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May 23, 2006



“Toronto is now dangerous, dirty and unfriendly.” One of the reasons people are leave the city and venturing north.

Jeff Holec

Your emotional rant about the decline of the city of Toronto shows a very basic lack of understanding of the issues the city faces in any depth whatsoever. As one who was "inside the beast" for several years as a consultant to the late, great Municipality of Metropolitan Toronto Chief Administrator's Ofice and the Metro Chair's Office, I can tell you that no one, regardless of left, right or centre could make that city work as it is now. As a former mayor and York Regional Councillor I know the limits placed on municipalities and mayors - which you apparently are not familiar with. When the Harris government imposed amalgamation in one fell swoop ( although a committed Tory I have always said I did not always agree with the way Queen's Park did things ), and maintained the "weak mayor" system of municipal government, they set the stage for guaranteed failure.
So, let's lay the blame where it belongs, not on the hapless bunch who try to manage the city today. It's wonderful that you recall the halcyon days of downtown Yonge St - as do I as a former resident of Crombie Park/st Lawrence Market, but let's do a bit of thoughtful analysis, shall we?

John Alden

You're absolutely right on the mark, amply proven by Mr. Holec, who admits to having been at the trough and even to working in TO city administration - wanna buy a computer. The real problem is, that although 99.9% of the citizenery is in agreement with you, your words will have no effect whatsoever. No longer is the pen mightier than the sword, in fact you're lucky the Liberals are not still in power or we'd probably have a pen registry.... just in case.

John Slykhuis

"Thoughtful analysis" and other politically correct navel gazing is just more of what we need as the city goes to hell in a handbasket. What's this nonsense of not being able to do anything because we have a "weak mayor" system? (yes, I am familiar with various types of municipal government). If they weren't dumping money into gay theatre and counting the number of bums on the street, they might just be able to hire some more cops. And a "weak mayor" system doesn't prevent a get-tough approach to bylaw enforcement. As for the U.S. system of "strong" mayors, God help us all if Mayor David Miller and his NDP stooges had that much power. Toronto would soon resemble Calcutta. Anyway, Jeff, you sure don't sound like a Tory. (By the way you were quite an effective mayor for being "weak")

rod urquhart

The comments made in answer to Slykhuis' Blog are too humourous for words.
I ask former Georgina Mayor Jeff Holec is he feels safe walking the streets of Toronto late at night? What, three more shootings this past weekend -- shootings virtually every weekend. Then you have Toronto Council -- remember that councillor who was drumk at a Leaf game and then later denied it was him? Yeah, they are a respectable bunch, aren't they? As for mayor's powers being limited -- I don't buy it for one. As someone who has covered municipal and regional council for more than 30 years, I have yet to see any kind of decline in the power weilded by a mayor on council. No, Slykhuis has hit the nail on the head with his Blog -- it's just that the socialist thinkers in today's society would rather stick their head in the sand and hug-a-thug today, then actually 'fix' the problem.

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John Slykhuis



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