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Economic recovery recommendations presented to Kawartha Lakes council

DAN CEARNS, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, for The Standard

KAWARTHA LAKES: Kawartha Lakes councillors saw a number of recommendations on how the municipality could help stimulate economic recovery irrespective of the COVID-19 pandemic, at a meeting on Tuesday, November 3rd.

The recommendations were made to the city by the municipality’s Economic Recovery Task Force. The recommendations include: waiving permit fees for park use, patios and events next year; increasing the number of garbage cans and frequency of waste pick up in the city’s downtown areas; moving forward with the downtown Fenelon Falls reconstruction project process; accelerating investments in local boat launches and trails, to provide improved access for residents and visitors; having staff “develop a cultural sector recovery grant program for 2021”; additions of portable washrooms and directional signage; and having council support “the work of Eastern Ontario Regional Network (EORN) and Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus (EOWC) for the Eastern Ontario “1 GIG” proposal for increased broadband capacity.”

The task force was formed in late May, with the goal of providing “advice and recommendations to Council and Staff on resources and support to stimulate local economic recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Rebecca Mustard, the city’s Manager of Economic Development, said, the task force’s action plan “proposes to do things differently, by reprioritizing or reshaping existing activities to address the reality of a very much changing economy.”

But, despite these being the final recommendations from the task force, this task force will not yet be disbanded.

“We’re not dissolving the task force at this point. We want to have a follow up meeting, once we see how council’s decisions go, and for any other follow ups we need to do,” Mayor Andy Letham explained to councillors.

With it being a committee of the whole meeting, the recommendations presented, will still need to go to a council meeting on Tuesday, November 17th for ratification.

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