Newsstand: April 8, 2013

Torontoist

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Newsstand: April 8, 2013

Today would be a good day to carry an umbrella, according to the forecast. April showers, right? In the news: Mayor Ford releases an open letter touting a downtown casino; Canada heads to the Davis Cup semis, thanks largely to a particular Torontonian (no, it's not Drake); one city councillor wants protective shields in cabs; and the Winter Classic game between the Leafs and the Wings is back on.

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Mayor Rob Ford has released an open letter to the city’s residents explaining why he wants a casino built in downtown Toronto, scooping his own staff’s report. In the letter, Ford gives figures that, according to his press secretary, come from the report and says “After reviewing all available information, consulting with my council colleagues and members of the public, I am confident Toronto faces a golden opportunity.” City Manager Joe Pennachetti’s report on a possible casino in the city’s downtown could be released as early as this week; the mayor’s executive committee and council will then vote on the matter. George Christopoulos, the mayor’s press secretary, told the Globe and Mail the report would be released today, while City of Toronto spokesperson Jackie DeSouza said she could not confirm its release date.

With a four-set win over Italy’s Andreas Seppi, Thornhill’s own Milos Raonic sent Canada to the finals of the Davis Cup—an international country-vs-country tennis tournament—for the first time in the modern era of the sport. Canada will play Serbia’s team in its home country in the semis in September.

Councillor Cesar Palacio (Ward 17, Davenport), chair of the licensing and standards committee, will ask officials to report by May on making protective shields mandatory in the city’s cabs in an effort to reduce violence against drivers. In a letter that will go to the licensing committee on April 18, Palacio said that studies in other cities have shown that the shields reduce incidents of violence against drivers by more than 50 per cent. The councillor is also calling for a report on requiring pre-payment or deposits for after-dark fares and on the use of credit and debit machines in cabs as a measure to reduce the amount of cash drivers are carrying.

After the cancellation of a planned Winter Classic game against the Detroit Red Wings, due to the NHL lockout, the Toronto Maple Leafs will get another shot to play an outdoor game in Detroit next year. The Leafs will play the Wings at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbour on January 1, 2014 to a crowd that NHL commissioner Gary Bettman called potentially record-setting.

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