Councillor Shelley Carroll

Find out the latest news and upcoming events in your neighborhood. Politics, news, views, and links from Ward 33 Councillor Shelley Carroll.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Long July Council Session Finally Closed

Our hearts go out to the family and long time neighbours surrounding the Domestic Incident that turned tragic yesterday on Havenbrooke Blvd. Special thoughts also for our officers at Division 33 who have had to take on two particularly upsetting cases in one week as they also responded to the sad euthanasia case down in Ward 34.

It took four days to complete the July Council session but much progress has been made. I got my Works item approved which calls for the ramping up of waste recycling efforts in Multi-Residential buildings. Half of Toronto's residents live in multi-residential buildings. In Ward 33 that number is over 60% when we include our condominium owners.

The most newsworthy item was the 5 hour debate on regulating Holistic Health practitioners in a way that would drive out illegal body rub parlours from their ranks. I lost count of the number of amendments councillors placed at 24. I think we finally voted on about 30. Council has attempted to deal with the issues surrounding illegal body rub parlours without creating unnecessary disadvantages for the legitimate practitioners who treat Torontonians every day. It is important to remember that these people provide various forms of wellness therapy for sufferers of such ailments as cancer and degenerative arthritis.

We are fortunate in some ways in Ward 33 as commercial retail space is so expensive that we don't have a big problem with illegal operations such as body rub parlours in storefront locations. Indeed, our high retail rent is the reason I haven't been able to find an affordable constituency office. But these operations do move in overnight. The bottom line for residents to remember is that you have a right to expect action to be taken if an illegal operation appears in your neighbourhood. If you suspect such a thing, be sure to contact us so we can put the new bylaws to the test.

Complete council highlights will be typed up and posted next week. Tomorrow I'll have updates on the development applications in Parkway Forest and at 25 Buchan Court.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Eucan Recycling/Litter Bin Pilot

Three EcoMupis bins are going up in North York today as part of a three-month test to get the public's input on the bins. Keep your eyes open for them at these following sites: Sheppard Avenue East at Brian Drive, Finch Avenue East at Leslie Street, and Don Mills Road North at Van Horne Avenue.

As part of the new recycling/litter bin pilot, the City of Toronto wil be testing the feasibility of collecting organic waste (e.g. fruit and vegetable scraps) and batteries in the new EcoMupis bins. Please note that the EcoMupis located at the southeast corner of Don Mills & Van Horne will be tested on collecting both organic waste and batteries. One of the waste receptacles of the EcoMupis has been modified to collect organic waste and one of the ashtrays has been modified to colllect batteries. The posters/information panel will be modified to show that organic waste and batteries are accepted/collected at this location. Also please note that Eucan will be testing the feasibility of using alternative sources of energy to illuminate the bins. Therefore, the EcoMupis located at the northwest corner of Sheppard & Brian Dr. will be testing solar power.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Cheap Gas Motion Held Over

A number of folks have contacted me to ask if I got anywhere at council with my inquiry about the gas sale line-up problem. They continue to breath the fumes at night and pay over a dollar a litre for gas by day and are getting fed up. Unfortunately, a number of difficult items protected under the confidentiality section of the Municipal Act ate up a lot of our time. The item has been held over.

We have a special meeting to try to finish the agenda on Tuesday and I will try to get the motion in the hands of staff then. General Manager of Municipal Licensing and Standards, Pam Coburn helped me write it and is ready to deal with the issue so there should be little resistance to forwarding it as a quick item.

There was a letter in a recent North York Mirror which may have confused the issue for some. The complaints to our office are not with regards to the motorists themselves but rather with the Gas Station owners. My motion reflects the residents' wishes and asks for staff to report on what influence MLS can have over how the owners arrange their line-ups and whether we can require the station owners to ask their customers to turn off their cars in the line-up. There was never any intention, as the letter tries to indicate, to attack individual motorists, but rather to try to help Ward 33 residents who are concerned about the fumes from stations close to their backyards.

In any case, the sale practice seems to be waning. We have noticed that the sale price has risen from the original 75.9 to as high as 85.9 on sale nights. Curiously, at some stations the daytime high price of 101.9 doesn't seem to be falling quite as fast. Oh well, we all love our free enterprise system.

At the end of the day, with respect to all idling situations, we ask that drivers remember that automobile manufacturers' studies show that the gas needed to restart your car equals the amount of gas needed to idle your car for 30 seconds.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Green Bin Program Update

The City of Toronto has hired staff to go door-to-door in North York to talk with residents about the new Green Bin Program. The door-to-door visits will start on July 21st.

A literature will be distributed to residents in multi-languages including: French, Chinese, Farsi, Italian, Korean, Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, Tamil and Vietnamese. Should a resident not be home when staff visit, the literature will be left at the door or mailbox for them. Residents will continue to receive lots of information over the next few months of the program.

Facts about the Green Bin Program:

  • Each household will receive two new containers; a small one for your kitchen and a larger green bin to take to the curb.
  • Starting the week of October 24, 2006, garbage will be collected every two weeks, and green bin compost will be collected every week.
  • The green bin material will be made into high-quality compost used by farms and parks.
For more information about the City of Toronto Green Bin Program, please visit their website

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Toronto Water asks residents to reduce water use

Toronto Water is asking city residents and businesses to voluntarily reduce their outdoor water usage during this extreme heat wave. To avoid a potential water shortage, the City is seeking residents’ help to lower the amount of water being used. During extreme hot and dry weather, it could become difficult to keep water supply levels at capacity. Reducing non-essential water usage will help ensure pumping stations and water reservoirs meet current demands.

Here are some outdoor water efficiency tips:

1. Reduce the number of times you water your lawn – healthy lawns only need 2.5 cm (1”) of water per week, including rainfall2. Use a rain gauge to track the water falling on your lawn from your sprinkler and the rain3. Water your lawn early in the morning to avoid water evaporation4. Leave grass clippings on your lawn as they provide natural nutrients and moisture5. Use a broom – not a water hose – to sweep up debris or clean your driveways and walkways6. Fill a small pool for your kids to cool off in, rather than leaving the sprinkler on7. Take a break: skip washing your car during heat spells

Reducing indoor water usage can also help decrease current demands. Only turn on your dishwasher and washing machine once you have a full load.

In the meantime, the City of Toronto is requesting City departments, agencies, boards and commissions to suspend all non-essential outdoor water use. This includes activities such as:

• Landscape irrigation• Washing exterior building surfaces, parking lots, driveways or sidewalks• Street and vehicle washing• Transit vehicle washing such as subway cars and buses

For more information on water efficiency tips, go to our Web site at:

Monday, July 11, 2005

Cheap Gas For Sale, Emissions Free!

We have been receiving some phone calls of concern about late night gas discounts. On the weekend I had a chat with some folks down at the Tim Horton's on Sheppard and the recent Gas Sale frenzy came up again.

I think we need to hear your input and preferably before Council is in session on July 19th. There is an item on the agenda with respect to the Idling Bylaw on the Council agenda and if people feel we should ask for help, that would be the place for me to do it.

Everyone loves cheap gas, but there is an environmental concern with having as many as 20 cars idling constantly during the two hour sale on muggy nights, twice a week. When I joined the line recently, there was no supervision and cars were approaching the pumps from all directions. I found it was quite possible to turn off my car as the line clogged to such a degree that I was stationary for 5 minutes or more at a time as I advanced through the long line. The line snaked out onto Sheppard Ave at one point clogging traffic as well.

If you think I should ask staff to investigate whether or not they have authority to require some sort of line-up plan so that cars can turn off their motors and then be moved forward in a more orderly fashion, I can do that at council. It makes a starting point and would bring input from the rest of Council. Let me know what you think by emailing us at:

The Big Sigh of Relief

It is calm and quiet at City Hall this morning. One can almost hear the collective sigh of relief echoing through the halls. All of the Councillors' teams went home on Friday wondering how they would cope with all of your issues if there was another summer Strike.

I hope you won't mind that the blog contained only technical information last week as negotiations progressed. Both sides of the table were working extremely hard all week and none of us wanted to grind things to a halt by saying something that might cause offence. When you are holed up in a hotel room with 10 of your bargaining unit and none of you have slept for days, the TV news playing in the corner of the room can really set people off. We all felt it was best to follow the Mayor's lead and keep political (Read: numbskull) comments of the airwaves as much as possible.

Members of CUPE Local 416 will vote to ratify the agreement later this week and Council will vote on it on July 19th. Council are hoping and praying that Staff will be able to share the same success with the Library Local bargaining unit by July 14th.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Labour Disruption Contingency Plan

Please be advised that the following is a set of service delivery plan outlined by the City of Toronto in the event of a Labour Disruption by Toronto Civic Employees' Union Local 416 (CUPE).

- Police, Fire and Homes for the Aged will not be affected by a labour disruption.

- Emergency Medical Services and Toronto Public Health will continue during a labour disruption.

- Children's Services, Hostel Services, Social Services will operate as usual.

- The City's water supply and sewage treatment systems will continue to function within established safety and quality standards.

Parks and Recreation:

  • Programming and permits at a limited number of community centres will continue. Select indoor pools, outdoor pools, splash pads and wading pools in parks will remain open. A complete list of facilities that will be open is at
  • City parks will be open for casual use only. There will be no turf or grounds maintenance. All permits in parks, tennis courts, outdoor sports field and civic squares will be cancelled.

Garbage collection:

  • Former Toronto, Scarborough, North York and East York curbside garbage, green bin organics and recycling collection will be cancelled.
  • All yard waste, white good (e.g. fridges and stoves) and household hazardous waste collection will be cancelled.

Residents will be asked NOT to:

  • throw garbage onto streets, into laneways or parks.
  • leave litter or waste at litter bins. These will not be emptied during the disruption.

To minimize the amount of waste, residents are encouraged to:

  • store dry waste, recyclables (cans, bottles, paper and newspapers) and any uncomposted yard waste at home until regular collection resumes.
  • place food and other wet waste in securely tied, double plastic bags and take to a garbage drop-off location.
  • compost fruit and vegetable waste and yard waste where possible.
  • postpone garden trimming and pruning.

Garbage drop-off locations (Transfer Stations):

All seven waste transfer stations will be open to accept both residential and commercial garbage 24 hours-a-day, seven days-a-week:

Disco Transfer Station (120 Disco Road, Etobicoke)

Bermondsey Transfer Station (188 Bermondsey Road, North York)

Ingram Transfer Station (50 Ingram Drive, North York)

Dufferin Transfer Station (35 Vanley Crescent, North York)

Victoria Park Transfer Station (3350 Victoria Park Ave, North York)

Scarborough Transfer Station (1 Transfer Place, Scarborough)

Commissioners Street Transfer Station (400 Commissioners St, Toronto)

** All residential waste must be double bagged and will be accepted free of charge (max 5 bags) at the transfer stations.

Temporary Locations:

Seven drop off locations will be open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week for the disposal of residential waste. No renovation waste, bulky items.

Ted Reeve Arena (NE corner of Main St. and Gerrard St. E.)

Sunnyside Park (lot between Ellis Ave. and Colborne Lodge Dr.)

Morningside Park (Morningside Ave. and Ellesmere Rd.)

Wishing Well Park (Sheppard Ave. E. & Pharmacy Ave.)

Villiers Street (between the Don Roadway and Saulter St.)

Christie Pits Park (Bloor St. W. and Christie St.)

North York Centennial Centre (Bathurst St. & Finch Ave. W.)

Transportation Services:

The following services will not be available. Residents are advised to call 416-338-9999 in an emergency.

  • Routine replacement of non-safety related traffic signs
  • Routine repairs or maintenance to expressways, roads, sidewalks and bridges
  • Street cleaning and flushing
  • Routine pavement marking
  • Grass cutting in some areas

Detailed updated information about City services, programs and facilities will be available from Access Toronto at 416-338-0338 or and at throughout a labour disruption.

Smog days impact on Grass Cutting & Sweeping Operations

Due to a series of smog days, the sweeping and grass cutting schedule for roads and boulevards has been impacted and is currently behind schedule. With respect to grass cutting, transportation staff will do their best to start up within their normal schedule. The third cut should be completed by July 20/05 assuming no additional smog days. Upon completion of the third cut, staff will commence their fourth cut.

If you have any questions regarding this, please call our office at 416-392-4038.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

City of Toronto Act online consultation launched

Okay, I know that when you get up in the morning and read the papers it seems like all we want to talk about is the New City of Toronto Act. Well take a look at the media release below. The Province is putting some real energy behind the debate and there is even an online questionnaire for you can take. Please check it out before the end of July. Think of it as really swell online summer fun! Yes, that was lame, but the Province and the City are finally working together on this one. Humour us!

Website Offers New Opportunity To See What Others Say

TORONTO - Ontario Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister John Gerretsen and Toronto Mayor David Miller today launched an e-consultation on a new City of Toronto Act, the next phase of the Strong Toronto, Strong Ontario joint consultation being led by the province and the city.

"We are using every means at our disposal to seek public input about our joint work developing a new legislative framework for the city," said Ontario Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister John Gerretsen. "Over the next month we are seeking online advice on how to most effectively build a strong Toronto."

"At public consultation sessions held on June 22, the people of Toronto demonstrated that they were informed, engaged, and vocal about bringing new powers to Toronto's government," said Mayor David Miller. "This input was valuable to us, and I am very glad that residents will continue to have their say about how to give this city the political tools it needs to thrive."

Go to between now and July 31st and share your views in an online questionnaire.

This online component is part of the Strong Toronto, Strong Ontario consultation. On June 22, more than 700 people attended joint consultation meetings at four locations across Toronto. These sessions, linked by webcast, provided a unique opportunity for participants to discuss Toronto's future directly with neighbours, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing John Gerretsen, MPPs, Mayor David Miller and City Councillors.

A summary of comments from the June 22nd sessions, and those submitted online, are now public and available at

Monday, July 04, 2005

The Garbage 411

First: Jenny is still looking for volunteers to line up for Canvassing with the Councillor on Monday and Thursday nights from 6:30pm to 8:30pm. We want to go door to door to build a list of community issues to in the Fall. If you are interested, call Jenny at 416-392-4038.

Re: Garbage!!!

There have been a number of newspaper articles since the Works Committee met last Wednesday and made three key decisions about waste collection. Let me try to package it all so that you can send me your input before we present these decisions to Council in the third week of July.

First off, enforcement was on the agenda, not as a new concept, but as a request for more staff to better enforce existing bylaws and existing fines. It has been a law for some time now, with provincial approval and a provincially approved fine, that Toronto residents must source separate to whatever extent is required in each region of the city. In North York for example, the City currently provides only a grey and blue box program. By law you are required to take part in those programs.

Staff have found that when bylaw officers spend time visiting offenders, explaining the programs and allowing time to begin to sort, only a very few continue to refuse and need to be fined the $130.00. Staff have simply asked for 6 extra officers to carry out these visits to increase compliance.

Secondly, we have proposed setting aside the Bag Tag program for now. We know that currently Torontonians drop an average of 2.1 bags every two weeks and with the inclusion of North York in the Green Bin program that average will go down even further. These figures show that you are already doing a great job. We voted that you don't need a Bag Tag program that is complicated to implement (at least 16 staff) but that you could live with a limit decrease after North York comes on stream with the full program. The reduction from 6 bags to 4 bags will be phased in over two years and will still leave the allowable limit well above average. Enforcement officers will continue to ensure separating at home.

And last but not least, waste collection in Multi-residential buildings has got to change. Works Committee has voted to delay implementation of charges for dumping above the average amount per building but are committed to helping tenants and their landlords increase diversion. Staff will deliver mock bills to building managers to let them know where they are in terms of how the new charges would affect them. They will also work with condo corps, condo boards, property management firms, landlords and tenant groups to develop waste diversion plans for buildings before implementing the Multi-Residential charges. The important thing to keep in mind is the 'Jenkins resolution' which states that buildings that keep within the allowable limit pay no extra charges.

All of this in short: We intend to beef up enforcement of existing City bylaws on recycling, we intend to reduce the number of green bags per single family dwelling but not for two years and we intend to increase apartment diversion but not until waste diversion plans can be worked out with landlords and condo corps. Call us at the office and let us know what you think or email me at