Yesterday’s municipal election has formed a new, slimmed-down #Toronto City Council that should make it easier for Mayor John Tory (re-elected in a landslide) to get things done.
By my count, Toronto elected 12 councillors who should naturally ally with Tory on most issues. That’s enough to win a majority vote in the new smaller council. There are also five councillors who Tory can work with on an issue-by-issue basis and eight who are likely to oppose him on almost every vote. So, Tory’s in great shape.
Although the margins look slim, Tory has enough perks and appointments to dole out before the new council convenes in December that he should have no difficulty buying himself a solid coalition to achieve progress on his key mandate items.
For the first time I can remember, the mayor of Toronto will begin the council term with all the political support he needs to get things done. Now, it’s up to John Tory. He won’t have many excuses available for lacklustre performance. He’s got the ball – finally – now he just has to run with it.
What does the new Toronto Council look like from the mayor’s seat?
Here’s where I think the mayor’s support and opposition will likely come from in the 2018-22 Council.
(Mostly Support Mayor)
(Issue-by-Issue support possible)
|The Disloyal Opposition
(Mostly Oppose Mayor)
|Mayor John Tory||7 – Anthony Perruzza||4 – Gord Perks|
|1 – Michael Ford||9 – Ana Bailao||10 – Joe Cressy|
|2 – Stephen Holyday||17 – Shelley Carroll||11 – Mike Layton|
|3 – Mark Grimes||22 – Jim Karygiannis||12 – Josh Matlow|
|5 – Frances Nunziata||23 – Cynthia Lai||13 – Kristyn Wong-Tam|
|6 – James Pasternak||14 – Paula Fletcher|
|8 – Mike Colle||18 – John Filion|
|15 – Jaye Robinson||24 – Paul Ainslie|
|16 – Denzil Minnan-Wong|
|19 – Brad Bradford|
|20 – Gary Crawford|
|21 – Michael Thompson|
|25 – Jennifer McKelvie|
The mayor has a number of bargaining chips he can cash in for support. First off, he directly appoints the chairs of seven standing committees, the deputy mayor(s) and can pretty much appoint the Chair of the Toronto Transit Commission, the Budget Chair and other members of the 13-person Executive Committee. These appointments raise a councillor’s profile immensely and are highly desired. It’s standard practice to expect (and receive) loyalty to the mayor in exchange for an appointment.
There are also over 100 other appointments to desirable agencies, boards and commissions that can be offered in exchange for limited – or unlimited – support from the lucky appointee.
So, I foresee no real problem for John Tory to assemble a solid coalition to move forward quickly on his key mandate issues. In fact, with a 13-person Executive Committee he is pretty much guaranteed a majority at Council on any issue approved by the Executive. And, with a smaller council – it should take half as much time to get council business done.
So, we should expect – and demand – great things from this mayor and council over the next four years. There are really no more excuses.
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