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Morning Brew: Rob Ford not worried about next year's huge budget hole, Ontario government wants to relax liquor laws, soon you can watch roasting chicken 24/7, Toronto gets a new nickname and the Raptors win!

I guess you could say Mayor Rob Ford is the type of guy who lives in the present moment. How else can one explain his unruffled response to next year's looming budget hole? Council voted Wednesday in favour of a promised property-tax freeze in the 2011 capital budget. It also voted to put an end to a city-funded downspout-disconnection program aimed at reducing the amount of water flowing directly into sewers, and to a program that subsidized the purchase of low-flow toilets. All of these are Ford's budgetary victories he promised to Torontonians. However, The city faces a $774-million budgetary hole going into 2012 after balancing this year's budget primarily off reserve funds and previous surpluses. But the mayor said that's not his concern right now. "We talk about what's in front of us," Mr. Ford said. "You can't talk about 2014 or 2015. We're talking about 2011 and that's before us, and that's the proper procedures before council. ... I'm only focused on 2011."

First buck-a-beers, now this. It must be election season. The Ontario government is looking at relaxing the province's liquor laws, which could mean the demise of beer tents at festivals in favour of allowing people to wander freely with drinks. In addition, the Attorney General is planning consultations on a number of other changes such as extending the hours booze can be served at special events like weddings and charity fundraisers to 2 a.m. from 1 a.m. and the selling of all-inclusive vacation packages in Ontario.

You know when you watched the fireplace channel and thought to yourself: "I wish there was a chicken roasting in that fire because that would make this experience so much more enjoyable"? Well, wish granted. In a savvy marketing move by Cara Foods' Swiss Chalet, The Rotisserie Channel will launch on channel 208 on Rogers digital cable on February 28 and will run until May 22 (depending on how successful this multimedia campaign turns out to be). I hope people realize the chicken you're watching won't be the chicken you're going to be eat.

The winner of EYE Weekly's nickname contest has been announced. Drum roll please....and it's "El Toro." I don't know about y'all but I always had a thing for Latinos, so I dig it. But it also has nothing to do with Toronto -- aside from four letters -- so it's a rather odd choice. Or perhaps just proof that Toronto doesn't need a new nickname...


Photo by Scott Snider in the blogTO Flickr pool.

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