Town of Aurora is marking one year of operating under COVID-19. On March 17, 2020, the Town began remote operations; on March 18, Mayor Tom Mrakas declared a State of Emergency to align with the provincial declaration.

“This has been a challenging year in any number of ways and I think it appropriate to mark one year to the day since enacting a State of Emergency ensuring we had the ability to effectively support residents and staff through the pandemic,” says Aurora Mayor Tom Mrakas. “Over the past year, despite operating remotely for an extended period of time, the work didn’t stop and we safely maintained a large number of services and programs to residents by focusing on remaining agile and keeping the overall well-being of the community top of mind.”

Those services included, but were not limited to:

  • Deferred tax payments to assist residents whose income was negatively impacted by the pandemic.
  • Responded to nearly 46,000 calls by residents to Access Aurora.
  • Hosted the first ‘in-person’ concert within the entire region and GTA
  • Innovated a “stationary parade” concept which was presented to the region.
  • Reconstructed, paved, or resurfaced 10 lane kilometres of road.
  • Issued 990 building permits (2020).
  • Granted 20 patio extension requests in response to COVID-19.
  • Issued hundreds of communications in various formats informing residents of changing circumstances.
  • Active participation in regional efforts to monitor, respond to, and enforce provincial and local regulations.
  • Establishing and maintaining ice pads for outdoor skating; and
  • Maintained dozens of virtual programs for all age groups including cooking, creative projects, exercise and fitness, take-home kits, virtual tours, photography, geo-caching, festivals, and art – with overall participation in the thousands.

“Our goal since declaring the State of Emergency has been to balance quality of life and livelihood with the health and safety of our staff and citizens,” continues Mayor Mrakas. “Now that we see light at the end of the tunnel, our ability to maintain this balance is a testament to the team effort of our entire community. On behalf of Council, I want to recognize our residents’ and business owners’ resilience throughout this pandemic. We have all been impacted by the pandemic to varying degrees. Most importantly, our thoughts are with those who have lost friends, family, or livelihoods in the last year.”

Town of Aurora maintains a page on its website dedicated to the latest information related to COVID-19. For more information, please visit aurora.ca/covid19

“This has been an unusual year for Aurora, as it has for municipalities across the country,” says Chief Administrative Officer, Doug Nadorozny. “Through it all, I have been proud of the compassion, commitment, and adaptability of our staff. I want to thank all of our employees – those working from home and those on the front line – for their hard work and dedication.”