Look Out For City, Provincial Road Tolls


Will Ontario drivers get accustomed to paying for use of the road?

Toronto simply can’t keep up with the cost of repairing its roads.

Columnist Christopher Hume says the time is fast approaching when driving will become much more expensive with tolls:

In hindsight, the $60 vehicle registration fee looks like a bargain. By the time the city and province are done implementing their road tolls, highway charges, HOT lanes and so on, driving will be a whole lot more expensive.


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Is The Glebe A Tourist Area?

The Glebe Business Improvement Area would like to see its neighbourhood declared a tourist area so that stores and the like can stay open on statutory holidays.

Is the Glebe a tourist area? It’s arguable but not really.

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Ontario Reviews City Election Laws



Former Ottawa city councillor Alex Cullen has been one of the leaders of the fight for many years to ban corporate and union donations to campaigns of municipal candidates.

While that doesn’t stop personal donations from union members, company officials and relatives and friends of both, it is a step in the right direction.

The Ontario government is reviewing municipal election laws now, so this is your chance to participate.

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Please … Teacher Working Conditions Are Fine

Teachers should be well paid for the important work they do. And they are.

So what bothers me about teachers’ labour situation is working conditions. Teachers complain about working conditions.

They get generous holidays … particularly in the summer when time off is difficult to get in the private sector.

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Ontario Protects Bees

This is a release from the Ontario Premier’s Office:

Starting July 1, 2015, Ontario will be the first jurisdiction in North America to protect bees and other pollinators through new rules to reduce the number of acres planted with neonicotinoid-treated corn and soybean seeds by 80 per cent by 2017.

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Ranked Ballots Will Flop In Ottawa: Cullen

This is a letter from former Bay ward councillor Alex Cullen:

Dear Editor:
The announcement by the Ontario Government to permit municipal councils to consider instituting  ranked ballot system by the 2018 municipal elections gives the illusion of democratic reform, which will disappoint many.

Ranked Ballots Considered For Municipalities



This is a release from the office of Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne:

Ontario is taking steps towards giving municipalities the option of using ranked ballots in future municipal elections.

As outlined in the 2014 mandate letter, the province is reviewing the Municipal Elections Act, 1996 to explore how ranked ballots could be implemented by municipalities across the province. Ranked ballots allow a voter to rank candidates in order of preference instead of voting for a single candidate. The option to use ranked ballots would give municipalities an alternative to the current municipal voting system.

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Ontario To Improve Poor Winter Road Maintenance

This is a release from the office of Ontario Transportation Minister Stephen Del Duca:

“Earlier today, the Auditor General released her report on winter highway maintenance in Ontario. I would like to thank the Auditor for her thorough and thoughtful review and recommendations.

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Denley Can’t Get His Political Virginity Back



So Citizen freelancer Randall Denley decides to take on the Liberal provincial government over selling part of Hydro One and raising beer taxes to build infrastructure.

Wasn’t it just a few months ago that Denley was running for the provincial Progressive Conservatives against that Liberal government?

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Ontario Introduces Cap And Trade

This is a release from the Ontario Premier’s Office:

To fight climate change — one of the greatest challenges mankind has faced — Ontario is putting a limit on the main sources of greenhouse gas pollution through a cap and trade system to protect the air we breathe, the water we drink and the health of our children and grandchildren.

Climate change is already hurting our environment, causing extreme weather like floods and droughts, and hurting our ability to grow food in some regions.

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Province Pledges $587M To Fight Homelessness

This is a release from the Office of the Premier of Ontario:

Ontario is partnering with municipalities across the province to prevent and address homelessness. 

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Ottawa Debt Rises Shockingly High

cityhallsmallHere on The Bulldog we’ve been warning of the accumulation of debt at the civic level but the locals’ apathy is such that we just can’t gain traction.

Oh well, maybe this will do it.

Bulldog reader Jamie Carson sent this little missive along that shows the serious level of Ottawa debt. You might not mind such a debt if it were been poured into a worthwhile light-rail project rather than the one we have.

The tale of the tape is below:

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Ont. Raises Minimum Wage

This is a release from the Ontario Premier’s Office:

Ontario is raising the general minimum wage from $11 to $11.25 per hour, effective October 1, 2015. Minimum wage rates for jobs in special categories such as liquor servers, homeworkers, and students are also increasing at the same time.

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Beer Buying Freedom Backed: Poll Results

bulldog pollBulldog readers aren’t supporting Premier Kathleen Wynne’s position on retail alcohol sales.

It’s not that they don’t want liberalized alcohol sales. No Bulldog readers want wide-open beer and wine retailing … at corner stores, supermarkets, the Beer Store and LCBO. Wynne wants such sales but only at supermarkets and the traditional outlets.

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Where Should Wine, Beer Be Sold? Vote

bulldog pollShould the Ontario government be making it legal for large supermarkets to sell wine and beer? Or is the status quo the best bet? Does it matter to you?

If it does, participate in our new Bulldog Poll. Tell Ontario’s politicians how you feel about the way beer and wine are sold in the province.

The poll is below. You can only vote once. Thank you in advance for participating.

If you want to say why you voted as you did or if you have another related opinion, the comment box is below.

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Liberal Wine, Beer Rules A Wash

Maclean’s Anne Kingston examines what’s in store for Ontarians as new rules for selling wine and beer come down the pipe:

Details will be released during the provincial budget. What is known is that hundreds of large supermarkets (read: Loblaw Companies, Wal-Mart, Sobeys) will be able to sell imported and Canadian wine and craft beer in its own section, like deli or snack food, which is a big win for them.

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Big Money Causes Electoral Woes

In Ottawa we’ve been learning a great deal about the influence of campaign donations on elections.

Well not surprisingly, this is not confined to Ottawa. The Toronto Star is seeing it at Queen’s Park:

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The Beer Store: Ah, Campaign Donations

Doesn’t this quote sound vaguely familiar in the municipal sphere?

The Globe is reporting The Beer Store has donated $667,000 to provincial Liberal coffers since 2005:

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