Controversial former city councillor Giorgio Mammoliti to run for mayor

Five years after exiting Toronto City Hall, the long-time councillor wants to make his return by running for Toronto mayor in the upcoming by-election. Mark McAllister speaks with him about his controversial past.

Former longtime Toronto city councillor Giorgio Mammoliti confirms with CityNews that he will run for mayor in the upcoming byelection.

Mammoliti held his North York riding for more than two decades before losing his seat in the 2018 election after the wards were reduced from 44 to 25.

He then made a failed bid for mayor of Wasaga Beach.

Speaking to CityNews on Wednesday, Mammoliti said his campaign would focus on housing.

“Housing that is affordable is the main issue in the city right now, because people can’t afford to buy or rent.”

Mammoliti said the city could ease zoning restrictions and provide subsidies to find more people housing.

“How many vacancies do you have? We are going to subsidize the vacancies and we are going to house people in your apartment buildings,” he said, referring to landlords who are sitting on vacant units.

“It’s a simple mechanism for us to say we are here to help.”

He also said he doesn’t support the strong mayor powers bestowed upon the mayor of Toronto by Premier Doug Ford, and said if elected he would ask Ford to “reconsider that completely and allow us (mayor and councillors) the opportunity to work together.”

The controversial Mammoliti was known for making headlines including when he called for a city-wide 11 p.m. curfew for youth. He also proposed arming bylaw officers.

A byelection to replace John Tory is officially set for June 26. Tory stepped down after admitting to an affair with a younger, former staffer.

Several other candidates have already thrown their hats in the ring, including Gil Penalosa, who finished second to Tory is the last election, and another former councillor, Rob Davis.

It’s not the first time Mammoliti has tried to secure Toronto’s top job. In 2010, he unsuccessfully ran for mayor.

After campaigning without exceeding single digits in public opinion polls, Mammoliti announced his withdrawal from the contest on July 5, 2010, to run for re-election as a city councillor.

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