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Municipal

City pivots on how it might eliminate deficit

In less than 24 hours Mayor Andy Letham and CAO Ron Taylor appear to have changed tack on the best way to pay down Kawartha Lakes COVID-19 induced budget shortfall of $3.2 million.

At council on May 26, Taylor dealt with the issue of the shortfall in depth.  He hinted that the city had two potential possibilities for paying the multi-million dollar deficit down.

The first option was applying a possible $3 million budget surplus from 2019 against the 2020 deficit.

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Students can begin retrieving personal belongings from schools

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Students will get one last look at their schools, if needed, as Trillium Lakelands District School Board moved to give limited access to schools for staff and students starting today.

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‘An outdoor grocery store:’ Lindsay Farmers Market re-opens

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It's a new normal but was a successful opening, says organizers. Photo: Jamie Morris.

The tone for customers of the newly-opened Lindsay Farmers Market was set by a hand-lettered scene at the single entry-point, in the library parking lot: “For the time being: Think of the market as an outdoor grocery store not a place to visit your neighbour.”

It had taken the market’s executive a month and a half to put together COVID-19 protocols and secure approvals. The health unit, the provincial farmers’ market association, and the city’s economic development department were all involved.

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43 local households in need of affordable rental housing

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43 local households in need of housing

Hope Lee, manager of housing for Kawartha Lakes and Haliburton, says 43 households are looking for full-time, affordable rental housing in Kawartha Lakes and Haliburton.

The bulk of the need is in Lindsay and Fenelon Falls.

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Five area hospitals partner to ramp up non-urgent care

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Campbellford Memorial Hospital (CMH), Haliburton Highlands Health Services (HHHS), Northumberland Hills Hospital (NHH), Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) and Ross Memorial Hospital (RMH) have now received formal approval from Ontario Health (OH) to move forward with a regional plan to begin resuming non-urgent surgeries, procedures and tests.

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Eleven roads earmarked for a ‘life cycle extension’ by city

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Eleven different stretches of road across the city have been earmarked for this year’s life cycle extension.

These roads have been chosen by the public works department for either/or local asphalt paving, local surface treatment, micro-resurfacing, slurry sealing or crack sealing.

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LEX re-imagined for 2020 but no midway or grandstand shows

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LEX re-imagined for 2020 but no midway or grandstand shows

The Lindsay Exhibition (LEX) is not being cancelled but rather re-imagined for 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic — but the Advocate has learned there will be no midway or grandstand shows.

In a short letter to exhibitors, Harry Stoddart, Lindsay Agricultural Society (LAS) president, says certain aspects of the LEX “present insurmountable challenges and will be postponed to 2021.”

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COVID-19 costs city $3.2 million in lost revenue — so far

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Found in Lions Riverview Park, Lindsay. The pandemic has strained city finances. Photo: Roderick Benns.

Chief Administrative Officer Ron Taylor says the city has lost millions of dollars that will most likely never be recovered, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Taylor was providing his monthly update to council regarding the fiscal impacts that COVID-19 and the state of emergency have had on the daily operations and long-term prospects of Kawartha Lakes.

He shared a concerning financial picture that will be further fleshed out at the next committee of the whole meeting June 9. The CAO says city financial statements are being reviewed on a weekly basis because of the dramatic decrease in revenue and a decline in user fees.

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Get tested for virus, says RMH, with just one symptom or if you’re at risk

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The Chief Medical Officer of Health has issued expanded guidance on Ontario’s testing strategy to provide COVID-19 testing for:

  • All people with at least one symptom of COVID-19, even if mild symptoms
  • Asymptomatic people have been exposed to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19
  • Asymptomatic people who are at risk of exposure to COVID-19 through their employment

The COVID-19 Assessment Centre phone lines are open from 8a.m.-4p.m. daily.

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Green leader says avoid more property taxes; cities need help from feds

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Green leader says avoid more property taxes; cities need help from feds

Mike Schreiner, leader of the Ontario Green Party, says municipalities will need significant financial help moving forward – and increasing property taxes is not the answer.

In a wide-ranging interview with the Advocate, Schreiner talked about how the COVID-19 virus is influencing municipalities, long term care homes, public schools and universities, and small businesses as Ontario tries to re-open carefully and cautiously.

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Grocery sales down 40 per cent over long weekend compared to last year

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Kawartha Lakes Mayor Andy Letham says grocery sales were down 40 per cent over a typical long weekend in the city because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a wide-ranging media scrum Letham and CAO Ron Taylor shared their thoughts on the disappointing business trends from the recent Victoria Day weekend and what issues the city will be facing moving forward next month and even into next year.

On the grocery store numbers, Letham says that “unless residents use their local businesses they are going to lose them.”

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