury on Thursday, July 30 at 1 p.m. at the New Tecumseth Recreation Complex in Alliston.</p><p><strong style="font-size:18px;"> EVENT: Launc​h of new LINX Transit Route 5</strong></p><p><strong>Where: </strong> New Tecumseth Recreation Complex <br>              7300 Industrial Parkway, Alliston, Ontario<br></p><strong>When:   </strong>Thursday, July 30, 2020 ~ 1 p.m. <div>​<p>This is the fifth route as part or the regional LINX Transit Service. For details the other four LINX routes or timelines for the launch of the sixth route later this fall, please visit <strong>linx.simcoe.ca.</strong> </p><p>As the Province of Ontario is gradually reopening businesses, services and public spaces on a regional basis as the fight against COVID-19 progresses, the County of Simcoe does remind attendees to follow Health Unit guidelines including practising physical distancing and remembering to wear a face covering as outlined in regional guidelines. <br></p><p>​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 <strong>simcoe.ca</strong>.<br></p><div style="text-align:center;"><strong>- 30 - </strong></div><div style="text-align:center;"><strong></strong><span style="font-size:1em;"></span><p style="text-align:left;"><span class="ms-rteThemeFontFace-1 ms-rteFontSize-2"><strong>CONTACTS:​</strong></span></p><p style="text-align:left;">Collin Matanowitsch<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Manager<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><a href="mailto:Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">​Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a></p><p></p><p style="text-align:left;">Jennifer Straw<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Consultant<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-790-5979 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca</a></span><span style="font-size:1em;"> </span></p></div><p><br></p></div>
County of Simcoe to extend local waste facility operations at select siteshttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/county-of-simcoe-to-extend-local-waste-facility-operations-at-select-sites.aspx7/27/2020 2:22:27 PMCounty of Simcoe to extend local waste facility operations at select sites<p><strong>​Midhurst/July 27, 2020 –</strong> Starting the week of July 27, the County of Simcoe's Tosorontio and Mara waste facilities will expand operating days and Matchedash waste facility will reopen to the public.</p><ul><li><strong>Matchedash Waste Facility</strong> – As of July 27, Matchedash will operate Sundays and Mondays 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. <em>(Please note: Due to servicing limitations, Matchedash will be operating on </em><span style="text-decoration:underline;"><em>cash only</em></span><em>, rounded down to the nearest $5, until a cashless system can be installed.) </em></li><li><strong>Tosorontio Waste Facility</strong> – Starting July 28, Tosorontio will operate Tuesday through Saturday 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. </li><li><strong style="font-size:1em;">Mara Waste Facility</strong><span style="font-size:1em;"> – Starting July 30, Mara will operate Thursday through Saturday 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. </span></li></ul><span style="font-size:1em;">These changes apply to the three sites listed above only. The County's remaining waste facilities will continue to operate on the modified pandemic-related schedule implemented May 25. The full schedule can be found at </span><a href="/_layouts/15/FIXUPREDIRECT.ASPX?WebId=a41fbfa1-82ca-4939-9932-d97b8d6ad3e9&TermSetId=fb933945-005d-43ad-bb62-b84ef1fa9284&TermId=b02bb469-59e9-4f40-b373-50a0573763e9" style="font-size:1em;">simcoe.ca/covid19</a><span style="font-size:1em;">. The County also encourages residents to download the Simcoe County Collects app to view your waste calendar and to receive updates on our waste services. Service Simcoe is also open to field inquiries by phone and email Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 705-735-6901 or </span><a href="mailto:service@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">service@simcoe.ca</a><span style="font-size:1em;">.  </span><br><p>In May, the County was among one of the first municipalities in the area to reopen waste facilities to assist residents and local businesses and help meet their waste disposal needs. Taking into account health and safety guidelines and staffing/resourcing limitations due to COVID-19, the County created a modified schedule that allowed five of eight sites to operate five days per week.</p><p>The County and our front-line staff ask that residents continue to follow all Public Health recommendations. If you are in self isolation, stay at home. Please don't make any unnecessary visits to the sites and adhere to physical distancing when interacting with staff and other site users. When physical distancing is not possible, Public Health strongly recommends wearing a mask in all settings. <br></p><p>​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 <strong>simcoe.ca</strong>.</p><p style="text-align:center;"><strong>- 30 -</strong></p><p style="text-align:left;"><strong>CONTACTS</strong></p><p style="text-align:left;"><span style="font-size:1em;">Chris Hedley<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Consultant<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch​<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-715-7654 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Chris.Hedley@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">Chris.Hedley@simcoe.ca</a></span></p><p style="text-align:left;"><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Collin Matanowitsch<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Manager, Public Relations<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><a href="mailto:Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca" style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;">Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a><span style="text-align:right;font-size:1em;"> </span></p>
Ask an Expert Virtual Series provides businesses with tips on how to expand their foundationshttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/Ask-an-Expert-Virtual-Series-provides-businesses-with-tips-on-how-to-expand-their-foundations-20-7-27.aspx7/27/2020 1:34:16 PMAsk an Expert Virtual Series provides businesses with tips on how to expand their foundations<p>​<strong style="font-size:1em;">Midhurst/July 27, 2020 </strong><span style="font-size:1em;">– The Ask an Expert virtual webinar series continues August 13, 2020 when business and organizational leaders are invited to join subject matter experts as they share insights on</span><span style="font-size:1em;">  </span><span style="font-size:1em;">how businesses can create additional value for their customers, strengthen their business model foundations and ensure business viability.  ​</span></p><p>At this session businesses will:</p><ul><li>Learn about the importance of business planning</li><li>Understand key factors in developing strategies to survive and thrive in today's economy</li><li>Discover tools and resources that can help improve market share</li><li>Hear first-hand experience from business owners who have successfully implemented new strategies <br><br></li></ul><p></p><p><strong style="font-size:1em;">EVENT:</strong><strong style="font-size:1em;"> </strong><strong style="font-size:1em;">          </strong><strong style="font-size:1em;">Ask an Expert: Building on Your Foundations</strong><br></p><p></p><p><strong>Where:</strong><strong>           </strong>Zoom (details for joining the Zoom meeting will be sent in advance)</p><p><strong style="font-size:1em;">​When:</strong><span style="font-size:1em;"> </span><span style="font-size:1em;">           August 1</span><span style="font-size:1em;">3, 2020 ~ 3 to 4 p.m.</span></p><p><strong>Register:</strong>       Visit <a href="http://www.ask-an-expert-building-on-your-foundations.eventbrite.ca/">www.ask-an-expert-building-on-your-foundations.eventbrite.ca</a><br>                      Participants can submit questions in advance when registering or by<br>                      emailing <a href="mailto:edo@simcoe.ca">edo@simcoe.ca</a><br><br></p><p>Small Business Centre of Barrie, Simcoe County and Orillia, South Georgian Bay Small Business Enterprise Centre, Orillia Area Community Development Corporation, Nottawasaga Futures, North Simcoe Community Futures Development Corporation and the Centre for Business and Economic Development.</p><p>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. ​​<br></p><p style="text-align:center;"><strong>- 30 -​</strong></p><p><span class="ms-rteThemeFontFace-1 ms-rteFontSize-2"><strong>CONTACTS:​</strong></span></p><p>Collin Matanowitsch<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Manager<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">​Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a></span></p><p></p><p>Jennifer Straw<br><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Consultant<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-790-5979 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">Jennifer.Straw@simcoe.ca</a></span><span style="font-size:1em;"> </span></p><p><br></p>
Confirmation of Positive COVID-19 Cases at Georgian Residences (Retirement Home at Georgian Village)https://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/confirmation-of-positive-covid-19-cases-at-georgian-residences.aspx7/24/2020 3:33:05 PMConfirmation of Positive COVID-19 Cases at Georgian Residences (Retirement Home at Georgian Village)<p><strong>​­­­</strong><strong>Midhurst/June 24, 2020 </strong>– The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) confirmed that a resident at Georgian Residences Retirement Home, in Penetanguishene, has tested positive for COVID-19. </p><p>On July 2, this resident was admitted to hospital for a lengthy period due to unrelated medical issues. Subsequently, the resident received a negative test result on July 11 in the hospital and returned to Georgian Residences on July 12. Upon return, this resident was placed in isolation and received enhanced monitoring and infection control precautions given this virus can test negative during its incubation period. On July 20, the resident became symptomatic, was transferred back to hospital, and was retested for COVID. Our staff were notified by Public Health earlier today (July 23) that the resident now tests positive for COVID-19. The resident continues to receive care in hospital, and we are monitoring the situation while wishing them and their family the best outcome possible. </p><p>Following this initial positive test, the SMDHU has notified the County that a subsequent positive result has been identified with one staff member who works at Georgian Residences. The County is in close contact with the staff member and working to conduct extensive contact tracing for source control. The staff member has consistently taken part in precautionary bi-monthly testing and reported a negative result as recently as July 14. Preliminary tracing identified symptom development with this staff member after exposure to our positive resident case. We are supporting our staff member as much as we can during this difficult time.</p><p>In response to these positive COVID-19 tests, the SMDHU has placed Georgian Residences Retirement Home in outbreak. In order to ensure the health and safety of residents and staff, the County's Health and Emergency Services division has enacted our full outbreak protocols. As a separate entity, Georgian Manor Long-term Care and Seniors Services facility (which makes up the other portion of Georgian Village) is not included in the outbreak declaration.  However, staff have implemented enhanced monitoring and procedures as an additional precaution for the entire campus.</p><p>We are working closely with the staff of the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit to monitor this situation and ensure all outbreak precautions are in place. </p><p>All staff are continuing to wear necessary PPE, and we will continue with our diligence to screen everyone entering the building at the beginning of their shift as well as before they leave at the end of the day. We are proceeding with immediate testing of All residents at Georgian Residences. All staff working at Georgian Village and Manor are being tested immediately.  </p><p>In addition, the following steps will also be taken at Georgian Residences to keep our residents and staff safe:</p><ul><li>All family visits (except essential) are on hold during the outbreak;</li><li>Adult Day programming at Georgian Village is cancelled effective immediately for the duration of the outbreak;</li><li>All Village Square (Rendezvous) services will be closed during this outbreak except for Life Labs;<br></li><li>Retirement Home residents will receive meal service on their floor;</li><li>Residents are asked to stay on their floor and are reminded to maintain physically distancing (6 feet) from others; and</li><li>All resident admissions are on hold during this outbreak.</li></ul><p>Similar to the recent outbreak at Simcoe Manor, we are hopeful that these cases are limited, and have the best possible outcomes for our resident and staff member.  We will continue with our strict precautions and protocols and keep you informed as the situation unfolds. </p><p>Sincerely,<br></p><p><em>Jane Sinclair</em><br><em> General Manager of Health and Emergency Services</em><br><em> County of Simcoe</em></p><p><br><br></p>
Adapting and acting to support the COVID-19 responsehttps://www.simcoe.ca/CorporateCommunications/Pages/adapting-and-acting-to-support-the-covid-19-response.aspx7/21/2020 12:48:11 PMAdapting and acting to support the COVID-19 response<p>​<strong style="font-size:1em;">Midhurst/July 21, 2020 –</strong><span style="font-size:1em;"> The COVID-19 pandemic ha</span><span style="font-size:1em;">​</span><span style="font-size:1em;">s impacted residents, communities and businesses, yet during these challenging times, </span><span style="font-size:1em;">as the provider of essential and critical services, the County has taken the lead from Council to adapt and play a vital role in the regional COVID-19 response and recovery.</span></p><p>On March 18, Warden George Cornell declared an emergency as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic developments in our region. This declaration afforded the County additional powers to protect the health and safety of all individuals, families and businesses as well as the vulnerable populations that we serve. The declared emergency is ongoing with a focus on a healthy, prosperous and sustained recovery. <br></p><p>"From the outset of this health crisis, the County has worked to ensure the continuity of essential and critical services, including continued access to front line health and emergency care," said Warden George Cornell. “I'm proud of our staff's ability to adapt to these challenging circumstances, and Council's decisive action in providing support and resources to ensure an effective recovery. As we work to return to our new normal, we are committed to providing innovative new solutions to meet the needs of our residents, communities and businesses."<br></p><p>County staff quickly adjusted to virtual work from home options and continued to provide services and programs to residents, clients and partners at a high level. Close to 80 per cent of the County's 1,900 staff work in, or directly support, service and program areas deemed essential by the Government of Ontario, and more than 90 staff members working in non-essential roles during the pandemic have been redeployed to support critical needs in the County's long term care and seniors services division – a sector greatly impacted during the pandemic.  <br></p><p>As the provider and manager of emergency services, paramedic services, social and community services, long term care and seniors services, waste management, tourism and economic development programs, the County has responded during COVID-19 to offer recovery initiatives, continue program delivery, keep residents safe and offer program expansions during the pandemic, including:</p><p><strong>Protecting the Health of Seniors:</strong></p><p>The County operates four long term care and seniors services facilities. From the very beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the County has prioritized the health and well-being of our most vulnerable residents, and through our extensive health protocols, we have done and continue to do everything possible to minimize the risk to our residents and staff and limit their exposure to the coronavirus. To date, the County of Simcoe's four long term care and seniors services facilities, which provide care to 1,300 seniors, have only experienced one single positive case of COVID-19.</p><p><strong>Providing Direct Medical Care and COVID-19 Testing to the Region:</strong></p><p>County of Simcoe Paramedics answered the call and continued to provide enhanced medical response care during difficult times, paramedicine to alleviate impacts on hospitals, support to the Health Unit with community and facility COVID-19 testing, and health checks at area shelter programs to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and impacts on these vulnerable populations. </p><p><strong>Supporting Vulnerable Populations:</strong></p><p>Social and Community Services adapted programing and applied emergency funding to support regional needs, including implementation and oversight of a motel shelter program that enabled physical distancing and supports. Currently, 184 individuals are being served through the motel model, funded by the County of Simcoe with no reported COVID-19 cases within the system to-date. The County's Ontario Works department played a critical role in the distribution of emergency assistance programs to residents in need, while continuing to support clients in a virtual setting. </p><p><strong>Children's Services:</strong></p><p>The County of Simcoe led the charge to implement Emergency Childcare services to frontline workers and worked with partner organizations to establish local centres to provide childcare to healthcare workers in need.</p><p><strong>Economic Development and Tourism:</strong></p><p>The County's Economic Development Office worked closely with area partners to execute two regional surveys to identify the urgent needs of businesses. Results of these surveys were shared with Provincial and Federal members of parliament for their consideration in relief programs. The County has funded the extension of the Digital Main Street program, supported the ShopHERE program, and has assisted manufacturing businesses in transitioning their core business to support the pandemic response. The County has played a key role in offering Ask the Expert webinars to local businesses to assist them in navigating reopening protocols. In addition, Tourism Simcoe County has supported local business with a ShopLocal campaign, including extensive promotion of delivery services throughout the region. </p><p><strong>Legislative Services:</strong></p><p>The Clerk's Department introduced virtual video options to continue legislative services and joint meeting of County Council and Committee of the Whole to ensure timely response to the pandemic and continuation of important County business. </p><p><strong>Public services:</strong></p><p>The County continued to provide critical curbside collection services during a time when residents were at home and producing increased waste. Landfill and transfer sites were quickly reopened on a phased approach, while many surrounding municipalities continued to keep their sites closed. The County continued to provide LINX Transit Service, free of charge with modified schedules during the pandemic and has recently reintroduced paid fares. Road construction projects, land use planning projects, customer service and communication/marketing services have continued and the Simcoe County Museum and Archives identified opportunities to provide virtual services/programming. </p><p>The County is now taking steps to move to the next phase of our Return to the Workplace program and will continue to work closely with our partners in Public Health to ensure it has enhanced and thorough procedures and protocols in place for the safety of staff and residents.  On August 4, 2020, the County will further open public facilities and spaces, such as the Simcoe County Museum, the Service Simcoe Contact Centre area at the Administration Centre in Midhurst. The County will be diligent in all precautions, and even with the reopening of some business operations, it will monitor closely and take every step to safeguard staff and the public. More details will be released shortly. <br></p><p>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 <strong>simcoe.ca</strong>.​<br></p><p style="text-align:center;"><strong>-30-</strong></p><p><strong>​CONTACTS</strong></p><p><span style="font-size:1em;">Chris Hedley<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">Public Relations Consultant<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Services Simcoe Branch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-715-7654 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Chris.Hedley@simcoe.ca" style="font-size:1em;">Chris.Hedley@simcoe.ca</a><a href="mailto:Chris.Hedley@simcoe.ca"></a></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><br></span></p><p><span style="font-size:1em;"></span><span style="font-size:1em;">Collin Matanowitsch<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">Manager, Public Relations<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">County of Simcoe, Service Simcoe Branch <br></span><span style="font-size:1em;">705-734-8386 (mobile)<br></span><span style="font-size:1em;"><a href="mailto:Chris.Hedley@simcoe.ca">Collin.Matanowitsch@simcoe.ca</a></span><strong style="font-size:1em;"><br></strong></p>