Dear residents and friends,
I deeply appreciate your support and confidence and I look forward to an ongoing dialogue with you on the many issues, challenges and opportunities we'll face together as a community here in Ward 22, St. Paul's and as a city.
I'm advocating for a more thoughtful, creative and responsible new approach for city council. I want council to engage our city's residents with an inspiring plan and make informed decisions that are based on evidence, community consultation and the merits of arguments - rather than ideology or left or right-wing partisanship.
My staff and I are here to assist you with any concerns or questions you may have. We're also working every day to improve our local neighbourhoods- along with supporting the many valued services Torontonians rely on every day. You are always welcome to contact me at 416-392-7906 or by email at email@example.com.
Councillor Matlow spoke on options for the Scarborough Subway, March 31, 2016.
Councillor Matlow spoke on tenant issues related to the Residential Tenancies Act, December 18 2013.
Buy local. Support small businesses.
These slogans are becoming increasingly prevalent as large retail companies have gradually taken up more real estate on our main streets. But is there substance behind the sayings? Does shopping at midtown's independent stores have any real benefits?
In a word, yes. For starters, significantly more money stays in the community when you shop at locally-owned businesses. Buying local also helps support the growth of other businesses and the local tax base. One recent study shows that locally-owned businesses generate a premium in enhanced economic impact. For every $100 spent at a locally-owned business, $45 goes right back into the community, compared to only $14 at a chain store.
Locally-owned businesses are more likely to hire architects, tradesmen, accountants and other ancillary service providers from the neighbourhood as chain stores generally keep those functions in-house.
Independent stores make a retail strip a community main street. Along with being an important part of our local neighbourhoods, Torontonians do come from all across the city to visit the Eglinton Way, Forest Hill Village and Mt. Pleasant BIAs because of unique destinations such as the Mad Bean, Little Dollhouse Co, Five Doors North, Zen Beginnings and Forest Hill's art galleries.
To honour the important contribution that local, small and independent business owners make to our quality of life, I started a "Best of Midtown" award to celebrate their contributions to our community- and to thank them.
We've recognized people like Mira Bunda and her family who've run The Bread and Butter restaurant on Mt. Pleasant Rd. for the past two decades and Elinor Lefave, the owner of Mabels' Fables. I have also discussed creating an initiative to support small, independent bookstores and cinemas- many of which have disappeared from our main streets over the years.
Thank you to everyone who attended my Tenants' Town Hall. I hosted this community meeting to inform you of your rights and to discuss with you what action is needed to protect them. It was a pleasure seeing so many tenants actively engaged in our community.
Many of you have asked that information from the meeting be available online. Click here for a copy of my handout listing important resources. Click here for a copy of keynote speaker Kenn Hale's speech. To see photos of the event, please click here.
I would also like to thank the insightful speaker and panelists:
- Kenn Hale of the Advocacy Centre for Tenants - Ontario
- Gus Michaels and Kim Kilburn of the City of Toronto's Municipal Licensing and Standards division
- Tony Balenzano and Daphne Gerou of the Landlord and Tenant Board
- Geordie Dent of the Federation of Metro Tenants' Associations
- Daryl Chong of the Greater Toronto Apartment Association
Please do not hesitate to contact me or any of the services listed above regarding any relevant issues you may be having.
Toronto's city council made a historic decision to finally move forward with building transit for Toronto and to truly connect our city. I want to extend my deepest appreciation to each of you who have supported this honest, evidence-based and fiscally responsible plan.
Next steps must start now
Now that underground and at-grade LRT projects are approved for Eglinton, Finch and Sheppard, I look forward to beginning substantive work to see transit projects including a Downtown Relief Subway line, improvements to current overcrowding on the Yonge line, dealing with state of good repair shortfalls and extending the Eglinton Crosstown line to Pearson Airport with a realistic plan and viable funding sources through to fruition. This hard work must start now.
To those of you who would like to learn more about the recent transit vote, please click here to listen to my analysis on CBC Radio's Here and Now.
For more information, please visit my website by clicking here.
Toronto City Councillor
Ward 22-St. Paul's
Today, Transportation Minister Bob Chiarelli issued the following statement on the Toronto City Council vote in favour of light rail transit:
"A majority of Toronto City Council voted today to build light rail transit along Sheppard Avenue East.
Last year, the Province signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Mayor Rob Ford to build a subway along Sheppard, on the condition that the plan be approved by council.
This government respects the will of the city's democratically elected councillors and they sent a message today to the Province and to Metrolinx that light rail transit is their
The Finch West LRT, Eglinton Crosstown and Scarborough RT upgrade received an overwhelming endorsement by Council in February. Today, council finalized their proposal for Sheppard Avenue East.
Metrolinx will now review that plan and then Cabinet will have the opportunity to further consider all advice.
Through the McGuinty government's $8.4-billion transit commitment, we are investing in keeping this city moving."
Library branches closed during labour disruption: Most website services available
TORONTO (Sunday, March 18, 2012) – A settlement has not been reached between the Toronto Public Library Board and the Toronto Public Library Workers’ Union Local 4948. As of 5:01 pm today, library staff began a legal strike.
During the labour disruption:
• All library branches and facilities are closed, and bookmobile and home library services are suspended.
• No fines will be charged during the labour disruption on overdue library materials.
• All book drops are closed. Borrowers are asked to hold onto their library materials until the labour disruption is over.
• All scheduled meetings and events are cancelled during the labour disruption. Room rental charges will be refunded, as appropriate.
• Most website services are available during the labour disruption. Please check the website for further updates www.torontopubliclibrary.ca
This morning the Expert Advisory Panel Regarding Transit on Sheppard Avenue East released its report and has recommended the building of Light Rail Transit (LRT) on Sheppard. The report was commissioned by Council on February 8, 2011 in order for Councillors to be better able to make an informed decision about rapid transit for Sheppard Avenue East.
Many of you have contacted me about the possibility of a Toronto casino. In recent weeks, I have taken the time to review and study research documents from both Canada and abroad on the economic and social impacts of casinos and problem-gambling. While I recognize the need to find sources of revenue to pay for our city's priorities, I do not believe that the long-term impact on Toronto, its neighbourhoods, its economy and its people are worth the gamble. I would far rather Council give serious consideration to road tolls or other infrastructure-related revenue sources before taking such a desperate act. Therefore I will not be supporting any proposal to place a casino in our city, nor any other proposals that contribute to the adverse social and economic impacts that gambling has.
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