January 27th, 2023 edition of Councillor Alejandra Bravo's Community Newsletter
Community Newsletter: Budget Wrap-Up, Local updates and more
Work continues on the 2023 Budget at City Hall. Earlier this week, the Budget Committee held its wrap-up meeting, where we had an opportunity to ask further questions of staff and move recommendations to the Mayor. The next step in the Budget process is new–a result of Bills 3 & 39 that gave additional powers to the Mayor.
Now that the Budget Committee’s work is done, the Budget becomes the Mayor’s Budget. As part of the new powers afforded to the Mayor, he required to present his version of the Budget on February 1. The Mayor’s Budget will then go to City Council on February 14 for amendments. However, those amendments can be vetoed by the Mayor, also as a result of the new powers.
At this week’s Budget Committee meeting, I moved a motion calling for the Mayor to recalibrate the inadequate funding for essential social services in his revised version of the Budget. The motion–which passed unanimously–calls for the Mayor’s Budget to:
- adequately respond to Toronto’s homelessness, mental health, and addiction crises;
- address the need for improved public transit access and service;
- advance our commitments to Toronto's climate and Vision Zero goals; and
- prioritize community responses and services for violence prevention and community safety.
I’m hoping that the unanimous adoption of this motion will send a strong message to the Mayor that we need more funding for the services that keep our City safe and liveable. I’ve been hearing loud and clear from members of our community that Ward 9 wants to see investment in services and supports that will promote wellbeing and safety.
Below, I have included some updates about community meetings, upcoming events, and what else I’ve been up to.
City Councillor, Ward 9
Vacant Home Tax Declaration Drop-In Clinic
My office and the City of Toronto’s Revenue Services team will be at Davenport-Perth Neighbourhood & Community Health Centre on January 31, 2023 from 12-4pm to answer questions and help Davenport residents complete their Vacant Home Tax Declaration.
Service will be available in English, Portuguese & Spanish.
Wallace Emerson Neighbourhood Streets Plan
The City of Toronto is developing a Neighbourhood Streets Plan for the Wallace Emerson area to address the volume of vehicle traffic, excessive speeding on local streets, traffic and safety around local schools, and the overall safety of pedestrians, cyclists and other vulnerable road users.
We would love to see you at the Drop-In Event on February 16, 2023, 6:30-8:30pm at the Wallace Emerson Community Centre (1260 Dufferin St). Portuguese interpreters will be present. You can also submit comments online, using the online mapping tool, until March 2, 2023.
The full notice, which was delivered to addresses in the area of the plan, is included below.
Toronto Community Crisis Service (TCCS) Interim Report
Share your views: UrbanHensTO Pilot Program
Let the City know what you think about the UrbanHensTO Backyard Hens Pilot Program, which has allowed residents to have hens in specific areas and wards of the City since 2018. Take an online survey to share your thoughts on the program and how you feel about making the program permanent and city-wide. Your feedback will help to inform a final staff report scheduled for the April meeting of the City’s Economic and Community Development Committee.
Learn more and take the survey at toronto.ca/UrbanHensTO.
Winter Coyote Sightings and Safety Tips
Seeing more coyotes in your neighbourhood? Coyote mating season falls during January and February which can lead to coyotes being more active and visible. It’s quite normal to see or encounter more coyotes in parks and green spaces across Toronto as they begin their search for a possible mate. They are typically shy and timid in nature and generally do not pose a danger to people, however they have been known to pose a danger for small pets. Here are a few ways to help keep you and your pets safe:
Always keep your dog close to you and on a leash, especially in areas where coyotes are known to live.
Never feed coyotes and do not leave food, including pet food, outside.
Properly dispose of garbage and waste at home and at parks.
When encountering a coyote, do not run; instead make a loud noise to scare the coyote away.
Do not approach coyotes, their dens or their young.
Do not touch coyotes, even if they appear tame, sick or injured.
Most interactions people have with coyotes are a result of a regular food source, caused by people either intentionally or unintentionally leaving food or garbage behind. Feeding wildlife may seem like the kind thing to do, but it can be very harmful. Letting wildlife forage for themselves is truly the only kindness they need.
The City of Toronto in partnership with Coyote Watch Canada has created an e-learning module that provides a lot of great information about coyote behaviour and ways that we can co-exist peacefully with our wild neighbours safely. To learn more, visit toronto.ca/Coyotes.
Community Consultation for 1613 St. Clair Ave. W.
Thanks to everyone who joined us at the public consultation meeting for the development application at 1613 St. Clair Ave. W.
If you’re curious about learning more about this application, you can check out the details in the Application Information Centre.