2014 City Council Election: Ward 5 – Etobicoke-Lakeshore

The Incumbent:

James Maloney (appointed)

The Race

Ward 5 was represented for many years by a capable Councillor in Peter Milczyn. With the departure of interim Councillor James Maloney, this ward has the opportunity to elect a fresh, fiscally responsible voice. There are mixed opinions on cutting the size of City Council and eliminating the Land Transfer Tax, but we’re pleased to see broad support for finding efficiencies in government and holding firm on labour negotiations.

Candidates Who Did Not Participate: Magda Chelminska, Tony D’Aversa

The Breakdown

  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Yes
    Desilets, Raymond No
    Di Ciano, Justin Yes
    Lehto, George Yes
    Melnyk, Walter Yes
    Samac, Nikola Yes
    Surma, Kinga Yes


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Improve processes, technology, and finding balance in the ratio of management to staff in all departments.
    Desilets, Raymond We have a revenue problem, not a spending problem. Property taxes are low and have been declining when adjusted for inflation.
    Di Ciano, Justin Re-structuring middle management and bring accountability to the role of Manager.
    Lehto, George Bring down the number of people relying on city assistance by increasing the employment based. Can be accomplished through training programs. Attract small business and get youth working.
    Melnyk, Walter Change the budget process
    Samac, Nikola Councillor salaries and expense accounts
    Surma, Kinga There should be a budget review at the beginning of every term. Assess which city services can be prioritized.


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Yes
    Desilets, Raymond No
    Di Ciano, Justin No
    Lehto, George No
    Melnyk, Walter Yes
    Samac, Nikola Yes
    Surma, Kinga Yes


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Yes, also for police services
    Desilets, Raymond No
    Di Ciano, Justin Yes
    Lehto, George No
    Melnyk, Walter Yes
    Surma, Kinga Yes


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Will consider reducing or eliminating
    Desilets, Raymond No
    Di Ciano, Justin No without revenue to replace it
    Lehto, George Reduce the tax for first-time buyers
    Melnyk, Walter Yes to eliminating
    Samac, Nikola Will consider if savings are found elsewhere
    Surma, Kinga Yes to elimination


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Research how other cities in North America used innovative approaches to bring business to cities.
    Desilets, Raymond Invest in infrastructure and public services. No race to the bottom with subsidies and tax cuts. Continue to invest in successful existing industries. Lobby provincial and federal governments for a long-term industrial strategy.
    Di Ciano, Justin Raise the minimum raise to $15/hour so there is more disposable income to spend creating new jobs.
    Lehto, George Lower commercial property taxes. Streamline bureaucracy for business ventures. Develop new relationships with world entrepreneurs.
    Melnyk, Walter Broad and aggressive initiatives for economic development.
    Samac, Nikola Tax incentives for small business and corporations.
    Surma, Kinga Reduce commercial and business taxes. Address traffic congestion so it doesn't affect businesses operating in the city.


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy The political process has caused confusion in moving ahead. Provincial and federal governments need to help fund transit.
    Desilets, Raymond Develop four other urban growth centres to balance transit load. Need to identify commuting pattens before building transit. Province should continue to fund Metrolinx and provide funding for local Toronto transit. Toronto should also issue long term debt to avoid sharp tax or fare increases.
    Di Ciano, Justin Funding requires investment from all three levels of government. Transit system must use all forms of transportation.
    Lehto, George Municipal, provincial, and federal governments need to share in responsibility to build transit. Light rail transit over subways.
    Melnyk, Walter Use reserve funds. All 3 levels of government should find money.
    Samac, Nikola Yes to changing transit planning
    Surma, Kinga Expand the subway system because it is the fastest and most convenient mode of transit. Would only support new revenue tools if dedicated to transit expansion.


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Fair compromise and realistic expectations from unions.
    Desilets, Raymond City workers deserve to get paid as well as private sector counterparts.
    Di Ciano, Justin City employee performance levels should be compared to private sector performance levels.
    Lehto, George Negotiating very little in wage increases is the new economic reality.
    Melnyk, Walter Need to be less afraid of union strike threats
    Samac, Nikola No more money to be given. Privatize more city services?
    Surma, Kinga Will request to sit on the labour committee so best results for taxpayers are accomplished.


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Will consider with cautious and detailed analysis.
    Desilets, Raymond Will consider on a case by case basis.
    Di Ciano, Justin No because the city is not business friendly enough for partnerships to flourish.
    Lehto, George No
    Melnyk, Walter Yes, for TCHC
    Samac, Nikola Yes
    Surma, Kinga Yes and they should always be explored


  • Candidate Response
    Bowie, Guy Traffic congestion and transit as it affects quality of life.
    Desilets, Raymond Etobicoke Centre has been designated as an Urban Growth Centre for intensification and re-development. Residents should have their say on design and amenities.
    Di Ciano, Justin For a full list of issues visit www.justindiciano.ca
    Lehto, George Reasonable condo development. Put the needs of residents ahead of the developers. Also, road safety and traffic calming solutions.
    Melnyk, Walter Will introduce a Taxpayers Bill of Rights at Council.
    Samac, Nikola Expansion of care programs for seniors and employment programs for youth. Responsible development of the Queensway and Six Points.
    Surma, Kinga Traffic, keeping taxes low, development, and illegal body rub parlours.

 

The full responses

  • 1. Do you support a property tax cap ensuring future hikes are no greater than the rate of inflation?

    Yes, I am in favour of property tax hikes at or below the rate of inflation.

    2. Where, specifically, do you advocate finding savings in the current city budget?

    I believe that savings can still be found in making all city departments more efficient and productive through improved processes, technologies and by finding balance in the ratio of management to staff.

    3. Do you support reducing the size of Toronto City Council?

    I support the reduction in size of Toronto City Council and I believe that council can operate just as well with some adjustment to ensure that constituent services are not negatively impacted by the new boundaries.

    4. Will you support contracting out garbage collection east of Yonge Street?

    Yes, I support the contracting out of garbage collection east of Yonge Street. Another area that would save taxpayers money would be the paid duty services currently provided by Toronto police. Much of this can be handled by private security firms at a fraction of the cost we currently pay.

    5. What are your thoughts on the Municipal Land Transfer Tax – will you support reducing it or eliminating it?

    I was not in favour of the increase to the Land Transfer Tax and I support looking at reducing or eliminating this in the future. However, given our current dependence on this tax, we would first need to look at the impact on the city budget and areas where we can reduce costs and find savings to make up for its loss.

    6. Toronto’s unemployment rate is much higher than the provincial rate. What are your ideas to create job growth in Toronto?

    I believe that we need to research how other cities in North America have used innovative approaches to attracting new businesses into the city. The United States have certainly suffered heavily over the last few years and many cities have had to struggle with this employment issue. Their experiences can help us to come up with solutions most likely to succeed.

    7. It seems City Council has been debating public transit forever with little results to show. How would you fund new transit projects to ease congestion for everyone? Do you feel we need to change the current transit planning process?

    I believe that the Transit planning process is sound…it seems that the political process is causing confusion and gridlock in regards to moving ahead. The funding of transit will certainly involve the Federal and Provincial governments and we need to rely on them to assist in building this infrastructure so that it will benefit all Ontarians and the economy as a whole.

    8. Labour negotiations will be a big part of the next council term. What advice do you have for the city’s negotiating team to get the best deal for taxpayers?

    Be tough and know that the people of Toronto expect fair compromise and realistic expectations from the unions given the current fiscal climate.

    9. Do you see opportunities for public-private partnerships (P3s) involving the City of Toronto? Where, specifically?

    I believe that P3’s can be attractive but they are still controversial and the jury is still out as to how effective they are and how beneficial they are to the public interest and the ultimate cost the public ends up paying. Each potential P3 initiative would require very cautious and detailed analysis.

    10. What is the top issue of concern for residents in your ward? What will you do as Councillor to address the issue?

    It seems, from my discussions with the residents of Ward 5, that there are a number of top issues depending on which part of the Ward you address. However, overall, I would say that traffic congestion and transit issues rank the highest…especially given the number of high density developments going on in the area. Traffic congestion and Transit have an enormous impact on our quality of life. It places stress on people, their families….recreation time, time spent with children and the list goes on. I would work to address this by building a world class transit system that encourages people to use as a first choice, and I would work to employ the latest “Smart” technology when it comes to managing the flow of traffic on our streets.

  • 1. Do you support a property tax cap ensuring future hikes are no greater than the rate of inflation?

    As the city’s density increases, the cost per capita of providing services should go down. Therefore, tax increases greater than the rate of inflation should not be necessary to cover operations. However, this may not be true for program spending and infrastructure investment. I accept that no one wants to pay more tax and that all levels of government must be fiscally prudent. But on the other hand, we never stop to consider the reason why our property values go up. It isn’t just inflation and there is no housing bubble. It’s because Toronto is a very desirable place to live, it occupies a finite geographical space, and the more that people want to live here the higher our property values will go. But to keep that trend going, we need to invest to our infrastructure, public spaces, and public services. Under current provincial and federal government intensification and immigration policies, we can’t have our cake and eat it too. We can’t have higher property values driven by a high demand from people wanting to live in Toronto coupled with lower property taxes especially when we are so far behind schedule in building the required supporting infrastructure. Toronto has the lowest property taxes in all the GTA. We have the capacity to increase them to build a better city.

    2. Where, specifically, do you advocate finding savings in the current city budget?

    For years we were led to believe that Toronto stands at the edge of a fiscal cliff. As it turns out, there is no fiscal cliff. There never was one either as argued by a pair of professors at the University of Toronto’s Institute for Municipal Finance and Governance. Professors Enid Slack and Andre Cote made a very clear and compelling case in August that Toronto does not have a spending problem and that its property taxes are low and have been declining when adjusted for inflation. There are other reports as well that come to the similar conclusions. So it seems we have a revenue problem and not a spending problem. Local politicians are doing the taxpayers a great disservice when telling them that we can build mass transportation systems and other infrastructure projects and we can pay for it all by finding efficiencies in the budget.

    3. Do you support reducing the size of Toronto City Council?

    Not at all. I expect that if I’m elected Ward 5 councillor most of my time will be dedicated to dealing with local ward issues. I suspect that is the case with other candidates and ward councillors. The wards are big enough already.

    4. Will you support contracting out garbage collection east of Yonge Street?

    No. Once the city disposes of all its garbage collection equipment, it will lose all of its bargainingpower and will be at the mercy of the private garbage collection contractors. All the cost saving of contracting out will be lost. As far as other services go, I would have to look at them on a case by case basis.

    5. What are your thoughts on the Municipal Land Transfer Tax – will you support reducing it or eliminating it?

    No. Why aren’t residents of Toronto outraged about paying 5% of the value of their homes to real estate agents. Homeowners are willing to pay $40,000 on an $800,000 sale to a real estate agent and for what? … a sign on the front lawn, a few pictures uploaded online and advertised in the local paper, an open house or two, and completing a standard form with a few initials and signatures. What kind of value for money is that? At least the money raised through the Land Transfer Tax goes to city building and programs. Where does the real estate commission go? How about we as home and property owners change our terms with the Toronto Real Estate Board and real estate agents with the following opening proposal: a combined 5% sales commission and LTT. The real estate agent can keep whatever is left after the LTT is paid.

    6. Toronto’s unemployment rate is much higher than the provincial rate. What are your ideas to create job growth in Toronto?

    Unlike provincial and federal governments, the City doesn’t have fiscal and monetary tools to create jobs. But, it doesn’t mean we can’t do anything. First, we must continue to make Toronto an attractive place to live, work and conduct business. That doesn’t mean racing to the bottom with subsidies and tax cuts like our competitors in other jurisdictions. It means investing in our infrastructure and public services to retain our high quality of life and civility. Second, Toronto must continue to foster and promote its existing successful and competitive industries that provide many good high paying jobs. Third, Toronto must lobby the provincial and federal governments to develop a long termindustrial strategy that will restore some of our lost manufacturing jobs. And finally, I support the Province and City’s plans to intensify the suburbs where many newcomers settle and lower income people live. I firmly believe that developing the four urban growth centers into real mixed use communities will provide many employment, educational, social and cultural opportunities for those who live nearby. Good, stable, and well payable jobs are an important factors in eliminating employment and poverty

    7. It seems City Council has been debating public transit forever with little results to show. How would you fund new transit projects to ease congestion for everyone? Do you feel we need to change the current transit planning process?

    The larger a city gets, the less the private car remains a viable mass transportation solution in terms of costs and space. We need to focus on moving people and not cars. Also, building a mass public transportation system designed to move people to and from one central location doesn’t make sense either. We must discourage additional downtown development and start developing the four other urban growth centers in Toronto to balance the transit load. Rather than drawing lines on a map and before committing billions of dollars, the provincial government should survey everyone in the GTA to determine where they live, where they usually go and how they currently get there. Once we identify commuting patterns, then we can start building mass regional transit rather than building transit in the hope that people use it. Furthermore, we must make a distinction between regional transit and local transit. That process has already begun what with Metrolinx and its expansion. Metrolinx should continue to be funded by the province. And given that the province funds Metrolinx, GO, and other regional systems that feed into the TTC, then it also has an obligation to provide serious funding for the TTC – fair is fair. Pressure should also be applied to the federal government for funding. Torontonians will also be required to contribute. The city has the capability to issue long term debt so minimize the need for sharp tax and fare increases. In the meantime, let’s consider local transit solutions like myQueensway Express Streetcar proposal that are affordable, efficient, and quick to deploy and can be funded by the city and TTC.

    8. Labour negotiations will be a big part of the next council term. What advice do you have for the city’s negotiating team to get the best deal for taxpayers?

    We have a highly skilled and educated city workforce that is the envy of any large metropolitan city in the world. The evidence of this can be seen every day in how civil, orderly, and efficiently this city works. Furthermore, there is very little evidence of corruption and kickbacks that plague other cities even in our own country. Therefore, city workers deserve to get paid as well as their private sector counterparts.

    9. Do you see opportunities for public-private partnerships (P3s) involving the City of Toronto? Where, specifically?

    I am suspicious of P3sgiven that there is ample evidence to indicate that governments tend to privatize the profits and socialize the costs and even the losses. Highway 407 comes to mind. With that said, I’m not fundamentally opposed to them and would consider them on a case by case basis.

    10. What is the top issue of concern for residents in your ward? What will you do as Councillor to address the issue?

    Etobicoke Centre has been designated by the Province and the City as an “Urban Growth Centre.” That means 1.69 sq. km. of land will be intensified and redeveloped to the accommodate some 67,000 people and/or jobs. Add to this a Metrolinx -TTC Mobility Hub at Kipling Station, it is the single most important development project in Ward 5 and one of the most ambitious in Toronto both today and for the next 20 years. Although it’s not off to a particularly good start, there is still time for Ward 5 residents to have their say on many of the design details and amenities. We can and must develop a community that combines the best qualities of urban and suburban living and not just another cluster of condos.

  • 1. Do you support a property tax cap ensuring future hikes are no greater than the rate of inflation?

    Yes I do. Taxpayers have a responsibility to operating a vibrant and functioning city, so do the politicians elected to manage the public purse. Capping the rate of future tax hikes to the rate of inflation is a fair and sustainable approach.

    2. Where, specifically, do you advocate finding savings in the current city budget?

    Restructuring middle management, and bringing accountability to the actual role of Manager. Working as closely as I do with City of Toronto Officials, its very easy to see that there are far to many people in charge in the same roles. Further when a manager is compensated with bonuses and raises regardless of performance it clearly shows a lack of organization efficiency which directly affects the value received by taxpayers.

    3. Do you support reducing the size of Toronto City Council?

    I think a better structure would be to have the same amount of councillors city wide, they can all participate at their respective community councils and three councillors from each community council can represent that community council at city hall.

    4. Will you support contracting out garbage collection east of Yonge Street?

    It seems that contracting out garbage 4 years ago saved taxpayers money and service remained stable and effective. I would like to further explore contracting out of other services across all city departments. The taxpayer expects their elected officials to look at delivering services with the best possible value.

    5. What are your thoughts on the Municipal Land Transfer Tax – will you support reducing it or eliminating it?

    Although I just recently purchased a home in Ward 5, and had to pay the Toronto portion of the land transfer tax, which was not fun, I cant see eliminating the tax until we find revenue to replace it.

    6. Toronto’s unemployment rate is much higher than the provincial rate. What are your ideas to create job growth in Toronto?

    Raise the minimum wage to $15.00. Seattle did the same and they are now the fastest growing city in North America. When people have money they spend it. When they spend it, it means news Jobs.

    7. It seems City Council has been debating public transit forever with little results to show. How would you fund new transit projects to ease congestion for everyone? Do you feel we need to change the current transit planning process?

    Funding transit for Canada’s largest city requires investment from all three levels of Government. I believe a transit system that utilizes all forms of public transportation (Subways, Buses, LRTS, Trains) is best.

    8. Labour negotiations will be a big part of the next council term. What advice do you have for the city’s negotiating team to get the best deal for taxpayers?

    have the negotiator compare city employee performance levels to private sector union  employee performance.

    9. Do you see opportunities for public-private partnerships (P3s) involving the City of Toronto? Where, specifically?

    There is a lot of talk of public private partnerships. Mayor Ford talked about it last campaign and he’s talking about it this campaign and the past four years I really don’t know that any meaningful partnerships flourished. The city IS NOT business friendly. Its actually almost impossible to get anything through the city in a way that makes sense for business. It is a direct result of 4 levels of management that serve to slow the process down, and end up with decisions and policies that are not friendly to business and the best interests of residents. I do not think the circumstances are there at the city for real effect private public partnerships to flourish.

    10. What is the top issue of concern for residents in your ward? What will you do as Councillor to address the issue?

    for a full look at the issues in Ward 5, please visit www.justindiciano.ca

  • 1. Do you support a property tax cap ensuring future hikes are no greater than the rate of inflation?

    I support a property tax cap. As a property tax payer for the past ten years, I feel that most people do not want and cannot afford an increase in their property taxes. Many feel they have very little left once mortgage payments, utilities, and family expenses are paid.

    Most homeowners want property tax increases to be implemented at the rate of inflation.

    As your councillor, I would fight for the cap to be put in place.

    2. Where, specifically, do you advocate finding savings in the current city budget?

    I would like to see how we can improve  the types and number of programs the City has to offer. There are always better ways to structure and deliver services. Finding innovative solutions to the way we deliver services needs to be examined in all areas. Seeking solutions that have worked in other parts of Canada and the rest of the world should be explored.

    Our second highest expenditure from the operating budget is Toronto Employment and Social Services. We need to bring down the number of people relying on assistance. While this is not an easy objective to achieve, I believe we need to increase the employment base in Toronto and ensure people have the skills employers desire.  People should be set up in training programs that actually match the jobs available in the labour market.

    Attracting small businesses to Toronto and keeping them here needs to be a priority. Getting youth working is another important component of reducing this part of the budget. Building strong relationships with employers and expanding apprenticeship programs, need to be part of an overall plan.

    3. Do you support reducing the size of Toronto City Council?

    A city council consisting of 44 members can be unworkable at times. One significant problem in a ward system is that council members tend to represent the narrower needs of the ward at the expense of the needs of the City.  They sometimes work at cross purposes.  Comparable cities would be Chicago with 50 councillors and NewYork City with 51 councillors.

    We are all very familiar with the conflicts in City Hall. However, reducing the size also reduces a councillor’s ability to adequately respond to the multitude of varying needs of his/her constituents.

    If there were a reduction, I would want to see a very nominal amount reduced.

    We need strong mayoral leadership that can unite the various factions of council. Broad, yet united, vision and purpose can help alleviate many of the squabbles in Council. As your councillor, I see myself as someone who can be a voice of reason, conciliation, and action.

    4. Will you support contracting out garbage collection east of Yonge Street?

    I don’t intend to contract out many of the current jobs in the City of Toronto. However, ensuring a high level of service delivery while balancing costs is the responsibility of a councillor to his/her constituents. I feel that I would be mandated to follow what would be in the best interests of my ward and, ultimately, my city.

    5. What are your thoughts on the Municipal Land Transfer Tax – will you support reducing it or eliminating it?

    The land transfer tax is an important source of revenue for the City.

    At the present time, I lean towards reducing it if the city can find other revenue streams that would offset the cost. We would want to find ways to possibly reduce the tax for first time buyers. It’s difficult enough for them to attain property ownership.

    6. Toronto’s unemployment rate is much higher than the provincial rate. What are your ideas to create job growth in Toronto?

    Great cities set up the right environment for entrepreneurs and companies to thrive. Toronto has many of the qualities that are attractive to employers. We already have a number of great qualities that the rest of the world envies. We are a multicultural-multilingual powerhouse. Our location on Lake Ontario is excellent. We have a population base that is one of the fourth largest in North America, and we are a rich source of intellectual wealth.

    However, we need to ensure that commercial property taxes are at a rate that is competitive with other municipalities surrounding the GTA. We don’t want to lose businesses because a neighboring municipality has a more favourable property tax.

    A stable, well run city hall is essential to attracting new business. The world needs to see that Toronto City Hall is a stable, progressive government. Our reputation has been tarnished in recent years.  We need to make it easier for small businesses to choose Toronto. We will need to streamline the bureaucracy for business ventures and continues business growth.

    We need to take a very aggressive approach to attracting employers to invest and start up in Toronto. The new mayor will need to take the reigns and lead this priority. We need to advertise, lobby and develop new relationships with the world’s entrepreneurs.

    Toronto needs to deal specifically with an extremely high youth unemployment rate. We need a very unified approach and it must be a focal point of the new council. Apprenticeship training and mentorship need to be expanded. We need to enhance our working relationships with the business community, and provincial and federal levels of government.

    I certainly don’t have all the solutions. Consulting our business and academic community is one of the best ways to find the most innovative solutions. They are the experts on job creation. Simply approaching problems using the methods we have always used will not work in this highly competitive global economy.

    7. It seems City Council has been debating public transit forever with little results to show. How would you fund new transit projects to ease congestion for everyone? Do you feel we need to change the current transit planning process?

    Toronto, both now and into the coming decades, will need to have a vastly larger and well connected public transit system than is currently in place. The Municipal, Provincial and Federal levels of government will need to share in the responsibility for an efficient transit system. The ablility to continue to manufacture subways, Go Trains, and street cars in Canada is a win win for the Private and Public sectors.

    The current council has been arguing about light rail vs subways. I think that we should go with light rail transit in many areas. It’s a more affordable and less disruptive alternative to subway construction.

    Funding from the province and the City will have to continue to ensure we make the large capital investments that are required for long term success of these projects.

    Losing precious time and the inevitable high costs will continue to sky rocket unless we act.

    8. Labour negotiations will be a big part of the next council term. What advice do you have for the city’s negotiating team to get the best deal for taxpayers?

    I think most employees will need to realize that were are in tough financial times. The ability to negotiate very little in the way of increases is the new reality in the economy. An atmosphere of respectful negotiation works for labour and management.  It allows for a satisfactory solution to be arrived at for both parties.

    9. Do you see opportunities for public-private partnerships (P3s) involving the City of Toronto? Where, specifically?

    The data that I have examined on the issue of Public – Private partnerships has had mixed outcomes.  At this point, I do not see any viable opportunities.  I would review the merits of any proposals on a case by case basis.

    10. What is the top issue of concern for residents in your ward? What will you do as Councillor to address the issue?

    After listening to people at the doors while campaigning,  I believe that one of the key areas of concern for many constituents is reasonable condo development.  They would like to see condos that are not too high and  development that suits the buildings that are already in existence.

    I would regularly consult with residents about their concerns with regards to development. I would make it a part of my mandate to push the needs of the community ahead of the developers. I see mixed use development as the most viable and successful way to develop our ward.

    Many residents are concerned with road safety in residential neighbourhoods and finding traffic calming solutions.  There is a real concern to ensure drivers are following the set speeds.

    Public awareness and education of drivers needs to be part of any solution. Police enforcement of traffic laws, and structuring neighbourhoods in a way that naturally improves road safety create a more vibrant and safer community.

    The top issue in the city, I believe, are our infrastructure projects. People want to see city council take action to improve and expand our public transit network with a better system of street cars, subways and/or light rapid transit. Most people are frustrated with how difficult it is to get around the city by car or by public transit.  It’s important to consult traffic experts, engineers and the public to examine solutions to transit problems in our City.

  • 1. Do you support a property tax cap ensuring future hikes are no greater than the rate of inflation?

    There should be no hikes whatsoever. Many other options exist.

    2. Where, specifically, do you advocate finding savings in the current city budget?

    The budget process itself is faulty and needs to change.

    3. Do you support reducing the size of Toronto City Council?

    Yes I do.

    4. Will you support contracting out garbage collection east of Yonge Street?

    Yes, 100%. All programs should be scrutinized for better value and service.

    5. What are your thoughts on the Municipal Land Transfer Tax – will you support reducing it or eliminating it?

    Eliminate it because it is a disincentive for renters to own their home.

    6. Toronto’s unemployment rate is much higher than the provincial rate. What are your ideas to create job growth in Toronto?

    Broad and aggressive new initiatives for economic development.

    7. It seems City Council has been debating public transit forever with little results to show. How would you fund new transit projects to ease congestion for everyone? Do you feel we need to change the current transit planning process?

    The city has huge reserves but pretends it’s a sacred cow. All three levels of government agree to find money.

    8. Labour negotiations will be a big part of the next council term. What advice do you have for the city’s negotiating team to get the best deal for taxpayers?

    We need to be less afraid of union strike threats (look what they did to Detroit!).

    9. Do you see opportunities for public-private partnerships (P3s) involving the City of Toronto? Where, specifically?

    Considering partnerships for TCHC.

    10. What is the top issue of concern for residents in your ward? What will you do as Councillor to address the issue?

    People are fed up with tax! tax! tax! spend! spend! spend! waste! waste! waste! I pledge to introduce “Taxpayers Bill of Rights” at Council and get all councillors to endorse it, then post it in committee rooms and council chambers to guide council’s decision – making.

  • 1. Do you support a property tax cap ensuring future hikes are no greater than the rate of inflation?

    Yes I do

    2. Where, specifically, do you advocate finding savings in the current city budget?

    We need to trim some of the salaries from counsellors. And staff and cut down on the expense accounts

    3. Do you support reducing the size of Toronto City Council?

    Yes I do I definitely think more would be done and we wouldnt be constantly postponing and delaying important issues and bickering among ourselves

    4. Will you support contracting out garbage collection east of Yonge Street?

    Yes I will I think Parks and Rex should be given to a private contractors to take care of our parks

    5. What are your thoughts on the Municipal Land Transfer Tax – will you support reducing it or eliminating it?

    Yes I would but we need to find saving somewhere else in order to replace the land transfer tax

    6. Toronto’s unemployment rate is much higher than the provincial rate. What are your ideas to create job growth in Toronto?

    More tax incentives for small businesses and corporations they’re the ones that they’re going to create the jobs promote Jobs apprenticeships

    7. It seems City Council has been debating public transit forever with little results to show. How would you fund new transit projects to ease congestion for everyone? Do you feel we need to change the current transit planning process?

    Yes that should be priority to change the transit planning

    8. Labour negotiations will be a big part of the next council term. What advice do you have for the city’s negotiating team to get the best deal for taxpayers?

    There is no more money to be given maybe we need to privatize more city services

    9. Do you see opportunities for public-private partnerships (P3s) involving the City of Toronto? Where, specifically?

    Yes I do

    10. What is the top issue of concern for residents in your ward? What will you do as Councillor to address the issue?

    encourage the expansion of care programs for our seniors and the employment programs for our youth safer and quieter neighbourhoods and responsible and consultative development of The Queensway and Six Points.

  • 1. Do you support a property tax cap ensuring future hikes are no greater than the rate of inflation?

    I support a property tax cap ensuring future hikes are no greater than the rate of inflation.

    2. Where, specifically, do you advocate finding savings in the current city budget?

    I believe that at the beginning of every term the City should conduct a budget review to determine where additional efficiencies can be found. The City should also conduct a report to determine which services the City could privatize in order to reduce budgetary pressures.

    3. Do you support reducing the size of Toronto City Council?

    I support reducing the size of Council to 22 – to match the boundaries of federal and provincial ridings.

    4. Will you support contracting out garbage collection east of Yonge Street?

    I support contracting out garbage collection east of Yonge Street. This has been done in Ward 5 and the services that have been provided function well. The City should explore contracting out park maintenance and cleaning services at public community centres.

    5. What are your thoughts on the Municipal Land Transfer Tax – will you support reducing it or eliminating it?

    I support eliminating the tax.

    6. Toronto’s unemployment rate is much higher than the provincial rate. What are your ideas to create job growth in Toronto?

    Council should reduce commercial and business taxes to prevent businesses from leaving Toronto. The City should also address traffic and congestion so that it does not affect businesses from operating in the City.

    7. It seems City Council has been debating public transit forever with little results to show. How would you fund new transit projects to ease congestion for everyone? Do you feel we need to change the current transit planning process?

    Transit expansion is the number one issue in this election. A decision will need to be made. It’s time for Council to finally make the right decision by supporting the transit system that will benefit the City the most in the long term. I will be advocating to expand the subway system. It is the fastest and the most convenient method of transportation. Should Council decide to implement a new revenue tool – I will only support it if it is allocated solely for transit expansion.

    8. Labour negotiations will be a big part of the next council term. What advice do you have for the city’s negotiating team to get the best deal for taxpayers?

    I will request to sit on the labour committee so that I can work with the city’s negotiating team to ensure that the best results for taxpayers are accomplished.

    9. Do you see opportunities for public-private partnerships (P3s) involving the City of Toronto? Where, specifically?

    P3′s should always be explored.

    10. What is the top issue of concern for residents in your ward? What will you do as Councillor to address the issue?

    There are several concerns in Ward 5. Beyond traffic and keeping taxes low, development and the high number of illegal body rub parlours continue to be an issue for many residents. As the City Councillor, I will work diligently with the Police to ensure that all illegal body rub parlours are closed once the anti-prostitution legislation is fully implemented. I will also advocate for communities when development applications come forward.