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Newsstand: January 25, 2013

Happy Burns Day; we have lots of haggis to address. In the news: Ford’s last stand (maybe), Ontario Liberals convene in Toronto, a TTC contract gets extended without any other bids, the City’s online presence is number two internationally, and baby research.

newsstand_sherbourne

This could very well be the last time that the words “Mayor Ford” grace a Newsstand article (that is, until Krista gets elected), because, as you already know, today is the day that Rob Ford finds out the results of his judicial appeal. Then again, this might not be the end of the legal process anyways. Anticipation!

In other political leadership news: today the Ontario Liberal leadership convention kicks off at Maple Leaf Gardens. If you’re into Provincial Liberals and delegate-based voting, then go down and get your fill all weekend. It is bound to be a very Liberal (with a big “L”) party.

We also have some big news for newsstands (with a small “n”), lottery booths, and cafés on TTC property. You can call it a sole-source contract, a mutually beneficial multi-lease harmonization, the right fiscal choice, or just a bad deal for the TTC, but at the end of the day it is an extra few years on a $48 million lease with Tobmar Investments International, the company that runs the 65 Gateway Newsstands and a few other businesses on TTC property, that no one else was able to get a shot at. If you’re looking for a wholly unbiased statement of the facts, just ask the lobbyists hired by Tobmar. They might still have copies of the talking points they gave out to some of our transit commissioners after the deal went through.

Let the online back-patting begin, because Toronto has the second-best online municipal resources in the world, according to a recent Rutgers’ survey. Seoul, South Korea, beat us out, but that’s okay because they pretty well blew everyone else out of the water. Apparently we are pretty good at the content and usability side of municipal websites, but we like to live dangerously and received lower marks for security and privacy.

U of T researchers have discovered that even toddlers can lie. Yeah, lie to themselves.

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