District of Muskoka issues update on JW Marriott’s sewage system following July spill

Muskoka Post Staff

BRACEBRIDGE - The District Municipality of Muskoka and the Township of Muskoka Lakes continue to monitor and facilitate information sharing regarding a private communal sewage treatment system owned by the JW Marriott Resort.

In July a provincial order was issued by the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP.) The province’s order relates to the non-compliance of a private communal sewage treatment system owned by the JW Marriott Resort in the Township of Muskoka Lakes.  

The district and TML facilitated a meeting on Sept. 3 with representatives of the JW Marriott,  the MECP, and the 3rd party operator of the sewage treatment plant. Staff were advised that the MECP is satisfied that the Order is being complied with. Furthermore, staff were advised that officials from the JW Marriott expressed commitment to addressing the concern.

“The JW Marriott is cooperating 100 per cent with the MECP and ownership takes this matter very seriously,” said Michael DiCienzo of the JW Marriott. “We cannot stress enough that we care about the safe operation of the Sewage Treatment Plant, the guests and staff at the Resort and protecting the environment”. 

The District’s Engineering and Public Works Committee received an update about the status of the order at their regular meeting on Sept. 18.

“It is important that we know that the MECP is satisfied that the order is being complied and that we communicate this to the public,” said EPW Committee Chair, Phil Harding, Mayor of the Township of Muskoka Lakes.  

District Chair John Klink agreed and stated that “I feel it is important that we satisfy ourselves that all government agencies are doing everything possible to address this issue. Minister Yurek did respond to my letter and reassured me that the MECP was fulfilling its mandate.”

Dr. Charles Gardner, medical officer of Health Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit has previously confirmed that “the spill was removed and there were no impacts to recreational, drinking water or land and there were no public health issues to be addressed”.

The district and the township will continue to be have regular communication with all parties involved to confirm that compliance is being maintained.

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