City Council meeting of November 6, 7 and 8, 2001
Review of municipal services
Council decided to undertake a review of City services to identify possible candidates for alternative service delivery. Alternative service delivery is the process of restructuring that improves the delivery of services by sharing government functions with individuals, community groups, the private sector or other government entities. Council established a Council Reference Group to assist the Chief Administrative Officer with the process, which is to include consultation with representatives of civic employee unions. The reference group will compile a list of candidate programs/services to consider.
Study of water and wastewater utility
Council decided to proceed with a study for the possible creation of a publicly-owned water and wastewater utility serving Toronto. At present, the Water and Wastewater Division of Works and Emergency Services supplies Toronto's drinking water and treats all wastewater (sewage and storm water). In a separate decision, Council approved a water rate increase of nine per cent, effective January 1, 2002, to help meet the cost of repairs to the infrastructure of water mains.
Appointment of City CAO
Council confirmed the appointment of Shirley Hoy as the City's Chief Administrative Officer. Ms. Hoy had been Acting CAO and Acting Chief Financial Officer for the City since June 27, 2001. Previously, she was the Commissioner of Community and Neighbourhood Services.
On-street permit parking
Council approved details for a new bylaw governing residential on-street permit parking across the city, excluding the North York Community Council area and Ward 34. The bylaw will replace the pre-amalgamation bylaws governing on-street parking in the communities of East York, Etobicoke, Toronto and York. Adoption of a city-wide bylaw does not make permit parking a mandatory program.
Transitional housing in the port area
Council approved a project to provide transitional housing on a port lands site at 525 Commissioners St. The project, which involves the non-profit Homes First Society, includes funding for prefabricated structures that will be used by some of the people now living at the "tent city" on privately-owned property south of Lake Shore Boulevard near Cherry Street. Other tenants will be drawn from the Homes First Society's waiting list and from referrals by partner agencies.
Illegal rents and deposits
Council approved a course of action to combat the practice of landlords charging new tenants more than one month's deposit to secure rental accommodation, a practice prohibited by the Tenant Protection Act. Council agreed to promote awareness of the issue and to make a series of recommendations to relevant provincial officials, such as increasing the penalties for demanding security deposits that contravene the Tenant Protection Act.
In response to the federal Toronto Port Authority's work on a land use plan for the port area, Council decided to ask the Minister of Transport to ensure that the plan does not conflict with the City's intentions for development of the waterfront. The City is also requesting that the minister address the issue of a security flight path protocol for the Toronto waterfront area.
Phasing out the use of pesticides
Council directed the Medical Officer of Health to prepare a discussion document and seek input for a bylaw restricting the use of pesticides on private property. The Pesticides Subcommittee of the Toronto Interdepartmental Environment Committee will also assess public attitudes toward, and develop an implementation strategy for, the proposed restrictions on pesticides.
City's position on Smart Growth initiative
Council endorsed a series of recommendations to present to the provincial government in response to its proposed Ontario Smart Growth initiative. Principles advocated by the City include giving municipalities authority and appropriate funding for land use planning, and recognizing that the needs of large cities differ from those of smaller communities. The City recommends that either the provincial government or a mandated body develop and co-ordinate the implementation of a regional growth strategy for the Greater Toronto Area and surrounding regions.
Municipal land use planning
Council decided to encourage the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing to make social infrastructure a central theme of provincial land use planning. The advice is one of several City of Toronto recommendations in response to the Ontario government's work on a major policy statement regarding land use planning.
Development near Fort York
A debate about a proposal for highrise development adjacent to historic Fort York concluded with Council's endorsement of a revised plan for the proposed three-tower development. Approval to proceed with the plan is still subject to a ruling by the Ontario Municipal Board.
Maintaining and acquiring parks
Council approved a proposal to create a city-wide "Adopt-a-Park" program modelled on a program by that name already established in the Scarborough community. The program involves drawing upon interested groups of residents to assist the City in caring for local parks. In a separate decision, Council approved city-wide guidelines for Toronto's future acquisition of park land.
Capacity of the Don Valley Parkway
Council debated and ultimately turned down a proposal to study the possibility of adding news lanes to the Don Valley Parkway. Proponents envisaged the construction of two toll lanes for traffic in each direction. Council requested reports on several related issues, including options to increase the existing roadway and rail line capacity in the Don Valley corridor area.
Previous Council Highlights
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