Morning Brew: Operation Traveller warrants stay secret for now, Ford takes credit for unemployment drop, city asks for subway cash, and judge to rule on Ikea monkey
It could be a while before the police search warrants issued for the Project Traveller raids see the light of day. A judge yesterday said he wouldn't release any information before Sept. 20, if at all. Lawyers for eight media organizations are fighting to have the warrants released to see whether there is evidence Rob Ford is linked to members of the Dixon City Bloods gang. Lawyers for the defence are worried releasing the details could prejudice potential jurors.
Rob Ford is taking credit for a drop in Toronto's unemployment. The monthly, seasonally-adjusted jobless rate was 7.1% in August, down from 10% at the same time last year. Ford said the drop was "proof that my administration is on the right track" but didn't point to any specific policies that may have caused the change. Cllr. Adam Vaughan accused Ford of taking credit for policies created before his term.
The city has submitted papers requesting $660 million from the federal government for the Scarborough subway extension. City manager Joe Pennachetti sent the letter yesterday morning and a detailed report is due Oct. 4 in time for the Oct. 8 city council deadline to secure funding for the subway. If the money isn't found in time, or other forces derail the project, the line will revert back to an LRT.
A woman accused of throwing a cup of juice at Rob Ford at the Taste of Little Italy Festival is due to appear in court today. Twenty-seven-year-old Shannon Everett is charged with assault over the incident that allegedly took place with the mayor was walking among a crowd.
A judge will also decide the fate of Darwin the Ikea monkey later today. Owner Yasmin Nakhuda has been arguing for months that she should be allowed to retain custody of the little snow macaque, which made headlines during an escape in December. Darwin is currently being looked after at Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary in Sunderland.
Cllr. Adam Vaughan wants Toronto to set up its own version of the Ontario Municipal Board for minor variance issues. Currently, the provincial body has authority over small issues in Toronto. Vaughan says a recent case in Harbord Village that went against the city was the final straw. A section of the City of Toronto Act would allow the proposed change.
A G20 police officer has been found guilty of assaulting a protester. A judge ruled Const. Babak Andalib-Goortani used excessive force arresting Adam Nobody on June 26, 2010 at the Ontario legislature, tackling and striking him repeatedly with a baton. "A police officer is not entitled to use unlimited force to effect an arrest," Judge Louise Botham said in her ruling.
Some good news for the TTC. Its renovation of Victoria Park station, which features a green roof, bike parking, and barrier-free entrances, won an Urban Design Award for public buildings Wednesday. Awards aside, the interior tiles still say "CTORIA PARK" where the new windows have been punched out.
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Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.