07.26.2018 08:18 PM

Ford drops a bomb

He did it. He really did it. Wow.

This is huge. And good, I think.

Premier Doug Ford is slashing the size of Toronto city council almost in half before the October election, the Star has learned.

In a stunning development, Ford is also cancelling planned regional chair elections in Peel and York, thwarting the ambitions of his political foe Patrick Brown, the former Progressive Conservative leader, as well as those of former Liberal cabinet minister Steven Del Duca.

Conservative sources said legislation will be tabled as early as Monday to cut Toronto council from a planned 47 councillors to 25, and ward boundaries would match federal and provincial ridings.

Now he just needs to make John Tory a mayor with true executive powers.

Hell, maybe a Kinsella will run yet!


  1. Gord Hunter says:

    Wow! Without even pretending to consult the public? That is ballsy and I guess you can like it until the next thing comes along and he is chopping at something dear to your heart. What will it be? TVO? Provincial parks? municipal long term care centres? With a totally beholding caucus there is no stopping him.

    • Matt says:

      I don’t think in human history the public has ever lost a wink of sleep at the thought of FEWER politicians in government.

      And he did talk about aligning Toronto’s “wards” with provincial and federal riding boundaries during the campaign.

  2. Lynn Foster says:

    Good work Premier Doug…now stop the Bala dam and you are golden…!

  3. Bruce Posch says:

    Ford was being moderate…He should have chopped the council to ten.

  4. Pipes says:

    Don’t give a shit, I’m moving.

  5. doconnor says:

    No sign of the moderate and reasonable Ford you claim existed, yet. Just the petty and vindictive Ford we feared.

  6. Sean says:

    Good for Ford. Toronto council has been low value for far too many years: It’s a showboat for circus acts, a megaphone for virtue signallers, and a romper room for adults who never moved beyond adolescents.

    • Fred from BC says:

      Is this the Donald Trump Effect, I wonder?

      The system appeared to be ‘broken’ down there, too…and the public elected a guy who was guaranteed to shake things up.

      (Michael Moore, as odious as he is, was right about one thing: it was the greatest political “f*ck you!” in American history)

      Ford (or Trump) might not be able to fix things, but he is certainly shining a harsh spotlight on everything that needs attention.

  7. Matt says:

    Love the idea.

    Mississauga mayor Bonnie Crombie seems very pleased with the plan to kill the Peel Regional Chair too.

    As for giving Mayor Tory more power, since we actually vote for the mayor directly he/she should be more that just another vote on council equal to the Councillors. How much extra power, I’m not sure.

    And I guess support/hate for the idea will all depend on your feeling about the person currently in the mayors seat. when Miller was mayor and wanted more power, the right said hell no.

    When Ford was mayor, the left said holy hell we’re glad

    • Matt says:


      last line should have said “when Rob Ford was mayor, the left said holy hell we’re glad McGuinty never changed the Act to give Toronto’s mayor more powers”

      And Ford dropped another bomb today. They are planning to privatize marijuana sales.

  8. Lino says:

    Fantastic move by the Premier. This will no doubt get the (p/manties) in a bunch of those living high on the hog on City Council.

    Common Sense is returning back to Queens Park and I believe that it would be a good suggestion for all municipalities to follow suit.

    • Matt says:

      Hopefully he also puts in term limits.

      Twelve years max. Either three consecutive terms or three separate 4 year stints

  9. Michele says:

    Finally a politician actually doing what he said he would! Way to go Doug! We’re behind you all the way!

  10. Tycho Manson says:

    I can’t see how there’s anything remotely good about this. Local government is supposed to be human-scale. You’re supposed to be able to contact your councillor — or at least his or her staffers — easily when you have a local concern. How does doubling the size of a councillor’s constituency do anything to make that easier?

    This simply doubles down on Mike Harris’s consolidation move 20 years ago. It will make city government even bigger, more remote, and ultimately more bureaucratic.

  11. ABB says:

    The Gravy Train ends at City Hall. Smart and excellent move. This is called “use your mandate for best effect” and shows that Premier Ford and his team are very savvy.

    In the bloated 47-member council, ideological fiefdoms flourish and there is no incentive for councillors to work together for best interests of ALL the residents. In the 25-member council, they have no option but to work together. And also to work, like, WORK HARD, because there is nowhere for lazy members to hide.

    God I love this guy Ford.

    • Tycho Manson says:

      How does reducing the numbers create an incentive to work together? If anything, it increases the likelihood of “ideological fiefdoms”, because councillors will claim to represent larger numbers of people (even though it will be proportionately harder to service their needs).

      • Matt says:

        Toronto population – 2.5 million give or take
        Council size – 47 members

        Los Angeles population – 4+ million
        Los Angeles council size – 15 members

        Toronto will be just fine with 25.

        • Derek Pearce says:

          American cities are a goddamned corrupt mess and poorly run. I think the fact that LA has a pop of 4+mil and only 15 councillors is an argument AGAINST Ford’s plan.

          • Matt says:

            Corruption Index
            Toronto – 8.7
            Los Angeles – 7.1
            Source: Transparency International, 2018

            Unemployment Rate
            Toronto – 9.9%
            Los Angeles – 8.7%
            Source: Wikipedia, 2018; city’s official stats, 2018.

        • Fred from BC says:

          Nicely done, Matt.

          I had no idea how hugely bloated Toronto City Council really was. I suppose that is what happens when you keep electing left-leaning Councillors, who all seem to be of the opinion that more government = better government (it doesn’t).

          I never miss a federal or provincial election, but haven’t voted in a Vancouver municipal election in years. There’s no point; I usually faced the choice between voting for the left-winger, the other left-winger or the communist. 🙁

          When will Vancouver get their own Doug Ford, I wonder?

        • Jim says:

          lots of missing information here
          Los Angeles also has almost 100 neighbourhood councils with 1,800 elected board members serving on them

          • Fred from BC says:

            You must have gotten that from the Red Star (a publication that can always be counted upon to provide half the story – the left half).

            Those 1800 people are *volunteers*. They don’t get paid.

            Each neighbourhood council gets 42,000 dollars per year for ‘administration’, but that’s about it.

    • doconnor says:

      Can you explain the math behind your conclusion? what

    • Ridiculosity says:

      You love him. I think he’s a total asshole.

      Let’s agree to disagree

  12. Derek Pearce says:

    This is bullshit and you know it WK. This was not mentioned at all during the campaign. It’s totally designed to let Etobicoke, Scarborough and North York have an overwhelming say in the running of the city. Fuck this guy. Well, at least the federal Conservatives will pay dearly for this in Toronto next year. I guess we truly do live in bubbles because everyone I know is *pissed to the max* about this.

    • Matt says:

      1) Yes it was. Granted, not part of the platform, but it was talked about.

      2) He’s been talking about it for eight years, all the way back to 2010 when was elected to Toronto council. He brought it up again 2014 when he ran for mayor.

  13. Matt says:

    Tory this morning:

    It’s not fair to all the people that have registered to run and already started raising money for their campaigns.

    Umm, what?

    Are they suddenly being prevented from running? No.

    Let’s say one person was going to run in ward 5 and another was going to run in ward 6. Those get combined into a new ward, let’s ward 4.

    So the people that were going to run in ward 5 and 6 now run in ward 4.

  14. merrill smith says:

    Sure, this is exactly what we need, a premier who makes arbitrary decisions without consultation with anybody and conveniently manages to settle old scores while doing it.

  15. Robert White says:

    With an autocrat dictator like Ford at the helm we have all lost our beloved participatory democracy to a Totalitarian dictator like The Duck. Ford promised all of us ‘fairness’ and what has transpired is wholeheartedly unfairness.

    Ford will be despised much more than Harris was IMHO.


  16. Warren,

    When you get into government, you think simplistic and rudimentary magic solutions. By the time you leave, you know better than that.

  17. whyshouldIsellyourwheat says:

    So progressives are complaining that Ford has given them an opportunity to vote for a progressive candidate lunder the new rules, rather than be stuck with what would have been effectively an acclamation of Tory.

    Fewer councillors favors “progressive” candidates too. But the wards will now be contested rather than fiefdoms of incumbancy.

    So instead of Tory and a bunch of neighbourhood yahoos, Ford has given Toronto the opportunity to have a progressive Keesmaat as mayor and a progressive council composed of councillors who aren’t just neighbourhood yahoos.

    The Toronto Star had an editorial for exactly what Ford is doing a few years ago.

    This is a strong council model instead of a weak mayor and weak councillor model.

  18. Doug Brown says:

    Great move and hopefully a small start to wide-ranging municipal and provincial bloodletting. While campaigning on headcount reduction would be suicide, the only way to restoring fiscal health is layoffs, layoffs and more layoffs.

  19. Shane says:

    Didn’t Toronto city council vote to increase the number of seats to 47 without public consultation?

    Wasn’t a reduction of seats supposed to happen after amalgamation under mayor Lastman?

    Would Toronto city council ever voluntarily vote to reduce its size?

    • doconnor says:

      “Didn’t Toronto city council vote to increase the number of seats to 47 without public consultation?”

      No, Ford was lying when he said that.

      “Wasn’t a reduction of seats supposed to happen after amalgamation under mayor Lastman?”

      The province imposed a seat reduction during amalgamation.

      “Would Toronto city council ever voluntarily vote to reduce its size?”

      It’s not impossible. The province reduced the number of MPs.I believe Winnipeg council reduced its size when it switch to full time councillors in the 80s or 90s.

    • Walter says:

      They did consult.

      The majority wanted Council reduced to 22 (then there were 22 ridings in Toronto). They ignored those voices and short listed options with 38 to 58 wards. Of those options, they chose the middle one.

      Harris PC’s voluntarily reduced the number of MP’s from 130 to 103 – again matching the federal ones.

  20. p bre says:

    we elect folks to take action …he did (and they all do), he can be voted out in 4 years….vote for the best 25 – $25,000,000 in savings…can we do that in 10 departments …put money into social services, homeless..you name it

    • Matt says:

      The Left are screaming “WE WEREN’T CONSULTED!!!”

      I don’t remember Wynne consulting Ontarians before forcing cap & trade on us. Don’t remember being consulted before she sold off a majority share in Ontario Hydro.

      Andrea Horwath screaming “IT’S NOT DEMOCRACY” leads me to suspect she doesn’t understand how democracy works. She yelss “THE PEOPLE WEREN’T CONSULTED!!!” This coming from someone who was going to force sanctuary city bullshit on every municipality, city, borough, county, and community in the province.

      Not democracy? Anyone who has registered to run being in the 47 seat council being told they can’t run for election in the 25 seat council? Nope.

      Horwath has been in a constant state of rage since election night. Her act has already become tiresome. Maybe she should be called Angrya Horwath from now on.

  21. Matt says:

    So, let’s examine some of the people who have publicly lost their shit over this:

    Fed Liberal MP Adam Vaughan – Ultra left NDPer turned Liberal
    Fed NDP leader Jagmeet Singh – NDPer, obviously
    Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath – NDPer, obviously
    Councillor Paula Fletcher – NDPer
    Councillor Joe Mehevic – NDPer
    Councillor Gord Perks – NDPer
    Councillor Krystin Wong Tam – NDPer
    Councillor Mary Fragedakis – NDPer
    Councillor Mike Layton – NDPer
    Councillor Joe Cressy – NDPer
    Former Toronto Mayor David Miller – NDPer
    Former City Planner of Toronto Jennifer Keesmaat – Lefty, possibly NDPer

    Anyone else seeing a pattern? It’s subtle so you may need to look hard……..

  22. James Smith says:

    Gee, Mr Ford gives more evidence of how deep his grudges are & how petty he can be.
    Funny story the level of government with the biggest impact on people is the one people don’t care/ don’t bother voting for.
    Why not just get rid of them all & let Mr Ford make all the decisions out of thin air?

  23. Alan Smithee says:

    Doug Ford = Thanos

    Provincial election = Infinity Gauntlet

    Toronto City Council = Marvel Universe

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