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Morning Brew: Fords talk casinos, Vaughan pulls blue tweet, pondering a GTHA transit tax, more slippery roads, skating on Lake Ontario, and a credit meltdown

Posted by Chris Bateman / February 11, 2013

toronto snow alleyRob and Doug Ford were joined on their weekly Newstalk 1010 radio show this week by Ontario Lottery and Gaming CEO Rod Phillips, who told listeners any GTA gambling facility would be less than 10% gaming and consist of convention, retail, residential and hotel space. Ford also said he'd like to cut the city's land transfer tax by 10%. The show also featured Markham mayor Frank Scarpitti for a chat about stadia.

The City of Vaughan (not Markham...) has apologized for a profane tweet during the Friday's snow storm. The city's official account publicly questioned local "fucknuts" who keep their cars on the street during a snow storm. The question lingered for roughly an hour before the account was temporarily suspended.

Metrolinx is finding support for taxes to pay for new transit if the most recent round of public consultations are anything to go by. According to the Globe and Mail (paywall), a small increase in sales tax is one of the preferred ways of raising the $34 billion required to prevent the GTHA slipping into gridlock. Are small raises on existing tolls the best way of easing the pain?

Police are asking drivers to take extra care this morning after last night's freezing rainfall. A GO bus has already spun out on the greasy Highway 404 road surface and some school busses have been cancelled (list).

The vagaries of Toronto's winter weather make skating on Lake Ontario a little hit or miss. For safety reasons, the city doesn't allow skaters onto the ice between the downtown and the Islands, but it's still possible to have a sneaky game of shinny with a view when its cold enough. Have you skated on the lake?

Councillor Mike Del Grande had his hands full this weekend after snow plows in his Scarborough-Agincourt neighbourhood failed to clear driveway access holes like they're supposed to. No problem, though, Del Grande brought out his personal snowblower and did the work himself. Windrow clearing, as its known, was salvaged in 2011 budget which Del Grande assembled.

Finally, artists Sean Martindale and Adam Krawesky didn't let a pile of fresh snow outside TD Centre go to waste this weekend. The pair carved "CREDIT" with shovels in anticipation of today's warm temperatures and rain that will, hopefully, provide an "opportunity to catch a snow CREDIT meltdown." Nice.toronto td snowIN BRIEF:


Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.

Image: "Croft Street Murals at College, Toronto" by Uncle Lynx/blogTO Flickr pool.



Rick / February 11, 2013 at 08:21 am
Vaughan is Markham now?
Steph / February 11, 2013 at 08:33 am
Does anyone even bother to proof before publishing?
Come on, it's Vaughan!
Brutal, blogto.
McRib / February 11, 2013 at 08:34 am
since when did Markham become Vaughan?

that's not just sloppy, its idiotic.
Rob / February 11, 2013 at 09:11 am
Libraries? GRAVY.

Suburban windrow cleaning? DEFINITELY NOT GRAVY.

Thanks amalgamation!
Alan replying to a comment from Steph / February 11, 2013 at 09:30 am
if it is north of bloor, Blogto is clueless.
Christopher King / February 11, 2013 at 11:00 am
Cut the land transfer tax?
Hasn't this idea already been proven a bad one for a City that has very little revenue generation powers?
W. K. Lis / February 11, 2013 at 12:54 pm
Friday evening and Hamilton calls a snow emergency. Emergency lifted Sunday.

Meanwhile, no snow emergency in Toronto, but the Mayor is doing the 311 business of acting on callers complaints on his home phone. Isn't the Mayor too overpaid to handle 311 calls, or is it because of staff shortages at city hall?
Vaugham / February 11, 2013 at 04:09 pm
Vaughan, Markham....who cares either way??? They both suck and nobody cares either way.
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