Ontario Supporting Waterloo Region Municipalities with Emergency Funding

Published on August 12, 2020

Over $43 Million in assistance will help ensure the delivery of critical public services during COVID-19


August 12, 2020

Waterloo Region — The Ontario government, in partnership with the federal government, is delivering on its commitment to provide urgently needed emergency assistance to Ontario's 444 municipalities.  Communities in Waterloo Region will receive funding to address municipal operating pressures related to the COVID-19 pandemic as part of the first round of emergency funding under the Safe Restart Agreement.


Ontario secured up to $4 billion in emergency assistance for municipalities through the Safe Restart Agreement. This will give them the support and flexibility they need to protect the health and well-being of their communities, while continuing to deliver critical public services as the province continues on the path of renewal, growth and economic recovery.


Local municipalities receiving funding include:

Region of Waterloo— $13,346,700, and an additional $16,473,425 to support transit operations.

City of Cambridge — $3,069,100

City of Kitchener — $5,939,500

City of Waterloo — $2,879,100

Township of North Dumfries — $222,200

Township of Wellesley — $204,100

Township of Wilmot — $482,400

Township of Woolwich — $550,500


“Our government knows that the success of our municipalities is vital to our economic recovery here in the region,” said Kitchener-Conestoga MPP Mike Harris. “With Premier Ford, I will work hand-in-hand with municipalities to ensure they can emerge stronger than ever and continue to keep local residents safe.”   

In September, Ontario’s 444 municipalities will receive $695 million in Phase 1 funding for municipal operating pressures. This funding will be allocated on a per household basis and would be shared 50/50 between upper- and lower-tier municipalities. Up to $695 million in additional funding will be available through Phase 2 for municipalities that have COVID-related financial impacts that exceed the initial per household allocation provided under Phase 1.

In addition to the support for municipalities, the government is providing over $660 million in the first phase of transit funding to the 110 municipalities with transit systems. The funding can be used to provide immediate relief from transit pressures, such as lower ridership, as well as for new costs due to COVID-19, such as enhanced cleaning and masks for staff. In the second phase, additional allocations will be provided based on expenses incurred to ensure the funding meets the needs of municipalities. As part of the Safe Restart Agreement with the federal government, up to $2 billion is being provided to support public transit in Ontario.

The government is committed to working in partnership with municipalities to ensure they can emerge stronger than ever and help lead Ontario’s economic recovery.


Quick Facts


  • The federal Safe Restart Agreement provides $19 billion to Canadian provinces and territories to help ensure a strong recovery and support frontline health care, families, and communities. Across all streams of federal investment, the Safe Restart Agreement provides over $7 billion in funding and in-kind supports to Ontario.


  • The agreement provides up to a total of $4 billion in funding to the province’s 444 municipalities.


  • The province is making a contribution of 50 per cent to the municipal supports and transit funding available through the Safe Restart Agreement, with the federal government contributing the other 50 per cent.


  • Ontario is also providing municipal service managers and Indigenous housing partners an additional $212 million under the Social Services Relief Fund to help protect vulnerable people from COVID-19. This investment can help them protect homeless shelter staff and residents, expand rent support programming and create longer-term housing solutions. This brings the government’s total Social Services Relief Fund investment provided to service managers and Indigenous program administrators to $510 million, and builds on our COVID-19 Action Plan to Protect Vulnerable Ontarians.


  • Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ontario government has worked with municipalities to provide them with the tools and supports they need, including enabling them to hold virtual council and local board meetings, and temporarily extending expiring development charge bylaws to ensure they could continue to collect this vital source of revenue.


Additional Resources