Morning Brew: Rob Ford is all good, Ontario PCs reject Doug Ford, National Post looks for alleged tape, new bump outs get knocked, and CityNews channel to close
"Everything's going fine" in the mayor's office according to Rob Ford. This period of normality has seen five staff leave or resign, including two more who walked out yesterday, and criticisms from everyone from council colleagues to the Premier. Ford insisted the resignations would enable his staff to take up better opportunities like he's the manager of a small-town hardware store or something.
Announcing the departures before the city hall press corps, Ford maintained he has no plans to step aside over accusations he was caught on tape smoking crack cocaine. Doug Ford, however, took time to swipe at Kathleen Wynne, who said she "will take action if and when it's appropriate" regarding the Ford saga. The councillor told her to get her house in order.
Things aren't going so swell for the mayor's older brother either. The Ontario PCs seem to be backing away from endorsing Ford for a provincial run, with house leader Jim Wilson telling a press conference "he is not our candidate ... I don't even know the guy." Ouch.
The National Post has dropped by the housing complex where the Toronto Star reported the Rob Ford video was being held. Reporter Megan O'Toole spoke with someone who said he believes the video was once stashed in the unit and admitted he wouldn't be surprised if it was still hidden nearby. The person who answered the door also claimed to have seen the alleged tape. Also, apparently, there's a Rob Ford lookalike called "Slurpy" out there.
Outside City Hall, yesterday was the first scorcher of the year. The city declared a heat alert for the first time in 2013. Today is supposed to be just as sticky and humid with temperatures loitering sluggishly around 30 degrees.
Roncesvalles' new "bump outs" - streetcar stops that double as bike lanes - are getting mixed reviews from cyclists. According to the CBC, pedestrians tend to wait in the bike lane portion not realizing it's supposed to be used for bikers when the streetcar is absent. What do you think of the new features?
In other TTC-related news, part of the 503 Kingston Road streetcar route is going on hiatus until Dec. 2013 effective Monday. The Commission is conducting rail replacement and other work necessary for the arrival of the new vehicles next year on Kingston Road. A shuttle bus service will operate that part of the route instead.
Finally, The CityNews channel is no more - Rogers has pulled the plug on the venture at the cost of 62 jobs. The channel will display a news ticker graphic similar to CP24's subway screens until it goes dark at the end of June.
Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.
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