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Newsstand: February 1, 2013

There will be no mention of Rob Ford, the TTC, or casinos in Newsstand today. Ha, February Fools! In the news: Councillor Stintz wants to hear what Mayor Ford has to say; Mayor Ford might not want to hear what his auditor has to say; two large, and very monied companies come together for a casino; Toronto’s number of undocumented workers is set to increase; and the TTC is fancying up their fanciest assets.

newsstand_greenwood2

Looking sleepier than ever, Rob Ford held a press conference to drum up some extra anger over the TTC’s recent sole-source Gateway Newsstand deal. TTC Chair Karen Stintz (Ward 16, Eglinton-Lawrence) was on hand to make sure she was present. Sure, that’s sort of circular logic, but hey, this is politics. No word on whether Ford tried to require her to sign in at the news conference.

It has overall been a good week for Mayor Ford, and not just because the TTC has given him something to get all riled up about on his radio show. Rather, the week has been good to him because he was allowed to continue to be mayor. Well, now the week is ending and a whole new (but not really new) thing might give him a reason to feel not so great. The audit of Ford’s campaign finances is apparently set to be released as soon as today, but maybe not. An unfavourable result does not definitely mean the end of Ford’s mayorship, but it does mean that a three-member compliance audit committee may choose to hire a special prosecutor who will then decide which violations to pursue non-criminal charges for. Ohhh.

MGM and Cadillac Fairview (a company owned by the Ontario Teacher’s Pension Plan) have climbed into bed together to pitch a joint casino plan that promises such great things as “new dining concepts” from Mark McEwan, the guy from The Heat With Mark McEwan and Top Chef Canada. MGM has its sights set on Exhibition Place, so “new dining concepts” probably just means something weird being deep-fried.

Toronto apparently has the largest number of undocumented workers in all of Canada and according to U of T’s Audrey Macklin, federal immigration policies will only put more people into that position as time progresses. According to the law professor, other countries that have implemented restrictions similar to our four-year limit on temporary work permits have had major increases to the number of undocumented workers.

The TTC is trying out some upgrades to the Toronto Rocket subway trains that went into service in July. This means door chimes that play outside the cars and fancy yellow straps from the ceiling of the train. Xzibit would be proud.

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