Morning Brew: Zero hour for Ford Nation, a Mammoliti conspiracy theory, TTC blasted for newsstand contract, strollers are getting smaller, and Toronto's website rules
Rob Ford will learn his political fate in roughly an hour and a half when a panel of Superior Court judges releases its final decision in the conflict of interest saga to the legal teams on both sides of the case. At 10:30 that decision will be published online for the world to see; if the judges uphold the earlier ruling, Ford is out pending a by-election or appointment. If they overturn. he stays. Feeling philosophical, Rob Ford told reports that "what will be, will be" outside his office yesterday. True that. Stay tuned...
Though it's unlikely, Rob Ford and Paul Magder, Ford's opposition, could still appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada if the ruling doesn't go their way today. Wouldn't that be something? If you're curious about the panel of judges making today's decision, The Star has a handy backgrounder.
In what has to be the most bizarre story out of city hall in a long time (and that's saying something) councillor Giorgio Mammoliti says he has "solid evidence" he was followed and his phone tapped in some sort of cloak-and-dagger conspiracy. Speaking yesterday, Mammoliti claimed "a group of people" were his tapping phone and following his car in order to "go after" him and other councillors. "When I can prove it, I'll be going to the police" he said.
Speaking to Newstalk 1010, Mammoliti also took time to re-affirm the seriousness of his floating casino plan. The former executive committee member said the gambling ship would provide revenue for a property tax freeze at the last council meeting.
The TTC is coming under fire for its decision to award a fifteen-year, sole-sourced contract for news stand services in the subway system. The transit agency accepted an unsolicited $48 million proposal to extend its current contract with Tobmar Investments International, which owns Gateway Newstands, at its last meeting. The decision not to seek rival bids in the name of transparency went against staff recommendations.
Though you might not believe it from this week's strollers-on-streetcars debate, buggies are actually getting smaller, according to a Yonge and Bloor retailer. The most popular model is around 60 to 90 centimetres wide.
Take that, Madrid. Toronto has the second best municipal government website in the world according to an e-governance survey by Rutgers university in the United States. The city's toronto.ca was second only to Seoul's site. In all seriousness, the site is actually pretty good.
- 9-year-old dies from gunshot in Brampton, Ont. [CBC]
- Baby delivered at side of Highway 401 in freezing weather [CBC]
- Stage version of Aladdin will have world premiere in Toronto [Toronto Star]
- Islanders rally for comeback win over Maple Leafs [CBC]
Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.