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Executive committee approves $1.65M in SmartTrack studies

Mayor John Tory holds his first executive committee meeting at Toronto City Hall on Dec. 5, 2014. ROGERS TV

Mayor John Tory’s executive committee unanimously approved $1.65 million in studies for his SmartTrack plan, the cornerstone of his election campaign.

The proposal went before the committee on Thursday, and members agreed to ask council to endorse it.

The improvements include seven additional stations on the Stouffville and Lakeshore East GO train corridors, a new line on Eglinton West, from Mount Dennis Station to Mississauga, and speeding up electrification of the SmartTrack line.

In early December, Tory’s executive unanimously approved an accelerated SmartTrack work plan. It was Tory’s first executive committee meeting since being sworn in as mayor on Dec. 2.

During Mayor John Tory’s first council meeting on Dec. 11, council voted 42-1 to push forward with his SmartTrack and Regional Express Rail transit plans. Coun. Rob Ford was the only one to oppose it.

Click here to read the meeting agenda.

Gender inclusive ‘O Canada’

Another item that was up for consideration but has been deferred is to direct city council to request that the Canadian government to change O Canada to make it more gender inclusive. The motion is presented by Coun. Ceta Ramkhalawansingh (Ward 20, Trinity-Spadina) and seconded by Coun. Pam McConnell (Ward 28, Toronto Centre-Rosedale).

Civil rights groups, who have endorsed the Sing All of Us campaign, would like to substitute the words “our sons” with “of us” in O Canada.

“To further recognize the rights of women to be represented in all aspects of society,” the agenda item reads.

Outsourcing court security and parking enforcement

The executive committee also reviewed a October 2014 report from the chair of the Toronto Police Services Board that looks at the feasibility and costs of outsourcing court security to the City of Toronto Corporate Security or privatizing it completely, and the costs of outsourcing parking enforcement.

With files from Amber LeBlanc and Patricia D’Cunha