LEAF Tree Planting Programs

Posted on August 22, 2017

Let LEAF help you create the backyard you’ve always dreamed about.

Looking to create a backyard oasis on a budget?
Short on time and not sure where to start?

LEAF will help you:

  • Assess the conditions in your yard
  • Understand what will grow best
  • Select trees, shrubs, and garden kits that you will love
  • Ensure everything gets planted properly
  • Do it all at a reasonable price!

Or Bring a LEAF Arborist to your Yard — Virtually!

The LEAF Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Tree Planting Program now offers virtual consultations to residents of Toronto. The DIY program includes:

  • online educational videos
  • virtual consultation with an arborist
  • a selection of native trees and shrubs to choose from
  • delivery of your trees and shrubs, along with mulch
  • tree planting guide to help you plant properly

LEAF offers Full Service Backyard Tree Planting, Do-it-Yourself Backyard Tree Planting, and Native Garden Kits at subsidized rates. For more information and to order or book your virtual consultation visit www.yourleaf.org

Torontonians Invited to Attend Celebration of Life for Deputy Mayor Pam McConnell

Posted on August 22, 2017

Deputy Mayor Pam McConnell (Ward 28 Toronto Centre-Rosedale), a long-time member of Toronto City Council, passed away on July 7 at the age of 71.

A Celebration of Life will take place at 1 p.m. on Friday, August 25 at the Cathedral Church of St. James, 65 Church St., and in the adjacent St. James Park.

Members of the public are invited to gather in St. James Park to celebrate McConnell’s life. The service will be audio broadcast into the park.

At the request of the family, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to any of the following organizations:

Collective of Black Artists (http://www.cobainc.com)
Online donations can be made at https://www.gofundme.com/SaveCOBA

Dixon Hall Neighbourhood Services (https://dixonhall.org)
Online donations can be made at http://dixonhall.org/donate

Riverdale Housing Animation Programs (http://www.rhag.ca)
Online donations can be made at https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/riverdale-housing-animation-programs/

Flags at City Hall, Metro Hall and the Toronto civic centres will be at half-mast on Friday. The book of condolence will be available at St. James Park on the day of the service. The online book of condolence will remain available at http://cityoftorontocondolences.ca until the end of the service.

Members of the media are invited to attend to cover and broadcast the service. Audio feeds will be available inside the cathedral.

TIFF Festival Street Road Closure, Streetcar Route and Event Information

Posted on August 22, 2017

The City of Toronto is a proud partner in the 42nd annual Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). TIFF reaches more than 450,000 film lovers annually through film screenings, industry programming and free Festival Street events.

This year, TIFF will host its fourth annual Festival Street initiative. Events on the King Street West pedestrian promenade, the site of Festival Street, will run from Thursday, September 7 through Sunday, September 10.

The Festival Street events will result in the full closure of King Street West to traffic between Spadina and University Avenues from 5 a.m. on September 7 until 5 a.m. on September 11. The road closure will also require changes to the 504 King, 514 Cherry and 304 King (night) streetcar services. John Street between King Street and Wellington Street will also be closed during the five-day period.

The City of Toronto and the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) are working with TIFF to ensure Festival Street is enjoyed with a minimum of inconvenience to those travelling in this area of the city. Toronto Police will be positioned at key intersections to assist with traffic flow and TTC ambassadors will be available to help customers.

People who need to drive in the general vicinity of special events in general should allow extra time to get to and from their destination. The City’s web-based map to help residents make travel plans can be accessed at http://www.toronto.ca/roadrestrictions.

More information about the TTC’s service changes for Festival Street is available at http://www.ttc.ca/.

More information about TIFF Festival Street and its events is also available at http://www.tiff.net.

Community Benefits Workshops for Parkdale

Posted on August 22, 2017

The Parkdale Community Economic Development (PCED) is hosting a series of Community Benefits Workshops for Parkdale on Wednesday August 30th and Thursday September 7th*.

Come learn about new developments arriving in Parkdale, discuss how they will impact the neighbourhood, and collectively develop ideas for how these developments can be best leveraged to benefit our community.

Building on workshops held earlier this summer with ESL students and the PARC Ambassador and Co-op Cred program, these workshops will provide a platform for community members to express their thoughts and suggestions on how to ensure that new developments in Parkdale benefit the local community and strengthen its four overarching values: Inclusiveness, Affordability, Diversity and Equity. The workshops will help to establish a set of community demands that developers must adhere to when building in Parkdale.

Food and refreshments will be provided. Please note that the library is wheelchair accessible. Contact mzayas@parc.on.ca for childcare and/or translation needs.

Spaces are limited. RSVP encouraged but not required: https://parkdale-community-benefits-workshops.eventbrite.ca

*Please note that these workshops are identical and participants need only sign up for one workshop.

Date: Wednesday, Aug. 30th
Time: 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Place: 1303 Queen St W. – Parkdale Library (basement)

Date: Thursday, Sept.. 7th
Time: 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Place: 1303 Queen St W. – Parkdale Library (basement)

City of Toronto to Launch Improved Process for Disputing Parking Violations

Posted on August 22, 2017

The City of Toronto is introducing a new, easier and more convenient process to dispute parking violations. Disputes for parking violations received on or after August 28 will be handled by the City instead of through the provincial court, improving customer service by providing faster resolutions and a more efficient overall process.

Access to the new dispute process will be available 24/7 through the City’s website, toronto.ca/aps. Individuals can request a review or dispute a parking violation online through the City’s website. People who prefer to dispute a violation in-person can have their penalty reviewed at one of two City locations: Metro Hall (55 John St.) or North York Civic Centre (5100 Yonge St.). In-person reviews can be booked in advance on the City’s website and are also available on a drop-in basis.

The City of Toronto is committed to continuously improving and modernizing customer service. This new dispute process allows the public to request a review of a parking violation through a customer-focused, streamlined service.

All reviews, online and in-person, will be conducted by a City screening officer who can affirm, vary or cancel penalties, including having the authority to give people additional time to pay the penalty fee. If the individual is not satisfied with the penalty review decision, a second and final review can be requested with an independent, Council-appointed hearing officer.

Payment methods for parking violations remain the same, with payment either online, by mail or in-person at seven City locations.

More information is available at http://www.toronto.ca/aps.

Parkdale Neighbourhood Land Trust Job Opening

Posted on August 22, 2017

Parkdale Neighbourhood Land Trust is hiring a full-time Affordable Housing Development Manager to lead acquisition and development planning for affordable housing projects! We are building our team to increase our local capacity to respond to the need for affordable housing preservation in Parkdale. Please see attached a job posting and/or download it from this linkThe deadline is September 4th, 2017.

The ideal candidate will be an early or mid-career professional with a background in affordable housing development, a strong commitment to neighbourhood inclusiveness, social equity, and eagerness to contribute to both affordable housing preservation and community-based land use management models. A strong capacity for real estate business planning, financing and project management is a must.

PNLT is committed to employment equity and encourages applicants from equity-seeking groups. We seek to foster a workplace that reflects the diversity of the community we serve. SPECIAL NOTE: In the case an early career practitioner is selected, PNLT will provide opportunities for job shadowing and mentoring from senior professionals in Toronto’s social housing sector.

High Park Movie Night

Posted on August 22, 2017

Bring some chairs and blankets and get comfy because Councillor Sarah Doucette and CUPE Local 416 are holding a movie night in High Park. Come out next week for a free showing of Moana with free popcorn too!

Tuesday, August 29, 8:00pm
High Park’s Picnic Area 2, near the Bloor St. entrance to the park, beside the Chess House.
Bring your own chairs and blankets.
Weather permitting (check www.ward13.ca on the day of)

Cllr Doucette Movie Night Moana

Public Consultations on the Vacant Home Tax

Posted on August 17, 2017

The City has launched an online survey and will be hosting a public consultation at City Hall about a potential implementation of a tax on vacant residential units.

As part of the Ontario Fair Housing Plan, the Province of Ontario introduced legislation that would empower the City of Toronto to introduce a tax on vacant residential units in order to encourage property owners to sell unoccupied units or rent them out, and address concerns about residential units potentially being left vacant.

Vancouver, facing a similar issue with housing affordability, adopted an Empty Home Tax in late 2016.

City staff presented the report EX 26.4: Implementing a Vacant Home Tax in Toronto to Council at its meeting of July 4-7, 2017. The report was adopted and Council requested City staff to undertake public consultation about:

  • Whether Toronto should implement a tax on vacant residential units
  • Potential public policy benefits of a property tax on vacant residential units
  • Potential implementation of a tax on vacant residential units in Toronto

Privacy rights prevent the use of personal or private information, such as water or hydro meter data, from being used as a means of identifying potentially vacant units. Therefore, the City is considering three options that could be used to identify vacant homes for taxation:

  • Mandatory declaration of occupancy status by all property owners
  • Self-Reporting Model
  • Complaints Basis

Decisions when Council considered EX 26.4: Implementing a Vacant Home Tax in Toronto can be found at: http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgendaItemHistory.do?item=2017.EX26.4

In response, staff have prepared the following:

Website and Online Survey
Residents are encouraged to visit toronto.ca/VHT to take the online survey that will be available until September 5. Results of the survey will be summarized in a report to Council in the fall.

Link to website: http://www.toronto.ca/VHT
Link to survey: http://cityoftoronto.fluidsurveys.com/s/vacant-tax-home/

Public Consultation
Residents can share their views at a public meeting:

Tuesday, August 22, 2017
6 – 8 p.m.
Toronto City Hall, Committee Room 1
100 Queen St. W.

Opinion Poll
The City has also engaged a private firm to conduct a poll on the proposed vacant home tax of which results will be summarized in the fall in a report to Council.

High Park Invasive Species Removal

Posted on August 16, 2017

The High Park Stewards want to make sure that the native plants in High Park have a fighting chance to grow by removing the invasive species that compete for space and resources. Weeding is as important as planting, and equally rewarding. Once the invasive species are removed, the native plants have room to grow, display their beauty, and provide food and shelter for wildlife. The Boulevard Beds group will work on our demonstration garden.

Meet in front of the Grenadier Restaurant at 10:30 am and go to the site from there to work until 12:30. For your protection, (heat, insects and skin irritants for some) please dress with long sleeves and pants, closed shoes and socks, a hat and bring water and sunscreen. They will supply tools and gloves. Everyone is welcome.

August 27th 2017, 10:30 AM – 12:30 AM
Meet in front of the Grenadier Restaurant

McCormick Playground Arena Board Vacancies

Posted on August 15, 2017

Are you passionate about recreation and community engagement? The City of Toronto is seeking a local resident to fill three current vacancies on the McCormick Playground Arena Board.

Arena board members support full and equitable access to the arena facilities, provide oversight of arena programs and finances, and help to represent the community and all arena users. A background in such areas as community development, financial management, sports facility operation, event planning, amateur and children’s sports, the non-profit sector, law, or marketing is an asset. Arena boards typically meet once a month in the evenings at the arena. Board members must be residents of Toronto and at least 18 years of age. Bring your skills and experience to the table to support your arena and make a difference in your community!

For more information and to apply online, please visit  https://secure.toronto.ca/pa/decisionBody/62.do. All applications must be submitted online by September 15, 2017.  If you have any questions about the application process, please contact the Public Appointments Secretariat at 416-397-0088 or appoint@toronto.ca.

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