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Mayor Applauds Provincial Closure of Non-Essential Businesses, Announces Special Council Meeting and Community Town Hall Updates

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*Please see below today’s media release issued by the City of Burlington.

Burlington, Ont. — March 23, 2020 — The City of Burlington’s Mayor and Council are applauding the announcement today by the Province of Ontario. The provincial government will order the mandatory closure of all non-essential workplaces effective as of Tuesday, March 24 at 11:59 p.m. This closure will be in effect for 14 days with the possibility of extending this order as the situation evolves. A full list of businesses that are permitted to stay open will be released by the Province tomorrow. The Ontario government also announced much needed funding for municipalities allowing them to provide direct support to homeless shelters, food banks and the local Red Cross.


The City of Burlington is announcing two special virtual City Council meetings on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 at 12:30 p.m. These meetings will discuss time-sensitive matters. All other items will be deferred to a later date. To protect the public and City staff and to help minimize the spread of the COVID-19 virus, a reminder that Burlington City Hall continues to be closed to the public until Monday, April 6.

Tuesday, Mar. 24 City Council Meeting — How to participate
We welcome the public to view the Council meeting remotely using the City’s calendar page (a LIVE link will appear tomorrow closer to the start time of the meeting). Due to COVID-19 and public health concerns, delegations will not be permitted at this time. The City Clerk will accept written submissions by email at Received written submissions will form part of the public record and be distributed to members of Burlington City Council.

City Council Meeting Agenda

  • First Special Meeting
    1. Procedural Bylaw Amendment – to allow for Remote Participation and Electronic Meetings
  • Second Special Meeting
    1. Remuneration Report – Provincial Deadline of March 31
    2. Burlington Hydro Operating Line of Credit

As a result of this virtual City Council meeting, the regularly scheduled Council meeting for March 30, 2020 is cancelled.


Panelist update for Upcoming Telephone Town Hall

The City of Burlington is hosting a public telephone town hall that will take place on Thursday, March 26 at 6:45 p.m. This one-hour town hall will be open to all members of the public and provide an opportunity to hear from a panel of leaders including members of council and senior staff, Mayor Marianne Meed Ward and our City Manager, Tim Commisso.  Newly confirmed to the panel are:

  • Burlington MPP Jane McKenna
  • Eric Vandewall, President and Chief Executive Officer of Joseph Brant Hospital
  • Dr. Dale Kalina, Medical Director of Infection, Prevention and Control at Joseph Brant Hospital
  • Roger Wilkie, Deputy Chief of Halton Regional Police
  • Anthony Odoardi, Superintendent for Halton Regional Police

Any further updates to panelists for the March 26 Telephone Town Hall will be shared with the public.

Thursday, Mar. 26 Telephone Town Hall — How to Participate

Burlington residential phone numbers will be randomly selected to be part of the telephone town hall. Residents who would like to be added to the telephone call list can email their name and telephone number to by the end of day March 25.

Anyone who does not receive a telephone invitation can call 1-800-280-9610 at 6:45 p.m. on Thursday, March 26 to join the town hall. For those individuals calling in to the town hall, please be advised that more than one attempt may be required to connect to the call due to the high volume of traffic on the phone lines. If your call does not connect you to the town hall on your first try, please hang up and dial the 1-800 number again.

Information about the town hall will also be shared with residents through the City and Mayor’s website and social media channels as well as the Burlington Post.

We ask our residents to share this information with their friends and neighbours so that anyone who is interested may participate.

Once the call begins, participants will be provided instructions by a moderator for submitting their questions to the leadership panel.

Any questions that are not answered within the hour-long call will be posted, with answers, to the City’s website at, along with an audio file of the call and a full transcript as soon as possible.


PLEASE NOTE: To stay updated on what the City of Burlington is doing regarding COVID-19, please visit the dedicated pages (and subscribe) and that will be updated as new information becomes available.


I am in complete support of today’s announcements from the Province. Their message to shut down all non-essential businesses to curb the COVID-19 spread echoes what we have been asking of our local businesses. This is a necessary step to protect everyone, customers, employees, families and friends. Closing down your brick-and-mortar shops doesn’t necessarily mean closing down your business for the time being – if you and your employees can work from home, do so.

We also strongly echo Premier Ford’s statement that people returning from outside the country MUST self-isolate at home for 14 days. Do not stop at the store first. There are volunteers willing to assist you. Check the City’s webpage at for links.

I also applaud the Province’s announcement today of additional funding to support our food banks and homeless shelters. These are much-needed funds and making it directly accessible to municipalities gives us the ability to provide direct support to our most vulnerable in our community. I now ask our federal government to act and institute a larger lockdown and enforcement of self-isolation. I look forward to hearing more details in coming hours.

*Posted by John Bkila, Mayor’s Media and Digital Communications Specialist

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