Toronto street

Morning Brew: Toronto council to be more diverse, furious George rages about roads, TTC shortlist for open fare system, man goes to trial for pushing teens in front of subway, off-peak rates to be lowered, the Bloodmobile makes its rounds

The makeup of Toronto's councillors may be a bit more diverse following this year's election. At present four women and nine minorities are represented on council. But this year's Toronto's motto, "Diversity Our Strength," hints at a possible shift. As many older councilors step down, their positions are being contested by a diverse set of candidates with ideas for improving the city, or at the very least, their ward.

Furious George is raging about road construction delays. Smitherman has promised to include a clause in construction contracts that will fine contractors if they delay road projects. The money would not go to the city but to affected businesses. Good idea or bad idea?

Among the shortlist for the TTC's open-fare system is Cubic. The San Diago-based company is responsible for smart card systems such as London's Oyster and will be providing an electronic fare system for Sydney's transit authority as well. Oddly missing from the shortlist are Canadian companies. A few contenders are LG, Visa, and a subsidiary of Visa. Should a Canadian company step forward to take on the project?

Adenir De Oliveiro will face trial for attempted murder after he allegedly tried to push three teens into the path of an oncoming subway train on Friday the 13th in February. Although all three boys survived, one teen had two toes amputated. De Oliveiro will undergo a psychiatric evaluation and has been ordered to receive his medication throughout the trial.

The McGuinty government is seeking to reevaluate off-peak rates for energy. The incentive for time-of-use pricing hasn't been effective in convincing ratepayers in altering their schedule to take advantage of the cuts. McGuinty alleges this is because the rate of off-peak hours is simply not low enough. The NDP opposition believes that the money spent on time-of-use meters would have been better spent on retrofitting homes with energy-saving devices.

The Bloodmobile, Canada's first blood donor clinic on wheels parked at Front and John yesterday in hopes of raising awareness and collecting blood for Canadian Blood Services. Toronto Hospitals use at least 50,000 more units of blood each year than is donated by citizens. In hope of becoming self-sufficient, Canadian Blood Services is on a blitz. The Bloodmobile will hopefully reach those who are pressed for time in the downtown core, but would still like to donate. Look for it at Yonge and Eglington today from 11:30 to 2:30.

Photo by tapesonthefloor in the blogTO Flickr pool.

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