Monday, October 22 from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m
Electors vote in the ward they live in.
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As Ontario Premiere Doug Ford restricted the number of Toronto council seats from 47 down to 25, this move has completely changed the election map for Torontonians. Now, the city has some wards larger than before complete with incumbents running against each other and new wards that have no clear-cut favourite. To reduce the confusion, we aim to share how the change in council seats directly impacts Liberty Village.
Liberty Village now falls under Ward 10: Spadina-Fort York. Across this ward, there are 14 councillors running. Let’s introduce you to some of them: there is Michael Barcelos, who describes himself as a ‘Dad of 3, #AutismDad, #StemCell advocate, and active citizen striving for a safer city’. There’s April Engelberg, who is committed to investments in transit, safer streets, and parks. There’s Joe Cressy who is the incumbent for the area and who has been responsible for a lot of positive developments at city hall. There’s Dean Maher who is interested in forming a neighborhood action committee (NAC).
Some of the other candidates running for Liberty Village include Rick Myers, a twice-over cancer survivor and Toronto businessman seeking better roads and safer streets; Karlene Nation, supporting community safety initiaitves, community policing, and more support for local businesses; John Nguyen, praising an analytical-based research and study approach to policy-making; Kevin Vuong, a Canadian-born son of refugees from the Vietnam War and a University of Toronto law school graduate; Edris Zalmai, a long-time resident of Toronto supporting affordable housing, better transit investments, and more; Andrei Zodian, a Toronto-based entrepreneur seeking to remove gridlock and enable direct democracy in municipal politics; and Sabrina Zuniga, supporting lower property taxes and more local small business support. There’s also Al Carbone, Ahdam Dour, and Andrew Massey running for the Ward 10 council seat as well.
The old wards have now been re-drawn into a new map and after much legal debate before the courts, this appears to be the permanent setup for the 2018 Toronto election moving forward. A lot of the new boundaries cross over into multiple wards however Liberty Village is one of the lucky ones in the sense that it only has one incumbent.
The decision to limit the city councillor wards to 25 is going to mean, at the end of the election, each Toronto councillor will have more constituents to answer to than their counterparts in other Canadian cities. The average councillor will have 109,000 constituents to answer to, a significant increase form the 58,000 average they had with 47 councillors. Premiere Ford’s justification for the cut from 47 down to 25 is that it will save on costs and “dramatically improve the decision-making process”. Meanwhile, opponents have argued that it could negatively impact communications, services, and democracy in Toronto.
Keeping all this in mind, in the years to come, it remains to be seen how Doug Ford’s cut to council will impact the city. What we know for certain is that these are the candidates running for Liberty Village’s ward and come the October 22, 2018 election, it will be one of the aforementioned representing our neighbourhood at Toronto city hall. Please register to vote and remember to hit the polls before the big day is up!