Council uncertain about provincial funds
Transit, housing, day care and more are priorities for the city, but Doug Ford has not made his own priorities clear
As a Toronto councillor at city hall, Doug Ford often saw himself as a co-mayor to his brother Rob Ford. The pair insisted on cutting spending, lowering taxes and building subways.
Now that Ford will soon be in charge of the province and master of many municipal domains as premier, it’s not clear what’s in store for a city that is struggling to manage an influx of refugees, create enough affordable housing and build multiple transit lines that have been planned for years. Premier-designate Doug Ford hasn’t committed to priority projects for Toronto such as the Waterfront LRT.
With social housing, for example, the city has a 10-year capital repairs plan to prevent further closures of subsidized units while many buildings continue to crumble.
Ford, who once handed out $20 bills to Toronto Community Housing tenants, has not specified any financial help for the corporation that is Canada’s largest landlord, responsible for some 110,000 residents.
On the transit file, TTC chair Councillor Josh Colle worried Ford’s election puts the city’s priority projects at risk.
Amid controversy over its high cost, council is pushing ahead with the one-stop, $3.35 billion subway extension to the Scarborough Town Centre. Ford has promised to revert to an earlier three-stop plan, which could add at least $1 billion to the bill, and, Colle warned, delay the project.
Councillor Janet Davis said she is skeptical of an unconfirmed statement that the PCS would honour the Liberal government’s commitment to build 100,000 new licensed child care spaces over the next five years.