Current situation

For the most recent information regarding cases in Ontario, please visit the Ontario government's COVID-19 website.

On March 11, 2020 the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 (Coronavirus) a global pandemic, so it is very important that individuals and organizations be prepared for a potential outbreak in our community. 

The Town of Saugeen Shores has declared a state of emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. With this declaration and the provincial government’s decision to close non-essential businesses, the Town of Saugeen Shores will also see several changes. See "Impact on Town services," below.

The province has banned gatherings of more than 10 people. Local authorities stress that this restriction, along with other provincial and federal orders to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, is enforceable by law. For information on creating your social circle, visit the Ontario government's website.

Public health and support

In Saugeen Shores, the Grey Bruce Health Unit (GBHU) is the municipality’s lead agency in terms of managing a local infectious disease outbreak.

The Grey Bruce Health Unit has issued the following notice for seasonal residents and visitors.

The Town will provide regular updates to the community via our website and social media platforms regarding Town services and programming.

If you need assistance during the pandemic, the United Way encourages you to submit a request to TheDo.ca. As well, you can call 211 to find resources and local services in our area. 

During a pandemic it is not uncommon to struggle with mental health.There is support available through Grey Bruce Public Health and The Canadian Mental Health Association.

What you can do to prevent the spread of illness

  • Know the facts. Follow direction from the Grey Bruce Health Unit to know the signs and symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Call Telehealth Ontario toll-free at: 1-866-797-0000 or visit the GBHU website for information on how to care for the ill, infection prevention and control, self-treatment and when and where to seek medical attention.
  • Follow Public Health’s direction to use infection control practices such as hand washing, covering your cough and sneeze, staying home when you’re sick to reduce the spread of the virus.
  • Organizations and businesses should be preparing their own plans and policies to ensure business continuity in the event an infectious disease outbreak is declared locally.

Impact on Town services

Declaring a state of emergency means that the municipality can access additional resources and expertise throughout this period. Essential services will focus on the following: policing, fire and emergency response; water supply and waste water treatment; emergency infrastructure repair; winter control; and supporting other essential services as identified by the province. 

Saugeen Shores staff are closely monitoring the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) situation in Ontario. Staff will continue to reassess the situation and will keep the public informed. Please follow @SaugeenShoresON on Facebook and Twitter for real-time updates and contact us for any questions or concerns.

View our helpful guide to the changes in how we deliver municipal services during this time.

Facilities and amenities

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and in consultation with public health officials, all Town of Saugeen Shores recreational and leisure facilities continue to remain closed until they are provincially sanctioned to open.

Municipal facilities and amenities closed to the public:

  • Municipal Office (600 Tomlinson Dr., Port Elgin)
  • Public Works facilities (339 Concession 6, Port Elgin and 429 Peel St., Southampton)
  • Saugeen Shores Fire Department (612 Emma St., Port Elgin and 50 Victoria St. S, Southampton)
  • Saugeen Shores Police Service (1240 MacKenzie Rd., Port Elgin)
  • The Plex and Rotary Hall
  • Centennial Pool
  • Southampton Coliseum
  • Southampton Town Hall auditorium
  • Southampton Curling Club
  • All playground structures and the BMX Park
  • Limited services at municipal public washrooms

Signage will be posted at most recreational facilities; however, the public is reminded that not every location can be signed but the same closures are in effect.

Splash pads update:

The Port Elgin and Southampton splash pads are now open from 10 am to 8 pm daily. A few things to remember while splashing around.
  • Maximum of 10 kids on the splash pad at a time
  • Keep 2 metres from those outside your social circle
  • Wash hands before and after using the splash pad
  • It is not safe to wear masks in the water
  • On busy days come back at a later time or on a different day
  • Keep visits short to ensure everyone has a chance to play

Municipal Campgrounds and Harbour update:

The Port Elgin and Southampton Tourist Camps reopened to seasonal permit holders as of Monday, June 1, 2020 at 9:00 am.

Due to COVID-19, the operation of the Camps will be significantly different than in normal years. Campers will be required to follow a code of conduct, which is being sent to all seasonal permit holders.

Access for visitors and transient overnight campers remains closed.

As of June 5, 2020, boat owners can dock in their assigned slips. All seasonal boaters are allowed to stay overnight on their boats at this time.

The Port Elgin Harbour Office opened on June 8 to provide fuelling and pump-out services. At this time, harbour washroom facilities will remain closed.

Recreation programs

It is with great disappointment we announce that the Town of Saugeen Shores has made the difficult decision to cancel all Town-run programming as currently scheduled up to September 6, 2020. This includes ball hockey, summer swimming lessons, waterfront fundamental programs, water and land-based day camps and advanced training courses. 

These cancellations are a result of the ongoing implications and restrictions related to COVID-19 that significantly impact our ability to deliver programs as they were intended. Staff are considering options for modified programs. Watch our social media channels @SaugeenShoresON, website and e-newsletter for information.

Refunds: 

  • Full refunds will be issued by cheque for ball hockey, swimming lessons, camps and advanced courses. Refunds for the waterfront fundamental programs will be applied as an account credit.
  • Refunds may take up to 6 weeks to be processed
  • Refunds will be processed in the following order based on program start date: ball hockey, camps, swimming lessons, courses

Garbage and recycling

Landfill resumes regular operations

Residents are welcome to bring their household garbage during normal operating hours Saturdays from 9:00 am to 3:45 pm and Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 9:00 am to 4:45 pm.

Physical distancing measures will remain in place and only debit tap payment will be accepted.

For more information on the Landfill, visit SaugeenShores.ca/Waste.

Council meetings

Staff and Council are limiting in-person meetings. Stay up to date by regularly checking SaugeenShores.ca/Meetings.

Paying your bills

We've received questions from the public about how they can pay their bills at this time. You can stay up to date with your water and sewer bill and property taxes with the Town of Saugeen Shores through a number of ways without needing to visit the Municipal Office. Read more on Paying your Taxes and Paying your Utility Bill

Property taxes: Penalties on 2020 property taxes have been suspended for 90 days from the original due date of May 21. Saugeen Shores will match the County of Bruce’s policy for the August 20 property tax due date. This means that if the County of Bruce extends their due date for payments for the third installment, Saugeen Shores will do so as well.

Utilities: Penalties on water and sewer billing have been suspended for 90 days past the original due date for the billing cycles due April 30 and June 30. All Non-Sufficient Funds (NSF) charges will be waived until September 30, 2020.

Rethinking garage/yard sales

Although many love yard sale treasure hunting in the spring, during the COVID-19 pandemic is not the time. At this time, the local Medical Officer of Health is discouraging yard sales. You can view Public Health’s considerations for selling second-hand goods on their website. Protect yourself and your neighbours and help to continue to flatten the curve.

Information for businesses

The COVID-19 pandemic has put stress on our local business community. To find business supports during this difficult time, please visit our Business Support page

Saugeen Shores’ small and locally owned businesses are woven into the fabric of our Town. To help support businesses during these challenging times, we’ve assembled a Saugeen Shores Strong page with information on how the community can help including a list of business updates created in partnership with the Saugeen Shores Chamber of Commerce. 

The Mayor’s Task Force on Economic Recovery is currently underway, working to support businesses in our community. Read more about recovery efforts happening in Saugeen Shores. The Mayor chairs the group and members will include representatives from each industry in the community, elected officials, regional and provincial government representatives, and employment/labour market specialists.

Essential business hotline

For any businesses in Saugeen Shores unsure of whether they are deemed essential by the Province of Ontario, the Stop the Spread hotline is available to answer these questions. Anyone with questions or concerns can call the province’s Stop the Spread hotline at 1-888-444-3659 or Saugeen Shores Police Services at 519-832-2500.

Public Notices