February 17th, 2023 edition of Councillor Alejandra Bravo's Community Newsletter
At this week’s City Council meeting, we focused on finalizing the 2023 budget. While there was no final vote on the Mayor’s Proposed Budget because of the strong mayor powers, Councillors were able to move amendments.
I worked in collaboration with fellow progressive Councillors to secure funding for priorities which I’ve heard from our community, and from people across Toronto. Some of these improvements include:
- A $1.7 million increase to Community Partnership Investment Program grants, which have supported organizations like Abrigo Centre, Davenport-Perth Neighbourhood & Community Health Centre, South Asian Women’s Centre, The Stop Community Food Centre and many more in Ward 9.
- $800k to support anti-violence and gun violence prevention programming for youth through TO Wards Peace, Think 2wice, and Youth Association for Academics, Athletics and Character Education (Y.A.A.A.C.E.) among other organizations.
- $800k to open one 24/7 warming centre until April 15
- $1M in additional investment to expand the Rent Bank grant program, providing additional support for renters across the City and preventing evictions
- $500k for a one-year pilot that will see trained mental health workers deployed on the TTC
- $900k for community-based arts programming that engages underserved youth and addresses the roots of violence, in consultation with the Toronto Arts Council
- $500k to scale up the Home Energy Loan Program
I also moved a motion to reallocate $900k from the increase to the Toronto Police budget to the Shelter, Support, and Housing Administration so they could partner with local organizations and drop-in spaces to provide 24/7 low-barrier space for homeless Torontonians beyond April 15. Every division/agency was asked to tighten their belt and make financially prudent choices. Making this small adjustment to the proposed $48.3M police budget increase would have allowed us to create safe indoor spaces for people and help save lives. This motion was supported by the Toronto Drop-In Network, The Neighbourhood Group, and other community voices. Unfortunately, it was not adopted by City Council.
After Wednesday’s meeting of City Council, Mayor John Tory officially tendered his resignation, which came into effect at 5:00pm today. Until an election is held, Deputy Mayor Jennifer McKelvie will assume the responsibilities for the Mayor’s Office. You can learn more about the Mayoral transition process here.
I’ve included updates on spring recreation programs, the resident grants pilot, and more below. I hope you enjoy Family Day with those you love.
City Councillor, Ward 9
In this edition
- Free Skate Rentals at Wallace Emerson & Dufferin Grove
- Spring Recreation Programs
- Resident Grants Pilot
- Apply for Summer Parks & Recreation Jobs
- Multiplex Housing Study
- Coldest Night of the Year
Free Skate Rentals at Wallace Emerson & Dufferin Grove
The City of Toronto is now offering free skate rentals at both Wallace Emerson Outdoor Rink and Dufferin Grove Outdoor Rink. This change will make it even more accessible for people to access skating in our community.
Free skate rentals will be available during the following hours at both rinks:
- Fridays, from 5:00pm - 9:00pm
- Saturdays, from 10:00am - 9:00pm
- Sundays, from 10:00am - 9:00pm
For more information, you can speak to skate staff at either rink. Happy skating!
Spring Recreation Programs
The City of Toronto’s spring recreation program listings are now available online to help residents prepare for registration dates next month.
Registration for spring recreation programs starts at 7 a.m. on the following dates:
- March 8 – Etobicoke York (including York South-Weston), Toronto and East York
- March 10 – North York and Scarborough
Spaces are still available at select locations for in-person and virtual March Break CampTO and Summer CampTO. Please visit the City’s CampTO webpage.
The quickest and easiest way to register for recreation programs is online. Registration by phone will also be available at 416-396-7378, from 7 a.m. on registration dates. For in-person registration support, five community centre locations will be open on the following dates from 7 a.m. to noon:
Wednesday, March 8
- Driftwood Community Recreation Centre, 4401 Jane St.
- Masaryk-Cowan Community Recreation Centre, 220 Cowan Ave.
- Wellesley Community Centre, 495 Sherbourne St.
Friday, March 10
- Centennial Recreation Centre, 1967 Ellesmere Rd.
- Dennis R. Timbrell Resource Centre, 29 St. Denis Dr.
Residents who require help preparing for registration can call 416-396-7378, Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The call centre will be open for extended hours on Tuesday, March 7 and Thursday, March 9, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. The call centre will also be open for extended hours on registration days (March 8 and 10) from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
You can find all of the information on spring recreation programs here.
Resident Grants Program
The Resident Grants Pilot supports resident-led projects that are engaged in local activation and focus on wellness, social inclusivity, civic engagement, and education across all neighbourhoods. The Resident Grants Pilot will prioritize the leadership and participation of Indigenous, Black and other equity-deserving groups within Neighbourhood Improvement Areas and Emerging Neighbourhoods.
Applicant groups can apply for up to $4000 in funding, for activities that take place between June 1st, 2023 and November 30th, 2023. The online application will be open until March 27th, 2023 at 12pm (noon).
City of Toronto staff will be hosting two interactive, virtual information sessions and office hours for the Resident Grants Pilot. You can also access all documents, including future recordings here.
Virtual grant info session #1 - March 1, 2023, 12:00 - 1:30pm
- WebEx Link: https://toronto.webex.com/toronto/j.php?MTID=m00794475b3924edc97c357ff8bb8148b
- Meeting ID: 2459 622 4828
- Passcode: FMsKFn7nY36
- Call in Number: 416-915-6530
Virtual grant info session #2 - March 9, 2023, 6:00 - 7:30pm
- WebEx Link: https://toronto.webex.com/toronto/j.php?MTID=m9c45ca95172e75fc80f9118c12ff5200
- Meeting ID: 2456 073 0129
- Passcode: 9B4vHKeT6W3
- Call in Number: 416-915-6530
Office Hours - March 22, 23, 24, 12:00 – 1:30pm
- WebEx Link: https://toronto.webex.com/toronto/j.php?MTID=mf3bae392920717b23546d91fe95343ce
- Meeting ID: 2455 696 0923
- Meeting password: 73Z3RyyMJM2
- Call in Number: 416-915-6530
If you have any questions, please email [email protected]
Apply for Summer Parks & Recreation Jobs
The City of Toronto is encouraging residents to apply for parks and recreation jobs, which support activities like swimming, programs like CampTO as well as the City’s gardens and parks.
These jobs are critical to providing over 85,000 summer CampTO spaces in 156 locations, including inclusive programs for participants with disabilities or who need additional support and the all-new CampTO Explore, which will be offered at various locations.
Recreation jobs offer seasonal and year-round part-time opportunities, flexible workhours and quality work teams. More information on how to get hired in recreation is at www.toronto.ca/RecJobs. More information about job opportunities to help maintain Toronto's parks is at https://jobs.toronto.ca.
Multiplex Housing Study
The amendments propose to permit multiplexes in all lands designated Neighbourhoods across the city and set out built form criteria in policy and zoning. The proposals contribute to the 2023 Housing Action Plan goals to remove exclusionary zoning and to increase housing opportunities in a range of housing forms, including but not limited to multiplexes.
The Multiplex team will also be hosting two virtual consultation events. Both events will have the same content with a staff presentation outlining the proposals and time for questions and answers. To register, please click the link below corresponding to your preferred date and time.
Coldest Night of the Year
Toronto City Hall
100 Queen Street West, Suite C42
Toronto, ON M5H 2N2
Email: [email protected]