The Cheat Sheet: January/February 2018 City Council (Extra Special Low Effort Edition)

On this meeting’s agenda: waterfront transit, a Rail Deck Park development proposal, various TCHC issues, self-driving cars, cryptocurrency, a new revenue tool, and, of course, tree removal applications.

Several items were deferred from the last meeting; check my previous write-up.

Getting Around

  • Wow, it seems like just yesterday that the City embarked on a waterfront transit “reset”—unifying the patchwork of planned and ongoing projects into a cohesive network plan. The latest report on the Waterfront Transit Network Plan includes details on laying the groundwork for extending light rail to Humber Bay Shores, redoing the Bathurst/Queens Quay/Fleet St. intersection, and options for improving the link between Union and Queens Quay. Read the full report here.

  • It’s officially time to get excited about new elevators at Lansdowne station, as Council is set to expropriate the needed land.

  • The wave of the future: self-driving cars! Are we prepared? If the proposed interim car-share policy is any indication, the general public’s greatest concern will be about these robo-cars taking valuable parking spaces away from human-crewed vehicles. Is this how the Butlerian Jihad begins?

Shelter and Housing

  • As part of its “Tenants First” strategy, TCHC is set to shuffle off its rooming houses and single-family houses to the non-profit sector. (Previously, as part of the same strategy, Council voted to split off seniors’ housing into a separate entity.) Absent a giant influx of cash, TCHC’s best solution for reducing its operating expenses and capital repair backlog is simply divesting itself of properties.

  • The Ombudsman’s report on TCHC’s priority transfer process for tenants at risk finds that the process is backlogged, arbitrary, and deeply unfair. For example, one complainant who “witnessed a violent crime” had her application denied

    even after learning that she had fled to a shelter with her child and that while she was there, an intruder entered her unit and left a gun in her child’s drawer.

    Read the Ombudsman’s recommendations for fixing the process in the full report.

  • So here’s Community Development and Recreation Committee’s response to the winter shelter crisis. Okay. I’m sorry. This is where I broke down and fell into a pit of despair because…look at this. Look at this pitiful, useless shit. Let’s go through this:

    “City Council reaffirm the 90 percent shelter occupancy cap.” The one they’ve never met since they voted to set it? Lol. Great.

    “City Council request the Federal Government…” Okay, we can write all these off as never gonna happen.

    Keep winter emergency programs running longer. Great. Okay.

    “Ensure necessary budget adjustments…” This is fucking useless because the majority of Council prioritizes keeping property taxes low instead of investing in programs or facilities.

    “City Council request the Ministry of Health…” Fucking lol.

    “Reporting on deficiencies and identifying finances required to resolve them.” You’ll never fund it so what’s the fucking point?

    “Pursue appropriate accommodation and support for refugees and asylum seekers through partner agencies…to lessen the reliance on the use of hotels as emergency shelters.” Make it someone else’s problem. Okay. The City is using hotels in the first place because THERE IS NOTHING ELSE. YOU DELIBERATELY KEPT THE SYSTEM OVER CAPACITY AND NOW YOU’RE BITCHING THAT IT LOOKS BAD THAT IT’S OVER CAPACITY.

    This is fucking pathetic, what even is the fucking point, in this city the fucking end goal for a majority of Council is to palm everything off on non-profits. Someone else’s problem. Whittle City government down to servicing car-driving property owners.

    Then I started crying because I hit this point every time. I hate this shit. Writing, politics, all of it. I just want to take a bath and go to sleep. The rest of this piece is just going to be links, forget about the write-ups. I want to sleep for the next 12 hours.

  • Affordable rental housing in the new Mirvish Village development.

  • Update on 389 Church St., which is to be turned into supportive housing for women.

Urban Planning and Development

Parks and Public Space

Taxation

Sprots

Miscellaneous

A perfectly healthy honey locust tree near Bathurst & Wilson, Toronto.

Watch the meeting on YouTube or track its progress on Meeting Monitor. I may be too depressed to watch idk idk. I hate everything.

2 thoughts on “The Cheat Sheet: January/February 2018 City Council (Extra Special Low Effort Edition)”

  1. Late to the party and maybe someone’s already weighed in, but city councillors sitting on the board of the Hockey Hall of Fame isn’t a new thing. There was actually a huge fuss back in April 2015 when people realized that Rob Ford had been appointed the previous December.

    The city gets 3 seats on the 18-member board, and that arrangement’s been in place since I believe the early-60s.

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