Ottawa youths eligible for accelerated second doses and homeowners face a three per cent tax hike: Five stories to watch this week
Parliament Hill is seen behind people riding the Interzip Rogers, billed as the world's first interprovincial zipline, connecting Ottawa and Gatineau over the Ottawa River, at its official opening event, in Ottawa, on Tuesday, June 22, 2021. (Justin Tang/THE CANADIAN PRESS)
OTTAWA -- Ottawa youths 12 to 17 next in line for an accelerated second dose, homeowners facing a three per cent property tax hike and the north side sucks and needs to be torn down.
CTVNewsOttawa.ca looks at the top five stories to watch in Ottawa this week.
As the city of Ottawa continues to get more first and second doses into the arms of residents, eligibility expands this week for an accelerated second dose.
As of 8 a.m. Monday, all youths 12 to 17 will be eligible to book an accelerated second dose appointment to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at community clinics.
Residents 12 and older will be eligible to receive the accelerated second dose 28 days after receiving their first dose of an mRNA vaccine.
The expanded second dose eligibility comes as Ottawa continues to surpass new milestones in the vaccine rollout.
As of Saturday, 80 per cent of adults 18 and older had received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, while 40 per cent of adults are considered fully vaccinated.
Border restrictions begin easing for fully vaccinated Canadian travellers
Canada will begin easing travel restrictions at the border on Monday, but only if you're fully vaccinated.
Fully vaccinated Canadians and permanent residents – those who have had two doses of COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in Canada – will be able to skip the 14-day quarantine.
Travellers must use the ArriveCAN app or web portal prior to departure to log their vaccination details, as well as the results of a negative COVID-19 test that's less than three days old.
The Canada Border Services Agency warns that if you're not eligible to enter the country now, you won't be on Monday.
"If you were unable to come to Canada on July 4 of this year, you can't come in on July 5 -- there's been no change to all of the restrictions and the provisions that have been issued on that front," said Denis Vinette, CBSA vice-president, travellers branch.
"However, for those that can come to Canada, it's a very cautious, early first step in starting to delay or remove some requirements at the border."
Health restrictions relaxed at Ontario's long-term care homes
The Ontario government will further ease public health restrictions in nursing homes across the province this week, now that Ontario is in Step 2 of the reopening plan.
Starting July 7, residents will be able to have outdoor gatherings with up to 10 people and host indoor visits with up to two general visitors and two caregivers.
As well, personal care services like salons offered within a long-term facility will be permitted to open.
When Ontario enters Step 3 of the reopening plan, the limits on the number of visitors to homes will be lifted and buffet and family style dining will resume.
2022 budget debate begins at Ottawa City Hall
Ottawa's finance and economic development committee will discuss a report outlining the proposed 2022 budget directions, timeline and consultation process on Tuesday.
City staff are recommending a three per cent hike in property taxes in 2022, along with a 2.5 per cent hike in transit fares.
The report also recommends a three per cent increase in the Ottawa Police Service budget in 2022, despite calls to cut spending.
"This is a direct affront to marginalized residents in Ottawa who put themselves on the line to advocate for a safer city and community," said Horizon Ottawa on Twitter.
The 2022 city of Ottawa draft budget will be tabled in November.
A three per cent property tax increase would cost the average urban property owner an extra $119 a year on the property tax bill.
North side sucks and must be torn down
The finance and economic development committee will also discuss the Lansdowne Park Partnership on Tuesday, including the "path to sustainability and next steps" in the partnership with Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group.
Staff recommend demolishing the arena and north side stands at TD place and replacing the structures to help Lansdowne Park succeed as a destination.
The report says the facilities are "approaching functional obsolescence" and should be replaced with a smaller arena, housing and commercial and retail space as part of revitalizing the site.
The stands and the arena were built in 1967. Staff say while they are structurally sound, problems include the arena ceiling leaking, persistent mold outbreaks, small dressing rooms and accessibility issues.
There are no estimates in the report about what the demolition and replacement of the stands and an arena would cost. The city of Ottawa and OSEG set up a working group, which recommends building a 5,000 seat arena.
Events happening in Ottawa this week
Ottawa Transportation Committee meeting – 9:30 a.m.
Ottawa Public Library branches reopen
Ottawa BlackJacks at Edmonton Stingers
Ottawa Finance and Economic Development Committee meeting – 9:30 a.m.
Ottawa City Council meeting – 10 a.m.
Ottawa Planning Committee meeting – 9:30 a.m.