Runnymede Station is accessible – Easier Access Project Update

Posted on December 10, 2020

Runnymede Station is the newest TTC subway station to become accessible. Three new elevators connecting the street to concourse and subway platforms levels are now open for customer use.
Other minor project related work will continue at the station.

Runnymede Station is Accessible 2020

Short-term rentals operators in Toronto must register by December 31 to continue hosting

Posted on December 10, 2020

Short-term rental operators renting homes or rooms for periods of less than 28 consecutive days must be registered with the City of Toronto by December 31, 2020, to continue short-term renting in Toronto.

Beginning January 1, 2021, registered operators must start collecting the Municipal Accommodation Tax (MAT). After January 1, 2021, the City will take enforcement action against operators who are not registered or are not following the rules. Enforcement action will also be taken against short-term rental companies that allow unregistered operators to list on their platform or contravene the bylaw.

Toronto is currently in the Grey – Lockdown category of the Province of Ontario’s COVID-19 response framework in an effort to reduce and eliminate the transmission of COVID-19, which began on November 23, 2020. During this time, as per provincial regulations, short-term rental reservations made before November 22, 2020 will be honoured regardless of when the rental occurs. No new reservations can be made after November 22, 2020 except for individuals in need of housing.

Despite the current restrictions, the City requires operators to be registered by the December 31, 2020 deadline to continue to short-term rent in Toronto when allowed by the provincial regulations. Registration is a mandatory step to legally rent out homes for short-term stays in the city. Operators are only allowed to short-term rent their principal residence – the residence where they live – and the address used for bills, identification, taxes and insurance.

Information and government-issued identification submitted with the application is validated by the City through a five-day processing period. Operators are strongly encouraged to register and pay the $50 fee as soon as possible to avoid last minute delays at: https://www.toronto.ca/ShortTermRentals.

Once registered, operators must include the valid City-issued registration number on all listings advertising the short-term rental and start collecting the MAT from January 1, 2021. The MAT payment is due on a quarterly basis, within 30 days of the end of the quarter. For example, the first quarter for 2021 will be January 1 to March 31, and the MAT payment will be due by April 30.

Registered operators who have not rented their property in a given quarter must still file a remittance each quarter. Operators are also required to keep a record of all accommodation transactions, including revenue collected and any exemptions that may apply during a reporting period. More information on how to submit MAT payments will be available in early 2021.

The City continues to respond to issues related to short-term rentals on a complaint basis, such as noise, waste and concerns that people are renting homes that are not their principal residence. Residents can contact 311 to report issues. Starting in the new year, complaints can be submitted to 311 online.

The current complaint-based enforcement will be supported by a data-driven enforcement approach.

  • Information that the City is collecting from operators upon registration will allow the City to validate that people only short-term rent their principal residences.
  • Short-term rental companies will be required to provide the City with data, including operators’ registration number, number of nights rented by rental type, and the address of listings, which will support efforts to ensure that short-term rental rules are being met.
  • Data scraping techniques will also be used to pull information from websites where operators post their listings, to identify issues and validate short-term rental activity in Toronto.

Short-term rental companies must ensure that all short-term rental listings on their platform have a valid City registration number. Starting in the new year, the City will begin sharing the registration number, the associated ward, and the first three digits of the postal code of registered short-term rental properties on its Open Data Portal. Short-term rental companies may validate against this list to ensure invalid or unregistered operators are removed from their platforms.

If a short-term rental operator is not compliant with the bylaws, the City will use its authority to cancel registration. If the City cancels an operator’s registration, short-term rental companies are also required to remove the operator from their platforms.

Operators not complying with the regulations are guilty of an offence and if convicted, may be liable to pay fines. Information on fines for specific offences and other short-term rental information for operators and companies is available at https://www.toronto.ca/ShortTermRentals.

Junction Residents Association presents ‘Joy in the Junction’

Posted on December 10, 2020

Enjoy the sounds of the season with the Junction’s ‘Travelling Carolers’ and support The Sharing Place all from your front porch!

Groups of carolers (4 to 8 people) will be strolling through your neighbourhood singing some of your favourite Christmas/Winter songs on December 19, 20 and 21 between 6 and 7 pm. (Carolers will be masked and socially distanced).

If you would like to donate a gift card, tape this flyer to your mailbox, leave your porch light on and place the gift card in an envelope in your mailbox. One of our carolers will collect your donation from your mailbox.
Suggestions for gift cards include grocery stores, chain coffee shops, or discount box stores.

You may also choose to donate online directly to one of the following local non-profit organizations:

Feed It Forward
FoodShare
Stone Soup Network
The Four Villages
The Period Purse
The Sharing Place
The Stop Community Food Centre

Please visit the JRA website www.torontojra.com to learn more.

City of Toronto continues working with community-based agencies to provide mental health support to vulnerable residents during the COVID-19 pandemic

Posted on December 10, 2020

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Toronto has partnered with community-based agencies that provide mental health and social services to support residents during this difficult time. The City has also remained committed to providing Torontonians with safe opportunities for recreation and prioritized access to the City’s parks and green spaces for fresh air and exercise.

As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to rise, continued measures to slow the spread of the virus and protect the city’s most vulnerable residents have created stress and anxiety for many individuals. These mental health pressures are particularly severe for individuals who are faced with challenging circumstances such as social isolation, job loss and illness.

Mental health support

The City launched the mental health support strategy in April 2020 and partnered with key mental health service providers to support the wellbeing of Toronto residents. Partner agencies have reported that almost 88,500 people have either called, texted or sent an online message for support. Of that number, more than 80,300 people received direct mental health support and more than 8,000 people were referred directly to partners for additional support. Preliminary data also indicates that 40 per cent of contacts were seniors, and three per cent of people seeking mental health services were youth. To date, 211 has also reported a total of 42,708 mental health-related web searches regarding issues related to community mental health services, addiction treatment, youth mental health, crisis lines and in-person crisis services.

Toronto residents are reminded that they have access to free mental health services from the safety of their homes. Anyone experiencing anxiety or stress can call 211 to connect with one of 13 mental health service partners for direct phone support. Mental health service information is also available at http://www.211toronto.ca/,as well as through the City’s website at https://www.toronto.ca/home/covid-19/covid-19-protect-yourself-others/covid-19-mental-health-resources/.

Mental health services are available for specific populations, such as: children and youth; seniors; frontline workers; Indigenous, Black, persons with disabilities and LGBTQ2S. These specific service providers include:

  • Across Boundaries
  • Caribbean African Canadian Social Services
  • Crisis Text Line
  • Family Services Toronto
  • Gerstein Crisis Centre
  • Hong Fook
  • Kids Help Phone
  • Native Child and Family Services of Toronto
  • Ontario Psychological Association
  • Strides Toronto
  • The Access Point
  • Toronto Seniors Helpline (WoodGreen)
  • Warm Line (Progress Place)

To help support frontline workers, specific mental health resources have been mobilized as part of the City’s Mental Health Support Strategy to support them. Frontline workers with minimal or no mental health coverage are encouraged to call 211, note that they are a frontline worker in need of mental health supports, and they will be connected to specialized counsellors free of charge.

 

Close Avenue Parkette – Playground Final Design

Posted on December 8, 2020

On November 5th, Councillor Perks and Park Staff held a virtual meeting to discuss proposed designs for a new playground at Close Avenue Parkette (King St W. and Close Ave). Staff shared different design options and gathered community feedback to finalize a design.

 

The following attachment is the final design for Close Ave Parkette. If you have any questions or comments, please send us an email at councillor_perks@toronto.ca

Close Ave Parkette-Preferred Concept Plan

Junction Residents Association’s supports Toronto Miracle

Posted on December 3, 2020

There’s a city-wide food drive (Toronto Miracle) happening on Saturday December 5. The general premise is to invite every household to donate 1 non-perishable food item (please check to ensure the donation is not expired). The Junction Residents Association will be promoting and helping to organize a Junction-wide effort in support of Toronto Miracle.

Given the limited time we have to organize, we are asking residents to volunteer to be a Community Captain for their street by signing up using the following portal Volunteer | Toronto Miracle | December 5th Food Drive  Once you have signed up, please email us at junctionra@gmail.com so we can partner with you to arrange local drop off locations, organize pick up routes, support the health & safety plan and collaborate with local food organizations. You will essentially be responsible for inviting neighbours who live on your street and we will support you with everything else.

The JRA also needs volunteer drivers to pick up donations. Please contact us at junctionra@gmail.com if you are interested in helping out.

If you are not able to volunteer to be a Community Captain at this time but would like to donate food, please visit Donate | Toronto Miracle | December 5th Food Drive to do so. Please email us at junctionra@gmail.com we will arrange to pick it up.”

 

‘Art Over Bridges’ shortlisted artists for Jameson Pedestrian Bridge

Posted on December 3, 2020

In celebration of this, and Toronto’s 2021 Year of Public Art, the Micki Moore ‘Art Over Bridges’ project is a transformative new StreetARToronto (StART) initiative to engage artists to design and install three-dimensional artwork on bridges in Toronto.

At the heart of Micki’s vision is a series of vibrant Art Bridges throughout Toronto, beginning with art over the Jameson Avenue Pedestrian Bridge. Micki’s placemaking initiative promises to strengthen the connection between people and the places they share through a collaborative process to improve the look and feel of our streets and the public realm.

The Micki Moore ‘Art Over Bridges’ shortlisted Artists present their design concepts for art over the Jameson Avenue Pedestrian Bridge in these online videos:

Kwest: https://youtu.be/APhrLJMpezU

Dan Bergeron: https://vimeo.com/484587609

birdO: https://youtu.be/gSpyQbtWS5c

We want to hear from you! Please share your feedback here:  https://cotsurvey.chkmkt.com/StARToverBridges or scan the QR code attached with your smart phone.

CurbTO registration for temporary pick-up zones

Posted on December 3, 2020

The City of Toronto will re-open registration for CurbTO temporary parking pick-up zones to help support main street businesses while Toronto is in the Grey – Lockdown category of the Province of Ontario’s COVID-19 response framework.

Throughout the summer, around 100 Temporary Parking Pick-Up Zones helped by re-purposing parking locations along main streets for short-term parking (no more than 10 minutes). Potential customers and delivery agents have used them to expedite food, medicine and other merchandise pick-ups by making parking spots immediately available near main street businesses offering curbside pick-up and delivery.

Blue signs are put in place to identify the temporary parking locations and City staff are working with Toronto Police Service Parking Enforcement to plan enforcement and help ensure that the designated parking locations are used appropriately.

With Toronto in the Grey – Lockdown category of the Province of Ontario’s COVID-19 response framework, the message from Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health is that the best way to stop the spread of COVID-19 is for residents to stay home and only go out for essentials. Making short-term parking available for curbside pick-up or delivery services supports both public health requirements and local businesses.

Businesses with available nearby parking lots are encouraged to use that space to accommodate temporary curbside pick-up locations.

The CurbTO program first launched in April and, at its peak in early summer, the program supported more than 200 locations while also helping to keep people safer from virus spread and respecting public health direction. Fifty-six sites are still active on City streets.

Main street businesses and BIAs can register or learn more about the program at toronto.ca/curbto.

Register to join my virtual town hall on Monday, December 7

Posted on November 26, 2020

Raising Our Voice: Organizing During the Global Pandemic

With new information coming out daily, it is difficult to know where to turn to make sure our views are heard on how we can rebuild a fairer, more just Toronto.

As the City prepares to release its 2021 budget in early January, every voice is critical to make sure the issues we care about are acted upon as we move forward. Housing, the environment, public transportation, and child care will all be up for debate as the City tries to find a path forward. By working together we can strengthen our voice to ensure no one is left behind.

Join me as I welcome both local and city-wide leaders and activists to discuss how we organize in these unprecedented times.


WHEN: Monday, December 7, 2020

TIME: 6:30 pm

REGISTER HERE


If you have any questions, please contact the Office of Councillor Perks by email at councillor_perks@toronto.ca or by phone at 416-392-7919.

Update on Inclusion to the City of Toronto’s Heritage Register

Posted on November 26, 2020

Two Staff Reports recommending inclusion of properties within Ward 4 Parkdale-High Park on to the Heritage Register will be heard at the Toronto Preservation Board meeting on November 30th, 2020.

The affected properties are located within the area of the Dundas Street West and Roncesvalles Built Form Study or the West Queen West Planning Study areas. The properties have been identified through the heritage surveys undertaken as part of past planning and heritage studies. Individual Property owners have received communication for the City of Toronto.

The report are available for review at:

PB19.7 Inclusion on the City of Toronto’s Heritage Register – Dundas Street West and Roncesvalles Avenue Properties

http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgendaItemHistory.do?item=2020.PB19.7

PB19.8 Inclusion on the City of Toronto’s Heritage Register – Properties within the West Queen West and Parkdale Main Street Areas

http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgendaItemHistory.do?item=2020.PB19.8

The listing of a non-designated property on a municipal Heritage Register provides interim protection from demolition, should a development or demolition application be submitted. Listing provides an opportunity for City Council to determine whether the property warrants conservation through designation under the Ontario Heritage Act.

“Listing” a property on the Heritage Register does not trigger maintenance requirements over and above existing property standards, and it does not restrict an owner’s ability to make exterior and interior alterations when demolition or a development application is not involved.

When a property is listed it does not necessarily mean that it will be subsequently “designated.”

Due to the pandemic, Civic buildings are closed to the public and meetings of the Toronto Preservation Board are currently being conducted by electronic means. If you wish to register to speak to this item at Toronto Preservation Board, or submit written comment, please email teycc@toronto.ca. Registered speakers will be provided with instructions on connecting to the meeting.

TEYCC will also be streamed live online at www.youtube.com/TorontoCityCouncilLive

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