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Your Toronto 2014 Issue Navigator

How the candidates compare on some of the city's biggest issues.

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Newsstand: October 4, 2012

Like, oh my god. It's so Thursday! In the news today: the plastic bag ban continues on, Gord Perks apologizes for squaring off against Giorgio Mammoliti, the Toronto Zoo's landlords come out against its sale, and the province puts the brakes on new school building projects. Totally!

All right, Toronto. Get ready to say goodbye to plastic bags! And while you’re at it, get ready to say goodbye to ever talking about not getting rid of plastic bags! A motion to reopen the debate over the ban was shot down in council yesterday. The majority of councillors voted in favour of it, but not enough to meet the two-thirds required for the motion to carry. The fight might not be over, though. Councillor Peter Milczyn (Ward 5, Etobicoke-Lakeshore) suggested the ban could be neutered if council axes the bylaw that would enforce it. He’s a tricky one, that Mr. Milczyn. Meanwhile the reaction from the plastics industry is pretty much exactly what you’d expect: a lot of huffin’ and puffin’, but no pop! just yet. A spokesperson said plastic bags have simply gotten a “bad rap” lately. You know, like juggalos. Wasteful, hard-to-decompose juggalos. So really, a lot like juggalos.

On the subject of council, Councillor Gord Perks (Ward 14, Parkdale-High Park) has apologized for giving us the most entertaining minute or so of City politics yesterday after getting all up in the face of Giorgio Mammoliti (Ward 7, York West). Phooey. We guess this means no cage match.

The City might be looking to cut loose some dead weight (and countless adorable animals) by selling the Toronto Zoo, but the Region Conservation Authority—who just so happens to own the land the zoo sits on—thinks otherwise. And since the authority needs to approve any changes to tenants on its land, well, we’ve got us a bit of a problem. Mayor Rob Ford still endorses selling the zoo, which means we’re one step closer to being able to safely say he hates cuteness.

How do you feel about a casino in your city? What about if it’s in a part of the city you probably weren’t ever going to visit? Those were both trick questions, because technically it doesn’t matter what you think—according to a City staff report, the province has the power to go ahead and put a casino wherever it damn well pleases. To be fair, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation says it won’t open a casino where local residents are in opposition. But polls show residents in north Etobicoke, near the Woodbine Racetrack, actually support the track turning into a full-fledged casino. Because at a certain point, anything that brings people to your neck of the woods becomes a good thing.

Speaking of the province throwing its weight around to the dismay of Torontonians: guess who just cut off funding for new school construction projects in the city? School board trustees were decidedly unhappy upon learning of the funding halt, especially with class sizes not getting any smaller. Apparently the TDSB is often over budget in construction projects. The Catholic school board is much more efficient, which means homophobia and bigotry aren’t the only the only things that board does well.

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