By Councillor Scott Moffatt
I hope everyone is getting a chance to enjoy what has turned out to be a two-dose summer. Council has remained busy this summer and our meeting last week had an impact on my role at Council. As many of you know, I have been the Chair of the Standing Committee on Environmental Protection, Water and Waste Management this term. That committee meets approximately eight times per year and our focus this term has been the development of the Climate Change Master Plan and the ongoing work on the Solid Waste Master Plan. I also Chair the Planning Advisory Committee, which meets twice annually. The new addition is that I will now Co-Chair the Planning Committee alongside Stittsville Councillor Glen Gower.
This change in leadership at Planning Committee came about with the recent resignation of Councillor Jan Harder as Chair. Given the heavy workload of that committee over the next year plus leading up to the 2022 election, Council elected to approve two Co-Chairs where we will balance responsibility on the Committee. While Councillor Gower will focus primarily on development review files, I will oversee the policy development files such as the update on the Official Plan, which comes to Committee this fall.
Although this may mean a bit more work, my office team remains here to serve you and our communities as we always have.
Step 3 Re-Opening
Now, on that whole two-dose summer thing, the Province of Ontario announced that we have now moved into the third step of its reopening plan on Friday, July 16. With that, the City will gradually expand many of its in-person services – especially indoor recreation and cultural activities and programs.
Under Step Three, Recreation and Cultural Services will restart at select locations – with a new level of restrictions and measures in place. Access to most activities will require a reservation in advance. The following activities will reopen with capacity limits:
• Indoor public and lane swims at select pools (July 16)
• Indoor Aquafitness programs at select pools on (July 16)
• Summer Learn-to-Swim programs (Week of July 26)
• Weight and cardio rooms at select facilities (July 16)
• Indoor sport activities at select facilities (July 16)
• Drop-in programs such as fitness classes, older adult fitness classes, and skating also started at select facilities on July 16 with capacity limits
Reservations for drop-in activities can now be made on ottawa.ca. Summer Learn-to-Swim registrations started on July 12 and are ongoing. The resumption of other recreation and cultural programming and activities – including its 2021 fall programming – will be announced in the coming weeks.
Select City indoor and outdoor rental spaces will be available with capacity limits. Please
contact the facility directly for rental information.
• Meeting spaces
• Sports fields
• Rental space for team sports
Arena and slab bookings are once again available for rentals. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Service Ottawa will continue to deliver in-person offerings – by appointment only – at its two currently open Client Services Centres:
• Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West
• Ben Franklin Place, 101 Centrepointe Drive
Stay tuned in the coming months for reopening announcements for the other Client Service Centre locations.
Visit ottawa.ca for the list of in-person service offerings. Residents can still take advantage of the convenience of accessing services on online. Residents must make an appointment for in-person counter services at any Client Service Centre by using the online booking tool on ottawa.ca. Residents without internet access can reserve a time by calling 3-1-1 and choose option six for the Client Service Centre. Requests for same-day appointments will be subject to availability. A return to walk-in clients will be announced in the coming weeks.
Building Code Services counters will be open at these locations by appointment only. Building Code Services will continue to support application submissions by mail and electronically at email@example.com
Ottawa Public Library will expand in-person services, increase capacity, and reopen creative spaces starting Monday, July 26, 2021. 31 of OPL’s 33 branches are open; branches in Vernon and Fitzroy Harbour will reopen in the fall. Please consult OPL’s Hours and locations page and current branch services page for more details. Access to virtual programs, digital resources, and requests for library items can be made around the clock via the Ottawa Public Library website.
Our city has made significant progress on COVID-19 vaccination efforts. As of last week, over 1,370,000 total doses had been administered in Ottawa. 83 percent of all eligible individuals have at least one dose, and the rate of those fully vaccinated with two doses has been accelerating quickly and stands at 67 percent for those 18 and above.
As the supply of vaccines increased significantly at the end of May and into June, operations expanded to eleven community clinics with a combined capacity to administer up to 100,000 doses per week. This capacity enabled the City to provide patient care and service excellence on an unprecedented scale and timeline.
Now, with so many residents having received vaccines, we will be consolidating the number of community clinics to meet demand. Specifically, the following community vaccination clinics will continue to operate as of Wednesday, July 21, 2021:
▪ Eva James Memorial Community Centre
▪ Nepean Sportsplex (Halls A and B)
▪ Ottawa City Hall
▪ Ruddy Family YMCA-YWCA
▪ Queensway Carleton Hospital (which will cease operations on July 30, 2021)
These five clinics, which are geographically located across Ottawa, have the capacity to handle the anticipated demand for appointments in community clinics. Appointments are available on the provincial booking system now through August 15th, apart from the Queensway Carleton Hospital clinic. Residents also have the option to walk-in to select community clinics without an appointment for first and second doses.
Community clinics provide the resources and scale for mass vaccination. As we proceed with the vaccine roll-out, other more targeted vaccine delivery channels will be prioritized to reach the remainder of the population. In addition to community clinics, pharmacies and primary care teams, pop-ups and other approaches serving those in priority neighbourhoods will continue to reduce barriers to access. This is in addition to new outreach and delivery approaches, such as the Escapade Music Festival that will have a pop-up clinic which aims to reach priority age groups.
Individuals with appointments at previously available community clinics are encouraged to rebook now for an earlier date. Efforts are also underway to reach out directly to these individuals. Consolidating the number of community clinics now makes sense from a demand perspective and will allow staff and our partners to focus on other service delivery priorities. We will, however, remain vigilant and retain our ability to quickly adjust the number of community clinics, as required.
If you have any comments, questions or concerns, please feel free to email me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca or contact me by phone at 613-580-2491. For information on Ward 21 issues, please visit TeamTwentyOne.ca.