Roncesvalles – Under construction but open for Business

Posted on August 28, 2009

During construction ALL BUSINESSES ON RONCESVALLES ARE OPEN!

Varcon Construction and Comer Group have begun the watermain and sewer replacement work on Roncesvalles. The work started in July and will be complete by January. While the construction is ongoing only one lane of northbound traffic will be maintained. We are making every effort to create some areas for parking on the street, but traffic will continue to be restricted for the duration of the Water work.

Please continue to shop locally and show support for business owners who have been patient and accommodating throughout the construction.

In addition I want to take this opportunity to remind folks that the 2009 Polish Festival is coming!

I look forward to seeing you on September 19th and 20th at the annual Roncesvalles Polish Festival.

Public Meeting – Proposed car wash at 2803 Dundas Street West (at the old McBride site)

Posted on August 28, 2009

Please join me, the applicants and our Area Planner, Christopher Dunn, to review the car wash proposal on September 16th at 7pm.

See attached notice for more information:

twbca_sept_16_meeting_poster.pdf

Wabash – Final Public Presentation on a Feasibility Study

Posted on August 28, 2009

Please join me on September 17th to view the

Final Public Presentation on a Feasibility Study for 40 Wabash Ave.

See attached flyer for more details:

wabash-sorauren-green-feasibility-study-public-consultation-flyer-3.doc

City Wide Zoning Bylaw

Posted on August 28, 2009

In June, City staff held Open Houses in each District on the draft new City-wide Zoning Bylaw. The canceled Open Houses have now been scheduled to take place in September 2009. The Open Houses run from 4:00 to 9:00 p.m. and Q&A session is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. The Open Houses will be advertised in the Toronto Star and the Community Newspapers, as well as the zoning bylaw project website.

Since releasing the electronic draft zoning bylaw in May 2009 they have been collecting comments on the draft bylaw that is accessed from the project website: www.toronto.ca/zoning. Staff will be reporting on the public consultation to the November 4, 2009 Planning and Growth Management Committee meeting.

The Open Houses meeting details are:

Toronto Open House
Member’s Lounge
Wednesday September 9, 2009
4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Scarborough Open House
Committee Rooms 1&2
Wednesday September 16, 2009
4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

North York Open House
North York Council Chambers
Thursday September 24, 2009
4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Items of Interest

Posted on August 28, 2009

Grafton Summer Harvest Festival- Rain or Shine!

Join the West End Flower Fairies on September 2nd to celebrate the Summer Harvest.

The event will be a VEGGIE POTLUCK – so you are encouraged to bring veggie delights to share.

Lead Exposure Study

St. Joseph‘s Health Centre, in collaboration with Health Canada and McMaster University is doing a pilot study of lead exposure among Canadians. The key study participants should:

– be between the ages of 1 and 85 years

– be English speaking

– be healthy

– be non-pregnant

– have no known occupational exposure to lead

– have the ability to consent (or have a parental/guardian consent)

Participation will take approximately 1 hour and study volunteers will receive $50 in compensation. Please find attached a brochure and flyer for further details. Additionally you can contact Jessica Tyrwhitt (St. Joseph‘s Study Coordinator) at 416-530-6089.

lead-poster-with-contact-info.pdf

 

Live Green Event this weekend at DUNDAS SQUARE – see attached flyer for more information: lgtf-flyer-2009.pdf

Western Waterfront Master Plan at City Council

Posted on August 14, 2009

After much hard work by the community, planning Alliance and myself, the WWMP went before City Council for final approval. At the City Council meeting on August 5th and 6th, 2009, Council adopted the following:

· Council approved the May 2009 Western Waterfront Master Plan which is to guide future decisions related to improvements to the public realm within this area.

· City Council direct the General Manager of Transportation Services to include for consideration in the 2010 Capital Budget for Transportation Services as a new project, $2.0 million in new capital funding ($1.0 million in 2010 and $1.0 million in 2011) in order to initiate in 2010 the environmental assessment for reconfiguration of Lake Shore Boulevard between the Humber River and Exhibition Place.

· City Council request the Chief Planner to consider inclusion of the Western Waterfront Master Plan Area within the jurisdiction of the City of Toronto Design Review Panel.

· City Council authorize the Waterfront Project Director to issue the Notice of Completion and file the May 2009 Western Waterfront Master Plan in the public record in accordance with the requirements of the Municipal Class Environmental Assessment.

· City Council direct the Waterfront Project Director to establish an inter-divisional staff committee to coordinate and identify resource requirements for implementation of the Master Plan.

· City Council authorize the creation of community advisory committees for major projects within the Western Waterfront to provide advice on future phasing and design.

· City Council direct the General Managers of Toronto Water, Parks, Forestry and Recreation and Transportation Services, and the Executive Directors of Technical Services and City Planning, to identify new projects that could expedite implementation of the Master Plan in the short term, for consideration as part of the 2010 Capital Budget process.

· City Council direct City staff to consult with impacted stakeholders to address operational and other issues when designing road realignments and improvements required to enhance public access to the water’s edge.

· City Council authorize and direct appropriate City Officials to take the necessary action to give effect thereto.

Thank you to everyone for ensuring this plan was approved. We can now begin the necessary work of improving pedestrian access and creating a vibrant and accessible waterfront.

Safe Pedestrian Access to the waterfront

Posted on August 14, 2009

Some great news. Access to the waterfront has been greatly improved.

The accessible pedestrian signals (APS) at Lake Shore Boulevard & Jameson Avenue were activated by Stacey Electric on August 12, 2009. The APS are pushbutton activated (pushbutton must be depressed for at least three seconds) and adjust to ambient sound levels.

Please share this exciting news with everyone.

Updates from the City of Toronto

Posted on August 14, 2009

Yard waste and garbage collection reminder

Curb-side collection of leaf and yard waste resumes next week according to the schedule in residents’ collection calendars. Tuesday, August 18 will be the first pick-up day for those residents scheduled to receive this service on that particular date. Leaf and yard waste pick-up is every other week. Residents have the option, until August 17, of dropping off their yard waste for free at a City transfer station.

Residents are also reminded that they have until August 28 to put out unlimited waste or recycling for the first two collections of both garbage and recycling after the labour disruption (two garbage pickups and two recycling pickups). No yellow garbage bag tags required. Extra recycling should be placed in clear plastic bags.

Residents should follow their collection calendar regarding the day of collection and the material to be collected (for example, do not put out garbage if scheduled for recycling collection). The collection calendar can be found at http://www.toronto.ca/garbage/single/calendars/index.htm. On scheduled pickup days, leave materials at the curb until collected. Crews, who are dealing with greater than normal volumes of material, may be delayed in finishing their routes.

City of Toronto offers extended camp season at more than 60 locations

The City of Toronto is pleased to announce that it will offer an extended season for Parks, Forestry and Recreation summer camp programs at more than 60 locations across the city.

Some camp programs were originally scheduled to wrap up on August 14. In most cases, extended programs will end on August 28, with some continuing up until September 4. For more information, please visit www.toronto.ca/parks.

Parks, Forestry and Recreation camp programs are reasonably priced. A wide range of programs are available for both children and youth. Participants enjoy sports, games, special events, arts and crafts and outdoor activities. Before and after care is available at some locations. To register, visit www.toronto.ca/torontofun or call customer service at 416-338-4FUN (4386).

Interest in Parks, Forestry and Recreation camps has remained high since programs resumed on Monday August 10. This week, there are more than 10,000 registrants participating in 548 camp programs across the city.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. Toronto has won numerous awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. 2009 marks the 175th anniversary of Toronto’s incorporation as a city. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Basement Flooding Subsidy

Basements can flood for many reasons. For its part, the City of Toronto is working to make improvements to its complex system of underground pipes, sewers and catch basins. But these improvements alone cannot completely protect a home from basement flooding. And with the increasingly frequent and severe weather events

related to climate change, it is essential that homeowners take the appropriate action to reduce the risk of basement flooding on their own private property. Those who isolate their home from the City’s sewer system can significantly reduce the risk of basement flooding. To assist homeowners, the City offers owners of single-family, duplex and triplex residential homes a financial subsidy of up to $3,200 per property to install flood protection devices including a back-water valve, sump pump, and pipe severance and capping of the home’s storm sewer or external weeping tile connection.

Please visit the following link to read the full details about this programme.

http://www.toronto.ca/water/sewers/pdf/brochure.pdf

Items of Interest

Posted on August 14, 2009

Edmond Place is holding its annual fundraising Boat Cruise in cooperation with Parkdale Activity Recreation Centre on Wednesday, August 19, 2009 from 6:00-10:00 pm. Music for the event will be provided by Zephie James with Diaspora. The cost for the evening, which includes buffet dinner and 1 free drink, is $80.00 (taicket must be presented at the gate). The cruise departs from Pier 29, 261 Queen’s Quay (East of Sherbourne). To order tickets, call 416-537-2262 Ext 244, email cfrado@parc.on.ca or visit PARC at 1499 Queen Street, West, 2nd floor.

The new collective agreements with Locals 416 and 79

Posted on August 5, 2009

Last week City Council approved new collective agreements with Locals 416 and 79 that will save the City money, and return the services we rely on.

Strikes are a difficult part of our democracy. I cannot tell you how relieved I am that this strike is over.

The City achieved its bargaining goals which were approved over months of meetings of Council’s Labour Relations Committee. The agreements were also ratified by majorities of members of both unions.

The wage agreement is similar (and slightly below) other recent public sector agreements. At the end of the day if the two sides were completely at loggerheads an arbitrator would have been brought in. Experience shows that arbitrators tend to use recent models as a template. The collective agreements the Labour Relations Committee negotiated are projected to save the City over $140 million over the next six years.

As to the sick program. We set out to replace the flawed and expensive program with a short term disability plan. Everyone knew this would be difficult. Unions defend existing benefits even more staunchly than they do wage increases.

We also all knew that we would not be able to retroactively reclaim existing banked days. Workers who had accumulated those days had done so under legal contracts. We could no more claw them back than we could ask them to pay back salary they had earned in previous years.

Given that, the real issue was always going to be: how would the transition work? First, no new employees can bank sick days. Second existing employees can switch from the old program to the new one (we won’t give them the new short term disability program unless they switch. Experience in other GTA municipalities show (Mississauga and others) that very quickly most switch.

The upshot is we have succeeded in capping an existing liability. Rather than creating a liability we have stopped the growth of a liability that previous governments created.

Could we have done better? I doubt it. As I said I believe we have done better than comparable municipalities. We have certainly done better than an arbitration award.

Nevertheless, even if a few slight improvements were hypothetically available, many people were suffering because of the strike. In my ward I can point to several new businesses that had recently started up but couldn’t get a health inspection or licensing approval. They were stuck paying leases and business loans with no revenue. People were not getting AIDS tests. Several rooming houses were going unlicenced. The risk to Public Health from illegal dumping was growing. Recreation services for children were closed. I could go on.

In Canada, and all other democracies, employers cannot simply impose contracts on unionized employees. Employers set bargaining goals and try to achieve them. We achieved ours. Continuing to allow people to suffer for hypothetical small improvements would have been a dangerous gamble.

To view the staff presentation at today’s Council meeting, Collective Bargaining — Tentative Agreements, City of Toronto TCEU Local 416 and City of Toronto and CUPE Local 79 — http://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2009/cc/bgrd/backgroundfile-22639.pdf

Staff report: Results of Negotiations with CUPE Local 79 and TCEU Local 416 July 30, 2009 – see http://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2009/cc/bgrd/backgroundfile-22638.pdf

Updated resumption of services web page – see http://www.toronto.ca/returntoservices/index.htm

I hope you can agree with this summary: We saved the City (you) money. We settled when we had achieved our goals.

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