FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2020
BAY OF QUINTE– Todd Smith, MPP for Bay of Quinte, announced today that Quinte Health Care (QHC) hospitals will be receiving an allocation of $1,442,292 in 2020-2021 through the Health Infrastructure Renewal Fund.
The funding will support QHC to keep up with hospital maintenance and repairs.
“Providing a reliable, safe and comfortable environment at QHC hospitals is a top priority for our government,” said Smith. “This annual infrastructure allocation, coupled with recent enhancements to base funding, will ensure these hospitals are well equipped to meet emergent health-care needs in our communities. I know these investments will positively affect patients and front-line health care workers.”
Brad Harrington, QHC Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer, was pleased to receive the allocation, which represents a $226,511 increase over 2019-2020.
“We are pleased to receive these funds so that we can ensure our hospitals are in a good state of repair,” said Harrington. “Some of the projects this year’s funding will help with include the heating boiler replacement at Trenton Memorial Hospital, the dry sprinkler replacement at North Hastings Hospital, and the fire alarm panel upgrade at Belleville General Hospital. These are all important projects that will help keep our hospitals safe and running smoothly.”
The Province also remains committed to health care modernization in Prince Edward County as it continues to support QHC’s redevelopment plan for a new facility. Smith announced in June that the Ministry of Health has authorized the project to proceed into Stage 3 and consider detail drawings for the build.
Across the province, the Ontario government is investing $175 million this year to address critical upgrades, repairs and maintenance in 129 hospitals. This includes $50 million to address projects related to COVID-19 and other urgent priorities.
“Maintaining hospital infrastructure is another example of how our government is ensuring that Ontarians have access to health-care services they depend on, especially during these unprecedented times,” said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “Our ongoing investments to support essential projects like repairing roofs and windows and adding more isolation spaces can make a big difference to a patient’s experience. It’s part of our plan to build the capacity we need to end hallway health care.”
As the government continues to work toward bringing Ontario’s world-class health care system into the 21st Century, the funding will not only address urgent needs but also assist with the ongoing response to COVID-19 through HVAC upgrades to enhance safety, increase capacity and bolster infection prevention and control measures.
- Ontario is investing an additional $7.4 million to address ongoing urgent and/or emergent infrastructure renewal needs for community health service providers who met specific criteria on a priority basis, through the Community Infrastructure Renewal Fund.
- Improving Health Care in Ontario: https://www.ontario.ca/page/improving-health-care-ontario
- Hallway Health Care: A System Under Strain: http://www.health.gov.on.ca/en/public/publications/premiers_council/report.aspx
- Visit covid-19.ontario.ca to learn about how the Province continues to protect its people.
Assistance will help ensure the delivery of critical public services during COVID-19
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, AUG. 12, 2020
BAY OF QUINTE — The Ontario government, in partnership with the federal government, is delivering on its commitment to provide urgently needed emergency assistance to Ontario's 444 municipalities. Municipalities within Bay of Quinte will see $9,492,162 in funding will receive funding to address municipal operating pressures related to the COVID-19 pandemic as part of the first round of emergency funding under the Safe Restart Agreement.
Ontario secured up to $4 billion in emergency assistance for municipalities through the Safe Restart Agreement, which gives them the support and flexibility they need to protect the health and well-being of their communities, while continuing to deliver critical public services as the province continues on the path of renewal, growth and economic recovery.
Municipalities receiving funding include [list in alphabetical order]:
- City of Belleville, $2,870,200 and an additional $903,985 to support transit operations.
- County of Hastings, $1,485,400.
- County of Prince Edward, $1,676,500 and an additional $22,315 to support transit operations.
- City of Quinte West, $2,341,000 and an additional $102,762 to support transit operations.
"Our government is pleased to work with the federal government to provide this much-needed support to our municipal partners," said Todd Smith, MPP for Bay of Quinte. "This funding will ease additional pressures muncipalities in our region and across Ontario are facing to deliver vital public services and encourage recovery, while protecting the health and well-being of their residents. This is great news for the people of Bay of Quinte.
In September, Ontario’s 444 municipalities will receive $695 million in Phase 1 funding for municipal operating pressures. This funding will be allocated on a per household basis and would be shared 50/50 between upper- and lower-tier municipalities. Up to $695 million in additional funding will be available through Phase 2 for municipalities that have COVID-related financial impacts that exceed the initial per household allocation provided under Phase 1.
In addition to the support for municipalities, the government is providing over $660 million in the first phase of transit funding to the 110 municipalities with transit systems. The funding can be used to provide immediate relief from transit pressures, such as lower ridership, as well as for new costs due to COVID-19, such as enhanced cleaning and masks for staff. In the second phase, additional allocations will be provided based on expenses incurred to ensure the funding meets the needs of municipalities. As part of the Safe Restart Agreement with the federal government, up to $2 billion is being provided to support public transit in Ontario.
The government is committed to working in partnership with municipalities to ensure they can emerge stronger than ever and help lead Ontario’s economic recovery.
- The federal Safe Restart Agreement provides $19 billion to Canadian provinces and territories to help ensure a strong recovery and support frontline health care, families, and communities. Across all streams of federal investment, the Safe Restart Agreement provides over $7 billion in funding and in-kind supports to Ontario.
- The agreement provides up to a total of $4 billion in funding to the province’s 444 municipalities.
- The province is making a contribution of 50 per cent to the municipal supports and transit funding available through the Safe Restart Agreement, with the federal government contributing the other 50 per cent.
- Ontario is also providing municipal service managers and Indigenous housing partners an additional $212 million under the Social Services Relief Fund to help protect vulnerable people from COVID-19. This investment can help them protect homeless shelter staff and residents, expand rent support programming and create longer-term housing solutions. This brings the government’s total Social Services Relief Fund investment provided to service managers and Indigenous program administrators to $510 million, and builds on our COVID-19 Action Plan to Protect Vulnerable Ontarians.
- Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ontario government has worked with municipalities to provide them with the tools and supports they need, including enabling them to hold virtual council and local board meetings, and temporarily extending expiring development charge bylaws to ensure they could continue to collect this vital source of revenue.
- Provide your input on the economic impacts of COVID-19
- See how your organization can help fight COVID-19
- Visit Ontario’s website to learn more about how the province continues to protect the people of Ontario from COVID-19
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TUESDAY, JULY 28, 2020
BELLEVILLE– Todd Smith, MPP for Bay of Quinte, announced this morning the Province of Ontario will contribute $53,572 toward three municipal economic development projects.
Appearing on behalf of Minister of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs Ernie Hardeman, Smith noted that the City of Belleville, the City of Quinte West and Prince Edward County each had a project approved through the updated Rural Economic Development Program (RED), which helps rural and Indigenous communities diversify their economies, retain skilled workers, invest in local infrastructure, and create jobs.
“Through the RED program, our Province is assisting municipalities in gathering knowledge that will help their businesses grow and thrive as they enhance visitor experiences,” said MPP Smith. “These projects will put Bay of Quinte in a better position for recovery as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic.”
As part of the Province’s recent $3.3-million commitment in cost sharing for 58 successful projects in the program’s first intake, the Bay of Quinte riding will see the following projects supported:
- The City of Belleville will receive $30,372 to invest in a WiFi communications system for its downtown area. The system will enhance visitor experiences and support local businesses. It will also allow the City to track residential data to contribute to strategic planning. The project will include installation and one year of data analytics. Completion is expected in June 2021.
- The City of Quinte West will receive $13,000 to conduct a Business Retention and Expansion study with a focus on its commercial and retail sector. The project is ongoing.
- Prince Edward County will receive $10,200 to conduct a training series for local agricultural producers who sell directly to their consumers or have interest in doing so. Eight workshops will be held with topics ranging from pricing to regulation, marketing and social media.
Each of the municipalities submitted its proposal as part of a streamlined application process, which was started last year in an effort to reduce the burden on applications.
“Supporting local jobs and removing barriers to investment and economic growth in rural communities is more important than ever,” said Minister Hardeman. “As the economy reopens, our investments in the RED program will have a very real impact for communities across rural Ontario.”
“We are very pleased to receive this Red funding for the downtown Wi-Fi project. The ability to provide free Wi-Fi to shoppers and dining guests is a service which will definitely enhance our visitors’ experience but its more than that. We are excited about the analytics software component because it will provide the City and its partners with visitor data that will enable us to build upon our strong points and target our business communications in a more focused strategic way.”
Mayor Mitch Panciuk, City of Belleville
"This funding announcement will allow the City of Quinte West to move forward with our Business Retention and Expansion survey of the commercial, retail and technology sectors in the city. The information gathered through the survey process will outline current strengths, challenges and opportunities for the City and community partners to implement strategies and actions that will further develop the local business economy."
Mayor Jim Harrison, City of Quinte West
“Value-added agriculture has grown in popularity in recent years, offering outstanding economic development potential for our rural community. The workshops we have offered - in part, thanks to Rural Economic Development (RED) funding - have helped hundreds of people to tap into that demand and make invaluable connections with others working in this area.”
Mayor Steve Ferguson, Prince Edward County
Municipalities, not-for-profit entities, Ontario Indigenous communities / organizations or local services boards are eligible for the Rural Economic Development program and costs are shared according to which of the two streams under which the project may fall.
- The RED program offers two project streams:
- Economic Diversification and Competitiveness: Projects that remove barriers to business and job growth, attract investment, attract or retain a skilled workforce, strengthen sector and regional partnerships and diversify regional economies.
- Strategic Economic Infrastructure: Minor capital projects that advance economic development and investment opportunities.
- For the Economic Diversification and Competitiveness Stream, the province will contribute up to 50 per cent of eligible project costs to a maximum of $150,000 while for the Strategic Economic Infrastructure Stream, the province invests up to 30 per cent of eligible project costs to a maximum of $250,000.
Rural Economic Development Program: https://www.ontario.ca/page/rural-economic-development-program