Ford can't "hold the gates back" for cottagers, hints at good news

May 4 2020, 11:10 am

Premier Doug Ford said there is only so long he can “hold the gates back” for cottage goers who own properties, and hinted at “good news” for more openings in the coming days.

On Monday, Ford said that while ensuring of physical distancing in cottage country is the right move during the COVID-19 pandemic, if the cases continue to decrease by May 24 there is only “so long you can hold the gates back.”

“People want to go to their vacation property. If the numbers go down, let’s see what happens,” Ford said.

The premier noted that he will be having a conference call later in the week with the cottage country mayors, including the Mayor of Muskoka, Phil Harding, to discuss plans on allowing cottage goers back.

According to Ford, it’s the cottage owners who end up largely supporting the economy in those regions.

With most cottage owners paying taxes in cottage country and supporting local businesses in the area from May to September, Ford said as long as “people are responsible” and keep to physical distancing measures, then he will seriously consider allowing property owners to have their vacation in cottage country.

“There is only so long you can hold back taxpayers from going back to their cottages.”

Earlier on Monday, select seasonal businesses in Ontario were allowed to open up including garden centres with curbside pick-up and delivery, lawn centres and landscaping, expanded essential construction projects, self-serve car washes, and auto dealerships by appointment only.

Golf courses can also prepare for the upcoming season and marinas can service their boats and other watercraft, but both are not yet open to the public