Morning Brew: Toronto goes ape for the IKEA monkey, Ford allies received job list, Gardiner cash stays missing, Eglinton LRT changes, and Rob Ford Gangnam Style
Things have been pretty bananas around Toronto recently but for the first time the mayhem actually involved a monkey. Yesterday a small, jacketed rhesus macaque, a native of south and central Asia, escaped from a crate in an unlocked car at a branch of IKEA near Leslie and 401. The "stressed" primate gave store security the slip but was eventually picked up in good health by Animal Services, who fed it grapes. Since exotic animals are banned in Toronto, the stylish little critter will be placed in a sanctuary.
Three councillors who said they never saw a list of preferred candidates for civic appointments from Rob Ford's office were, according to emails seen by the Star, recipients of "the mayor's choices for shortlisting tomorrow" document. Rob Ford criticized city ombudsman Fiona Crean earlier this year for concluding that the appointment process to city boards has been compromised.
"Making up lists," Georgio Mammoliti said before council. His and the assistants of councillors Michael Thompson and Jaye Robinson received, though they may not have forwarded, the list.
A city bureaucrat says it's not worth finding out what happened to millions of dollars in repair and maintenance cash budgeted for the Gardiner expressway that appears to have been misdirected to other projects. According to the National Post, the city has consistently spent less money on the aging highway than was allocated - in one year there was a difference of $17 million. Should the city follow the money?
Metrolinx might be about to revise its plans for the Eglinton-Crosstown LRT to include a longer tunneled section at either end of the line. A proposed for the east and west ends could extend the tunnel slightly to Don Mills Road and Weston Road.
Rob Ford says closing a west end fire hall won't effect response times in the neighbourhood. Station 424 on Runnymede Road can be closed because its catchment area overlaps those of surrounding stations, according to officials. Ford made the comments on his weekly radio show.
Finally, it might be a little late to the party, but here's Rob Ford (well, his head) starring in the Gangnam Style video.
IN OTHER NEWS:
- Rooftop pursuit ends in arrest [The Star]
- Record attempt sees 7,300 carollers pack Distillery District [The Star]
FROM THE WEEKEND:
- The Best Strip Clubs in Toronto
- This Week in Comedy
- A brief history of Toronto bike lanes
- Riff Raff keeps things unpredictable in return to Toronto
- Canadian Corps Legion Hall is now an art gallery
- The Toronto Motorcycle Show unveils hot new rides
- This Week in Theatre
- Album Review: Slim Twig, A Hound at the Hem
- Sunday Supplement: Campaign donations, Rocket ideas, TTC cobblestones, and Helicopter Canada
- Historic Clarence Square gets a facelift
Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.