Thanks to everyone for the outpouring of support in this first week of the campaign. Your sharing of the campaign announcement, as well as thoughtful and insightful ideas and input have already illustrated that this grassroots effort is worthwhile, and deserves a place in the lives of Torontonians. What you’ve said and will continue to say is most welcomed and an integral part of this journey; it is after all, our city.
It’s been inspiring to see active communities in Toronto, such as No Jets TO in preventing expansion of the Island Airport (I signed this petition, you can do the same), and I’m also grateful for Lindsay Lauckner and Thomas Morrison at CIUT 89.5fm at the University of Toronto for already taking interest in profiling my campaign.
As we are focused on a better Toronto, it needs to be said that Mayor Rob Ford’s budget proposals clearly demonstrate his inattention to citizens’ best interests (read more).
However, let’s look at how sensibly his Council — whom he claimed “stabbed (him) in the back” for not endorsing his own reckless behaviour — voted on some of the motions that were put forth at City Hall last night:
- to cut the planting of 97,000 trees in the next year: 38-7 AGAINST;
- to cater to corporate interests for the Pan Am games 31-14 AGAINST;
- to enforce a “Welcome Policy Fee” on low income families to pay for recreational programs for children: 39-6 AGAINST;
- to add library fines to property tax bills: 29-15 AGAINST;
- to cut security from libraries in favour of more police calls 38-6 AGAINST;
- to reduce management at employment and support services: 24-20 AGAINST;
- to ask the federal government for $864 million in support for community housing repairs: 43-2 IN SUPPORT (only the Ford brothers voted against);
- for outreach and organizing programs to support tenants: 29-16 IN SUPPORT;
- to give the TTC an extra $3 million: 36-9 IN SUPPORT; and
- to cut staff from heritage planning: 32-13 AGAINST.
Could it be that it is in fact Rob Ford who is the problem, and not the Toronto City Council as a whole? Torontonians like you and I deserve better, and this is the only beginning of what I know will be a rewarding nine months in exploring how we can make for a better Toronto.