October brings us golden foliage, trick or treating, time with friends and family during Thanksgiving, and yes, yet another election.
On October 24th, we will be able to have our say in the election of the councillor for Ward 15. Post-redistricting, Ward 15 now has the same borders as the Don Valley West riding in both the provincial and federal elections, a change effective in 2018 that melded Leaside into a large conglomerate of adjacent neighbourhoods such as Mount Pleasant East, York Mills, and Lawrence Park.
Running in our ward are four candidates, including incumbent Jaye Robinson, former provincial Green Party candidate Sheena Sharp, David Ricci, and Gregory Vaz.
In addition to her duties as councillor, Jaye Robinson currently serves as the chair of the Toronto Transit Commission. During her time representing Ward 15 she says she has “championed community planning and development reform, traffic and congestion management, the improvement of Toronto’s fiscal health, and the protection of trees and green spaces. As TTC chair, Jaye’s top transit priorities are implementing new strategies to improve capacity on Line 1 and building the long-awaited Downtown Relief Line.”
Challenging Robinson is Sheena Sharp. The founder of Coolearth Architecture Inc. has previously served as president of the Ontario Association of Architects. Recently, she represented the Ontario Green Party in DVW’s provincial election and espoused the view that “in order to meet our climate targets, new building design must be rooted in a plan to transform our energy and manufacturing industries.”
In a statement to Leaside Life, Sharp said: “After 35 years working on individual building projects, I want to bring new and effective ideas for climate action and better housing options to City Hall.
“The City of Toronto alone accounts for 2-3% of Canada’s green emissions. Reducing our carbon consumption can only be accomplished by switching to electricity for heating and cars, and I will ensure that we make meaningful decisions.
“Housing affordability depends on having a variety of housing within a neighbourhood, which will allow us to stay close to friends, family, and support systems across the lifespan. I intend to support this vision through zoning reform.”
Also running are David Ricci and Gregory Vaz, who were not available to be interviewed by press time.
Although Robinson is widely expected to be reelected, there are important issues at hand that deserve attention. Again. Regardless of whom you will be supporting on October 24th, it is imperative that you make your voice heard. Councillors are invaluable assets for Leaside and our advocates to the city at large.
This article was guest contributed by Lucas Flemming.