Summer Residents Requested to Delay Their Return

City of Kenora Media Release

Mayor Daniel Reynard joins Premier Doug Ford, Member of Provincial Parliament, Greg Rickford and the Chief Public Health Officer of Canada, Doctor Theresa Tam asking our summer residents to stay in their permanent home and not come to their cottages and summer residences.

Health experts advise that if we want to minimize the impacts of COVID-19 everyone needs to stop moving. Stay put and do not put any more exposure to anyone anywhere. The most reliable way to do this is to simply stay home.

This is a difficult request to make to our valued summer residents and visitors. They are vital to our business community and as spring starts to appear, become a valued part of our community. Asking visitors and summer residents not to come to Kenora is everything opposite that Kenora has been working for, but we really need everyone to just stay home. It is key to making the difference in the spread of this virus by what we have seen in other countries. We simply need everyone to follow the direction of the health experts. The bottom line is our local health care providers will not have the resources or capacity to meet the demands of a growing summer population” states Mayor Reynard.

While everyone wants to resume their regular activities and enjoy the things we have always done, we all need to be unified during this time and accept the critical advice the health experts are telling us. If we do this now, the sooner life can resume to activities we all enjoy. Now is the time to act, but we must act together. Please summer residents and visitors, stay home, and members of our community, please do the same and refrain from any travel outside of our community that is non-urgent.

Public health officials at the federal, provincial and local level, across the country have strongly stressed that all Canadians must do their part to keep the surge of novel coronavirus as low as possible by staying at home, unless absolutely necessary”, said Dr. Ian Gemmill, Acting Medical Officer of Health for Northwestern Ontario. “In that way, the transmission of the virus to others will be slowed, and lives can be saved. This measure applies as well to people who own recreational properties in the northwest, no matter where their primary residence may be: stay at home, and keep the virus at bay. If all Canadians comply with this measure, including seasonal residents of Northwestern Ontario, we will have a chance to reduce the surge that will affect all health services, including public health and would have such a devastating effect on resources for the critically ill, which some of us may need over the next several months. Even more important, our communities in the northwest do not have the resources to deal with illness in seasonal residents.”

This is a serious issue for Northwestern communities. We don’t have hospital capacity and the public health risk is too high for people to make leisure visits or open their camps early,” said Minister Greg Rickford. “I am working closely with my provincial colleagues to review all options necessary to protect Kenora-Rainy River’s health care and supply networks.”

This urgent request also pertains to our citizens travelling to other areas of Northwestern Ontario and Manitoba. Please stop moving for all non-urgent travel, you are putting everyone at risk by continuing this non-essential movement.

Mayor Reynard notes that when we beat this virus together by practicing all of the direction of our health care experts, which staying home is the biggest factor, we will welcome everyone back to Kenora with open arms.

Rural Travelers Guideline Tip Sheet

City of Kenora Declares a State of Emergency

City of Kenora Media Release

Today, on the recommendation of the City’s Emergency Management Team, the City of Kenora joins numerous other communities in Ontario by declaring a state of Emergency in accordance with the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, 1990 as a result of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak in Ontario.

While the community to date has been fortunate to have no confirmed COVID-19 cases, the municipality along with key stakeholders and health care experts are preparing for when cases are reported here in Kenora. We need to take the necessary precautions to prepare ourselves, which includes the declaration which was executed by Mayor Daniel Reynard.

This is a significant step and emphasizes the urgency of the situation in Kenora and that the community needs to act now and be responsible.

As Mayor of the City of Kenora, I am pleading with you to take this situation seriously. Understand the reality and the importance of your part in this crisis. There is nothing I can stress more as the leader of the community than to listen to the health experts and stay put. Please protect yourself, your friends, family and the community by staying home. The decision to declare an emergency was not taken lightly, however, now more than ever Kenora needs to understand just how serious the situation is.” States Mayor Daniel Reynard.

We are working with the Lake of the Woods District Hospital and the Kenora District Services Board to ensure we have emergency contingency plans in place should our vulnerable people become exposed and our hospital become beyond capacity. This requires us to prepare key City facilities to move patients and isolate those infected. This type of preparedness is unprecedented for the community and demonstrates the severity of the situation.

Declaring an emergency will help us act quickly to manage the impacts of COVID-19 on our residents and business during this evolving situation. The health and well-being of our residents and employees is our priority. We are looking at the long-term impacts of this pandemic and declaring an emergency will give us the flexibility we need as a municipality to manage the situation.

City staff continue to work with our health experts to address the evolving situation and are taking the necessary appropriate actions to address the COVID-19 pandemic. While many people in our community work tirelessly to maintain essential services for you, you need to respect those people and keep them safe. Your job is to stay home as much as possible, practice social-distancing when you absolutely must go out, and to strictly follow guidelines and mandates to self-isolate. We need to do everything we can to slow this virus down and help our health care providers deal with the expected surge of COVID-19 patients. Refusing to do so is irresponsible and places our community at increased risk.

Please continue to keep yourself informed by following current expert information and respect that information by following what you are asked. This is the only way we will stop the spread of this contagious virus.

For Important Announcements and Messages Follow on Social Media (Facebook and Twitter):


Justin Trudeau

Doug Ford, Premier of Ontario

Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier of Ontario and Minister of Health

Greg Rickford, Member of Provincial Parliament

Northwestern Health Unit

Dr. Theresa Tam, Chief Public Health Officer of Canada

World Health Organization


Transfer Station Extends Sunday Hours Effective April 5, 2020

Public Notice

Please be advised that the Transfer Station will be open extended hours from 8:30  a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sundays beginning April 5, 2020 to reduce congestion at the site.

The public is reminded that while at the facility, you must respect others by keeping the 2 metres physical distance at all times.

The City thanks the public for their cooperation and patience during this challenging time.

Matheson Street Bridge Closure March 31 – April 1, 2020

Public Notice

Please be advised the Matheson Street Bridge will be closed to all vehicle traffic beginning at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 31st and reopening on Wednesday, April 1st at 10 p.m.

Bus Stops #2, 3, 4, 5 on the Pinecrest Route will be unavailable during this time also.

One sidewalk will remain open to pedestrians.

The bridge works are weather dependent and may change if necessary.

The City thanks the public for their cooperation and patience during this infrastructure project.

Council to Hold First Virtual Meeting

City of Kenora Media Release

The current Bill 187, Municipal Emergency Act, 2020 which is now in effect permits Council to meet electronically during an emergency which may be declared by the Premier, Cabinet or the municipal Head of Council under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.

As a result of this legislative change, Council has announced their first meeting to be held Tuesday, March 31st at 12 noon. These changes to the Municipal Act allow members of councils who participate in open and closed meetings electronically to be counted for purposes of quorum during emergencies.

The first order of business on the agenda will be to amend Council’s Procedural bylaw which will permit for Council’s electronic participation.

While our Municipal buildings, including City Hall, remain closed during this pandemic, the public and media partners can still access the Council meeting by clicking on the following link:

This link will provide you live access to the meeting starting at 12 noon on March 31st and a recording of the meeting can be viewed following the meeting.

The next regular meeting series for Council is scheduled for April 14, Committee of the Whole at 9:00 a.m. and April 21 for Regular Council at 12:00 noon. Both meetings are being scheduled in the same format unless otherwise advertised.

Council recognizes the importance for meetings to continue during these uncertain times to make decisions that are necessary for our community. We continue to follow the direction of the Northwestern Health Unit, as well as the Governments of Ontario and Canada, on protocols and necessary precautions. We encourage you to follow social media for important announcements and messages from these levels, and continue to share with those who do not have internet access.

Council remains committed to the community and the efforts required to keep our community safe.

City Taking Steps to Mitigate Risks of COVID-19

Council and Committee Meetings: Calendar, Minutes, and Agendas

Lake of the Woods District Hospital (LWDH) Receives Approval for COVID-19 Assessment Centre


Lake of the Wood District Hospital
Media Release

On Monday, March 30th the Lake of the Woods District Hospital (LWDH), in partnership with the Sunset Country Family Health Team (SCFHT), Kenora District Services Board (KDSB), Waasegiizhig Nanaandawe’iyewigamig (WNHAC), and Kenora Chiefs Advisory (KCA), will be operating a new COVID-19 Assessment Centre.

The Assessment Centre’s key role is to assess people, and for those who meet certain criteria, take a specimen from them for subsequent testing for COVID-19 by an approved health laboratory. A sample is taken from the back of the nasal cavity with a swab. There is a strict criteria for testing so not everyone assessed will be swabbed Offering this type of service in an Assessment Centre reduces patients who otherwise would seek this service in the Emergency Department.

Screening process is subject to change as new situations develop.
Community members with potential COVID-19 symptoms (e.g. fever, new or worsening cough, sore throat, headache, muscle aches, fatigue, runny nose and joint aches) who feel they need to be assessed for COVID-19 must phone the Northwestern Health Unit Hotline 1-866-468-2240 to determine if they meet the eligibility criteria. If eligible, the Northwestern Health Unit will inform the Assessment Centre and the individual will then be contacted to schedule an appointment. The Assessment Centre does not offer a walk-in service.

The COVID-19 Assessment Centre is open on weekdays from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. by appointment only.

To access the Assessment Centre which is on the hospital site, turn onto Nethercutt Drive and turn right onto Wolsely Avenue (see map below). Enter the assessment lane which will be signed.

As you turn into the Assessment Centre laneway, you will drive or walk beside a tent canopy where you will be assessed by a Nurse Practitioner or a Nurse. The assessment will include taking a history, vital signs and conducting a risk assessment. If you are eligible for testing, a swab will be taken and you can exit the assessment area. If you are driving, you will not need to leave your vehicle.

For people requiring further assessment, you will be taken inside the Assessment Centre. You may receive further diagnostic assessment. For people who do not require medical intervention and may safely be managed independently, you will be provided with contact and health management information and you may leave the Assessment Centre. If you need medical intervention, you will be seen in the hospital in the most appropriate service.

The Kenora COVID-19 Assessment Centre is approved and funded by the Ministry of Health. The Assessment Centre operates in close collaboration with the Northwestern Health Unit. The Hospital, Northwestern Health Unit, Sunset Country Family Health Team, Kenora District Services Board, Waasegiizhig Nanaandawe’iyewigamig, and Kenora Chiefs Advisory are all members of the All Nations Health Partners which reflects the strength of this coalition.

LWDH Screening Location

COVID-19 Assessment Centre Location

Public Media Release re COVID 19 Assessment Centre March 27 2020


Mayoral Statement of Circumstances March 23, 2020

Media Release March 23, 2020

Mayor Reynard and Council are pleased to acknowledge that as of this morning there are no known COVID-19 cases in Kenora. We believe this is due to the great response we have observed from the citizens of Kenora, and their adherence to the protocols that have been put in place related to social distancing and self-isolation.

We appreciate citizens are concerned during these uncertain times, and we are all adapting rapidly as the information surrounding this virus and the various levels of government enact changes to help us reduce its spread. We are following the direction of the Northwestern Health Unit, as well as the Governments of Ontario and Canada, on protocols and necessary precautions. We encourage you to follow social media for important announcements and messages from these levels, and share with those who do not have internet access.

As leaders, we have had to make significant adaptations to adhere to these recommendations by closing public spaces and altering service delivery in some areas. The City remains committed to maintaining as much of our “normal” activities and services as we are able, for as long as we are able. Maintaining this continuity of service provides stability and a sense of normalcy to both the public and our staff, during these uncertain times. Notwithstanding, we ask that if you see staff on the street, for example, maintaining roads, sidewalks, or ensuring parking regulations are being followed, please ensure you are socially distancing yourself from these staff. We also ask that you appreciate that we are operating with reduced staff. As is normal for staff this time of year, many took vacations during March and this has resulted in numerous staff off on self-isolation. As such, we ask for your patience in regard to routine maintenance, such as potholes. Our staff are working hard to address these issues, but delays in service should be expected.

We are assured that there are no shortages in the supply chain of essentials such as toilet paper and other commodities. Restocking the shelves has been a challenge due to the quantities being purchased, so please ensure when you are shopping you are purchasing only those items you need. There is no reason to over purchase or “stock up” on items. Doing so is not only unnecessary it is socially amoral, creating unnecessary concern amongst your fellow shoppers.

Please ensure you are reaching out to loved ones and neighbours via phone or social media, over the coming days and weeks to ensure they are doing well. If you are not required to self-isolate please consider assisting those who are, by offering to shop for them. This is particularly true for seniors in your community. It is time for our community to truly do everything they can to put a stop to this virus. Do your part by staying home whenever possible, and if you must leave for work or have urgent needs, please practice social distancing of 2 meters or more, and personal protection wherever you are. We are all in this together and effort from each citizen will go a long way to
slowing and stopping the spread.

We will provide further updates as information and substantive changes occur. In the interim, Council and I want to thank each of you for your calm and measured approach to this situation, as we all adapt and comply with the changes that are occurring.

For Important Announcements and Messages Follow on Social Media (Facebook and


Justin Trudeau

Doug Ford, Premier of Ontario

Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier of Ontario and Minister of Health

Northwestern Health Unit

Dr. Theresa Tam, Chief Public Health Officer of Canada

World Health Organization

Playgrounds Close Due to COVID-19 March 23, 2020

Public Notice

Please be advised in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, all playgrounds will be closed until further notice.

As circumstances change, these closures will be reviewed and amended accordingly.

Thank you for your cooperation and understanding.

Load Restriction on Local Roads Effective March 20, 2020

Public Notice

Please be advised that beginning Friday, March 20, 2020 at 12:00 pm (noon), reduced load restrictions will be in effect as per the City of Kenora By-law 155-2008 and the Highway Traffic Act R.S.O. 1990, c. H. 8, Section 122. This restriction is necessary to protect highways, streets, and roads from damage during mild, wet spring conditions. Signs are posted on each of the impacted roads to notify motorists of the restriction.

The following roads are subject to the spring load restriction:

Anderson Road East Melick Road Mark’s Lane Snow Drive
Ascough Road Essex Road Matheson Bay Road Strecker Road
Austin Lake Road Gauthier Road Miller Rapids Road Sunnyside Road
Beauty Bay Road Gay Street Mt. Evergreen Road Tallieu Road
Beggs Road Gerald Street McKenzie Portage Road Tetroe Road
Beryl Winder Road Golf Course Road Ninth Street North

(from 19th Ave N. to Airport Road)

Transmitter Road
Bodgen Road Gould Road Parmeter Road Treadway Drive
Bruckenburger Road Haney Drive Peterson Road Valley Drive

(from Rabbit Lake

Road to Airport Road)

Carlton Road Hilly Lake Road Rabbit Lake Road Villeneuve Road
Clarence Street Homestake Road Radcliffe Drive Villeneuve Road North
Coker Road James Road Rat Portage Road Villeneuve Road South
Darlington Drive Johnson Road Ricky Street West Bay Road
Dennis Street Jones Road

(from Hwy 17E

To Homestake Road)

Ritchie Road Whitehead Road
Devlin Drive Kinger Road Schnarr Lake Road Worona Road
Donbrock Drive Kitt Road School Road Zimmerman Road
Duffus Road Lawton Drive Sinclair Road

Resources for Small Businesses Amid COVID-19

A Message to Business Owners from the Northwest Business Centre

The Government of Canada has set up a resource for small business owners in regards to COVID-19, see the link below.

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Resources for Canadian businesses:

Furthermore, the Government of Canada has asked business support organizations to provide details of businesses that are closing or modifying their practices. Please consider emailing Allyson Pele, NWBC Manager, any changes so she can provide the information to the government.  This will provide the intelligence needed to capture impact in Northwestern Ontario.  A list of the impacts the government is interested in learning about are outlined below:

What types of impacts are we looking for?
• Businesses being unable to export their products
• Businesses unable to import required materials or products
• Businesses scaling back production due to supply chain challenges
• Tourism businesses being impacted by reduced visitation
• Tourism events being cancelled
• Potential business closures

For more information, contact –

Allyson Pele
Manager, Northwest Business Centre

227 Second Street South
Kenora, ON P9N 1G1
Tel. (807) 467-4643
TF. (866) 336-7779

Water Dispensing Stations March 16

Public Notice

Please be advised while City Hall is closed to the public, adjustments have been made at both Crawford Road and Brinkman Road Water Dispensing Stations to allow customers to access water without interruption.

The water rate has been adjusted to $0.01 per cubic meter to allow customers to continue using current water cards without having to attend City Hall to reload.

If you experience troubles at the water stations, please contact Biman Paudel, Water and Wastewater Division Lead, at 807-467-2296.

If your water card balance reaches zero during this time, please contact Customer Service at 807-467-2000.

Thank you for your patience.

Water Dispensing Stations