Happy days are here again, it's Wednesday! Do the Hump Day dance! Well, no. Actually, don't, you might get charged with a crime and end up on a registry for the rest of your life. Instead, read some nice, harassment-free news: Pride funding may be in jeopardy; one city councillor says the mayor isn't doing his job (no word on how many other councillors are thinking it); more chunks of concrete crumble off the Gardiner Expressway; the royals have come and gone; ball hockey is prohibited on Toronto streets (what?!) but maybe not for long (phew) but it's not as simple as you think (what?!); a new cause for NIMBYs: the proposed casino; and Toronto's newest multimillionaire.
The City’s cultural grant of more than $100,000 is not a sure thing for this year’s Pride. City Councillor James Pasternak (Ward 10, York Centre) said if Queers Against Israeli Apartheid registers to march in this year’s parade, city council will have to rule on whether or not to fund the massive annual event. Last year, city staff ruled that the group’s name did not violate the city’s anti-discrimination policy, but council voted last June to reject that staff report. On Tuesday councillors on the economic development committee approved more than $6 million in cultural grants, including the Pride grant, but city council will have final say on funding. When asked for his views on the issue, Mayor Rob Ford shouted “Cottage!” then scuttled away to his weigh-in. We’re kidding about Mayor Ford of course — the weigh-in thing should have tipped you off.
City Councillor (and likely 2014 mayoral candidate) Shelley Carroll (Ward 33, Don Valley East) says Mayor Ford is “not doing his job” and should “get out of the radio station, come back to City Hall and work with [his] fellow councillors to decide the future of the city.” She suggests that councillors see or hear little of or from the mayor, save for when he is at his weigh-in (so, pretty infrequently?) or on the radio.
Once again, the sky is falling. Or, at least, for the third time this month, the Gardiner Expressway is crumbling. During Tuesday’s evening rush hour, a large chunk of concrete fell at Lower Simcoe Street and Lake Shore Boulevard. Again, we remind you to bring a helmet or a very strong, steel umbrella should you venture under Toronto’s most controversial highway.
They came, they saw, they conquered. Well, not really, but who hasn’t gotten caught up in the excitement of the Game of Thrones? In less-thrilling royal news, Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, have wrapped-up their Toronto visit which included visits to Queen’s Park, Ryerson University, the Moss Park Armoury, the Fort York Armoury, the Distillery District, the Yonge Street Mission, the Royal York, and, of course — no Toronto visit would be complete without it — a ride on the TTC. Phew. And what did you accomplish over the past few days, hmm?
If you’ve ever participated in a game of road hockey, or shooed your kids outdoors and onto the streets to smack a ball around, you are officially a bylaw breaker (or, in the case of the latter, an accessory to a bylaw-breaking crime). Under a widely ignored and rarely enforced bylaw, road hockey is actually prohibited. But, thanks to City Councillor Josh Matlow (Ward 22, St. Paul’s), that could soon change. That is, if would-be ball hockey players obtain the formal support of 80 per cent of the households on the street; the street has a speed limit of 40 km/h or less; 1,000 or fewer vehicles per day pass on the street; there is an average gap of one minute or more between vehicles; and there are sightlines sufficient to allow vehicles to stop before crashing into the goalie (oh, plus there are a few more hurdles). So, yeah. That sounds fun.
A new poll finding shows that most Torontonians would not be in favour of a casino if it meant it would be built in their neighbourhood. The majority think that there should be a city-wide referendum in which all voters can cast a ballot. To sum up, yay, casinos (maybe?) as long as they are not near anyone’s neighbourhood. Oh good, just as long as we all agree.
Are you $50 million richer as of this week? No? Well this penny- and girlfriend-pinching guy is. And we’re all so happy for him. Humph.
As has been pointed out by a reader, the next municipal election will be in 2014, not 2012. A typo that got someone’s hopes up, apparently! Apologies.