By Chad Ingram
AlgonquinHighlands landfills are operating under reduced capacity and meetingsof the township’s council have been suspended amid the ongoingCOVID-19 pandemic.
Followinga March 19 meeting a number of restrictions were put in place at thetownship’s waste disposal sites designed to protect landfillattendants members of the public and staff. Until further noticethe township will not be accepting: construction materials concreteor shingles (unless you have an existing account); scrap metal; bulkyitems (anything that doesn’t fit in a garbage can); mattresses;furniture; appliances; brush leaves yard waste; or boats.
Untilfurther notice up to one cubic metre of household waste and blue boxrecycling materials will be accepted. The re-use centres at MapleLake Dorset and Oxtongue Lake are closed.
“ Managingthese materials requires contact between attendants and site usersand to keep everyone safe and lower the risk of someone passingalong the virus we want to keep contact between site users andattendants at a minimum” reads a release from the township.
Regularmeetings of Algonquin Highlands council have also been suspendeduntil further notice in addition to previously cancelled committeemeetings and all township programming. All Algonquin Highlandsfacilities including its administration office along North ShoreRoad remained closed to the public.
Interactionswith staff are limited to telephone and email only. Onlineapplication forms for building bylaw and planning matters can befound online however the township is requesting that residentsconsider the urgency of their requests at this time.
TheStanhope branch of the Haliburton County Library is closed to thepublic as is the book depot at the Dorset Recreation Centre.
Thetownship’s trails remain open and public washrooms at the Dorsetparkette Elvin Johnson Park and Stanhope courts and playing fieldremain open to the public “although these facilities are regularlychecked and cleaned users are asked to undertake appropriate hygieneprotocols” a release from the township reads.
Theterminal building at the Stanhope Airport is closed while aviationoperations continue and fuel remains available.
Thedue date for the first instalment of 2020 taxes has been pushed backuntil April 24. No cash or debit payments are being accepted duringthis time and residents are asked to use online or telephonebanking mail cheques or deposit cheques in the secure drop boxlocated on the front porch of the administration office. No cash isto be deposited the box.
“ Weknow decisions that affect your daily routine are frustrating and weappreciate your patience understanding and cooperation as we movethrough this uncertain time” Mayor Carol Moffatt wrote in a socialmedia post. “We may have a long road ahead and we’re working toensure our decisions about municipal services have the long game inmind.”
Moffattis encouraging residents to stay at home.
Thetownship is developing a COVID-19 response section on its websiteand residents with questions can call the administration office at705-489-2379.