Ward 27 - Toronto Centre - Rosedale
My name is Rob Wolvin. I live and work in Ward 27! I'm offering to be your voice for the issues that affect Ward 27.
We need a Councillor who actually understands the needs of the Ward they are charged to represent AND works to build consensus among colleagues, to effect REAL change, for the good of Ward 27 residents. We don't need a Ward Boss, from outside our community. Being elected is a calling to public service NOT a career opportunity!
Too many politicians are elected because we have confidence in their pedigree as ambitious careerists or bosses. Corporate elites and lawyers have little in common with most of us! Ward 27 needs someone who has experience with management and business, sure, BUT also one who understands struggling to make ends meet! Ward 27 needs a REPRESENTATIVE, who has lived as they live and continues to be a part of our community.
We expect candidates to have all the answers. Nobody has all the answers! I don't have all the answers nor do I know all the issues. I've been busy, like you, making ends meet. Not having all the answers doesn't mean I don't make every effort to inform myself, nor that I don't have some ideas. It means, as a candidate and as your City Councillor, I'll listen! If you place trust in me, I'll employ my staff to actually consult with my neighbours, NOT arrange photo opportunities for MY re-election drive. I'll harness the professional talent already in our employ at City Hall to find answers. THEN I will listen to the experts, craft public policy AND work to build consensus for REAL change among my colleagues on Council. That's the kind of REPRESENTATIVE that Ward 27 residents deserve!
Elect a representative that understands they are hired, by you, to be YOUR voice at City Hall, not a government's voice AT YOU or a local big shot, above the residents he/she is hired to represent!
I think the fire and power loss at City Hall, Sept 25, 2014 was a metaphor for a Toronto suffering from neglect and loss of leadership from a Mayor and council that had been fighting for face time on TV, holding to rigid ideological rhetoric. Little has changed as Toronto's NEW Council includes only two new members, one new councillor and a new Mayor who only holds one vote like every other person on Council. While we've seen more civility in Council discourse, little is being done that makes Toronto more liveable. Decisions on transit and the Gardiner are debated, decided, then debated and decided again! Recently we've seen another member of the Ford Dynasty, Michael Ford (Stirpe), join Council after a bi-election that replaced his late uncle, Rob Ford.
I'm tired of rigid ideologues bent on protest and confrontation to get attention or shore up their support in an isolated corner of the electorate. Having a Councillor that hops from neighbourhood event to neighbourhood event JUST to get a photo taken IS NOT engaged in consultation. It's self promotion. Calling out a sick, misguided former Mayor WAS NOT courageous. It was political opportunism.
I can work with conservatives on council, if they want to see partnership with the private sector to build our communities. If the proposal is to solve all the problems by raising taxes or running more debt, I hear their concerns. I can find common ground because we don't have endless supplies of public monies.
Large commercial property owners MUST pay their fair share in taxes BUT small business owners and those who primarily rent to them MUST see some tax relief. Not all creative, hard working small business owners are great managers. Not all can afford first rate accountants. The city can do something about those things to free optimistic small investors to do what they do best.
Kicking the tax burden up to the province means taking from the right instead of the left pocket of the same taxpayers! It's NO solution!
I understand the cost of managing debt.
I can support councillors who seek to bring investment to the city and work with large employers to locate and expand in our city. I part ways if this is done at the expense of locally owned and operated small businesses.
The backbone of any job growth is small business and it's also one of the most potent tools for social mobility. I know what it's like to run a small store front business, in Ward 27, trying to attract people struggling past, on narrow, crowded sidewalks. Countless hard working small shop owners have been engulfed by dirt and noise alongside increasingly gridlocked streets, choking from regulation and taxes. Boarded up shops on Yonge, between Gerrard & Bloor Streets attest to this sad reality.
Public services are part of the infrastructure of our communities. If those same conservatives' only solution is to cut essential services, I part ways.
I can work with progressives on addressing the need for more affordable housing because I know what it's like to struggle to make ends meet, alone in a big city. I support the initiative on the part of some councillors to persuade the Ontario government to require affordable units in EVERY residential development.
I know what it's like to struggle to find my place in a neighbourhood where most of it's peoples are just visiting or newcomers. I live on Yonge St., in the heart of Ward 27. I'm tired of a Council that thinks of OUR neighbourhoods as nothing more than a thoroughfare to pass through or a bedroom to leave every morning. I want planners that approve development that also builds community. Greenery, bike lanes, wide sidewalks, central neighbourhood squares, a fully supported LOCAL school, seniors residences integrated with other generations, mixture of income groups, mixed use zoning so one can work, live, shop and engage in recreation, steps from home, child care, health care, 1st and multi generation Canadians, maximum disability accessibility, preservation and promotion of local heritage, monuments, community centres, libraries, small and medium sized, locally owned shops and cafes that encourage neighbour's interaction... REAL people live in Ward 27.
Toronto needs representatives who build coalitions to get things done for their neighbours, NOT self promoting know-it-alls who cherry pick, from wards they don't live in, to advance a personal career. This type of councillor contributes to an infrastructure deficit and applies NO vision to counter developments that stomp on communities and local heritage.
Why not require developments to include public green space in every development, making communities more liveable? Less cutting deals, for large parks, isolated from local traffic flow and miles apart, that permits increased density and yet another near identical steel & glass tower?
Why not require developments to incorporate solar and/or wind energy into EVERY development, helping to reduce the overall usage of power in Toronto & helping to reduce obscene hydro costs? Exploring this potential, regulating accordingly might help the environment, the low income households AND the cost of doing business in Toronto!
Let's find a way to encourage more food production in Toronto with an Urban Food Production Initiative. Streamline regulations. Provide an office where residents can find assistance working through the process of starting their own grow project. Provide incentives to those businesses that supply the materials necessary to grow food in your home, on your balcony, in your yard, on your roof or in a larger vertical farm operation. This would be good for the environment and provide more affordable produce for low income households.
Why are people who find themselves in need of assistance forced to live on $675 a month? It's unrealistic and encourages an underground economy when more rational assistance would give a person the much needed lift up, back to a productive, more fulfilling role in their community. This is not only about respect for human dignity; it's about fuller participation from more creative voices AND lower health and law enforcement expense for all of us!
I applaud a transit option that advocates subways over RT because I believe the less transfers the smoother the trip and want TTC to have the option to transfer trains between lines as congestion warrants. I don't believe Scarborough, though important, is priority #1 and I don't believe the expense of tunnels, in that region, at this time, is affordable!
I advocate a Down-town Relief Line NOW!
The most expensive, time consuming, prone to overruns, part of building subways is the drilling of tunnels and construction of stations. I propose laying subway track on existing open corridors and partnering with development to help build and maintain new stations along that line. It's cheaper, faster and presents the least possibility of disruption to neighbourhoods along the route.
We need to elect one of our own to serve our community!
Your issues are my issues and your community is my community. If you want me to be on the ballot in 2018, please lend me your support. I can't do this alone.
Getting together, to make a difference, is the kind of community building I advocate. Together, let's make OUR Ward 27 a better place for our families, our neighbours AND ourselves!
Ward 27 - Toronto Centre - Rosedale