Archive for July, 2012

Do the stars align for Mayor Rob Ford?

- July 31st, 2012

Toronto Sun entertainment writer Jim Slotek interviewed Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis following their meeting with Mayor Rob Ford at the Hockey Hall of Fame Monday (story here).

Here’s the Hollywood stars’ brief thoughts on Ford:

Slotek: So did you and our mayor hit it off?
Ferrell: Your mayor is a very nice fellow. And he gave us a lot of paraphernalia.
Galifianakis: I got a lot of stickers. What’s his platform?
Slotek: Um, The War Against Cars is one. He wants to make the roads more automobile friendly, make it easier for cars to get around.
Galifianakis: Oh yeah, I heard Toronto has a big bike-versus-cars thing. I don’t think I agree with your mayor on that one.

Quote of the Day – Mayor Rob Ford’s brush with Hollywood

- July 30th, 2012

“Just keep going hard, don’t hit babies though.”

- Mayor Rob Ford giving political advice to Hollywood comedians Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis. Ferrell and Galifianakis were in Toronto Monday to promote their new movie The Campaign. Ford was making a joke about one of the scenes featured in the movie trailer where Ferrell’s character rushes to kiss a baby and ends up punching the tot instead.

Quote of the Day: Councillor Doug Ford fires another shot in The Star wars saga

- July 25th, 2012

Mayor Rob Ford and his new Cadillac Escalade

“The Toronto Star can go to hell and you can quote me on that.”

- Councillor Doug Ford to the Sun on Tuesday (story here) in response to a Toronto Star column on the mayor’s new Cadillac Escalade

What to expect when Councillor Josh Matlow is expecting

- July 24th, 2012

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Councillor Josh Matlow has a mini-Matlow on the way.

The rookie councillor announced on Twitter Monday that his wife Melissa is four months pregnant.

“I’ve never been so clear about why I care so much about fighting for the health of our community and city,” Matlow tweeted.

His breaking baby news was quickly met with a torrent of congratulations.

The couple don’t know if it’s a boy or a girl yet but I’m told they will find out soon.

All the best to the Matlows.

Quotable Quotes: The Life and Death of OneCity

- July 12th, 2012

OneCityDone

Here’s what city councillors said Wednesday during the transit debate (story here):

“It’s pink lipstick on a very fat pig with flip flops on.”
- Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti on OneCity advocates claiming a win

“I think it has been renamed the Toronto transit expansion plan and that’s just fine.”
- TTC Chair Karen Stintz on the death of OneCity

“-”
- Mayor Rob Ford who didn’t speak during Wednesday’s transit debate

“I would say that the province would not be wise to continue to spend large sums of money on the Scarborough LRT because council is going to weigh in on it at a later point this year.”

- Councillor Joe Mihevc

“They’ve fallen into the trap that Rob Ford set about retail politics, when it’s all about slogans and campaigns.”
- Councillor Adam Vaughan

“I’m very disappointed that didn’t happen.”
- Councillor Glenn De Baeremaeker on rejection of his motion on studying extending the Bloor-Danforth line rather than replacing the Scarborough RT with an LRT

“I can assure everyone in Toronto the mayor is back in charge of transit and we’re going to move forward.”
- Councillor Doug Ford

“I just want to know what OneCity is … Where is it? Where’s Waldo?”
- Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti asking why no one has introduced OneCity on the floor of council

“We know that we’re failing (on transit), we haven’t kept up.”
- Councillor Peter Milczyn on transit

“We’ve clearly made a meal out of this particular issue, we continue to chew at the same old bone.”
- Councillor Michael Thompson on transit

“Building transit can’t be about political cover.”
- Councillor Shelley Carroll

“It’s a complete flame out.”
- Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong on the end of OneCity

Quote of the Day: Councillor Doug Ford sums up the OneCity fight

- July 10th, 2012

“They tried to kill Rob once, then they try to kill him again, and they try to kill him again. And then they find out their third plan doesn’t work so now they’re backpedaling and saying, ‘We didn’t really mean to try to kill ya, we just want you on our side, just for the next time we try to kill ya.’ But anyways, we’ll see what happens.”

- Councillor Doug Ford on Tuesday summing up the political wrangling between Mayor Rob Ford and councillors advocating OneCity  happening at City Hall ahead of Wednesday’s council meeting.

Mayor Rob Ford on OneCity

- July 9th, 2012

--From Remote-- (10--TorMayor-5- FOR DON PEAT FORD STORY- Toronto Mayor Rob Ford in Nathan Phillips

“I can’t support taxing the taxpayers.”

- Mayor Rob Ford on the OneCity transit plan when asked Monday at the Festival of Football kickoff what he’s going to do about it when it comes to council. His brother, Councillor Doug Ford, then abruptly cut off the political questions saying, “Let’s talk soccer.”

Quote of the Day: Glenn De Baeremaeker on transit and apple pie

- July 9th, 2012

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“There have been people who have said, well you didn’t consult with me. My answer is I’m consulting with you today. I can’t show you my apple pie before it is out of the oven. Now that this apple pie, this transit plan, is out of the oven and it’s full, now we have something to talk about.”

- Councillor Glenn De Baeremaeker last week on complaints from some councillors that they weren’t consulted by him and TTC chair Karen Stintz about the OneCity plan

Quotable Quotes: City Council recap

- July 9th, 2012

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Toronto city council meets this week for the last meeting before the summer break (story on that here). Here’s some of the more memorable quotes from city council meetings during the first six months of 2012:

“That whole meeting was irrelevant.”
- Mayor Rob Ford after city council voted in February to revive most of the Transit City plan.

“The people of this city have spoken loud and clear. They want subways,  folks. They want subways, subways, subways.”
- Mayor Rob Ford during the Sheppard subway vs. Sheppard LRT debate at council in March.

“I think we’re going to get sued.”
- Mayor Rob Ford immediately after Toronto city council voted to ban plastic bags starting January 1, 2013.

“Just get rid of the damn bags!”
- Councillor David Shiner urging councillors to support a bag ban at the June city council meeting.

“This is a vote. We’ll get past it. We’re one city. We need to move forward together.”
- TTC chair Karen Stintz on whether she could work with Mayor Rob Ford after the Sheppard subway vote in March.

“My advice to the taxpayer would be don’t send us any more activists, don’t send us any more unionists, don’t send us any more cyclists … Send us some people down here with good common sense who just want to manage the city’s affairs, that’s what’s needed.”
- Deputy Mayor Doug Holyday in April following a debate on contracting out cleaning jobs.

“F— off.”
- Councillor Gord Perks to Councillor Josh Colle during a debate on gun control in May. He later apologized.

“You just don’t get anywhere with these monkeys.”
- Councillor Doug Ford during the debate over the Sheppard subway in March.

“I apologize for saying monkeys.”
- Councillor Doug Ford after councillors demanded an apology for him calling them monkeys during the Sheppard subway debate in March.

“There is no way that you can say that (Mayor Rob Ford) saved the day, that he won the day. He, frankly, lost the day quite miserably.”
- Councillor Joe Mihevc after the 2012 budget vote at city council in January.

“I have never seen councillors so confused as they are today.”
- Speaker Frances Nunziata to council during the March special council meeting on the Sheppard subway.

Mayor Rob Ford losing his Chief of Staff

- July 7th, 2012

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Mayor Rob Ford is about to lose his top staffer.

The Sun has learned Amir Remtulla, Ford’s chief of staff, is leaving City Hall to take an executive position with the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games organizing committee.

Remtulla handed in his resignation this past week. His last day is next Friday.

The departure comes almost 18 months after Remtulla took over as Ford’s chief of staff.

Ford’s office didn’t respond to a request for comment Saturday morning.

 

UPDATE:

A few hours after this blog post, the mayor’s office released this on Remtulla’s departure:

 

July 8, 2012

Media Advisory

After serving the Mayor of Toronto for the past 18 months as Chief of Staff, Amir Remtulla is stepping down to pursue new opportunities.

Mr. Remtulla is leaving the post July 20, 2012, to move on to his new job as Vice-President of External Partnerships with the Toronto 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games.

“Amir has brought tremendous leadership to my team,” said Mayor Rob Ford.  “His experience, advice and dedication to his work will be missed.  I would like to thank him for his service and helping move a number of major accomplishments through Council.
I wish him all the best in his new role.”

Mr. Remtulla took over as the Mayor’s Chief of Staff on February 22, 2011, after helping Mayor Ford transition into office.

Mr. Remtulla has been credited with steering a number of the Mayor’s key items and priorities through City Council, including the Budget, the Core Service Review, the outsourcing of garbage collection, revamping Toronto Community Housing Corporation, as well as successful labour negotiations with CUPE 416, 79, 2998 and 4948.

His guiding hand has left an indelible mark on the Mayor Ford administration.

“It has been an honour and a privilege to serve the Mayor of Toronto,” said Mr. Remtulla.  “I am very proud of what the Mayor has accomplished during my time as Chief of Staff.  As a result, Toronto taxpayers now know that their dollars are being spent wisely and that customer service is improving.”

With over 17 years of experience in corporate and public affairs, Mr. Remtulla will help ensure that Toronto has great success in hosting the 2015 Pan and Parapan American Games.

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