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Cost of COVID-19 pandemic could rise to $173M: Region of York

A further $98M could result in 2021, according to financial impact estimates
20200109 york region admin centre 2
York Region Administrative Centre in Newmarket. Supplied photo/Region of York

The financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on York Region could amount to $173 million this year, with a further $98 million in 2021.

So far, York Region has incurred costs amounting to $63 million, according to an update of the pandemic's financial impact received by regional council July 30.

However, if the current emergency lasts until the end of 2020 with recovery occurring throughout 2021, it's estimated the cost could nearly triple in 2020, according to the Region of York.

Originally, financial impact estimates were based on the pandemic ending in June, followed by a six-month "recovery period."  

Included in the forecast is the cost of purchasing 300,000 masks "to help the most vulnerable population protect themselves from COVID-19," following council's endorsement of the mandatory mask and face covering instruction for enclosed public spaces until Nov. 30, 2020.

Staff are to report back to council in September as more information becomes available.