District of Muskoka Proposing $77.3 million for local share hospital funds
Health Services Committee member, Councillor, Bob Stone, announced the District’s proposal for the local share hospital replacement, in the September 25, 2023, Council meeting.
He said, “The District of Muskoka is proposing $77.3 million from the taxpayers.”
He provided examples of what this portion would look like on resident’s tax bills.
For instance, a $300,000 property would see an increase of $4.29 per year. A million-dollar residence would see a $14.30 increase per year.
He elaborated on the commitment the region must make in order for the hospital replacements to happen. “The people of Muskoka have to come up with $225 million for the local share hospital replacement,” he said.
Stone added that the area Towns and District have committed $107 million so far. “So, it’s clear now that the foundations – the Huntsville Hospital Foundations and Bracebridge Hospital Foundation – will each come up with $35 million, and MACH (Muskoka Algonquin Healthcare) is $38.2 million.”
He said that the Muskoka Lakes and Georgian bay municipalities weren’t enthusiastic about the project because they don’t use it as much as other Towns. Because of this there is an amendment on the table for discussion at the upcoming District Council meeting next month.
Mayor, Nancy Alcock, indicated that the Georgian Bay representative voted in favour of the local share.
Stone agreed. He indicated that the amendment will likely be to the satisfaction of the other Councillors, as 8 to 7 voted for it at the Committee meeting.
Alcock added, “Everybody approved with the exception of Muskoka Lakes.”
Councillor, Monty Clouthier, inquired about whether the Committee has heard anything from the northern towns about the local share.
Stone advised that they had. He said that Parry Sound and other smaller communities have made commitments to contribute $9.5 million to date.
Alcock said, “That makes up at least nine municipalities, so they have really stepped up in a very big way and have been very committed to this project’s success all along. It’s really impressive.”