Throw on those Saturday jammies, pour yourself a nice hot cup of coffee (or tea, if that's your pleasure, we're not here to judge), and roll that desk chair right up to the warm, glowing computer screen because we've got the news right here and ready for you. Today: Mayor Ford says he didn't jump the pothole queue; the TTC may soon slow to a crawl; the OLG puts the heat on the City to make a decision about building a casino; and some weird, and smelly, garbage news.
We all love a good scandal, but Deco-gate, the situation in which the mayor asked senior City officials to bump up repairs to the road outside his family business so potholes would be fixed before the company’s 50th anniversary party, may be less scandalous than it is, well, the type of thing that just seems a little corrupt. Mayor Ford defended his actions yesterday, saying that this was not special treatment, and that he fields calls about pothole problems all the time and tries to get to them within a matter of days. It has been the case that Mayor Ford does seem to spend a lot of time thinking about potholes, and has made promises about timely fixes in the past. But be that as it may, it seems the mayor needs a lesson in optics.
If the TTC’s plan to outsource bus cleaning comes to fruition, so might a work-to-rule campaign by the transit workers’ union. If a decision is made next week to contract out cleaning, TTC workers will do only the minimum required of their contract, says Amalgamated Transit Union Local 113 president Bob Kinnear. By adhering strictly to the rules outlined in their collective agreement, TTC workers will show their displeasure by doing just what is expected of them, things like driving the speed limit, and not a click over, as well as refusing to sign documents that allow for extra overtime. In other words, by sticking to their contracts word-for-word, transit workers in this city could slow down commutes considerably. Ah, sticking it to the man never felt so…structured?
Time is ticking, warns OLG Chairman Paul Godfrey, so Toronto politicians better make a decision soon on whether to allow a new casino in the city or not. According to Godfrey, the OLG needs to know by early 2013, and if not, the provincial gambling agency will be moving on to another city that is ready to commit (sniff, sniff, clutches copy of They’re Just Not That Into Me). Godfrey’s not playing too hard-to-get though; he’s not shy to admit that Toronto is OLG’s top choice, stating that “the waterfront or downtown” is the only place that makes sense for an “iconic” facility. Keep that sweet talk coming, Pauly boy, maybe we’ll consider making a decision soon (wink!).
With the weather turning a bit cooler this week, the lovely smell of autumn is starting to creep into the air. Crisp days, damp leaves, and…burning garbage? If you were at College Street and Dovercourt Road yesterday at 3 p.m., there is a good chance that you were treated to that lovely aroma as a garbage truck was forced to dump a load of smouldering trash onto the street after a fire broke out in the truck’s cargo bin.
In other garbage news, that human hand found yesterday at a North York garbage facility? Yeah, turns out that was a bear’s paw, not a person’s hand. Well, that’s a relief. It was pretty scary to think about a severed human hand in the garbage at… wait, now there are bear body parts in our urban garbage? Well that seems… terrifying.