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Newsstand: November 9, 2012

It was only 151 years ago today that the first documented football game in Canada took place at U of T. Look how far we’ve come. In the news: what the plastic bag law could look like, a rejected condo and office development, claims of mistreatment at Sunnybrook’s veterans wing, TTC accessibility gets some people upset, Eagles touch down, and City Hall rock 'n' roll.

The Toronto bylaw-to-be that will outlaw many types of plastic bags from city stores is ready for review. The proposed law still allows some types of single-use plastic bags, like those intended for bulk items, but the focus has always been on the kind that you get at the cash register. Those bags, “regardless of a customer’s decision to reuse,” will be illegal under this law on January 1, but a six-month grace period where no fines will be laid is suggested. The proposed bylaw goes to council in a few weeks—that will be a fun council meeting.

Yesterday, the City’s planning committee rejected a proposed condo/office development on Sterling Road north of Dundas Street that we told you about weeks ago. The planned towers were to be built on a vacant site beside an existing Nestlé plant that did not want to welcome the new neighbours. This update comes on the heels of recent news that a Mr. Christie’s plant in Etobicoke would be shutting down and potentially turning into condos. As these things go, the developer will now appeal to the Ontario Municipal Board and the OMB will probably just side with the developer. Hey, there are far worse kinds of factories to have in your backyard.

The families of some veterans living at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre on Bayview Avenue are raising issue with what they consider to be the neglectful and abusive treatment of their loved ones. The veteran’s wing of Sunnybrook, which houses 500 vets, is fairly unique because it receives funding from both the provincial and federal governments, but it is not unique in that it is an important public service with a shrinking budget. Sunnybrook claims that the concerns of the vocal family members are not representative of the hospital’s performance on a survey of patient and family satisfaction, but whether real of just perceived, the fact that these issues are even a possibility is pretty sad.

In more pre–Remembrance Day news, the TTC no longer displays “Lest we forget” intermixed with route information on buses because doing so makes reading the route information more difficult for some people. In fact, the TTC no longer displays any non-route information, such as the aforementioned phrase around Remembrance Day or “Happy Canada Day,” in an effort to provide more accessible service to people with vision impairments (many of whom are veterans).

Congratulations to the Don Bosco Eagles players for winning the Toronto District Catholic School Board football championship. Yesterday, they beat the Senator O’Connor Blues and now they advance on to the Metro Bowl quarter-finals.

Lastly, if you feel like things are all doom, gloom, and ideological bickering at Nathan Phillips Square, just read this article about a band consisting of City Hall regulars.

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