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Friday’s Headlines

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19 mini-dumps to take garbage [Toronto Star]
Striking workers’ sick day perks touch a nerve [Toronto Star]
All workers benefit from unions [Toronto Star]
Google Map: Where to drop your garbage in Toronto [Globe & Mail]
City of Toronto is falling off the same cliff as General Motors [Globe & Mail]
David Miller hands keys to city hall to union [National Post]
Settling in for the long haul [Globe & Mail]
Residents cry foul as city opens temporary dump sites [Globe & Mail]
Garbage hits the Pits [Toronto Sun]
City cancels Canada Day parties [Toronto Sun]
19 more trash mountains [Toronto Sun]
Population of rats going to ‘explode’ [Toronto Sun]
T.O.’s garbage woes ‘not end of the world’ [Toronto Sun]
Dump site is the Pits [Toronto Sun]
Toronto needs to keep cool over strike [Metro]

Approve deal for streetcars [Toronto Star]
Streetcar tab soars as Miller’s gamble fails [Toronto Star]
Streetcar deal led by parade of fools [Toronto Star]
Mayor bows to reality on streetcar funding [National Post]
Toronto set to approve borrowing $834-million for streetcar deal [Globe & Mail]
Toronto on hook for extra $40oM in streetcar deal with no federal funding [CBC]
Transit needs ideas, not money [National Post]
’11th-hour’ vote on streetcars [National Post]
One person to blame [National Post]

City council pay freeze solves nothing [Toronto Sun]
Torontonians feel overtaxed and underserviced, Ipsos-Reid poll finds [National Post]
Pride event to close some downtown roads [Toronto Star]
Meter fight gets court go-ahead [Toronto Sun]


  1. The sad and unavoidable situation in Conservative arithmatic they had nothing to gain, and something to win, by scorning Toronto’s streetcar purchase. They have no seats here, won’t get seats here, and get seats in places that resent Toronto and urban living. It is a resentment driven party, unable to form coalitions on any issues, faulting us in urban and French Canada for their inability to gain the majority parliament they are sure the deserve. In their infantile minds, this is payback.

  2. jamesmallon – can you explain to us all why Toronto should get a project which will produce no streetcars before 2012 and will create few jobs in the GTA before then should qualify for a program with the following rules – must happen before 2012, must create jobs in the area the money is spent.

    While doing so, can you explain to us why your interpretation is right and Hazel McCallion and Susan Fennell’s is wrong? Can you explain to us why 400m more taxpayer dollars will be diverted from Toronto construction firms to Thunder Bay businesses between 2015-2018 is a good thing? Even Chris Hume thinks Toronto was trying to vary the terms of the programme!

    There was, ironically, a project which would have helped the downtown transit situation and could have gotten started more quickly and likely much of it done at Hillcrest – dealing with the situation where we have 250 existing streetcars, only about 170-180 fit for service and the TTC still failing to release the report on streetcar availability. We will need most of those streetcars to keep running for years after the first new car is delivered in four years or so.

  3. Re: City of Toronto is falling off the same cliff as General Motors.

    Marcus Gee hit the nail in the head. The mugs game of having the highest expenses and the lowest taxes (residential) is up.

  4. Whoa Mark, I’m not sure how what I said caused such unusual foaming in your mouth. Did the City of Toronto break the rules of the application? Yes. Did the city do it out of desparation, foolishly ignoring the high chance that a Conservative government would spit in their face? Probably. Were there other things to spend the money on? Absolutely.

    Are these the real reasons that the Conservative government, in word and deed, once again told Toronto to “&^%$ off”? Not likely.

  5. James, I have to take issue with your claim of desperation. There was nothing desperate about the Mayor’s tactic. He was attempting tactical end-run around the rules and thought (wrongly) that the government wouldn’t dare say no to a populist issue like public transit. He misread the game, gambled and lost. And he’s lost big. No surprise, we’ll be paying for it.

    It gets harder and harder to make excuses for David Miller’s lack of political savvy. Even if I were to concede that he’s been a decent mayor (which I won’t…rather he’s been confused and ineffective) he’s an atrocious politician. Always wanting to pick sides, taking on too many crusades at once and having no sense of how to read or effect public opinion.

    The only thing sadder than his abilities as a mayor is the total lack of an alternative.

  6. Glen,

    What changes do you propose to address that situation?

  7. Josh, I don’t think I disagree with you. The city’s tactic was stupid, as proven by the results.

    I have two thoughts about the Conservatives not funding the streetcars that I can summarise thus: a complete lack of surprise, and a full helping of disgust. Politicians are no less self-serving than the rest of the species, often more. That is where I am unsurprised that they will give nothing to a region where they do not hold a single seat, and have little chance of gaining one. My disgust is more varied: that their thinking is so ungenerous, that their self-interest is so unenlightened and short term that they have damned themselves to minority or less, that they are not even smart enough to get enough Toronto support to vote-split the Liberal domination of Toronto with the NDP.

  8. Ben: for Glen’s solution, see about a dozen or so previous comments threads :).

  9. I think people are missing the forest for the trees on the issue of the streetcar financing.

    The federal government needs to step up and pay – at the very least – its share for the streetcars. Who cares what program the feds alot the financing to? Toronto generates far more in tax dollars to both the province and federal government than it gets back from those governments in either money or services. So leaving aside that financing the streetcars is very good policy, its something that Toronto is owed.

    Apologists for the Tories are hiding behind the fact that it didn’t meet the stimulus criteria, and thus miss the point. If there had been no stimulus, Toronto would still need and deserve federal dollars. Whether or not the streetcars should be paid for under the stimulus program is entirely irrelevant to the fact that the feds need to pay for this.

  10. Personally I find it hard to believe that the city wasn’t getting advice from federal government staff suggesting that the transit application would be approved for stimulus funding. Miller and city staff may be wishful thinkers at times but they’re not flat-out stupid. When there are hundreds of millions of dollars on the line, there is a lot of information flowing both ways before an application is finalized. There’s little doubt in my mind that the refusal to fund was a calculated political decision.

  11. RF

    You are wrong and every indicator says so. The Liberals and other Ontario municipalities all had the same reaction to Miller’s bungling assumptions that Toronto can demand special treatment. Sorry RF, get the message, they are that ‘flat-out stupid.’

  12. I could be wrong, I’ll admit that, but I still think that your view of things – that Miller took a total gamble on hundreds of millions of dollars – is highly implausible.

    I think Fennell and McCallion will say whatever they need to say to curry favour, just as Miller will not say what could be said because the Tories would retaliate. In my opinion Miller’s greatest flaw is that he doesn’t speak truth to power.

    Again, I may be mistaken, but I believe McGuinty himself said that the streetcars were a reasonable stimulus project. From the Star today: Although Ottawa has failed the city so far, “The idea that it would stiff the city of its fair share is very hard to believe,” said Liberal infrastructure critic Gerard Kennedy. “I don’t think people in any part of the country want to see the government play personal political games with this stuff, so there is obviously a way, with flexibility on the part of the federal government, to infuse stimulus funding in a way that enables this transit project.”

    Sure doesn’t sound like an accusation of bungling to me.

  13. RF,
    I would like to say that I do not actually believe Miller and crew are “flat out stupid.” They actually are too smart for their own good and ideologically blind leading to bungling and the perception of arrogance that is common to ideologes who are poor at reading tea leaves.
    Your statement on Miller’s flaw of ‘not speaking the truth to power’ is well taken but in a much larger context. Our Mayor’s major flaw is that he ‘does not speak the truth’ so as to preserve his own power.