Today Sun Mon
It is forecast to be Chance of Rain at 11:00 PM EDT on August 23, 2014
Chance of Rain
It is forecast to be Partly Cloudy at 11:00 PM EDT on August 24, 2014
Partly Cloudy
It is forecast to be Partly Cloudy at 11:00 PM EDT on August 25, 2014
Partly Cloudy



Rob Ford: What Torontonians Care Most About is Police, Smooth Roads, and Clean Streets

Rob Ford during his inaugural meeting as mayor. Photo by Christopher Drost/Torontoist.

In a live interview with Stephen LeDrew on CP24 at noon today—one of the very few of his mayoralty—Rob Ford addressed some of the issues that have been making headlines recently. Some highlights from their conversation—
On the ongoing budget review:
“It’s not a matter of cuts. KPMG has gone in, is finding the duplication, finding the waste. [...] It’s finding efficiencies, it’s saving the taxpayers money… There’s three essential, essential things that the taxpayers want: police services…roads that are clean, don’t have potholes in them, and the third thing is the garbage—they want the garbage picked up, they want a clean city, they don’t want graffiti.”
On whether we should reduce the number of police officers in Toronto:
“My personal opinion? No.”
On KPMG’s list of potential cuts to community grants:
“I can’t sit here and justify handing out $50 million in grants,” Ford said, while the government tries to balance it’s budget. The City, he continued, could not just hand out money to “every special interest group out there… Some, some of it might be legit. But when you’re $750 million in the hole you have to get the private sector involved.”
On a property tax increase:
“Very very hard to say” whether one would be included in next year’s budget. (An earlier report said that the City might be considering an increase of no more than 3 per cent this year.)
On buyouts and relationship with City staff:
“I’m prepared to go toe-to-toe with anyone… it’s not an anti-union thing, it’s about finding value for your dollar.” Later, he said that among City staff was some “deadwood, hiding behind a desk, not doing anything.”
On not attending the Pride parade:
“I don’t regret it… My family comes first.”
On his mayoralty so far:
“People that know me know I’m a man of integrity, I speak the truth, and I do what I say I’m going to do… I want to be in the business of cleaning the city up, making sure our roads are spic and span…all the other stuff to me is duplication.”
The footage of Mayor Ford’s interview is available on CP24.


  • Nexus .

    *LOL* this guy doesn't have a clue….. I'm surprised Doug didn't do the interview for him and just tell Stephen to “pretend” that he's talking with Rob…

  • Justin Kozuch

    I'm glad that everything else about running this city is just “stuff” to him. And what exactly about this “stuff” is duplication?

  • Toronto_Dave

    Proof once again that Rob Ford would make an excellent mayor of a small town. Toronto is perhaps a little too…er, complicated…for his skill level.

  • Anonymous416

    Finally, Ford defines who his “The Taxpayer” is.  Someone whose idea of civilization is police officers, smooth asphalt, and blank walls.

  • Justin Kozuch

    I think it can be summed up like this:
    “Fisher Price, My First City.” Bike Lanes, Gravy Ladle and Civic Engagement sold separately.

  • CraigC_TO

    Apparently, Rob Ford wants the most bland, boring city in the world. One where workers are drones with no lives outside of working and commuting. One where there's always another city somewhere else that's more interesting.

  • rmcw

    I'll agree with him on his statement on his mayoralty so far, with the exception of maybe the telling the truth part. And the doing what he says he's going to do part. And the integrity part. But he totally loves roads and stuff.

  • Paul Kishimoto

    Poor people, children, the sick and the elderly are apparently “special interest groups.”

  • bdawgz

    How does he know what every Torontonian wants?  I was never asked.  I really like grafitti and bike lanes and arts funding and gay people.  And as for pride, since when is that an excuse?  I would love to go to this city council meeting, but my family goes to Wonderland on this day every year.  You're the mayor now!  He should have just gone to the flag raising and everything would have been fine.  Just take the elevator to the roof, slap on a smile and take some photos.  What a douche.

  • istoronto

    Is Rob making this up, like Doug did with his Library/ Timmys statement?

    I need to find these people, uh, I mean taxpayers, that essentially only want these three things. All of my friends and family, only put garbage service in the top three things they want from city government. A place where there are jobs that allow them to afford living in the city is #1. A city does this by attracting businesses. How? Competitive tax rates, good schools, clean recreational areas, great public transit and vibrant neighbourhoods for their employees.  Getting to those jobs on reliable, affordable transit is #2. Clean water and air are in there somewhere. Crime is low on the list, because most people aren't affected by it. Road dis-repair is a concern for drivers, but the reality is that the city could spend 1/2 of its $6 billion budget on fixing roads and still not make much headway on all the repairs needed. Crummy roads is something most city have to contend with, on a on going basis.

    Rob, show me proof, that what you say the majority of Torontonians want, is based on real numbers and not from a few phone calls to your office from your buddies.

  • Paul Kishimoto

    Please call your councillors, everyone, and tell them what you think.

  • Cameron Reid

    Interesting how this man of 'integrity' seems bound and determined to make the poorest and most marginalized bear the brunt to the pain in the budget.

    “Any society, any nation, is judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members — the last, the least, the littlest.”

  • Pedram Navid

    Well if you take stuff, and then add more stuff, clearly there's just a whole bunch of stuff going around!

  • TiarasandFeathers

    “Cleaning this city up” seems to be some sort of code for making it impossible for poor, or even middle class people to live here. All while spending tax dollars to paint over street art that is part of what makes OUR city (not his) so amazing.  Not to mention an outright campaign against intellectuals (the libraries), creativity (the arts) and diversity (his refusal to attend Pride, refusing nurses to help new Canadians, his constant attacks on economic diversity, I could go on and on and on).

    I would love for this “man of integrity” to try to live IN the city (and by city, I mean the downtown core) he attempts to govern for a month on the budget of one of his constituents, without a car and dependent on public transportation.  I would love to hear his opinions on Transit City after a week of riding an Eglinton bus crosstown at rush hour.

  • istoronto

    Some group should open a bank account, were everyone who dislikes the current mayor can contribute $1.00 per month until the next election. There would probably be a few million dollars in funds. Then have potential mayoral candidates campaign to receive the funds based their plans to right, Ford's wrong!
    Donation Solgan – For the price of one small Tim Horton's coffee per month, you can contribute to rid Toronto of the Ford Brothers in the next election.

  • Justin Kozuch

    So THAT'S what's in the “Rob Ford Manual for How To Run A City”. Now I understand him SO much better! ;)

  • Matt Patterson

    “People that know me know I'm a man of integrity, I speak the truth…”

    …Except for, you know, all those untrue things I'm always saying like labour costs being 80%, and that we can balance the budget with no tax increases or service cuts, and that we can build a subway using only private-sector money.

  • dangouge

    Where does Ford get these ideas? Did he ask anyone other than Doug?

  • Bryan Cook

    I just did the math and realized Ford was elected by less than 1/4 of Torontonians. Mind you only 52% voted (a record high) of which only 47% voted for Ford meaning less than half of voters voted for him.

    Naturally this means he speaks for all of us.

  • Toronto_Dave

    Psst….Don't tell this to Ford Nation. They're still going around saying he won by the “largest majority in Toronto's history.” Because clearly 47% is a massive, unprecedented landslide, and indisputably a majority by any mathematical standard. I mean, practically no one voted for anyone else!

  • Joe

    The phrase, like the name of the old cleaning product, is “spic and span.” (The spick spelling is listed as an alternate and has certain connotations.)

  • Meg_Campbell

    Hi Joe,

    Thanks for pointing that out. We use Canadian Oxford as our dictionary of choice, and it does, in fact, list “spic and span” as the preferred spelling, so the post has been amended to reflect that.
    However, if when you mentioned “certain connotations” you were referring to the derogatory term for Spanish-speaking people, that is actually spelled without the “k” in all the dictionaries (online and off) that we've consulted.

  • sezmesez

    Rob Ford values smooth roadways because when there are bumps, sometimes you dial the wrong number on your cellphone, or if you're giving a six-year-old the finger, you might hurt your finger.