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On August 4, 2021, Northern Ontario Large Urban Mayors (NOLUM) sat down with Minister Michael Tibollo, Ontario’s Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, to discuss the opioid crisis that is plaguing northern Ontario communities. 

Attending the meeting in-person or virtually, the group raised their concerns with respect to the services and funding needed in their communities to help battle the opioid addiction crisis their residents are facing. The opioid addiction issue is not unique to one community and the NOLUM group is working together with one voice to bring attention to the Provincial and Federal governments. 

“The message was clear to Minister Tibollo that we need help and we need it now.  It is an urgent crisis and waiting any longer will only progress the issues we are facing”, said Mayor George Pirie. “We are hopeful to hear of the funding available to upgrade current infrastructure and expand services.”

Minister Tibollo advised the group that there are currently 240 recovery beds in Ontario and he’s is hopeful to bring that number to 1,000 beds.  Roughly $14 million more of annual operating dollars will be directed by the province to support the costs of additional beds and expanded addiction treatment programs. 

Mayor Christian Provenzano addressed an issue facing the City of Sault Ste. Marie.  He said that violent crime is increasing with respect to supply and drug dealers.  While the issue of adding recovery beds is urgent, police budgets are facing an all-time high and at this rate, without bringing forth any change, will continue to rise.  

“I believe that the Minister understands the acute and immediate need to address the addictions and mental health challenges being felt across Northern Ontario," said Mayor Brian Bigger of Greater Sudbury. "I am encouraged, knowing that Minister Tibollo is responding to our call to action.”


“All the northern Mayors are facing the same issues in their communities,” added Mayor Pirie. “Being able to sit down as a group with the Minister, we were able to present a unified voice.  We are hopeful that the help we need is coming and we can continue to battle this crisis in our communities.” 
Posted by Lisa Greer  On Aug 11, 2021 at 10:02 AM
  
The Government of Ontario reaffirmed its commitment to Timmins and Northern Ontario earlier this week with a series of visits and funding announcements. It gave Mayor George Pirie the opportunity to meet with Minister Caroline Mulroney and Minister Greg Rickford with the goal of advancing Timmins’ future planning of infrastructure and economic development.

In his Monday meeting with Minister Mulroney, Minister of Transportation and Minister of Francophone Affairs, the discussion included future upgrades to the Connecting Link and roads previously uploaded to the City. Talk also turned to the province’s proposed passenger rail service and the importance of designating Timmins as the system’s hub; as well as, the necessary construction of 60 miles of rail between Timmins and Foleyet, a project that would connect Timmins directly to the Ring of Fire.

“We had fruitful conversations on every aspect of the portfolios Minister Mulroney holds,” said Mayor Pirie. “The Ontario Government has supported the necessary repairs to our Connecting Link, but there is more work to do. I spoke of the need for a large vehicle bypass, which is necessary to avoid constant maintenance on our roads, particularly the Algonquin Blvd. corridor.

“We also spoke about cultivating zones of economic cooperation between northeastern Ontario and northwestern Quebec. Regional partnerships are necessary in the development of a port or trade though the James Bay coast, which would further solidify Timmins as a global hub of industry.”

In his meeting with Mayor Pire on Wednesday, Minister Rickford, Minister of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources, and Forestry, restated the Province’s commitment to develop fully the potential of Northern Ontario.

“We have an economic opportunity because of our region’s resources,” adds Mayor Pirie. “We have the raw materials needed for the production of everything from catalytic converters to electric vehicles. Currently, many of our resources are shipped globally as part of the production process to countries like Germany and China. Minister Rickford understands that the final goods can and should be produced right here in Timmins and Northern Ontario.”

Minister Rickford, who also serves as Ontario’s Minister of Indigenous Affairs, made a point of visiting with evacuees from Pikangikum and connected with the team behind the recently funded Fire Keeper Patrol Program. Earlier this year, the Ontario Government contributed $1.3 million to support the service coordinated by Mushkegowuk Council in partnership with the City of Timmins, Wabun Tribal Council, Porcupine Health Unit, and more. The Fire Keeper Program will provide 24/7 service to homeless people suffering from addiction.

“Minister Rickford is fully engaged in the success of the program and understands the significance and importance of it being Indigenous led,” said Mayor Pirie. “This is an exciting initiative for Timmins and I’m thrilled that it has been acknowledged through funding by the Province of Ontario and personally by Minister Rickford.”
Posted by Amanda Dyer  On Jul 22, 2021 at 1:28 PM
  

City of Timmins

A Special Council Meeting has been called for July 22, 2021 at 12:00 p.m. by virtual conferencing to discuss the following items:

McIntyre Ammonia Exhaust Compliance
Timmins Transit ECO-60-In Ground Bus Lift Replacement

For more information, contact the Clerks Department:
STEPH PALMATEER, AMCT
City Clerk
220 Algonquin Blvd. East
Timmins, Ontario
P4N 1B3
clerks@timmins.ca

Posted by Amanda Dyer  On Jul 19, 2021 at 3:56 PM
  

Wachay,

As I sit here and look out over the vast Mattagami River Valley, I want to first acknowledge that the City of Timmins is situated in Treaty 9 territory that is steeped in rich Indigenous history and that the lands on which we operate are the traditional territory of many First Nations, Metis and Inuit People today. We also acknowledge Mattagami First Nation, from whose traditional land I speak. I make this Acknowledgement as a first step in recognizing First Peoples’ large history and the living culture that continues today. With respect I acknowledge the Spirit and Intent of the Treaty, as well as the elders, past and present.

Today is National Indigenous Peoples Day, our 25th year celebrating the heritage, diverse cultures and contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Metis peoples. The date is significant, it is the summer solstice, and for generations Indigenous communities have celebrated their culture and heritage near this day because it is the longest day of light in the year.

Just last month, Canada was reminded about one of the darkest chapters of our history when the remains of 215 children were discovered buried in un-marked graves near a former residential school in British Columbia. For the first time in my life, I questioned what it means to be Canadian. How could this have happened? But we often choose to forget that our past includes the operation of more than 150 institutions that forcibly separated children from their families to assimilate them into Canadian society. With that discovery, we can no longer claim ignorance. With that discovery, we must make a commitment to learn about our past history, as dark as it may be, to unlearn behaviours that do nothing to promote inclusion and diversity.

We know that our past treaties with Indigenous Peoples formed the foundation for systemic racism that still exists in Canada today. Economic disparity was ensured between the white community and Indigenous population by making sure there was no perceived economic value of the land they were provided. We need to recognize that this has led to isolation, poverty and inequity. We must now ask ourselves what our role will be in stopping systemic racism. We have an obligation and opportunity to shape our future together and create vibrant communities and healthy economies that are inclusive and diverse.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada states that “together, Canadians must do more than just talk about reconciliation; we must learn how to practice reconciliation in our everyday lives – within ourselves and our families, and in our communities, governments, places of worship, schools and workplaces.”

It is with that spirit of reconciliation, of education, and acknowledgment that we celebrate National Indigenous Peoples Day as a community. We will stand together to learn and understand our past histories with the purpose of shaping a new future. I believe that future is possible … to walk together and speak with one voice.

Miigwetch,

Mayor George Pirie


Posted by Amanda Dyer  On Jun 21, 2021 at 9:01 AM
  
Within one day of the State of Emergency, the declaration supported the Porcupine Health Unit’s request for additional allocation of COVID-19 vaccines. As a result, vaccine clinics for all individuals 12 years and older have been added over the long weekend.

“This is exactly the response we hoped for,” says Mayor George Pirie. “Declaring a State of Emergency is not decided lightly. In order to get through this third wave, we need people to follow the public health measures and get vaccinated. We not only needed more vaccines, but more available clinics and appointments. We want to ensure that every eligible individual has access to a vaccine, so we’ve also made sure that free transportation is available for residents that require a reliable way to get to and from their appointment.”

Scheduled and “Pop-Up” Clinics

Residents can line-up on Friday, May 21 at Food Basics between 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. and on Saturday, May 22 at Timmins Native Friendship Centre between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. No appointment required. Clinics will also be offered this weekend at the Mountjoy and Whitney Arenas by appointment only. For more information or to book an appointment visit the PHU online (https://www.porcupinehu.on.ca/en/your-health/infectious-diseases/novel-coronavirus/covid-vaccine/).

Transportation

This Friday to Monday, residents can ride Timmins Transit at no charge to their vaccine appointment and back. To make the route even simpler, from Saturday to Monday, Timmins Transit is adding a shuttle from the Transit Terminal direct to each vaccine clinic location. It’s a faster and more direct option to get residents to their appointments. Please note that regular bus service and shuttle service have been added to the holiday Monday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Vet’s Taxi is also offering complimentary service. Residents can call Vet’s Taxi (705-264-2333) for a ride to and from their vaccination appointment. No between stops are permitted. It’s important to thank Richard and Diane Lafleur for being great corporate citizens and partnering on this initiative with the City of Timmins and Cochrane District Social Services Administration Board (CDSSAB).
Posted by Amanda Dyer  On May 19, 2021 at 12:57 PM
  
Mayor George Pirie has declared a State of Emergency for the City of Timmins, effective today at, in response to the rapid and un-checked spread of COVID-19 and its variants. Mayor Pirie made the declaration at the request of the Timmins and District Hospital (TADH), the Porcupine Health Unit (PHU), and Cochrane District Emergency Medical Services (EMS).

The declaration of emergency is in accordance with Ontario’s Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and has been put in place to protect the health and safety of all citizens in the municipality.

Currently, the TADH reports that ten (10) COVID positive patients with an average age of 42 have been admitted to the hospital and COVID positive vented patients are being transported from its facility.

EMS reports that its resources are overextended and that its emergency response is threatened.

PHU reports that workplace transmission of COVID-19 is clear and present in our community and remains an ongoing source of exposure. Workplaces need to ensure that proper personal protective equipment (PPE), distancing and screening are followed diligently in every setting at all times, whether open to the public or not. Employees need to stay home if they are experiencing symptoms.

Small businesses are also reporting their fears of business failure if they are unable to reopen should Timmins remain in lockdown once the provincial Stay-at-Home order has been lifted.

“I want to send a very clear and strong message that COVID-19 is a threat to residents in the City of Timmins,” said Mayor George Pirie. “We are seeing a dramatic rise in cases in our region as we continue to battle COVID-19. We know that our regional hospital is currently experiencing a surge in patients requiring medical care and that the cases are affecting a younger population. We have declared a State of Emergency to insure that we can act fast to further protect our residents and local businesses. Our Municipal Emergency Control Group is taking the best course of action at this time and will continue to closely monitor the situation.”

The PHU has called upon the Government to recognize Timmins as a provincial “hotspot” to ensure that vaccines and supplies are readily available for the community; to enhance capacity for testing; and, support for a community isolation centre.

PHU reminds residents that it is imperative that people stay home and isolate even with mild symptoms and get tested. Getting tested is critical to stop the spread of COVID-19.

TADH calls upon the residents of the community to get vaccinated as soon as possible to ensure that health care services are not overwhelmed.

“I am asking the residents of Timmins to get vaccinated and follow public health measures to ensure that our businesses and our citizens survive the third wave,” adds Mayor Pirie. “Each community member must stay home immediately if they have any symptoms – even mild – and call to get tested; wear a mask properly, distance from anyone you do not live with, and treat every interaction in the community as a potential exposure. Vaccinations will get us there, but we need time for immunity, so these actions remain critical.”
Posted by Amanda Dyer  On May 17, 2021 at 4:44 PM
  
Timmins is ready to virtually host this year’s Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities (FONOM) AGM and annual conference. Held on Tuesday, May 18, FONOM provides an exciting opportunity for the City to promote how Timmins’ is positioned for a future of green energy, resource, and industry.

Timmins formal presentation has been optimistically called, “Timmins: Green, Growing, and Global,” and focuses on projects in the region that will advance Northern Ontario’s position in the electric vehicle supply chain, biomass energy fulfillment, and sustainable infrastructure.

“Timmins is growing and diversifying,” says Mayor George Pirie. “This is an exciting time. We are surrounded by rare earth elements, critical minerals, forests, and arable land. Four of the newly permitted gold and base metal projects are within a 200 kilometer radius of Timmins. Our location is optimal.

“We reached out to five leaders who are pivotal in forestry, green energy, and agriculture and asked them to share why they have chosen to invest in Northern Ontario. Participants will hear from Mark Selby, Chairman and CEO of Canada Nickel. Their Crawford Nickel Cobalt Sulphide Project has the potential to place Northern Ontario front and center in the electric vehicle supply chain, and it will do so while reducing our carbon footprint.”

Timmins’ presentation also includes remarks from Paul Rivet, incoming Board Chair of GreenFirst Forest Products. Their recent acquisition of lumber mills in Cochrane, Hearst, Chapleau and Kapuskasing make a strong case for why Northern Ontario’s future of sustainable forestry is set. Rounding out the presentation are comments from Robert Manseau of Commercial BioEnergy, Pat Chilton of Five Nations Energy Inc., and Ted Griffith with a discussion on the great clay belt and large-scale agricultural farming.

In addition to Timmins’ robust presentation is an opportunity for attendees to tour Timmins’ Virtual Showroom provided courtesy of Utopia VR. Using the latest technology for virtual meetings and events, Timmins’ showroom provides a quick glance at some of Timmins’ popular amenities like Mount Jamieson, Hersey Lake, and local businesses within downtown Timmins.

“We’ve made every opportunity to highlight all that Timmins has to offer,” adds Mayor Pirie. “We know that when Timmins is successful, the region is successful and we’re excited about the future.”
Posted by Amanda Dyer  On May 17, 2021 at 10:55 AM
  
2021 tax rates and ratios for all classes of taxation have been approved by Timmins Council. Overall, Timmins municipal levy will increase by 1.33 percent. It is important to note that this increase is significantly lower than other northern municipalities, with increases varying between 2.15 percent and 3.9 percent for 2021.

The tax rate for the residential class is increasing by 1.08 percent with an average increase of $34 per residential property.

“When you look at the City’s tax allocation, the residential class makes up 64 percent of taxes collected by the City,” explains Director of Finance Natalie Moore. “This is a decrease of 2 percent from 2019. We are continuing a downward trend to try and alleviate some of the tax burden from residents.”

The commercial class will see a decrease of 1.84 percent with an average savings of $430 per property. This is the 4th year in a row that the commercial class has seen a reduction, which is important in a year where businesses continue to struggle with the impacts of COVID-19.

“This council campaigned on a platform of fiscal responsibility and stability,” says Mayor George Pirie. “These tax rates and our overall budget have delivered on that direction.”

Once tax bills have been received, payment will be due in two installments on June 30, 2021 and September 30, 2021. Payments can be made via online banking, pre-authorized payments, or by mailing in a cheque.
Posted by Amanda Dyer  On May 13, 2021 at 8:58 AM
  

City of Timmins logo

A Special Council Meeting has been called for April 27, 2021 in Council Chambers.

This meeting will be in closed session to discuss advice that is subject to solicitor-client privilege, including communications necessary for that purpose, regarding Wallingford Road.


Posted by Amanda Dyer  On Apr 26, 2021 at 11:43 AM
  
April 18 – 24 is National Volunteer Week, a time to celebrate, recognize, and thank our community volunteers. This year’s theme is ‘The Value of One, The Power of Many’ and it truly resonates with where the City of Timmins is now and how we envision our future.

During National Volunteer Week, we are asked to reflect on the acts of kindness by our volunteers and the power of what we can accomplish when we work together for a common goal. Volunteers in our community help many of our social service programs function. Whether it’s advocating for food-security or volunteering for initiatives that engage our youth, volunteers are the passion and the power that make it possible.

“There is no doubt that volunteers in our city work tirelessly, day after day and week after week,” says Mayor George Pirie. “I have had the pleasure of meeting volunteers from organizations like The Lord’s Kitchen, Living Space, and the Canadian Red Cross who are dedicated to this community: To making Timmins a better place to live. I know there are many more organizations who rely on volunteers and I am so very grateful for the time and commitment residents in our city are willing to provide.”

As Timmins moves forward with our first ‘Community Safety and Well-Being Plan’, there will be more opportunity for residents to get involved and give back. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, Timmins.Care can help connect you to a service agency looking for help. Learn more about our ‘Community Safety and Well-Being Plan’ and how you can get involved online at Timmins.ca.

This week, consider thanking a volunteer you know. #VolunteersBringChange.
Posted by Amanda Dyer  On Apr 16, 2021 at 10:40 AM
  
 
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