MEDIA RELEASE: COVID 19 - Update 4

print-logo March 17, 2020

Municipality of Port Hope COVID – 19 Update #4: Facility Closures

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, March 17, 2020 – Port Hope

The impact of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) is rapidly evolving. This morning, Ontario Premier Doug Ford enacted a Declaration of Emergency to protect the public and our senior leadership is responding by implementing additional measures, to maintain the health and well-being of our community.

Business Continuity and Municipal Staff
Effective Tuesday, March 17, 2020 at 4:30 p.m. all municipal facilities will be closed to the public. Municipal staff will operate under a modified work model. This will mean that there will be a reduced number of staff members at each municipal facility and they will be practicing social distancing within their offices. To accommodate basic requirements, essential services staff at the following facilities will report to work on a rotating schedule. When not at their workplace, staff will work from home, where possible, until April 6 or directed otherwise.

Municipal building closures include:

  • Town Hall
  • The Fire Administration Office at Fire Station #1
  • Development Team Office (5 Mill Street South)
  • Joint Operations Centre
  • Jack Burger Sports Complex
  • Town Park Recreation Centre
  • Marketing and Tourism Office
  • Port Hope Community Hub
  • Port Hope Public Library
  • Ruth Clarke Activity Centre for Seniors
  • Rural Area Public Works Yard
  • Cemetery Office

Business continuity by department
In order to maintain business continuity during the building closures, staff are operating under a modified work model. Staff will report to work on a rotating schedule to maintain operations. Residents with urgent requests are encouraged to contact staff by phone or email.

Corporate Services: 905-885-4544 or admin@porthope.ca

Finance: 905-885-4544 or finance@porthope.ca

Community Development (Planning and Marketing and Tourism Divisions): 905-885-2431 or developmentteam@porthope.ca or tourism@porthope.ca

Parks, Recreation and Culture: 905-885-2474 ext. 3221 or prc@porthope.ca

Works and Engineering: 905-885-2431 or publicworks@porthope.ca

Fire and Emergency Services
Firefighters are operating as usual, with no impacts to the Fire Service outside of additional precautions.
For emergencies, please call 9-1-1.
For staff at the Fire Administration Office, contact 905-753-2230 or fire@porthope.ca

These staffing and business continuity plans are implemented until April 6, in keeping with the recommendation from the Federal Government to practice social distancing. Staff have been advised that these plans are subject to change and they have been asked to be available and flexible should circumstances and/or requirements change.

Given this change in our usual customer service delivery, delays are to be expected for basic municipal services. We apologize for any inconvenience and will do our best to meet the needs of the community.

Scheduled meetings and events
The Council and Committee of the Whole Meetings scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 17 are proceeding as scheduled. Only Council and essential municipal staff will be in attendance.

In keeping with the Government’s goal to slow the spread of COVID-19 by way of social distancing, residents are urged not to attend the meetings in person.

If you do plan to attend the meetings, please use the hand sanitizer provided inside the council chambers upon entering the room. Additional cleaning of touch surfaces has been implemented, but attendees are reminded to use proper cough/sneeze etiquette and handwashing techniques while in the building.

Seating in the Council Chambers will be limited and adjusted to uphold the minimum distance recommended by the Government of Canada.

Please note that all Advisory Committee and Board meetings have been cancelled until further notice.

Large events that are taking place on municipal properties with the assistance of municipal staff are cancelled or postponed until after April 6. These include:

  • Volunteer Appreciation Dinner (March 20): This event has been postponed. Invited guests will be notified of a new date.
  • Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny (April 11): This event has been cancelled for 2020.
  • Civic Awards (April 23): This event has been postponed. A new date will be announced.

As the situation develops, more cancellations and postponements may be issued. We will not be taking any new facility of park bookings at this time.

Municipal senior leaders continue to carefully monitor developments on COVID-19, including regular updates from Ontario Health and local health partners. The team is meeting regularly to review business continuity practices and ensure preparedness. Residents can continue to expect regular updates from the Municipality at porthope.ca/COVID-19, as the situation develops.

Some helpful links include:

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For media inquiries, please contact:
Kate Ingram, Communications / Community Engagement Coordinator
905-885-4544 x2248
kingram@porthope.ca