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Newsstand: April 11, 2014

It's going to be a warm weekend, everyone! It's finally going to be a warm weekend! In the news today: OCAD is falling apart, Pearson Airport will fall apart in bad weather, and Norm Kelly wants to investigate the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority.

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Peeling paint and out-of-order bathrooms are among the maintenance issues that frustrated students and faculty of OCAD University so much that they created a group, OCAD Us, to force the administration into action. According to Associate Vice President of Students Deanne Fisher, the issues are only being ignored because of monetary constraints. “We are not sitting on billions of endowment funds,” Fisher told the National Post. Administrators had arranged for the school’s property managers to fix the bathrooms, work which should have been done by now according to a February web post. Instead, it hasn’t yet begun.

Almost anyone who tried to travel by airplane this past winter already knows this, but Pearson Airport is not equipped to deal with extreme weather. A report released Thursday confirms that anecdotal knowledge and makes a dozen recommendations for how the airport can better prepare itself. Among those is the suggestion that the airport create an “Airport Update” website, that it set up more warming stations for outdoor workers, and that it “establish clear early-warning procedures” for “large-scale service disruptions.” Next winter, when the airport is shut down over some falling snow and a light breeze, remember that they were offered this advice.

Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly wants the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority investigated, as he believes the group may be renting out housing properties to employees at prices below the market rate. TRCA CEO Brian Denney responded: “It may be bad optics, but (TRCA employees) would also be very good tenants because we know they would take good care of the homes, as long as they’re providing market rent.”

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