Mayoral Candidates: Fun or Chance?

A look behind the scenes; the unseen platforms that might make the cut
Rahman Mohamed

John Tory, Olivia Chow, and Doug Ford are considered front-runners in Toronto’s 2014 mayoral race.  They have online platforms that include transit plans.  But there’s still a total of 65 candidates in the race, 24 of whom have online platforms listed on the City of Toronto’s candidate list.  John Tory’s isn’t listed.  What do the online outliers have to say?

Morgan Baskin: with a focus on Youth, her campaign slogan “Because YOUth Matter” her focus is on youth unemployment in the city.  Not only that, she’s received recognition from CP24, the Globe and Mail, CBC Metro Morning, the Metro, and Samara.  Her plan: digitalize the city, bring Toronto to global market, going green and “Connecting with our lost rivers”.

Next in line, Jeff Billard.  Potential Mayor Billard talks about participating in a debate hosted by March of Dimes Canada and Community Living Toronto, moderated by Steve Paikin.  His priorities as mayor include Billy Bishop Airport, expanding Toronto’s recycling, Green roofs, bicycle paths, LRTs, TTC-Pearson, TTC accessibility, Bylaw update and enforcement, support for employment, youth employment, arts and culture – architecture, artists, and events, and the downtown relief line.

Ari Goldkind, declared a longshot by the Toronto Star but been invited to a debate with John Tory, Olivia Chow, and Doug Ford says he plans to fund the city using tolls, higher property tax and “Exploring the possibility of a 0.5% to 1% increase in HST, dedicated solely to making transit work in Toronto. Not borrowing, not complicated debt structuring”.  In terms of transit, his platform includes a relief line, Scarborough LRT, and the vehicle registration tax to fund Wheel-Trans and the TTC.  He also plans to reject expansion of Billy Bishop, audit Toronto Police, make Lapel pins mandatory, improving accessibility, “re-establishing and enforcing term limits” and to

integrate smart-city technology that organizes and improves the way cars, buses and trucks flow through the city, including, but not limited to, traffic light synchronization (which is currently already in a pilot project)

Rob Johnness is using “the campaign slogan “Rob not Ford”.  If elected his platform calls for extended subway times, bus lanes, subway WiFi, credit/debit on subways, timed transfers, and Scarborough LRT.  Together with expanding social services by working with VANDU (the organization from Downtown Eastside Vancouver who opened and maintain InSite, North America’s only supervised injection facility), he stands on better housing and more efficient spending, not reducing the “gravy-train”, better services for the youth, arts and culture, nightlife, protection for sex workers, and expanding Bixie bikes.

Klim Khomenko talks about re-engaging with Torontonians to make housing more affordable and the city more efficient.  Dewitt Lee’s on the other hand priorities has a comprehensive list of priorities that includes business development, job creation, better transit, police reform, youth and education.

According to Matthew Mernagh, “became known as the person who almost made marijuana legal”, the city’s priorities lie in its lifestyle, green living – parks and recreation, accessibility, municipal taxes, transit and roads, and emergency services.

Michael Nicula says he’s the best choice because he has the education and experience needed to manage the city including an MBA, Masters in Architecture and Urban Planning, and is an HR/Payroll Systems Expert.  His ideas: a bigger budget without raising taxes using “city income rebate”, building subways and extending highways, cut costs because “the gravy train is still rolling” and engaging residents through online voting and referendums.

Mohammad Okhovat is using “HEALTHS” to cover his campaign, multiple priorities starting with each letter.

Pat Oberge: a

Hard worker. Entrepreneur. Leader. But also someone involved in his community by volunteering for charities and non profit organizations. Someone who enjoys putting his community’s needs before his own.

He says he’ll attack gridlock, transit, affordable housing, and safer streets; support local business and the economy and bike lanes.

Like many other candidates she talks about affordable housing, traffic, bike lanes and investment in TO.  But Lee Romanov is one of the few who talks about the city’s arts and culture, a digital city and tourism, “bringing Toronto to the world

On a rolling header with superheroes (seriously) next to a rolling add including “Vision-Accountable-Transparent-Results ‘Protecting your tax dollars’ When the city needs a hero” followed by “Z4Green” and a $15 billion “50 years mobility plan” that includes a “Green Bike Lane” Erwin Sneidzins says he has a $20 billion plan to save the city.  He’s another outlier who’s asking for donation and help with his campaign.

Not only is Tibor Steinberger campaigning on the issues as many of his competitors – safer city, bike lanes, jobs and economy, transit, congestion, and homing, he’s providing updates of the Leafs, Argos, and Toronto FC on his site.

Others have non-functioning sites.  But the ones with a web presence have been Tweeted and Facebook Liked multiple times.  They might not be widely known or media recognized like the front-runners they have a voice online.

Nova’s Rays does not endorse candidates.  Simply provides available background information to voters


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