Tag Archives: Karen Stintz

Fighting for Transit City

Kris Scheuer
(Written for the Town Crier Dec. 15)

TTC's new light rail vehicles.

Several residents refuse to believe Transit City is dead.
In December, days after Mayor Rob Ford announced that Transit City is no more, local activist Adam Chaleff-Freudenthaler organized a grassroots campaign in North Toronto to save Transit City, including the Eglinton light rapid transit line.
Chaleff-Freudenthaler took his “save Transit City” petition to the streets in North Toronto’s Ward 16. In December, he continued to canvass every ward affected by the Finch, Sheppard and Eglinton LRTs.
“The goal is to bring high quality, accurate information to people at their doors and communities,” he said.
On Dec. 1, the day he announced Transit City is dead, Ford met with TTC general manager Gary Webster and asked staff to look at costing of various underground options for transit including having the Eglinton LRT completely underground.
Webster will report back in January.
Councillor Karen Stintz, now the new TTC chair, has told the Town Crier on four occasions since the Oct. 25 election she expects light rapid transit along Eglinton to proceed underground.
“I expect when the plan is reviewed, that there won’t be any changes to Eglinton,” she said Dec. 10.

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Councillors’ office budgets slashed

Kris Scheuer
(Written for Town Crier Dec. 17)

Councillor John Parker voted to cut offices expenses.

Another stop on the gravy train has been eliminated as Mayor Rob Ford and council voted on Dec. 16 to cut councillor office budgets by over $20,000.
The vote was 40–5 in favour of reducing the expense accounts from $50,445 to $30,000, which will save a total of $899,580 a year.
“This reduction is highly symbolic of the will of Toronto city council to listen to the voice of the public and demonstrate leadership in fiscal restraint and respect for the taxpayer,” said Ford in a statement.
In 2009, when the office budget maximum was $53,100, Councillor John Parker was near the top that year, but voted to reduce the amount to $30,000.
One thing he’ll no longer be able to afford is his constituency office on Laird Drive, which cost over $7,000 in 2009 but he’s not mourning that loss.
“I live in the ward, so my front door is my constituency office,” he told theTown Crier. “It was more productive and satisfactory for me to meet with them in their homes, offices, factories.”

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Mayor Ford picks team players

Ford announces key roles for councillors
Kris Scheuer
(Written for Town Crier Nov. 29)

Mayor-elect Rob Ford announces his picks among councilors for key roles. Photo by Francis Crescia/Town Crier.

Mayor elect Rob Ford announced this afternoon the team that will help guide Toronto for the next few years.
The were no surprises in the appointments to head the seven council standing committees nor the spate of other plum posts as Ford’s choices had already been widely reported in the media.
The geographic and ideological composition of the group also offered no surprise. There are reps from the suburbs and midtown, but no one from downtown. Leftie councillors were shut out but two newbie female politicians are on Ford’s team.
“This is the team that’s ready to get down to the hard work of bringing accountability and respect for taxpayers back to city hall,” Ford said. Continue reading

More women on Toronto council

A total of 14 councillors now women
Seven of the newly elected reps are females
Kris Scheuer
(Column written for Town Crier Nov. 4)

Move over, Mr. Councillor.
Toronto has elected more women to council.
The 45-member city council now has 15 females, up from the 10 elected in 2006. So city council is now 33 percent female.
This is impressive when you consider the United Nations has called for governments worldwide to have at least 30 percent of the political representatives as women.
I’d argue having more women means council is more reflective of Toronto’s population. Elected officials should bring the perspectives of the many people they represent to the decision- making table.
And what’s great is the current crop of female reps are a diverse group themselves.
There are lefties like Paula Fletcher, Pam McConnell, Maria Augimeri and Janet Davis. There’s more right-of-centre councillors like Francis Nunziata and Karen Stintz, and even they can differ immensely in their views. Gloria Lindsay Luby was part of Mayor David Miller’s executive committee and so was budget chief Shelley Carroll.
These eight re-elected female councillors are all very opinionated and passionate politicians who speak up for the causes they believe in. I love that.

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Rob Ford good for Midtown?

Mayor-elect’s biggest support in suburbs
Downtown not a fan, Midtown voters were  luke warm
Will  a Ford administration be good for Midtown Toronto?
Kris Scheuer
(Written for Town Crier Nov. 4)

Mayor-elect Rob Ford. Photo by Francis Crescia/Town Crier.

New mayor Rob Ford got mixed reaction from voters in midtown, but one’s thing for certain: This is definitely not his core electorate.
So his sweeping victory — he won easily with 383,501 votes — has midtown wondering: what will he do for us?
Overall, there’s a cloak of secrecy surrounding Ford these days as he bunkers down with his transition team lead by Councillor Case Ootes.
What campaign policies will Ford stand by and which will he soften?
Calls to Ford’s team were directed to Ootes, who said he could not discuss any policy direction now. Period.
“The objective of the mayor is to deliver on his commitments and to get costs under control,” Ootes said earlier this month. “I won’t get into what’s doable and what’s not doable. That’s what the transition team is discussing now.”
And while they’re behind closed doors talking, so is midtown.
There’s mixed feeling among business owners, residents and Ford’s midtown council counterparts: fear, hope or downright uncertainty of what a Rob Ford Toronto will mean for midtown.

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Toronto councilors and mayor elected

Rob Ford elected new mayor
Some incumbent councillors lose
New faces on 45-member city council
Kris Scheuer

Mayor-elect Rob Ford at the Town Crier's editorial board. Town Crier file photo.

Here’s a run down of the winners, upsets, and top place results for the Oct. 25 vote.
Of the possible 1,546,732 eligible voters, voter turnout was about 52.6 percent, which is up from the 2006 election with 39.3 percent.
RESULTS: Toronto here’s your new mayor and 44 councillors.
Are you pleased with the results for mayor and council seats? Please let me know…
Mayor-elect is Rob Ford with 383,501 votes for 47.11 percent followed by George Smitherman in second with 289,832 for 35.6 percent, according to the city’s website. Of course, 38 other mayoral candidates were on the ballot and results for each can be found here and may vary as the city updates the election results.
Here are the councillors-elect for all 44 wards with a list of each winner and closest runner-up. For a full list of all candidates votes in each race, click here.
Etobicoke-North Ward 1:  Vincent Crisanti won with 40.75% of the vote ousting incumbent councillor Suzan Hall, who got 36.96%.