A message from the District of Muskoka
COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on communities throughout Canada, and Muskoka is no exception. As we begin to slowly emerge with new and important public health measures in place to keep our communities safe, Muskoka is turning its attention to what we can do to ensure our economy rebounds to pre-COVID levels of activity.
The Muskoka Economic Recovery Task Force (MERTF) is working collaboratively with regional partners and small business stakeholders to ensure strong economic outcomes for Muskoka both during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. Established at direction of District Council in late May, MERTF is made up of representatives from the following organizations and agencies:
- District Chair and District Staff
- Area Municipal Economic Development Leads
- Muskoka Parry Sound MP and MPP offices
- Muskoka Chambers/BIAs
- Muskoka Tourism Agencies
- Federation of Ontario Cottagers’ Associations
“The goal of the Task Force is to minimize the effects of the pandemic on businesses across Muskoka and respond by undertaking strategic actions that enable recovery while ensuring strong economic outcomes both during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic,” said District Chair and Task Force Chair John Klinck. “Where available, the Task Force will also seek, leverage, and advocate for Provincial and Federal government funding to support Muskoka-based businesses.”
To support and coordinate the activities of the Task Force, David Sword has been hired to serve as MERTF Team Lead. Sword’s focus is to ensure that the economic recovery plan and initiatives are designed to promote growth through the re-opening, expansion and retention of existing businesses, and the attraction of new businesses into the District, which will result in local economic growth. Additionally, Wade Matthews has been hired as Project Coordinator, Muskoka Employment Partnership Project, which will focus on regional workforce development goals aligned with MERTF priorities.
“David and Wade will work closely together to support the shared economic and workforce development goals of both the Economic Recovery Task Force and the Muskoka Employment Partnership Project,” said Klinck. “We look forward to their contributions to these very important initiatives that will support Muskoka’s communities recover from the impacts of COVID pandemic.”
For more information and to get involved in supporting and promoting local business recovery in Muskoka, visit the MERTF project page on engagemuskoka.ca.
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