Barrie police have arrested and charged a 37-year-old man with Fail Remain at Accident Causing Death, relating to a collision early last Friday morning that claimed the life of a Barrie man.
On Friday, Nov. 1 at approximately 2:45 a.m., officers from the Barrie Police Service responded to a report of an injured male who had been located at the intersection of Wellington and Toronto streets. Upon arrival, police determined that the male, a 33-year-old Barrie resident, who had been transported to a local hospital and succumbed to his injuries, was the victim of a fail-to-remain collision.
As a result of an exhaustive investigation that was conducted by the Barrie Police Traffic Unit and following up on information that was received late yesterday afternoon, a 37-year old Barrie man has been arrested and charged with Fail to Remain at Accident Causing Death, contrary to Section 320.16(3), Criminal Code of Canada.
The accused is scheduled to appear at the Ontario Court of Justice located in Barrie on Wednesday, Dec. 18 at 9 a.m. The Barrie Police Service wish to thank the media and the public for their assistance as the local coverage that was received greatly assisted in the resolution of this investigation.

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The process of drafting a new budget is under way at City Hall
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The cost of maintaining a home in Barrie looks to be going up next year as city council considers a 3.52 per cent property tax increase.
On Monday, director of finance Craig Millar presented the 2020 Business Plan Operating Budget. The budget overview is the third stage in a six-part process of approving a new budget; the first two were council budget directions and staff executing a budget preparation plan, with the next three being a budget question-and-answer session, deliberations on Dec. 2, and council consideration on Dec. 9.
Directions from council to staff regarding the operation budget included:
Tax supported services
• Cap on any potential 2020 tax increase of 3%, excluding legislated changes, and the Dedicated Infrastructure Renewal Fund levy
• Options/strategies for smoothing the cost of service delivery related to growth pressures such as the net operating impact of capital.
Service Partners
• Budget changes directly linked to Provincial legislated changes/announcements be identified separately.
Other
• Increase the contribution to the tax capital reserve by $110,000 for the purpose of accommodating an increase in active transportation initiatives.
The budget shows a 3.7 per cent rate increase for water, a 3.88 per cent rate increase for wastewater, and parking fees being held at current rates. These are self‐sustaining operations, with revenue requirements based on full‐cost recovery.
The budget forecasts a $199 million 2020 capital plan, with $145 million in new requests and $54 million already approved. Key projects include:
• Harvie Road crossing
• Wastewater Treatment Facility upgrades and expansion capacity
• Bell Farm Road ROW expansion
• McKay Road ROW expansion
• Road resurfacing
• Dunlop Street corridor improvements
• Mapleview Drive East road expansion and new trunk watermain
• Storm pond upgrades.
The City’s debt level for 2020 is expected to be $312 million, down from 2019’s $322 million. Service partners will make their presentations on Nov. 25.

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Investigators would like to speak to the driver or anyone who may have been a passenger in a mid-sized dark blue pickup truck that is shown in the pictures and video being released

The search for the driver of a vehicle that was involved in a fail-to-remain fatality last Friday morning continues as police examine surveillance videos.
The collision took place in the wee hours of Friday morning, about 2:45 a.m., at the intersection of Wellington and Toronto streets. When police arrived, it was determined the victim had been struck by a vehicle that had failed to remain at the scene. The victim, a 33-year-old Barrie man, was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.
Police continue to examine a number of surveillance videos. As a result, one such video, which is being released today, has identified a vehicle of interest that was observed travelling westbound on Wellington Street and which stopped for the red light at Bayfield Street at 2:42 a.m. When the light at the intersection turns green, this vehicle continues westbound through the intersection and along Wellington Street.
Investigators would like to speak to the driver or anyone who may have been a passenger in a mid-sized dark blue pickup truck that is shown in the pictures and video being released. From the video, it is evident that there is something large in the bed of the truck that extends well above the side panels and rear fenders.
Local businesses or homes in the Wellington Street area east and west of Bayfield Street who have video surveillance equipment are encouraged to review their footage in the timeframe between 2:30 a.m. to 3:00 a.m. to see if they may have captured any images of this pickup truck. Any video surveillance that assist in this investigation should be provided to the police immediately.
Police are asking anyone who may have additional information or information which could assist in identifying the vehicle or the driver involved to contact Constable Hale of the Barrie Police Service at 705-725-7025 extension 2913 or Sergeant John Brooks at extension 2911.  The officers can also be reached by email at: mhale@barriepolice.ca or jbrooks@barriepolice.ca.
To remain anonymous, please contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or leave an anonymous tip online at www.p3tips.com.

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It’s the time of year for remembering, and the City of Barrie will be holding three events this year in honour of Remembrance Day.
The first, taking place on Nov. 10, is in recognition of the 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands. The Canadian Tulip Festival, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the National Capital Commission are honouring this anniversary with the planting of the Liberation75 Tulip. The goal is to cover Canada in 1.1 million Liberation75 Tulips in honour of the 1.1 million Canadians who served during the Second World War.
Barrie has invited local Royal Canadian Legion members to take part in helping to plant some of the 2,000 bright orange Liberation75 tulip bulbs at the following event:
Event: Liberation75 Commemorative Planting 
Date/Time: Sunday, Nov. 10, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Location: Memorial Square & Meridian Place, downtown Barrie.
On the evening of Sunday, Nov. 10, the Remembrance Day Vigil will be observed starting at 7 p.m. at Memorial Square. From 7 p.m. on Nov. 10 to 7 a.m. on Nov. 11, five cadets in rotating shifts will stand vigil at the Cenotaph in Memorial Square.
On Remembrance Day, the Legion and the City will hold their annual Remembrance Day Parade and Ceremony:
Event: Remembrance Day Parade and Ceremony 
Date/Time: Monday, Nov. 11, starting at 10:30 a.m.
Location: Parade runs on Dunlop St. E. from Mulcaster Street to the Cenotaph at Memorial Square for the ceremony, moment of silence and laying of wreaths.
Remembrance Day flags
The City has worked with Heritage Barrie, the Grey & Simcoe Foresters Regimental Museum, the Legion and the Simcoe County Archives to design a series of flags to commemorate 33 local area soldiers who served in the Canadian Armed Forces during various conflicts. The flags are on display throughout downtown Barrie until Nov. 15.
• Free Transit for Veterans
Veterans ride Barrie Transit free of charge, with one companion, all day on Remembrance Day. Simply show Barrie Transit operators anything that proves you’re a veteran. For more information, visit the City’s website.

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Police investigate Halloween treat with needle inserted

An examination of the packaging could not determine if the needle was inserted prior to packaging or afterwards

The Barrie Police Service is currently investigating an incident where a two-inch sewing needle was located in a Halloween treat.
Late yesterday afternoon, police were contacted by a concerned homeowner after her child bit into a chocolate bar that contained the needle. The child was not injured, but the potential for injury was certainly a possibility.
From the investigation that followed, police have learned that the child attended homes in the Raymond Crescent and Serena Lane area, and also on Danielle Crescent and Catherine Drive in Barrie. An examination of the packaging could not determine if the needle was inserted prior to packaging or afterwards. The chocolate bar has been seized by police and the investigation remains ongoing.
Although there are no known suspects at this time, police are urging parents that have children who may have attended homes on the identified streets to please have a second look at their child’s candy and make certain that they have not been tampered with and are safe to consume.
Anyone with information on this mischief is asked to contact Constable Claridge of the Barrie Police Service at eclaridge@barriepolice.ca, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or leave an anonymous tip online at www.p3tips.com.

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The MacLaren Art Centre’s 2019-2023 strategic direction, mission, and vision – tagged Enhanced Engagement – get laid out for city council tonight during a presentation from the centre’s representatives.
The plan, and a supplementary presentation called Start Thinking Art, calls for a focus on enhancing ways of “sharing our stories,” building the centre’s “curatorial focus,” and enhancingour engagement with new and diverse communities.”
Museums, says Carolyn Bell Farrell, the centre’s executive director, reflect the communities they serve, and also “have the capacity to create community through building a sense of ownership; reflecting local issues and histories; offering relevant, living formats and open representations; and emphasizing visitor experience.”
Its enhancement strategy involves:
1) Enhance ways to share our stories:
• Build enhanced relationships and communication with our audiences
• Provide greater physical and intellectual access to the artwork on view by offering audiences a wide range of innovative entryways
• Ensure that the MacLaren is a partner in community planning processes.
2) Enhance our curatorial focus:
• Build the exhibition and collection programmes on the theme of “reading through place”
• Co-create new narratives about this region with our cultural partners
• Explore narratives that represent diverse voices.
3) Enhance our engagement with new and diverse communities
• Expand partnerships and enhance outreach to engage new and diverse communities in Barrie and the surrounding area
• Develop interested, engaged and return users from diverse community groups and help them feel comfortable at the gallery
• Enhance the diversity of our board, staff, volunteers and artist instructors.
The centre conducted five strategic planning sessions in June involving staff, artists, service volunteers, and community stakeholders. An online survey was organized and emailed to the centre’s 2,700 subscribers, with 171 respondents.
“During these community consultations, we reviewed our mission; our strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and challenges; the changing demographics of our community; our current and potential audiences; and ways to measure and evaluate our progress,” says the centre.
Some key facts about the MacLaren Art Centre:
• The centre engaged more than 57,000 people in 2018 through activities at the gallery, in the schools and in the community
• It offers exhibitions, workshops and special events that “nurture artistic talent, inspire creativity and stimulate intellectual curiosity” throughout the year, delivering more than 650 arts education activities for audiences of all ages, interests and abilities
• The centre’s 30 exhibitions include two touring shows, four virtual shows, and 12 community shows
• Its staff includes 13 full-time and 11 part-time/contract employees, and 33 artists
• It is a registered charity, incorporated in 1986 independently from the City
• It has an annual operating budget of $1.85 million. The centre says it receives “cultural grants from all three levels of government comprising 20% of our total budget, including a grant of $137,000 from the City of Barrie plus facility maintenance”
• The rest of the budget comes from earned income, and the support of individuals, local businesses and community organizations.
MacLaren, as a public art gallery, strives to bring people to art and art to people in ways that are engaging, enriching and enjoyable, says Bell Farrell.
“Our hope is that this new strategic plan will help us to identify, prioritize and design contemporary visual arts experiences that are meaningful, representative and inclusive for new Canadians and culturally diverse audiences and that foster a sense of belonging. We are excited about what our future holds and deeply grateful to all those who helped to shape this vision.”

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The Barrie Police Service is asking the public for their assistance in locating 16-year-old Caden Raycroft.

The Barrie Police Service is asking the public for their assistance in locating 16-year-old Caden Raycroft.
Caden was last seen on Friday, Oct. 25 in the Burton Ave/Bayview Dr area of Barrie. He is described as 6’2″ tall, with a slim build wearing glasses, a black jacket, black jeans and black shoes.
Anyone with information on Caden’s whereabouts is asked to contact police.

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The woman pictured, say police, is a person of interest, and they would like to speak with her regarding this occurrence.

The Barrie Police Service is looking to identify a person of interest in relation to a serious incident which occurred at the Winners store located at 411 Bayfield Street in Barrie.
On Wednesday, Oct. 30, a male who had previously been seen attempting to steal from the location, was observed in the store again. Police responded and located the male and informed him that he was under arrest. 
The male attempted to escape the grip of the officer and ran towards the door. The officer gave chase and a struggle with the male ensued. As the officer tried to gain physical control of the male, the male resisted, and assaulted the officer, grabbing the officer’s gun in an attempt to disarm him.  
The officer protected his weapon while being assaulted. The male then fled to an awaiting vehicle and left the scene. The officer was taken to a local hospital, where he was treated for minor injuries and released. The vehicle was located discarded in the north area of Barrie. 
A warrant has been issued for a 29-year-old Barrie man on the following charges:
• Attempt Theft Under $5000
• Assault to Resist Arrest
• Attempt to Disarm a Police Officer
• Escape Lawful Custody.
The woman pictured is a person of interest, and police would like to speak with her regarding this occurrence.
 Anyone with information is asked to contact Sergeant Moore of the Barrie Police Service at 705-725-7025 ext. 2765 or dmoore@barriepolice.ca. Any information can be provided anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or leave an anonymous tip online at www.p3tips.com.

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Police seek witnesses in fail-to-remain fatality

The Barrie Police Service is investigating a fail-to-remain incident that resulted in a victim who had been struck by a vehicle succumbing to his injuries.
At approximately 2:45 a.m. this morning (Friday, Nov. 1) police received a call regarding an injured male in the intersection of Wellington and Toronto streets. Upon arrival of police, it was determined the victim had been struck by a vehicle that had failed to remain on scene. The victim, a 33-year-old Barrie man, was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. The investigation is ongoing.
The involved vehicle is believed to be a navy blue compact or mid-sized SUV/crossover or mini-van type vehicle, which would have significant damage to the front end.
Police also believe there may have been witnesses in the area at the time of the collision. Police are asking anyone who may have additional information or information which could assist in identifying the vehicle or the driver involved, to contact Constable Langdon of the Barrie Police Service at 705-725-7025 ext. 2912 or dlangdon@barriepolice.ca.
To remain anonymous, please contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or leave an anonymous tip online at www.p3tips.com.

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Guess what week it is from now until Nov. 7. If you came upon with Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week, pick a prize from the jar.
The Barrie Fire and Emergency Service (BFES) reminds residents to prevent carbon monoxide (CO) at home by getting all fuel-burning appliances inspected annually and ensuring there are working CO alarms outside of all sleeping areas.
“In Ontario, more than 65 per cent of injuries and deaths from CO occur in the home,” said Assistant Deputy Fire Chief Carrie Clark. “There is an increased risk of CO poisoning during the colder seasons when we spend more time indoors and increase our use of gas heaters, fireplaces, and other devices to beat the cold. Stay safe this season and make sure you get all fuel-burning appliances inspected by a registered contractor.”
During Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week, BFES is giving away free CO alarms to everyone who provides proof of having their furnace and fireplace professionally cleaned this year. Residents can visit Fire Station 1, 155 Dunlop Street West, or tag BFES on Facebook (@BarrieFireService) or Twitter (@Barrie_Fire) to show their proof and claim their alarm. 
The Ontario Fire Code requires all homes in Ontario with fuel-burning appliances, a fireplace or an attached garage to have working CO alarms outside of each sleeping area. Fuel-burning appliances can include furnaces, hot water heaters, gas or wood fireplaces, portable fuel-burning heaters and generators, barbeques or stoves.
Condos and apartment buildings with a service room, are required to have CO alarms installed in the service room and adjacent to each sleeping area of all homes above, below and beside the service room. In condo or apartment buildings that have a garage, CO alarms must be installed adjacent to each sleeping area of all homes above, below and beside the garage.
BFES has partnered with Lowe’s and Home Depot to host two safety events during the week. On Saturday, Nov. 2, join firefighters from 12 to 4 p.m. at Lowe’s (71 Bryne Drive). There will be giveaways, a fire truck demonstration and information about smoke, carbon monoxide alarms and home escape planning.
On Wednesday, Nov. 6 from 1 to 2 p.m., BFES is hosting a free workshop at Home Depot (10 Barrieview Drive). The workshop will cover everything residents need to know to stay safe from the silent killer. Residents are encouraged to sign up for the workshop at the Home Depot Customer Service Desk.
Visit the CO Awareness Week page via www.barrie.ca/FireAwarenessEvents for more information.

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The City’s Watermain Swabbing Program, conducted every spring and fall, continues until tomorrow, Nov. 1.
It’s a maintenance program, and about five kilometres of the system is being swapped; the day-and-night effort began Oct. 28 in the in the following areas:
Ward 1: Strabane Avenue from Duckworth Street to Vancouver Street, Melrose Avenue from Duckworth to Vancouver Street, Napier Street from Duckworth Street to Vancouver Street, and Steel Street from Duckworth Street to Penetanguishene Road.
Ward 3: Bayfield Street from Livingstone Street north to the city limits, Cardinal Street, Robin Court, Cartwright Drive, Hadden Crescent, Rolston Drive, Meadowlark Road, Baltimore Road and Blue Jay Drive.
Swabbing involves scouring the watermain with foam swabs and high velocity of water. These swabs are injected at a fire hydrant, pushed along the watermain and are removed further down the main through another fire hydrant. The foam swab, combined with fast moving water, scours the inside of the main to remove sediment that builds up in watermains.
This sediment comes from naturally occurring minerals in the water and gradually builds up on pipe walls. Some residences and businesses will experience water outages as part of the swabbing process; those affected will receive written notice in advance of any outage. Some homes and businesses may experience more than one outage.
Residents and businesses may experience some water discoloration for short durations following outages. Follow these guidelines once watermain swabbing is completed:
• Turn on a cold water tap and let the water run for a few minutes. Do not choose a tap that has a water filter connected to it, or the sediment may clog your filter. Do not use a hot water tap because it could draw sediment into your hot water tank.
• Collect some water in a light-coloured cup or container to see if it is clear. Proceed to use the water if it is clear. If the water doesn’t clear in five minutes, wait 30 minutes and try again.
• During the outage, water pressure will come and go, but please do not run any water during this time period as it could cause large quantities of sediment to plug your service/plumbing/appliances etc.
Apartment property managers, landlords and business operators are asked to consider the following:
• Turn on a cold water tap near the water shut off valve (e.g. a tap in the mop sink in the maintenance room) and let the water run for a few minutes.
• Collect some water in a light-coloured cup or container to see if it is clear. Restore water to the rest of the building only when the water is clear.
If water is still discoloured after two to three hours, call the Water Operations Branch at 705-792-7920. Water Operations staff will be monitoring the watermains throughout this project. To see the affected areas on a map, visit the Water Distribution page via barrie.ca/WaterServices.

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The Georgian College Career Expo on Nov. 6 at the Orillia Campus will host 40 employers and hundreds of job seekers.
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Students, alumni and members of the public looking for opportunities for employment will have the chance to network with area employers at Career Expo 2019 at the Orillia Campus of Georgian College on Wednesday, Nov. 6. The event takes place in the gym from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Attendees will be able to apply to open full-time, part-time and summer jobs, learn about hiring processes, preferred skills and certifications, explore advancement opportunities and outlooks for various industries, and more.
This year, the fair will host 40 employers and hundreds of job seekers. There will also be a pair of Beatsheadphones, a Fitbit and a Google Home up for grabs.
The Youth Justice Division from the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS) has attended the Career Expo for the past six years. “This event is a great way to connect with our postsecondary partners and help students make informed decisions regarding careers in serving the public, in addition to contributing to better outcomes for youth in conflict with the law,” said Marc Savage, Recruitment Lead for the Youth Services Officer Recruitment Unit of MCCSS.
Savage said they have hired Georgian graduates from Community and Justice Services, Police Foundations, Social Service Worker and a variety of other programs and recommended that students attend the Expo.
“This event is especially important for first-year students to gain insight into employers’ expectations and their hiring/experiential requirements to help inform potential placement experiences,” said Savage.
He added that it’s also important for businesses to take part.
“It may seem obvious, but beyond meeting potential graduates prepared to enter their respective fields of study, the Career Expo enables employers to connect with individual programs and instructors,” explained Savage. “Faculty who attend and engage with employers can bring information and advice directly into the classroom to accompany program curriculum.”
Thi My Le Huynh, 29, a graduate of Georgian’s Early Childhood Education program, met her first employer at last year’s Career Expo.
“I volunteered at the Career Expo in addition to utilizing it to search for a potential employer,” said Huynh. “Georgian helped me prepare a great resumé in advance so I was ready to meet with employers. I researched who I wanted to meet, visited their booths and introduced myself. I was able to talk about my experience, give them my resumé and I followed up with several after the Expo. A week later, I received an email from an employer for an interview. 
Huynh is now working as a registered Early Childhood Educator in the infant program at Little Start Childcare in Barrie.
“I would absolutely recommend that students attend the Expo,” said Huynh. “It’s a great opportunity to help you connect with potential employers, establish professional relationships, and discuss potential job prospects.”
The Orillia Campus Career Expo is hosted by Georgian’s Co-operative Education and Career Success [CECS] department. CECS offers a variety of resources to assist students in achieving individual student career and employment goals.
Interested employers can contact Tammy McDowell at 705.325.2740, ext.3090, or tammy.mcdowell@georgiancollege.ca.

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UPDATE: Following a deputation on Oct. 8 from representatives of the Downtown Barrie Business Improvement Area requesting free parking in the parking lots and on-street in the downtown area until construction is completed, the City’s building committee referred the matter to staff in the Transit and Parking Strategy Department to review the effectiveness and cost of the request, and report back to the committee recommending suitable alternatives. The matter is to be discussed by general committee on Monday.

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Representatives of the Downtown Barrie Business Improvement Area (BIA) are scheduled to appear before the City’s building committee on Tuesday to lobby for parking options during the current reconstruction of Dunlop Street.
In a presentation titled ‘Construction Negatively Affects Businesses – A Solution is Proposed,’ the BIA says the current option of free parking on the fourth floor of the Collier Street parkade is not effective. The association is requesting free parking for all of the Downtown BIA area during all phases of the construction.
The project is proceeding in three phases:
• Phase 1A – Section between east of Mulcaster Street to just east of Owen Street commenced in September, and is scheduled to proceed to Nov. 8. This phase will be completed early in 2020, as weather permits 
• Phase 1B – Owen Street intersection culvert, Owen Street intersection to Bayfield Street and Five Points intersection. This work is to start after the first phase is done
• Phase 2 – Section between Bayfield and Toronto streets, planned following the completion of phase 1B.
The BIA has committed $300,000 to the $13 million project, but in the presentation says (many businesses) “won’t survive without quick action.” The construction is already impacting businesses, the BIA says.
“In Sept, (business was) down 56 per cent compared to 2018, down 51 per cent compared to 2017,” one retailer says, while another says the “construction has drastically affected my business! Wasn’t prepared for this.”
The parking solution,” says the BIA, “needs to be simple – all parking lots within the downtown.”

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A Barrie youth has been charged with numerous offences relating to a robbery which occurred Friday morning.
On Oct. at approximately 8:00 a.m., a female homeowner in Barrie observed an unknown male as she was walking back up her driveway after picking up her recycling containers. A few minutes later as she was preparing to leave for work, the same male who she had earlier seen walking eastbound on her street had turned around and was now walking westbound towards her home, police report.
The male walked up her driveway and while brandishing a firearm, demanded the keys for her car. The victim complied and the suspect was last seen backing out of her driveway.
Sunday afternoon, shortly before 3:15 p.m., an officer from the Aurora detachment Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) observed the stolen vehicle travelling southbound on Highway 400 after a driving complaint regarding the manner in which it was being operated had been received. Although the OPP attempted to safely stop the vehicle, the driver refused to pull over. The OPP continued to follow the car until the driver reached Finch Avenue where the male driver abandoned the car and fled on foot, only to be apprehended a short time later, police report.
As a result of the investigations conducted by the Barrie Police Service in regards to the robbery and the subsequent incident where the driver failed stop for the OPP while travelling on Highway 400, a 16-year old male from Barrie, who cannot be identified under the provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA), is facing a slew of charges. He is scheduled to appear for a bail hearing Monday at the Ontario Court of Justice in Barrie in regards to Friday’s robbery and the charges laid by the Ontario Provincial Police will be dealt with on a future date.
Barrie Police Charges: Robbery, Point Firearm, Fail to Comply with Youth Sentence (two counts) and Drive Disqualified.
• Ontario Provincial Police Charges: Possession of Stolen Property Over $5000, Flight from Police, Dangerous Operation, Possession of Marijuana, Possession of a Stolen Credit Card, Fail to Comply with Youth Sentence (two counts), Drive Under Suspension and Stunt Driving. 

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Coverage area includes the waterfront and walking trails from the South Shore Community Centre to Heritage Park, including Meridian Place, and Dunlop Street from Mulcaster Street to Toronto Street.

The City’s effort to bring public wifi service to downtown Barrie and parts of the waterfront is proceeding, with the goal of having all five phases of the project completed by next summer, according to a memo to council.
Back on April 29, council adopted a staff report on the wifi project, conducted over the summer to select a vendor to implement the project over five phases, writes Ryan Nolan, director of information technology.
“The phased approach was chosen to provide the most flexibility for installation and budget. The coverage area includes the waterfront and walking trails from the South Shore Community Centre to Heritage Park, including Meridian Place, and Dunlop Street from Mulcaster Street to Toronto Street.”
Phases one through three (the waterfront) are due to be completed by next March. The City plans to work with the Downtown Business Improvement Area (BIA) on phases four and five to bring the downtown online by next summer.
“Overall the wifi project is progressing within budget, with major cost negotiations completed within expectations.”

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Council gets an update on Connected Core initiative

Connected Core launched an online tool on Sept. 24 called the Chalmers Bot, a database of information users can access for information on local shelter, food, clothing, housing, employment, drop-in and crisis support.
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It has been three months since the City launched the Connected Core initiative, and council has been provided with an update.
On May 13, council adopted the pilot project as a way of addressing social issues in the downtown core, with its goal being “to create awareness of services currently available in the downtown core, by bringing together community partners and other key stakeholders,” writes Sam  Docherty, program coordinator.
“The aim of the (program) is to connect marginalized individuals to the right services at the right time by providing access to a comprehensive archive of all our community partners and downtown stakeholders. This work has allowed for cross sector connections to be made between the business community, community partners and front line service providers in our downtown core.
“The pilot program “has also provided the opportunity to build empathy, eliminate stigma, improve the downtown climate and create a better sense of community.”
To aid in the effort Connected Core launched an online tool on Sept. 24 called the Chalmers Bot, a database of information users can access for information on local shelter, food, clothing, housing, employment, drop-in and crisis support.
The Bot “is currently available as a stand-alone tool, available to all downtown businesses and community partners. It can also be accessed through the Connected Core website and Barrie Public Library terminals,” writes Docherty.
The Barrie Police Service will be able to use the Bot “for quick access to information, assisting officers in quickly and efficiently supporting those in need.”
Docherty continues that the program has helped downtown owners and staff feel more empowered and secure about working in the downtown core through de-escalation and naloxone training. The creation of a job bank “has supported the creation of opportunities for employment to those furthest from the labour market, aiming to bring them closer to job readiness.”
Community partners – The Gilbert Centre, The David Busby Centre, The Salvation Army, Simcoe County Alliance to End Homelessness (SCATEH), Rapid Addiction Access Medicine (RAAM) Clinic, and Barrie Police Service – meet monthly to discuss related efforts, such as supporting the centralization of communication, identification of gaps, and further building of programs.
“As the (program) moves forward it has been agreed upon by these partners that Connected Core will move into a coordination role for local outreach services, including the creation of a terms of reference, calendar and communication protocol to support the ongoing implementation of effective, strategic and collaborative outreach services to meet the needs of those most vulnerable,” writes Docherty.
The program, Docherty adds, “aims to connect more people in need with the services offered by our community partners, when and where they need them.”

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It’s Waste Reduction Week in Barrie, and residents are encouraged to learn more about waste diversion and waste reduction.
The City’s Environmental Services department, in partnership with the Barrie Public Library, will be hosting a number of activities that highlight The Recycling Council of Ontario’s educational themes. Events throughout the week include:
• tips on how to recycle right and make the most of the green bin program
• how to find service providers in Barrie that will recycle or reuse your goods and that offer community gardening to help reduce food waste
• crafting and lunch and learn sessions
• using local resources to reuse, recycle or update clothes
• how to reduce use of single use plastics, including a reusable metal straw giveaway
• learning more about the Library’s Repair Café to help contribute to a sustainable society
• how to recycle your old electronics for free.
In addition to the events at the library, Environmental Services staff were at Bear Creek Secondary School on Oct. 22 to talk about the problem with single-use plastics. Other local schools will be coming to the Barrie Landfill and Education Centre for field trip visits during Waste Reduction Week.
For a detailed listing of events, visit the City’s website.

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A Barrie man has been charged with charges related to impaired driving following an incident Monday night.
Just before 8 p.m. Monday, Barrie police responded to a report of a vehicle that had collided with a house in the Mapleton Avenue/Marsellus Drive area of Barrie.
The investigation has determined that the driver had tried to enter a nearby restaurant, but as staff believed he appeared to be impaired, they refused to serve him. The restaurant staff attempted to stop the driver from returning to his vehicle and called police. The vehicle then left the property, where it traveled a short distance before hitting a nearby house.
Upon arrival, officers found the vehicle on the front lawn of the property, where it had come to a stop. The driver was located on scene and was not injured. Fortunately, no other injuries were reported.
A 23-year-old Barrie man has been charged with Dangerous Operation, and Operation while Impaired, and is scheduled to appear at the Ontario Court of Justice located in Barrie on Nov. 4.

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The boo ride is coming back to town, courtesy of Barrie Transit and the ghouls and goblins at City Hall.
The Ghost Bus is back for its sixth year, bringing free Halloween fun to the City’s three main community centres next week. Once again, a Barrie Transit bus has been transformed into a spooky place for families to explore this Halloween season. 
“The Ghost Bus Tour has grown into one of our most popular annual events. It’s a great way for families to get in the Halloween spirit,” said Alex Malmsten, Recreation Supervisor at the City. “Transit and Recreation staff try to raise the bar each year and introduce new spooky elements to keep the thrill alive.”
Approximately 8,000 people attended the Ghost Bus Tour last year. Here are the dates and locations of this year’s tour:
• Tuesday, October 22 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at East Bayfield Community Centre, 80 Livingstone St. E
• Wednesday, October 23 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at Allandale Recreation Centre, 190 Bayview Drive
• Thursday, October 24 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at Holly Community Centre, 171 Mapleton Ave.
In addition to the Ghost Bus, a variety of Halloween-themed activities will be offered for kids of all ages. The bus will remain stationary all night so participants are invited to drop in anytime during the free event. Costumes are encouraged.  
Parents are reminded to use their discretion when deciding whether or not to enter the Ghost Bus with their children. The bus is on the softer side of a typical haunted house, but may be too spooky for some participants.

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Barrie retains its AA credit rating in annual report

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It seems that Barrie stands in good credit as it has maintained its AA credit rating, according to the latest report from Standard & Poor’s (S&P).
The report is issued annually from S&P, a financial services company that offers services including credit ratings, data analysis and equity research to both the private and public sectors worldwide.
“We expect the City of Barrie’s economy to continue growing at a healthy pace and to diversify in the next two years, owing to high demographic growth and robust private investment trends,” S&P states in its report.
“We expect that the city will maintain elevated levels of capital spending and will continue to run modest deficits after capital accounts. We also expect the city’s experienced management team and sound financial policies will support fiscal performance throughout our two-year outlook period.”
The report attributes Barrie’s ‘AA’ rating to the City’s growing and diversifying economy and strong financial management that will continue to support the City’s fiscal performance in the face of high population growth and elevated capital spending. The stable outlook reflects Standard & Poor’s expectations that Barrie’s economy will continue to expand healthily, and its liquidity position will remain more than sufficient over the next two years, says the City in a release.
“S&P’s ‘AA’ credit rating confirms that Barrie’s economy is strong and we continue to make the necessary investments to support our growing community. Council and City staff are dedicated to building a solid financial foundation and this rating shows that we are on the right path,” says Mayor Jeff Lehman. 
“We expect the City of Barrie’s economy to continue growing at a healthy pace and to diversify in the next two years, owing to high demographic growth and robust private investment trends.”
“We expect that the city will maintain elevated levels of capital spending and will continue to run modest deficits after capital accounts. We also expect the city’s experienced management team and sound financial policies will support fiscal performance throughout our two-year outlook period.”

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Chamber and realtors host candidates’ debate

The Barrie Chamber of Commerce, with the Barrie & District Association of Realtors, is holding a Federal Candidates’ Debate for the Barrie – Springwater – Oro-Medonte riding tonight (Oct. 10). The event is scheduled from 6-8 p.m. at 676 Veterans Drive.

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EQAO testing a ‘snapshot of student achievement’

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The Education Quality and Accountability Office’s province-wide testing results for school boards and schools are out, with results for the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board showing a high of 80 per cent for Grade 6 writing, and a low of 39 per cent for Grade 6 mathematics.
“Our students and staff work extremely hard all year, in every subject area, and we are particularly proud of those students who spend many hours writing the EQAO test each spring – they should feel good about their hard work and efforts,” said Brian Beal, Director of Education.
“EQAO is useful to help identify trends so that the province and the school board can put programs and strategies in place, enabling every student to achieve their God-given ability.” 
The testing shows percentages of students who are meeting or exceeding the provincial standard. The results for the school board are:
• Grade 3 reading – 67 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard
• Grade 3 writing – 62 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard
• Grade 3 mathematics – 48 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard
• Grade 6 reading – 79 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard
• Grade 6 writing – 80 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard
• Grade 6 mathematics – 39 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard
• Grade 9 applied mathematics – 40 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard
• Grade 9 academic mathematics – 77 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard
• Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test first-time eligible students – 75 per cent meeting or exceeding the provincial standard.
“It is important for parents, students and staff to remember that EQAO is only one of the tools we use to measure student outcomes and it is a consideration when board staff are planning curriculum and professional development opportunities,” said Carol Corriveau-Truchon, Chair of the Board of Trustees.
“EQAO provides a snapshot of student achievement on one particular day, but ongoing evaluation in our classrooms reflect the learning and achievements that take place everyday in our schools.”

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Transforming the student experience was the focus of the second phase of Georgian College’s Power of Education Campaign, and thanks to the support of a generous community, the campaign exceeded its $40-million goal.
At the close of the campaign, Georgian raised more than $54 million to support capital projects and scholarships to benefit students at all seven campuses and the downtown Barrie location. The campaign was supported by alumni, students and friends, corporations and foundations, as well as through government investment at the municipal, regional, provincial and federal levels.
“To maintain its edge, Georgian must continue to deliver a transformative student experience,” said Mike Stollery, President of the AutoIQ Network and Power of Education Campaign Chair. “One that empowers students to learn any time, anywhere; uses technology to enable and expand access to learning; and prepares graduates to be change-makers, ready to adapt and innovate in a constantly evolving economy.”
In 2014, the County of Grey council committed $2 million, followed by provincial and federal government investment, as well as private industry support, resulting in the 2016 opening of the Algoma Central Corporation Marine Emergency Duties (MED) Centre at the Owen Sound Campus. The 13,600-square-foot facility is a key part of Georgian’s renowned Centre for Marine Training and Research.
That same year, the college opened the Segal International Centre at the Barrie Campus to better serve the growing number of international students. The centre features an experienced team of multilingual and culturally astute staff who support more than 3,600 students from 85 countries.  
Early on in the campaign, the Georgian College Alumni Association funded the development of fully equipped videoconferencing classrooms that allow students enrolled in programs at all Georgian campuses to benefit from the technology.
The largest campaign gift came from those with a direct stake in the outcome – the students. The Georgian College Students’ Association (GCSA) made a $7.2-million commitment to the campaign that supported a number of priorities across Georgian campuses, including renovations to student spaces in Orillia, Owen Sound and Barrie, phase one of the sports field at the Barrie Campus and the implementation of a student portal providing any time, anywhere access for all Georgian students. 
“Since joining Georgian, I’ve seen the commitment to excellence that our students, staff, alumni and communities expect,” said Dr. MaryLynn West-Moynes, President and CEO, Georgian College.

“It’s that commitment that has made reaching and exceeding the goal of the Power of Education campaign both necessary, and possible. We deeply appreciate our Board of Governors and campaign volunteers for their tireless efforts, and are truly grateful to our community of donors and industry partners for their incredible generosity. We have an exciting future ahead of us.”

Other notable successes include the naming of the J.C. Massie Field in 2017 in recognition of improvements to the sports field, extending its use and reach into the community, and in 2018 the grand opening of the Peter B. Moore Advanced Technology Centre. 
The new $30-million, 56,000 square-foot facility is providing students and industry partners with access to research, commercialization, incubator, change-maker and fabrication spaces and is home to the first engineering, environmental sustainability and computer science degrees in Central Ontario, offered in partnership with Lakehead University.
Federal funding from the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund was matched by commitments of $5 million respectively made by the County of Simcoe and the City of Barrie. Furnishings and future-ready equipment and technology were supported by major gift donors such as Peter B. Moore, owner of Moore Packaging, the Automotive Business School of Canada Board of Directors, Alectra Inc., Honda Canada Foundation, the GCSA, AutoIQ.ca Network, Innovative Automation Inc., and Jane Brown Jackson.
Those who support Georgian understand that investments in the college are investments in the broader community and the future success of our region.
“I’ve been involved with the college for many years and feel strongly that it has a huge influence in our community,” said Jamie Massie, President and CEO of Georgian International and Honorary Campaign Chair. “My business has grown in part due to the talent pool of Georgian graduates, particularly on the automotive side. Investing in Georgian is synonymous with investing in our community.”

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Brian Beal, Director of Education, Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board.

The Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board has announced it will close schools and cancel all programs for Monday, Oct. 7 if an agreement with custodial staff isn’t reach over the weekend.
This would also include the cancellation of before and after care at any of our school locations.
“The health and safety of our students and staff must always be our main priority. After much careful consideration we have determined that in the best interest of student safety, the cancellation of classes is the most appropriate course of action. We understand that this decision will greatly impact our families, but we do remain hopeful that a negotiated settlement is reached this weekend and that a strike is averted,” Director of Education Brian Beal said in an email statement to parents.
Earlier this week the board was notified by the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), representing custodial workers, that it intended to proceed with a full legal strike, beginning Monday. Ongoing negotiations are scheduled during the weekend between CUPE, the provincial government and the Trustee Associations.
“We do remain hopeful that a contract can be negotiated this weekend and/or that full strike action is averted. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we continue to work through this difficult situation,” Beal continued in his email.

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Barrie residents can share their thoughts about what the City should be spending their money on in 2020 through an online tool, the Budget Allocator.
The allocator will allow residents to offer budget opinions regarding increases, decreases or maintaining current levels of services and taxation. Comments can also be left.
The City operates more than 60 services and programs, including public transit, waste collection, fire and emergency service, roads and parks maintenance, and recreation programs. Through this tool, residents can learn more about each service area and how budgeting changes can impact service delivery.
This year, the City is facing additional budget pressures due to a number of funding and program changes introduced by the provincial government, says CAO Michael Prowse.
“These include funding cuts to public health and changes to the Development Charges Act. There is only one taxpayer. When cuts happen at the provincial level or services are downloaded to municipalities, local governments are left with the bill.”
According to the City, municipalities like Barrie take in just nine cents of every tax dollar raised in Ontario, while the province and the feds receive 44 cents and 47 cents respectively. Municipalities own 57 per cent of the capital infrastructure, while the province owns 41 per cent of infrastructure and the federal government, two per cent.
Examples of capital infrastructure owned by the City include roads, bridges, stormwater drains and sewers, streetlights, sidewalks, community centres, water treatment facilities, etc.
A number of funding and program changes enacted by the province are “adding pressure to the City’s tax base through its service partners,” according to a City spokesperson. Examples include:
Police: Provincial funding reductions were imposed on core programs including Court Security Prisoner Transportation Grant and the Policing Effectiveness and Modernization Grant. 
Health Unit: The provincial budget indicates that the proportion of funding for public health from municipalities will increase to 30 per cent from the previous 25 per cent.
County of Simcoe: The City receives paramedic, social housing, long-term care, child services, and Ontario Works services from the County of Simcoe.  The 2019 provincial budget contains numerous changes to funding agreements between the province and the County that will result in a larger proportion of costs for these services being borne at the municipal level.
The 2020 Budget will outline the City’s plan to make up for the provincial funding shortfalls to ensure vital front-line services are delivered while minimizing the impact to local tax payers. Residents are encouraged to share feedback about their priorities through the Budget Allocator tool.

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