Doug Ford says he intends to slash the size of Toronto city council in half in the name of “efficiencies.”
But there’s another reason for Ford’s enthusiasm to squash council’s influence: his plot to take over public transit in Toronto.
And like his shock and awe to reshape Toronto’s political system, Ford’s transit plans will mean less democratic control of the TTC, a public service that millions of people depend on every day.
Weeks before the provincial election, city council voted 30-6 to keep the TTC publicly owned, operated and maintained. The vote was in response to the Amalgamated Transit Union’s Keep Transit Publiccampaign, which was launched over concerns of “years of creeping privatization by the province and Metrolinx.”
Ford, on the other hand, campaigned on a plan to break up the TTC and have the province take control of subways. He also campaigned on building subways in Scarborough.
Let’s forget for a moment that the estimated cost for the single-stop subway in Scarborough championed by Ford when he was a city councillor (and when his brother Rob was mayor of Toronto) is based on only five per cent of its design (the 30 per cent design cost won’t be released until 2019). Never mind that taxpayers are already paying a surcharge on their property tax bill for the cost to switch to a one-stop Scarborough subway from the original plan to build a seven-stop LRT.
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