Take Steps to #TransformTO

Take Steps to #TransformTO

TransformTO is the City of Toronto’s Climate Action Strategy.  From May 6 – 20, the City is challenging us all to walk more to support a healthier and greener Toronto and to raise awareness of this program.  To reduce community-wide greenhouse gas emissions, 75% of all trips under 5 km will need to be walked or cycled by the year 2050.

Each of the City’s 25 wards will compete with one another to see which one can get out and walk the most.  With your help, the Willowdale …

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Concerned About TTC Upload (UPDATED)

Concerned About TTC Upload (UPDATED)

Premier Doug Ford announced the Province’s plans for transit expansion in the Toronto area this week.  Details remain vague on funding and construction timelines but redesigned plans focus on the Scarborough Line 2 extension, the Yonge North Line 1extension, the Eglinton Crosstown West extension and Relief Line subway.

John immediately spoke out about his concerns around the feasibility of this plan, the delays it is likely to cause and the potential impact on public safety.  Many of the above expansions have been active in the planning stages for the last several years.  Redesigning elements of …

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Clean Toronto Together Campaign – April 28

Clean Toronto Together Campaign – April 28

Toronto’s annual spring cleanup takes place on April 26-28, 2019.  The Clean Toronto Together program mobilizes more than 200,000 residents, students, businesses, organizations and community groups.

The Corporate 20-minute makeover event and school cleanups are scheduled for Friday, April 26.  Community Cleanup Days are Saturday, April 27 and Sunday, April 28.  To register your group for a cleanup event and become eligible for free litter/recycling bags and special litter collection, sign up here.

This year, Willowdale representatives at all levels of government are joining together to organize a clean-up blitz in the North York Centre.  …

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Federal Housing Investment Announced

Federal Housing Investment Announced

This week, the Government of Canada made a major commitment towards addressing the critical need for affordable housing in Toronto.  Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stood with Mayor John Tory to announce $1.3-billion in funding – the largest federal housing investment with a municipal partner in Canadian history – to support the renovation of 58,500 Toronto Community Housing units in 1,500 buildings across the city.

Since the creation of TCH in 2001, the City has been working on commitments from other levels of government to address the ballooning back-log of …

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Enhancing Your Yard With Trees & Shrubs

Enhancing Your Yard With Trees & Shrubs

As you make your gardening plans for the spring, think about new trees and shrubs.  The City of Toronto is continuing its tree planting strategy pursuing the goal of reaching 40% tree canopy cover.

To help achieve this target, Local Enhancement and Appreciation of Forests (LEAF) offers a Subsidized Backyard Tree Planting Program which helps you enjoy the many benefits of trees by planting the right tree in the right place. You will get an arborist consultation at your property, a 5 to 8 foot native tree and full …

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Council Passes 2019 Budget

Council Passes 2019 Budget

Our city remains in a bad financial situation.  Though this month’s budget may have been the best we could do under the circumstances, there remain ongoing issues that need to be fixed.

City Council approved its 2019 tax and rate combined operating budget in March. This included a 2.55% tax increase for residential properties, 1.28% increase for commercial properties and no increase for multi-residential/apartment buildings as per provincial legislation. With additional levies, including 0.5% to the City Building Fund, the total increase for homeowners will be 3.58%.

The …

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Bill 5, Better Local Government Act, 2018

Bill 5, Better Local Government Act, 2018

Dear Neighbours,

To look on the bright side of the province’s ill-timed decision to reduce the number of Toronto councillors to 25, we have yet another reminder that we should not take our democratic institutions for granted. In a country such as ours, where these are seldom threatened, we need to remember what we value about our political system: consultation, open discussion, and rational decision-making for the clear benefit of the public.

Much has been said about how difficult it will be for councillors to stay in …

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City Consultation on Construction Dust – May 15

City Consultation on Construction Dust – May 15

Willowdale continues to be a neighbourhood with a very high amount of infill construction. When builders are not sensitive to impacts on their neighbours, this can be a source of great frustration.

Over the past several years, John has worked with the City to improve the resources it has available to enforce bylaws, improve training for building inspections and develop new communication tools for neighbours.

You can read more about addressing infill construction issues here.  Or find the City’s recently published Good Neighbour Guide here.

One of the most frequent …

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From City Hall: New TTC Buses Revitalizing City Fleet

From City Hall: New TTC Buses Revitalizing City Fleet

The City of Toronto has announced a $934 million investment into 1,738 new and revitalized buses in the city to improve public transit for local travelers. New buses will result in shorter wait times, more reliable service and increased accessibility.

The total investment is split between the City and the Government of Canada’s Public Transit Infrastructure Fund (PTIF). This fund was established in 2016 to match up to 50% of eligible project costs allocated to municipalities based on local ridership. This commitment is part of a $3.6 billion national program to improve …

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#TorontoStrong Vigil & Community Walk – April 29

#TorontoStrong Vigil & Community Walk – April 29

As we move together through a difficult week, I want to update you on community gatherings in the days ahead.

The #TorontoStrong Vigil was announced today by the City of Toronto to honour and support all those who have been affected by Monday’s tragedy.

The vigil will take place on Sunday, April 29 at Mel Lastman Square, beginning at 7:00 PM.

Organized in collaboration with community groups Faith in the City and the Toronto Area Interfaith Council, the vigil will be an interfaith demonstration of Toronto’s diverse communities as well as a display of the City’s resiliency.

Additional details, including …

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Decision on REimagine Yonge Deferred

Decision on REimagine Yonge Deferred

City Council last week deferred consideration of REimagine Yonge. The deferral came after the TTC raised last-minute concerns about potential conflict between bike lanes and a bus lane north of Finch Avenue.  With this issue unresolved, the Transform Yonge option would not likely have passed. John therefore reluctantly supported postponing the decision.
The issue could possibly come back to Council this term or, as the last Council meeting this term is in July, a decision may be delayed until 2019.

 

The Transform Yonge option is recommended by city staff and was supported …

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REimagine Yonge (UPDATED)

REimagine Yonge (UPDATED)

UPDATE – March 2018

City Council this week deferred consideration of REimagine Yonge. The deferral came after the TTC raised last-minute concerns about potential conflict between bike lanes and a bus lane north of Finch Avenue.  With this issue unresolved, the Transform Yonge option would not likely have passed. John therefore reluctantly supported postponing the decision.

The issue could possibly come back to Council this term or, as the last Council meeting this term is in July, a decision may be delayed until 2019.

The Transform Yonge option …

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