Neighbours decide when new patios and parking pads approved
But political reps say polling lists are outdated and flawed
By Kris Scheuer
(Written Nov. 18 for Town Crier.)
Want front yard parking or a patio for your café?
Better hope your neighbours like you, because they’re the ones who vote to approve your application to the city.
But the city’s outdated poll lists mean some ballots are sent to homes of tenants and homeowners who may no longer live in the neighbourhood.
And, if too few ballots are returned you’re out of luck.
Unless you throw yourself at the mercy of community council and appeal, that is.
That’s just what the owners of Il Gelatiere Artigianale at 647A Mount Pleasant Rd. did at Toronto and East York Community Council
The owners’ lawyer, Marc Kemerer, said his client’s story highlights the problems that come from an archaic municipal polling system.
“The polling is meant to strike a balance between commercial interests and residents, but it’s fraught with some problems,” says Kemerer, with White, Duncan and Linton.
“It goes to people who don’t live there anymore.”