Just a Quick Announcement

I’m moving on from Torontoist.

I’m incredibly grateful I had the opportunity to contribute to a great publication. Torontoist’s editors (and I mean copy editors too! ilu guise) have improved my writing immensely. And a shout-out to the many Torontoist Flickr pool photographers whose work has enriched my articles.

However, I deserve to be paid fairly. And Torontoist doesn’t have the budget for that.1

I’ll be reaching out to other publications that may be a good home for my municipal politics coverage. In the meanwhile, my City Council previews (and everything else) will appear here.


  1. As you know from Who Pays Writers, Torontoist pays freelancers $15 per article. I believe a fair amount would be about $150-300 per article (depending on length and work involved) and $20 per hour of liveblogging. 

Toronto’s New Apartment Bylaw Aims to Protect Tenants and Crack Down On Bad Landlords

Originally published at Torontoist. Photo by Seekdes (Mike in TO). Via the Torontoist Flickr pool.

The new apartment bylaw passed by Council yesterday isn’t exactly what tenant advocates imagined, but for apartment renters, it’s a promising step forward.

Owners of “problem properties” like 500 Dawes or 105 West Lodge are a perennial problem for residents, their councillors, and City staff. Detractors have argued that it would be enough to beef up the City’s MRAB program, which audits apartment buildings for compliance with property standards. However, advocates for tenants and low-income residents want the City to have more teeth to deal with squalid apartments and unresponsive landlords.

Continue reading Toronto’s New Apartment Bylaw Aims to Protect Tenants and Crack Down On Bad Landlords

Toronto City Council Agenda Preview: March 2017

Photo by Jae Yang from the Torontoist Flickr pool.

City Council convenes this week for yet another Scarborough transit debate. But there’s much more on the agenda, including energy drinks, the Great Lakes, landlord licensing, the inexorable spread of Shoppers Drug Mart, and more. Read on for our picks.


Read more at Torontoist.

Toronto City Council Preview: December 2016

From road tolls to water rates, we read Council’s agenda so you don’t have to.

The rate-supported budget—water, waste, and parking—will be passed this meeting. But it’s a regular Council meeting, too! Try to contain your excitement! The Big Ticket The water, waste, and Parking Authority budgets get passed today. (These are separate from the tax-supported budget, which comes to Council in mid-February.) Read our discussion of the rate-supported budget. […]


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What You Need to Know About Toronto’s 2017 Water, Waste, and Parking Budget

Toronto actually has multiple City budgets! Think of this as the secret one that no one talks about.

When people talk about the City budget or the budget process, they usually mean the tax-supported budget. But there’s another budget—or, rather, there are three. The water, waste, and parking budgets are funded by people paying fees for the services they use (and only the services they use). They make up the rate-supported budget, which […]


The post What You Need to Know About Toronto’s 2017 Water, Waste, and Parking Budget appeared first on Torontoist.

Toronto City Council Preview: November 2016 (SmartTrack, Ward Boundaries, and Flood Protection)

Every month, Torontoist reads the Toronto City Council agenda details so you don’t have to.

On this month’s busy agenda: SmartTrack, redrawing Toronto’s wards, service animals, skate parks, and more. The Big Ticket The people want SmartTrack. SmartTrack, SmartTrack, SmartTrack. A major transit report on the City’s commitment to a development process and funding for SmartTrack comes to Council this month. There are many unknowns, untruths, and potential snags. Read […]


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Four Ways that SmartTrack Could See More Problems

It has political support, but it’s still an unfunded plan with billions in questionable assumptions.

After Executive Committee unanimously approved the recommendations in the key transit report released earlier this week, the item will go to City Council for debate next week. If it passes there as well, does that mean SmartTrack is a done deal? No. This is just the first step in a long process, and through the […]


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We Annotated Toronto Council’s Transit Report So You Can Follow Along

We make sense of the report with billions of dollars’ worth of implications for Toronto’s transit future. (You can suggest your annotations too!)

Dang, Toronto’s transit planning is confusing. Unfortunately, the language in staff reports that’s used to inform decision-making doesn’t always help, either. Sometimes it can be verbose, or you need lots of institutional knowledge to appreciate the context and underlying issues they’re referencing. So we here at Torontoist have annotated the recent staff report on the […]


The post We Annotated Toronto Council’s Transit Report So You Can Follow Along appeared first on Torontoist.

Mammoliti Sent a Stupid Press Release, So We Added the Annotations it Needs

Giorgio Mammoliti’s press releases are a joy to open. The colourful councillor will say and do anything for attention, whether it’s acting like a raccoon, capitalizing on Rob Ford’s death, or going shirtless at city hall to protest a nude beach. The press release he sent Monday at 3:06 p.m. was simple enough, even if…


Read more at Torontoist.