July 17 Office of the Mayor and Council Update
Remembering former Councillor Ralph Robinson
Today my Council colleagues and I learned of the passing of former Ward 1 Councillor Ralph Robinson.

Ralph was a dear friend of mine before he became a colleague on Council, and I will miss him terribly. He had a joy of life that will always be inspirational for me.

Ralph served Oakville for 11 consecutive terms, spending 36 years as the self-described “backyard guy”.

He had background in finance and a successful career in politics in Halifax, N.S. and St. John’s N.L. before coming to Oakville.

He is remembered by his Council colleagues as a mentor who brought wit to everything he did.

The devoted Kinsman was a force in the Kinsmen Club of Oakville, providing assistance to those most in need in our community. He chaired the Bronte Creek environmental steering committee, acted as a founding member of the former community advisory committee to Petro-Canada and the Lake Ontario shoreline algae action committee and chaired the Oakville Terry Fox Run for 25 years. R alph was also a founding director of the Oakville Sports Hall of Fame and past director of the Halton Multicultural Council.

Flags at Town Hall are being flown at half-mast in his memory.
Items in this update:

  • COVID case counts
  • How close are we to a vaccine for COVID-19?
  • On the passing of former Councillor Ralph Robinson
  • Town of Oakville Announcements
  • Oakville to open more pools
  • CLARIFICATION re: Investigation at St. Volodymyr Ukrainian Cemetery in Oakville
  • School Board Chair moves motion related to 2020/2021 school year
  • Oakville Rotary Clubs name new presidents
  • Provincial Government announcements
  • Hospital assumes management of Villa Colombo in North York
  • Ontario introduces measures to cap interest and fees on payday loans
  • Province takes steps to ensure all Ontarians benefit from local research, innovation
  • Ontario's mayors encouraged by emergency COVID-19 funding
  • Jays get provincial clearance to play home games in Toronto
  • Government of Canada announcements
  • Redesigned Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy
  • New details on proposed financial support for persons with disabilities during COVID-19
  • More support for Canadians through the Safe Restart Agreement
  • Quebec will not close bars
  • Alberta sees highest daily jump since May, no return to shutdown planned
  • U.S. breaks daily record with more than 77,000 new cases
  • Florida teen met friends against family's wishes - Dad now fights for life
  • Twenty-seven days is all it took for Brazil to go from one to two million cases
  • Australia coronavirus measures increase as surge spreads
  • In other COVID-related news
  • Masks will be mandatory on GO Transit vehicles starting Tuesday
  • What Ontario can learn from elsewhere about making schools safer from COVID-19
  • Advice from Canadian ex-pats to Ontarians: Don’t let reopening fool you, COVID-19 is still lurking dangerously
  • The risk of catching COVID-19 from contaminated surfaces, objects is ‘negligible,' scientist says
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COVID case counts
Total confirmed cases in Halton increased by +2 from 801 to 803 with +1 new confirmed cases in Oakville from 265 to 266.

There is currently 1 COVID-19 patient being cared for at OTMH and 12 active cases in Oakville.

There were +2 reported recoveries in Oakville, from 277 to 279 and +2 recoveries in Halton Region from 819 to 821
There are 111 new cases in Ontario today with nine new deaths reported, bringing the province’s total to 37,274 with 33,162 considered resolved and 2,746 deaths. Currently there are 108 COVID patients in Ontario hospitals, 30 of whom are in ICU with 21 of them on ventilators.

Canada has 109,518 confirmed and presumptive coronavirus cases. Provinces and territories listed 72,937 of those as recovered or resolved. 

The global coronavirus case count stands at 13,818,963, with 590,213 deaths and 7,727,518 cases considered recovered, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
Visit https://art-bd.shinyapps.io/covid19canada/ for the U of T COVID-19 data aggregation map
COVID-19 deaths per million
How close are we to a vaccine for COVID-19?
An effective vaccine against the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is everyone's hope for a real return to normal life. More than 100 teams of scientists around the world are working to develop and test a vaccine against the virus SARS-CoV-2 as quickly as possible. They're employing a huge variety of strategies and technologies, including some that have never been used in an approved vaccine before.

Have a look at the different vaccines under development, and where they are in the pipeline
Oakville and Halton
Town of Oakville announcements
Oakville to open more pools 
To help beat the summer heat, two additional town-operated outdoor pools, Brookdale and Bronte, will open on Saturday, July 25, and another indoor pool at Iroquois Ridge Community Centre will open on August 1.

“We are pleased to learn pre-registered swims at our previously opened locations have had great uptake with more than 93 per cent capacity for the first week,” said Mayor Rob Burton. “We have rigorous safety measures in place to help keep our staff and customers safe. This includes pre-screening all pool visitors, extensive training on safety protocols for staff, touch point disinfection between swims and physical distancing rules with signage to remind users of the all the new distancing measures and restrictions.”

Swimmers can pre-book their swim times online at active.oakville.ca or call 905-815-2000. To manage restricted capacities, only pre-registered customers will be admitted. 

Admission fees are $4 for seniors and youth, and $5 for adults. In addition to length and leisure swims, Bronte and Brookdale will also offer family swims for $15, which includes access for up to five individuals within your immediate social circle. Credit card payments can be made at the time of booking. Cash will not be accepted on site. If you require support with alternate payment options, please call 905-815-2000.

The town is gradually opening its pools in compliance with Halton Public Health, Lifesaving Society and provincial protocols, which includes reduced numbers of people to meet physical distancing guidelines. Swim times currently vary from 45 minutes to 1.5 hours depending on the type of swim (length swims are 45 minutes and leisure/family swims are 1.5 hours). A thorough cleaning is conducted between each swim block.

Protect yourself and others from COVID-19 while using indoor and outdoor pools by following these guidelines:
  • Do not come to the pool if you are sick. 
  • Customers will be asked a verbal health questionnaire before entering the pool. Anyone exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms will not be allowed to enter.
  • Always stay 2 metres apart from those not in your group. 
  •  Wash or sanitize your hands regularly, especially after touching shared surfaces. 
  • Follow instructions while at the pool from staff and on signage. 
  • Limited lawn chairs and/or loungers are available and are disinfected prior to the next swim.
  • Arrive wearing bathing attire as change rooms will not be available. Washrooms will remain open. 
  • Shower at home in advance, if possible, as showers will only be accessible prior to entering the pool.
  • Remember, equipment will not be available for use with the exception of lifejackets, which will be disinfected between users. Visitors can bring in their own equipment to use, subject to approval by on-site staff.

Other regulations including commonly asked questions and answers are online . All other regular pool admission rules apply.

“Staff in our facilities and programming areas had to implement a lot of new protocols to keep residents and visitors safe and healthy. I encourage residents to continue to follow all health protocols while using these amenities including follow physical distancing and proper hand washing. And, stay home if you are not well. Let’s continue to flatten the curve,” added Mayor Burton.

Lions Wedgewood and Falgarwood outdoor pools and Queen Elizabeth Park indoor pool are already open and available for pre-booked swims and limited swimming lessons. Limited additional private swimming lessons were added at Falgarwood and Bronte Pool, and leadership courses will be added at Iroquois Pool to address waitlists. 

The Town of Oakville’s top priority continues to be the health and safety of the community and town staff. There is a comprehensive recovery process in place that aligns with the province’s gradual phased-in approach. As provincial guidelines are updated, the town will continue to look for opportunities to expand programming in a safe and responsible manner. Learn more about the town’s COVID-19 Recovery Program Framework.

For more information on the town’s efforts to support the community in response to COVID-19, visit the COVID-19 page or follow us on  Twitter , Facebook and Instagram .
CLARIFICATION re: Investigation at
St. Volodymyr Ukrainian Cemetery in Oakville
​On June 22, 2020, the Halton Regional Police Service was called to attend St. Volodymyr Ukrainian Cemetery in Oakville for graffiti to a monument in the cemetery.

The initial information collected by investigators indicated that the graffiti may have been hate-motivated, targeting the identifiable group of Ukrainians in general, or Ukrainian members of this cultural centre. At no time did the Halton Regional Police Service consider that the identifiable group targeted by the graffiti was Nazis.

We regret any hurt caused by misinformation that suggests that the Service in any way supports Nazism.

The investigation continues and we will provide an update via media release when it reaches a conclusion.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact our 2 District Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905-825-4777 ext. 2215.

Tips can also be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers. "See something? Hear something? Know something? Contact Crime Stoppers" at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at  www.haltoncrimestoppers.ca .
School Board Chair moves motion relating to 2020/2021 school year
At the Wednesday, July 15 Halton District School Board Special Meeting, Chair Andrea Grebenc moved a motion that was passed unanimously by trustees calling for a letter be written on behalf of the Board of Trustees, copying all Ontario Boards, OPSBA and local MPPs, indicating the concerns with the current part-time hybrid/adaptive model as outlined by the Ministry of Education, requesting the hybrid/adaptive model, under its current funding level, be withdrawn as an option for September 2020 for students in Kindergarten to grade six, requesting appropriate funding for the 15-student model as a daily attendance model or adjusting the model cohort parameters.

The motion also calls for the Chair to ask the Minister of Education for clarification about who the decision maker is for the September school year start up.

Oakville Rotary Clubs name new presidents
Four new presidents have been named to lead Oakville’s Rotary Clubs for the upcoming 12 months. They are Michael Henry, Rotary Club of Oakville, Catherine Whittaker, Rotary Club of Oakville Trafalgar, Ahmed Ezzat, Rotary Club of Oakville West, and Jananee Savuntharanathan, Rotary Passport Club South.

For almost 100 years, Oakville Rotarians have raised funds through special events to support local area charities and not-for-profits, dispersing financial aid to many deserving organizations and their very worthy projects and initiatives. As well, funds are donated and leveraged to support Rotary International projects that impact the global community in a meaningful way.

Congratulations to all four clubs and presidents!

Ontario
Provincial Government announcements
The Ministry of Long-Term Care is appointing Humber River Hospital as interim manager at Villa Colombo in North York.
Despite receiving support and advice from Humber River Hospital for weeks, Villa Colombo has been unable to contain the spread of COVID-19. Humber River Hospital will now manage care in the home along with the team at Villa Colombo and fill the executive director role on a temporary basis.
"Our government will continue to act to keep Ontarians safe, especially our most vulnerable people in long-term care," said Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Long-Term Care. "I am confident that the talented staff at Humber River Hospital and Villa Colombo will work together to combat COVID-19."
During these unprecedented times, it's important to use every tool available to keep Ontarians safe. Voluntary management contracts come hand-in-hand with other measures the province has taken on behalf of long-term care residents and staff, including emergency funding, regulatory flexibility, staffing support, expanded testing, along with direction and guidance on outbreak management, and infection prevention and control.
The Ministry of Long-Term Care will continue to make decisions on which long-term care homes may require additional management support on a case-by-case basis. 
Ontario introduces measures to cap interest and fees on payday loans 
The Ontario government is proposing changes that would provide additional protection for payday loan borrowers by capping interest rates and fees on defaulted loans, ensuring that workers and families who use payday loan services can keep more of their hard-earned money. The changes were included in the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Act, 2020.

"Our government remains committed to protecting Ontarians during these unprecedented times, now and in the future," said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Government and Consumer Services. "These proposed amendments to the Payday Loans Act, 2008, are intended to provide some much-needed relief to some of Ontario's most vulnerable consumers."

Proposed amendments to the Payday Loans Act, 2008, would cap the interest rate that lenders can charge on payday loans that are in default. Lenders would not be permitted to charge interest in excess of 2.5 per cent per month (non-compounded), providing rate relief to borrowers unable to repay their loans on time.

The government would also establish a maximum fee of $25 that may be charged by lenders for dishonoured or bounced cheques or pre-authorized debits. This measure would protect borrowers from having to pay high fees while already facing financial hardship.

"Throughout COVID-19, and beyond, our primary objective has been to ensure the people of Ontario have what they need to provide and care for their families and loved ones without additional stressors," said Minister Thompson.

If passed, this would be the first time Ontario has taken action to protect borrowers in default from annual interest rates as high as 60 per cent and to establish a maximum fee that may be charged for dishonoured payments.     

Learn more about other supports provided by the Ontario government by visiting  COVID-19: support for people .
The Ontario government announced a made-in-Ontario Intellectual Property Action Plan to help ensure the tremendous social and economic benefits of taxpayer-funded research and innovation stays right here in the province. In addition, the government unveiled the second round of research projects approved and supported through the $20 million Ontario COVID-19 Rapid Research Fund . Through these efforts, researchers will be working to find ways to prevent, detect and treat COVID-19.

The government is strengthening Ontario's intellectual property (IP) position through the Intellectual Property Action Plan. The plan will drive the province's long-term economic competitiveness by prioritizing IP generation, protection, and commercialization.

The government is also creating the Special Implementation Team on Intellectual Property (SITIP), which will be comprised of the IP experts who previously served on Ontario's Expert Panel on Intellectual Property. The team will provide advice on the implementation of the Intellectual Property Action Plan, including the commercialization of research and IP in the province's postsecondary institutions and innovation centres to ensure that Ontario is open for jobs and open for business.

Together, Ontario's SITIP and Intellectual Property Action Plan will respond to the  report prepared by the Expert Panel on Intellectual Property  and will:
  • Work with postsecondary institutions and research institutes to strengthen mandates related to commercialization entities within their organizations;
  • Strengthen Ontario's IP literacy by developing standardized, web-based basic and advanced IP education curriculums;
  • Create a centralized provincial resource entity that will increase access to sophisticated IP expertise; and
  • Develop a governance framework for organizations supporting entrepreneurial and innovation activities, which incorporates IP considerations.

The postsecondary, research and innovation sector will also take a leading role in Ontario's economic recovery and future prosperity. As part of its strategy to strengthen the research and innovation economy, the Ontario government is funding an additional 20 proposals that were submitted in response to the government's $20 million  Ontario COVID-19 Rapid Research Fund . In May, 15 projects were announced as part of the first round and they are focusing on areas such as vaccine development, diagnostics, drug trials and development, and social sciences. The government is also committing funding to help commercialize the Rapid Research Fund projects here in Ontario, ensuring that taxpayer-funded research benefits Ontarians first.
Ontario’s mayors ‘encouraged’ by
emergency COVID-19 funding
Ottawa has pledged $2 billion to cover municipalities' operating costs with provinces and territories expected to match that amount.

Jays get provincial clearance to play home games in Toronto
Ontario Premier Doug Ford says he's looking forward to the Toronto Blue Jays playing at Rogers Centre this season after a member of his government said the Major League Baseball team has been given the green light to play games at home.

The federal government, however, has not yet said whether it has approved of the plan.

Canada
Government of Canada announcements
Redesigned Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy
The Government of Canada is taking immediate, significant and decisive action through Canada’s  COVID-19 Economic Response Plan  to support Canadians and protect jobs during the global COVID-19 pandemic, and to better position them for a strong recovery.

The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) protects jobs by helping businesses keep employees on the payroll and encouraging employers to re-hire workers previously laid off. Since its launch, about 3 million Canadian employees have had their jobs supported through the CEWS, and that number continues to grow.

Today the Finance Minister, Bill Morneau, announced proposed changes to the CEWS that would broaden the reach of the program and provide better targeted support so that more workers can return to their jobs quickly as the economy restarts. This support would continue to protect jobs and help Canadian businesses that are the most impacted.

Today’s proposed changes included in the Government’s draft legislative proposals would:
  • Allow the extension of the CEWS until December 19, 2020, including redesigned program details until November 21, 2020.
  • Make the subsidy accessible to a broader range of employers by including employers with a revenue decline of less than 30 per cent and providing a gradually decreasing base subsidy to all qualifying employers. This would help many struggling employers with less than a 30-per-cent revenue loss get support to keep and bring back workers, while also ensuring those who have previously benefited could still qualify, even if their revenues recover and no longer meet the 30 per cent revenue decline threshold.
  • Introduce a top-up subsidy of up to an additional 25 per cent for employers that have been most adversely affected by the pandemic. This would be particularly helpful to employers in industries that are recovering more slowly.
  • Provide certainty to employers that have already made business decisions for July and August by ensuring they would not receive a subsidy rate lower than they would have had under the previous rules.
  • Address certain technical issues identified by stakeholders.

These proposed changes follow consultations with business and labour representatives on potential adjustments to the CEWS program aimed at ensuring that it continues to protect jobs and promote growth.

By helping workers transition back to their jobs and supporting businesses as they increase revenues, these changes would ensure that employers have the certainty they need to hire back quickly as the economy improves and to best position workers and businesses for the future.

The government continues to assess and respond to the impacts of COVID-19 and stands ready to take additional actions as needed to stabilize the economy.
New details on proposed financial support for persons with disabilities during COVID-19
The Government of Canada continues to take immediate, significant and decisive action to ensure that the needs of all Canadians are supported during the COVID-19 pandemic. Last month, the Government announced a series of measures to help Canadians with disabilities navigate the effects of the outbreak, including a one-time, tax-free, non-reportable payment of $600 to assist with additional expenses incurred during the pandemic.

These additional expenses might include higher costs for personal protective equipment; additional expenses related to hiring personal support workers and accessing other disability supports; paying for increased costs for medical supplies and medication; higher internet costs associated with physical distancing; and increased use of taxis and home delivery services to obtain groceries and prescriptions.

Today, the Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, announced that the Government of Canada intends to propose legislation that would make the benefit available to more people and expand the one-time payment to include approximately 1.7 million Canadians with disabilities, who are recipients of any of the following programs or benefits:
  • A Disability Tax Credit certificate provided by the Canada Revenue Agency;
  • Canada Pension Plan disability benefit or Quebec Pension Plan disability benefit; and
  • Disability supports provided by Veterans Affairs Canada.

The Government has shared draft legislative proposals that would facilitate these payments. If enacted, eligible Canadians would receive the payment automatically.

Additionally, Canadians with disabilities who are eligible for the Disability Tax Credit but have not yet applied, would have a 60-day window of opportunity to do so after Royal Assent.

Seniors who are eligible for the one-time payment to persons with disabilities would receive a total of $600 in special payments. The one-time payment to persons with disabilities would be adjusted to provide a top-up for eligible seniors, including:
  • $300 for Canadians who are eligible for the Old Age Security pension and who received the
  • one-time seniors payment of $300; or
  • $100 for Canadians who are eligible for the Old Age Security pension and the Guaranteed Income Supplement or Allowances and who received the one-time senior’s payment of $500.

The Government remains committed to a pandemic response and recovery that is disability inclusive and thanks the members of the COVID-19 Disability Advisory Group for their tireless work and valued input over the past few months.
More support for Canadians through the Safe Restart Agreement
As we gradually restart the economy and take the initial steps to recover from the impacts of COVID-19, the Government of Canada continues to work with the provinces and territories to ensure Canadians stay safe and healthy, and have the support they need in these challenging times.

The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, yesterday announced a federal investment of more than $19 billion to help provinces and territories safely restart their economies and make our country more resilient to possible future waves of the virus.

This investment, through the Safe Restart Agreement, will help address the key priorities, agreed upon by Canada’s First Ministers, for the safe restart of Canada’s economy over the next six to eight months. It will support measures to increase testing and contact tracing of the virus to protect Canadians from a future outbreak, and support the capacity of our health care systems, including services for people facing mental health challenges. It will also assist with the procurement of personal protective equipment to help our essential workers, and in protecting the most vulnerable, like our seniors.

The agreement will also help get funding quickly to municipalities so they can deliver essential services that Canadians rely on every day, like public transit. In addition, it includes actions to help Canadian workers during this challenging time, such as ensuring the availability of safe child care to help parents returning to work, and providing income support for people who do not have paid sick leave so all Canadians can stay healthy.

During this time of uncertainty, the Government of Canada is putting Canadians first by working together with our provincial and territorial partners to lay the groundwork to keep our communities strong and healthy, and ensure our economy is resilient.
Quebec will not close bars as Legault says recent rise in coronavirus cases due to private gatherings
Quebec remains the province with the highest number of cases and deaths attributable to COVID-19.

Alberta has highest daily COVID-19 jump since May, but no return to shutdown planned
Alberta has surpassed more than 100 new daily COVID-19 infections for the first time in more than two months, but the province’s top doctor said the spike, while worrying, does not warrant another shutdown.

International news
U.S. breaks daily record with more than 77,000 new cases
Thursday also saw 969 lives lost, the biggest increase since June 10, with Florida, South Carolina and Texas all reporting their biggest one-day spikes.

Florida teen met friends against family’s wishes.
Now dad has COVID-19, fighting for his life
The young man, who did not want to talk to the media, had told his father and stepmother that he initially thought he had a common cold and took over-the-counter medication.

It took 27 days for Brazil to go from
one to two million coronavirus cases
On Thursday, confirmed cases in Brazil totaled 2,012,151, while deaths numbered 76,688.

‘No dancing, no singing’: Australia coronavirus measures increase as surge spreads
Australia on Friday posted its second biggest one-day rise in new COVID-19 infections, with 438 cases.

In other COVID-related news:
Masks will be mandatory on GO Transit vehicles starting Tuesday
A memo sent to the union representing GO bus workers says passengers on all GO and UP Express vehicles will be asked to wear face coverings starting Tuesday, July 21.

What Ontario can learn from elsewhere about making schools safer from COVID-19
Going back to school means learning lessons and facing tests. Ontario will soon face a crucial test of whether it has learned from the mistakes and successes of other jurisdictions in preventing the spread of COVID-19 in schools.
 
Advice from Canadian ex-pats to Ontarians: Don’t let reopening fool you, COVID-19 is still lurking dangerously
Canadians living abroad are worried a careless reopening could plunge Toronto and Ontario back into the worst of the pandemic.
 
The risk of catching COVID-19 from contaminated surfaces, objects is ‘negligible,' scientist says
Dr. Emanuel Goldman is among a camp of researchers who now believe the chances of getting COVID-19 from fomites are probably much smaller than originally thought. Although they support hand hygiene and the cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces, they suggest other measures, such as physical distancing and wearing masks, play a far bigger role in preventing the spread of the new coronavirus. And if they’re right, that means pushing elevator buttons, touching door handles and allowing children on outdoor playground equipment are all less risky than previously believed.
Upcoming events:
Halton Environmental Network is launching Pop-up Clean-ups! The socially distanced clean-ups are a safe and fun way to enjoy the outdoors while making a difference in your community. Not only will you be cleaning up litter, but you’ll be tracking the waste you find. The collected data will empower our community to make informed decisions on how to protect our environment.
 
You can either lead a clean-up or take part in one! Students also have the opportunity to gain volunteer hours for school credit with each clean-up they do. If you are interested, please register   here .  
Food Banks experiencing record demand
Oakville's food banks are in record-breaking demand. If you can donate anything, please do. Your help is needed.

Fareshare Food Bank Oakville: 905-847-3988 or email  oakvillefoodbank@gmail.com

Kerr Street Mission: 905-845-7485 or donate online at kerrstreet.com

The Salvation Army Oakville: Donate online https://salvationarmy.ca/
Oakville Meals on Wheels continues to operate

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Oakville Meals on Wheels continues to operate under increased safety measures. I f you know or are aware of someone who is struggling, call 211 and get help to navigate the network of health, community and social service programs. This service is offered 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and has interpretation for over 150 languages. And, if you are able, please consider supporting the Meals on Wheels effort by making a donation.

Testing in Oakville
Call the COVID-19 hotline
For the duration of the pandemic, if a member of the public wishes to report an incident of non-compliance with the emergency orders, they may contact the Halton Regional Police Service COVID-19 Hotline: 905-825-4722

It is critical that our residents use 911 for emergencies only.
Coronavirus timeline