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Morning Brew: City hall lobbyists should be regulated, Ford approval flatlines, more boring on the Spadina line, Hadfield takes over ISS and Leafs hike ticket prices

City hall lobbyists could be prevented from accessing the mayor and city councillors outside of office hours if new rules proposed by registrar Linda Gehrke are adopted. Currently there are no rules governing when and where registered lobbyists can meet with elected officials. Should lobbyists be limited?

A poll commissioned by the Toronto Sun has found the Sarah Thomson "ass-gate" controversy (as the paper insists on calling it) did little to dent Ford's popularity. Currently 43% approve of the job the mayor is doing, down just 1% from a month ago. Do those results surprise you?

A new phase of the Spadina line extension into York region is underway. Premier Kathleen Wynne, mayor Rob Ford and TTC brass attended a press event yesterday celebrating the launch of two tunnel boring machines that will dig parallel tunnels between the Steeles West and Highway 407 station sites.

Ford and Wynne still seem some distance apart on transit funding, with Ford restating his vow that he wouldn't support a dedicated tax for new infrastructure in the GTHA at the event. Wynne has expressed support for new revenue tools.

Chris Hadfield, Ontario's very own homegrown astronaut and regular chronicler of Toronto from the air, has taken over command of the International Space Station. He's the first Canadian to hold the most important job in orbit. Hadfield received an official message from the Queen congratulating him on his promotion.

It's going to cost more to be a fan of the Toronto Raptors of Maple Leafs starting next season. Seeing a match at the Air Canada Centre will be 2.5% more expensive once the "cost of living" increase kicks in. How much more would you pay to see a Stanley Cup?

Also in cost increases, bus riders in Burlington will have to pay $3.25 to ride city buses in future despite claims the service is already too thin. The hike makes the system more expensive to ride than the TTC.

Today is Pi Day - think 3/14 - the most mathematical of all informal celebrations. The nexus of the event arrives at 1:59:26 in the afternoon when mathematicians will be pulling celebratory pies from the oven. May the fourth be with you. Oh, wait, that's something else.

The trailer for Kick-Ass 2 is out and Toronto is proving once again it can look just as much like New York as the real thing. See if you can spot Yonge Street and several other glimpses of the city (Dundas station is obvious in one shot) in the video below. Need help? Reddit user ChewedUp has you covered.


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

Image: "That Time of the Day" by Lychee_Aloe/blogTO Flickr pool.

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