March 2021
Published monthly
Vol. 2, Edition 9
The Monthly Report
March update
Welcome to the latest edition of The Monthly Report.

We cover a lot of ground in our March update.

Learn what's happening with the twin-pad arena and library project, get details on other infrastructure investments we are moving forward with this year, and discover great programs and events that you and your family can access.

Plus, see our 'The Way We Were' historical photo, read Mayor Nina Bifolchi's latest message, and check out the many other informative items we've included.

Again, thanks for reading and if you haven't subscribed you can do so by visiting here:
Ontario back into shutdown
The Government of Ontario moved the province back to shutdown on Saturday, April 3.

The province says the move is due to the surge in COVID-19 cases and related hospitalizations.

Wasaga Beach continues to advocate for long-term care beds for the community
On March 30, Mayor Nina Bifolchi wrote to Queen’s Park asking why Wasaga Beach was overlooked when it came to a recent announcement of new long-term care beds in Ontario.

“On March 18, 2021, the Government of Ontario announced what it called a ‘Historic Investment’ to modernize long-term care in our province.

We were anxious for the details of this announcement as Primacare, a company with a proven track record of caring for older adults, had submitted an application for a 160-bed facility in our community.

It was disappointing to see that of the 11,707 long-term care spaces to be built in Ontario through 80 projects, Wasaga Beach was not on the list. We want to understand why," said Mayor Bifolchi.

Vaccination clinic
operational at RecPlex
CLINIC VISIT On March 20, members of town council and senior municipal staff had a socially-distanced tour of the COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the RecPlex. The clinic is overseen by representatives of the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit and the South Georgian Bay Family Health Team. Learn more about vaccination efforts here:
Best wishes on 60th anniversary
SIXTY YEARS OF LOVE On March 25, Mayor Nina Bifolchi had a brief socially-distanced visit with Archie and Joan Nesbitt of Wasaga Beach. On behalf of council, Mayor Bifolchi congratulated the couple on their 60th wedding anniversary and presented them with a certificate recognizing the special occasion.
80 years young
HAPPY BIRTHDAY On March 15, on behalf of town council, Mayor Nina Bifolchi paid a socially-distanced visit to Jens Arne Moller to present him with a certificate in celebration of his 80th birthday. Congratulations on reaching such an important milestone.
Celebrating 90 years
BIG BIRTHDAY On March 29, on behalf of council, Mayor Nina Bifolchi had a brief socially-distanced visit with Wasaga Beach resident Winnie Mason to present her with a certificate in recognition of her 90th birthday. Best wishes for the year ahead, Winnie!
Colliers to provide Bid Document Review services for library-arena project
Council at its March 30 meeting approved using Colliers International to provide Bid Document Review services for the drawings and specifications for the twin-pad arena and library project.

The cost of the service is a fixed fee of $52,800.

Bid document review work aims to identify areas of possible contention in project tender documents before the town issues them.

Bid document review work is set to start May 1.

Council approves Sponsorship and Naming Policy, plus Donor Recognition Policy, for arena and library project
Council received for information at its March 30 meeting the twin-pad arena and library fundraising and sponsorship update report and approved the related Sponsorship Naming Policy, plus the Donor Recognition Policy.

By adopting the two policies, the fundraising campaign for the twin-pad arena and library has established parameters from which to carry out its objectives.

Twin-pad arena and library fundraising campaign strategy report received and methodology OK'd for naming
Council received at its March 30 meeting, for information, the twin-pad arena and library fundraising campaign strategy and asset report.

Members also approved the methodology for establishing naming opportunities and valuation figures for the project.

Val Dickson, fundraising and sponsorship coordinator for the project, started work on the campaign in January.

The approval of the methodology helps establish a comprehensive foundation from which to carry out fundraising for the project.

Find our Q&A here
New condo proposed for
River Road West
A developer proposes building an 86-unit condominium in the west end.

A public meeting regarding the six-storey proposal was held at the March 11 Coordinated Committee meeting. Wasaga Riverwoods Homes Inc. is the proponent.

For the project to go ahead, it requires council approval of an Official Plan Amendment and a Zoning Bylaw Amendment.

The proposed site is on the south side of River Road West, just west of Westbury Road.
Town staff provided an overview of the proposal during the public meeting. Neighbours in the area also commented on the project.

Staff are conducting a detailed review of the proposal, as well as the public comments received, and when that work is complete will provide council with recommendations on the proposed amendments.
Subdivision agreement approved for Stonebridge development
Council approved a subdivision agreement for a draft plan of subdivision in the Stonebridge development.

The draft plan permits 48 town homes on a property bound by Beachway Trail to the west, Sandy Coast Crescent to the south, Stonebridge Boulevard to the east, and a stormwater management pond to the north.

Hamount Investments Ltd., the developer, plans to start a related sales program this spring and construction of the units this summer.

Building activity remains strong in Wasaga Beach
The Building Department Activity Report for February shows the town issued 20 permits with an estimated value of $1.5-million.

Councillor David Foster, chair of the Development Services Section of Coordinated Committee, shared the news during his regular monthly report to council. He said the report was received for information during the committee’s March 11 meeting.

The report also notes that during the month the department did 138 inspections, including 11 occupancy inspections.

Q&A: Beach Area 2 lands to remain as parkland
Read our Q&A on Beach Area 2 lands and get the facts about the future of this area in our community.
Sand staying on Beach Drive as town moves ahead with redevelopment plans
Due to continued high water levels and as part of the redevelopment of town-owned land at the beachfront the sand will remain on Beach Drive for the summer of 2021 and beyond.
“We are excited to be revitalizing this popular space,” Mayor Nina Bifolchi said. “Now is a period of transition, but ultimately we will end up with an area that affords exciting new opportunities.”
Street sweeping getting started
GOODBYE WINTER SAND Street sweeping and sand clean-up will begin after the last snowfall and when the temperature is consistently above freezing. This is anticipated for the week of April 6, weather permitting. See our website to learn more about this annual program.
The Facade Improvement Program is a FREE municipal Grant Program Package that assists property owners looking to revitalize and/or restore the frontage of their buildings in town. Projects can include side and rear facing facades that have high public visibility.

The program will provide a grant up to 50% of the eligible costs up to $2,000 per project.

Open Patios program rolling
out again this year
Council has approved the Open Patios program for 2021.

Open Patios is designed to mitigate the financial impacts restaurants are experiencing, due to the pandemic, by allow them to extend seating options outside.

The program ran successfully last year and the town expects interest again this year.
The town does not charge fees to review and assess proposals for temporary patios.

Businesses wishing to serve alcohol must secure the appropriate provincial licence.

Town investing in
Ramblewood Drive reconstruction
At the March 30 meeting, council awarded the Ramblewood Drive reconstruction contract to Ratcliff Excavating and Grading Inc. for $4,033,582, plus HST.

The reconstruction of Ramblewood Drive, between 45th and 58th streets, will consist of a new road surface, plus a new storm sewer, sanitary sewer extension, water services, concrete curbs, sidewalks, and dedicated bike lanes. It will link the already finished sections of Ramblewood Drive with 45th Street.

The purchasing action was done through a competitive process.

Drinking water and wastewater reports show systems operating to standards
Council heard on March 30 that during the Public Works Section of the March 11 Coordinated Committee several reports related to the town’s water and wastewater treatment systems were received for information. 

This included the monthly Drinking Water System Performance Report and the Water Pollution Control Plant Report.

In addition, the committee received the well system supply reports and the annual Wasaga Beach Drinking Water System Report.

The reports show systems operating to provincial standards.

The drinking water system received a final inspection rating of 100 percent for 2020.

Councillor George Watson, chair of the Public Works Section of Coordinated Committee, commended the Ontario Clean Water Agency and town staff for the excellent results.
New look coming for neighbourhood park
CHANGE A firm has been hired to lead design and construction contract administration for the redevelopment of Glendale Park. The consulting services include research, inventory and analysis, community outreach, concept design, detailed design development, preparation of tender documents including drawings and specifications, and warranty inspection.
Town retains firm to spearhead design for redevelopment of Glendale Park
Council approved using EDS Group Inc., at a cost of $42,682, to provide architectural services for the redevelopment of Glendale Park.

Staff used a competitive RFP process to select EDS as the recommended provider for design services.

The park is located between Glen Eton Road and Riverdale Drive.

See our Build Wasaga page for a closer look at all of the great investments being made in our community.
Orchard Park Drive Pedestrian Bridge replacement project going ahead
Town council members on March 30 approved retaining Landco Group Inc., at a cost of $192,064, for the Orchard Park Drive Pedestrian Bridge replacement project.

Council also approved awarding contract administration services for the project to Planmac Engineering Inc. at a cost of $20,657.

The town used a tender process to identify the two firms.

No chickens in backyards for now, council says
Council on March 30 agreed to keep controls in place that prohibit chickens in backyards.

A public consultation exercise looked at potentially allowing the birds, but found a majority of people were not interested in the idea. 

Last fall, after the town received inquiries about the potential of having chickens in backyards, council directed staff to review the matter.

The town launched a survey on its community engagement website,, in November.

The survey ran until early February. Six-hundred and ninety-one individuals completed the survey and a majority of residents were not interested in keeping chickens on their property.

Events Summary Report outlines plans for months ahead
At the March 30 council meeting, Mayor Nina Bifolchi, chair of Committee of the Whole, noted the Events Summary Report was received for information at the March 26 committee meeting.

The mayor provided an overview of the report during the council meeting.

The summary outlines cancelled events due to the pandemic and those that are going ahead. The number of in-person events is limited due to the size restrictions under public health regulations. If this changes, staff will recommend to council that more in-person events take place.

In some cases, virtual events will take place.

Town releases 2020 salary disclosure information
On March 19, the Town of Wasaga Beach released a list of employees who earned $100,000 or more during 2020.

Under the Ontario Ministry of Finance’s Public Sector Salary Disclosure Act, organizations that receive funding from the Province of Ontario are required to disclose the names, positions, salaries, and taxable benefits of employees who earn $100,000 or more in a calendar year.

This information is often referred to as the provincial Sunshine List.

For 2020, the town submitted the names of 37 employees compared to 36 in 2019. There are 20 firefighters on the list, with the remaining names coming from the rest of the organization.

Factors contributing to the list include the payout of accumulated vacation and overtime. Another factor affecting the number of employees on the list is the Town of Wasaga Beach pays its employees based on a 40-hour workweek compared to a 37.5 or 35-hour workweek that a number of comparable municipalities use.

The following information reflects the report submitted to the Ministry of Finance:

PARKING Due to current COVID-19 closure requirements, resident parking passes are now available to purchase over the phone by calling the Treasury Department at 705-429-3844. The cost of each pass is $25 +HST. **New** this year, there is a limit of 2 (TWO) parking passes per address, which can be transferred to any vehicle. The residential parking pass can be used for parking in any of the designated municipal parking lots and must be displayed at all times. The parking pass is valid from May 21 – October 11, 2021. A map of the applicable Municipal lots is available on our website.
SO LONG WINTER PARKING RULES As of Thursday, April 1, Winter Parking Rules are no longer in effect. Vehicles may now be parked on-street overnight in permitted areas and in accordance with other Parking By-Laws that limit certain on-street parking, including no parking in front of hydrants, driveways, or within 9m of an intersection. For a full list of our parking restrictions please visit our website.
SPECIAL VEHICLE Do you own a RV/Tent Trailer or Boat? These qualify as 'Special Vehicles' under the Zoning By-Law. As of April 1st you are allowed to park your Special Vehicle in your driveway until October 31st with the following restrictions: 1) The vehicle including trailer does not exceed 7m (23 ft) in length (exclusive of hitch or tongue) 2) does not exceed 2.6 m (8.5 ft) in width. If your special vehicle does exceed these measurements then you are permitted to park it in the driveway for a maximum of 5 days per month. For more information on restrictions on parking special vehicles please refer to section 3.41.4 of Zoning By-Law 2003-60.
Probus Month in Wasaga Beach
PROBUS March was Probus Month in the Town of Wasaga Beach. Members of council and local Probus members held a flag-raising to mark the occasion March 2. Learn more about Probus here:
Council supports #ITSTARTS campaign
ITSTARTS In recognition of International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on March 21, the County of Simcoe proclaimed March as #ITSTARTS Month. For the fifth year running, the #ITSTARTS campaign is promoting inclusion, acceptance, and equity within the vibrant, diverse and growing communities that make up Simcoe County. #ITSTARTS aims to raise awareness about the value and importance of multiculturalism in our communities. Councillor Stan Wells promoted the campaign by reminding people about the importance of respect. Similar messages from members of council can be found on our Facebook page. Learn more about the campaign here:
INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY At the Town of Wasaga Beach, we are proud of the team that delivers public services for our community. Many of the people helping us do this work are women. In celebration of International Women's Day on March 8, we gathered the women who work at town hall for a photo with Mayor Nina Bifolchi and Deputy Mayor Sylvia Bray. Learn more about International Women's Day here:
Download app before heading out on trails
The Ontario Provincial Police Provincial Communications Centres (PCCs) are using the mobile application 'What3Words' to help people in need when a caller cannot describe or does not know where they are located.

Through its global mapping system, the app labels every three squared metres with a unique three-word location string which can be converted into latitude and longitude coordinates for entry into the Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system in use at the PCCs.

What3Words is a free application for iPhones and Android devices that works off the cellphone’s Global Positioning System (GPS) or offline without mobile data if the caller already has the mobile app downloaded on their cellular device.

Even if the caller does not have the app previously downloaded on their mobile device, the PCC communicator can send a link to the caller’s cell phone which will enable the caller with data access to find their What3Words location. The app is available in 43 languages but shares the location in English.

This is an excellent opportunity to save precious time in an emergency and enable a more rapid frontline response.

Consider adding the app to your mobile device, especially if you are planning a trip onto our local trail system.

Online resources to support you during the COVID-19 pandemic
Government of Ontario COVID-19 updates

Visit the main newsroom here
Wasaga Beach Council Highlights
Wasaga Beach Town Council met on Tuesday, March 30.

For an overview of what took place, see our highlights package: Here

Watch the meeting below:
Find a meeting in our calendar
Looking for information on when town meetings take place?

Check out our website for dates and times. You can see the whole month at a glance.

Learn more here:

Town of Wasaga Beach Quick Fact

Did you know that you can access our beachfront cameras at any time of the day?

Find them on our website. You have two views to choose from, one that looks out towards the water and one that is more focused on the beach.

Waste collection information
The County of Simcoe is responsible for waste collection in the Town of Wasaga Beach.

You can learn more about waste services by visiting the county's website.

The site includes a variety of information, including waste collection schedules and landfill locations. Learn more here:
Learn more about other recreation programs
Check out Let's Talk Wasaga Beach here: Click
Pocket dialing can tie up resources
When inadvertently dialing 911 on your cell phone, please remember you are activating an emergency service.

In doing so, emergency personnel are committed to determining the origin and extent of the emergency that may be happening.

This means they have to locate the individual who inadvertently dialed 911.

This response can draw needed resources away from actual emergencies. To prevent this please, when not using your phone, lock it so that unintentional calls do not happen.

If you do dial 911 by mistake, please do not hang up on the operator. Explain the call is in fact not an emergency, tell the operator where you are and stay there. This is because an officer must attend your location to determine an emergency is not taking place.

By hanging up or leaving your current location, you create a situation where emergency services must try to locate you, and in the process tie up precious resources.

Only you can stop 911 misdials.
Medic Alert Connect
Are you familiar with MedicAlert Connect?

MedicAlert Connect provides Ontario Provincial Police with 24/7 direct access to a person's medical information including conditions, anxiety triggers, and de-escalation techniques, to assist with reuniting you and your loved ones.

Did you know the OPP has an online crime reporting site?

The site lets you report a crime without visiting an OPP detachment. Learn more.
The way we were...
NUMBER, PLEASE From the Historical Advisory Committee. Wasaga Beach’s first telephone company was the Noisy River Phone Company, beginning in 1944/45. Operating out of Creemore, Stayner and Wasaga Beach, it provided service for the year-round residents and for the seasonal tourists. The phone service would operate out of Wasaga Beach over the holiday season, however, the service would be transferred to the Stayner office over the winter months as the permanent resident population was too small to maintain the switchboard.  The Wasaga Beach phone service operated out of the front room of a small house, just east of Joan Avenue (18th Street), on Mosley. A number of local women worked as operators. They would sit at a Magneto Switchboard, with their headsets on, and when a call came, they would ask what number you were calling. Each business and residence had a number. Birch Haven Cabin & Lodge was 88, Barker’s Tea Room was 73, Cardinal Cabins was 21, Bowles Drug Store was 222, and Sloppy Joe’s was 147. The service also provided long distance calling, but only had a limited number of long distance lines. If you were placing a long distance call, you would often have to wait for a line to become open, for the call to go through. In the summer months, tourists had access to a small number of public phones to make long distance calls. Stories are told of tourists lining up in queue, waiting to make a call, and waiting for a line to become open. The switchboard system remained in place until it was replaced by the direct dial system. The Wasaga Beach Archives has one of the original operator headsets that will be on display, when the new archives building opens.
There's always something to do through the Wasaga Beach Public Library

Message from Mayor Nina Bifolchi
As we learned on Friday, the province is back into shutdown.

This is unfortunate news to say the least.

While such a move is with public health in mind, these lockdowns are proving hard on people’s mental health.

I know lockdowns are also extremely trying for our business community and for people who find themselves suddenly without work.

There is no doubt that the days ahead will be difficult for so many as we attempt, once again, to slow the spread of COVID-19.

One of the things I have found particularly frustrating about the lockdowns is the inconsistent approach. I have raised these inconsistencies with the province at various times throughout the pandemic, as have other municipal leaders.

As we navigate this new lockdown, it is imperative that we continue to support one another as best we can. Throughout the pandemic, repeatedly, we have seen tremendous examples of people caring for each other. These actions are the greatest response we can provide in times of challenge.

In that respect, please keep friends and family in mind during the lockdown. Call people to check on them. Enjoy a Zoom visit. Mail a care package. And if you are finding things difficult, reach out to someone and talk.

Support for our local business community is paramount during the lockdown, too. If you can, please order take-out, place curbside pick-up orders, and generally support Wasaga Beach businesses as much as possible. They are really depending on us.

The shutdown is to last four weeks, at least, and we must do our utmost to support one another.

Finally, please stay safe and remember to follow all of the protocols in place.
Wasaga Beach Town Council
Mayor Nina Bifolchi
705-429-3844, ext. 2225
Deputy Mayor Sylvia Bray
Councillor Joe Belanger
Councillor David Foster
Councillor Mark Kinney
Councillor George Watson
Councillor Stan Wells
Your town council...
Members of Wasaga Beach town council are elected to represent the people of Wasaga Beach.

You can discuss town matters with a member of council by calling or e-mailing them.

If you would like a member of council to attend a special event please contact Pam Kenwell at 705-429-3844, ext. 2246 or e-mail [email protected]
Chief Administrative Officer
705-429-3844, ext. 2222
Town of Wasaga Beach |