Council Update: March 2015

PG2.8 - Heritage Conservation Districts

I am thrilled to share that Council adopted recommendations concerning the study of heritage conservation districts, which included the start of the consultation for the Baby Point and Bloor West Village in 2016.  Our community has worked very hard to get to this point, and it is wonderful to see the validation from the City. 

MM5.15 - Protecting Toronto’s drinking water

I was honoured to second Councillor Layton’s motion concerning oil pipelines that pass through the northern part of Toronto, including across two major watercourses. Council agreed to ask Enbridge to install automatic shutoff valves in its Line 9B pipeline on either side of the two watercourses as a way to limit the amount of oil that could enter and contaminate the waters should a pipeline break/spill occur. The two watercourses flow into Lake Ontario, from which Toronto draws its drinking water.

EX 4.4 - Schools as community assets

Council directed the City-School Boards Advisory Committee to consult with the Toronto school boards and the Province on the projected closure of some local schools with low enrolment. Council asked that the plan for the school properties must take into consideration the value of schools as community assets such as sports fields, playgrounds, swimming pools, and childcare facilities, and report on how we can retain public ownership of former school properties.  As a member of the City-School Boards Advisory Committee I look forward to working on this to help keep our communities vibrant.

EX4.16 - Expanded gaming at Woodbine Racetrack

I agreed with Council to authorize the City Manager to conduct public consultations on the matter of expanded gaming at Woodbine Racetrack. Following last terms debate primarily focused on the downtown casino, residents of Ward 13 told me they were equally divided regarding gambling at Woodbine.  This consultation will allow staff to report back on technical requirements such as the number of slot machines and gaming tables, as well as on the merits and risks of expanded gaming. The City will also be looking into the public health impacts and a transit strategy for the area.

PE2.5 - Extending the outdoor skating season

Council directed the Parks, Forestry and Recreation division to include a contingency to extend the outdoor skating season if weather permits. For the past two years the City has had to look for alternative funding as the winter remains cold going into March.  This will ensure that residents know that if cold weather continues, our outdoor rinks will remain open.

CC5.11 - Taxicab licensing

Council considered a report about a court decision regarding the validity of taxicab regulations enacted last year that created a new taxicab licence class called the Toronto Taxicab Licence. The court decision upheld the validity of the new licence but found that the deadline for converting current licences to the new licence was invalid. Council agreed not appeal the court decision.