Updated March 10, 2012 at 11:30pm: The motions and votes by Council on this matter are now available on the City’s website. The linked report first shows the consolidated effect of the motions. This is followed by all of the detail of what various Councillors proposed and the votes on each item.
The original article from March 6, 2012 follows the break.
In a stunning defeat for Mayor Rob Ford, Council restructured the Toronto Transit Commission by replacing most of Ford’s loyal followers with a new slate much more representative of the overall views of Council on transit matters.
The question was on Council’s agenda by way of a proposed Commission reorganization to shift the balance of power from an all-Councillor body to one with a mix of “citizen” members holding the majority of seats. Recent events (Ford’s reaction to the pro-LRT transit vote on February 8 as “irrelevant, and the sacking of former Chief General Manager Gary Webster by Ford’s TTC cronies) drove a wedge between the Mayor and Council. What Ford had expected to be a chance to banish his enemies from the TTC turned into a rout of Ford’s supporters.
The process used was straightforward — move amendments to the Ford-friendly proposal with the intent of completely changing the effect. Three different schemes were proposed, but only one really mattered. TTC Chair Karen Stintz proposed that the existing Commission be dissolved immediately (thereby ending terms that would have otherwise run to late 2012), and that a new board be constituted initially with 7 Councillors as members. When this passed by a vote of 29-15, the alternate proposals became moot, and all hope of a Ford victory, even bragging rights from a tight loss, evaporated.
The Councillors appointed to the Commission are:
- Karen Stintz (reappointed, and subsequently reconfirmed as Chair)
- Peter Milczyn (Vice-Chair of the immediately preceding Commission)
- Maria Augimeri and John Parker (members of the immediately preceding Commission)
- Glenn de Baeremaeker (member of the Miller-era Commission)
- Raymond Cho and Josh Colle
A further four “citizen” members will be named in October 2012, and of these, one will become Vice-Chair. (An interim Vice-Chair will be chosen from among the seven Councillors by the interim version of the Commission.)
The new Commission and Toronto Council have much work to get TTC and City policies back on track after the upheaval of the Ford era. I will turn to this and the future of transit in Toronto in another article.
Postscript: The election of TTC members and Chair were carried out through a little-used balloting procedure of Council. The detailed results are available online for the Commission and Chair votes. The full set of motions and votes appears on the City’s website.