I’m talking about the TTC Turncoat — a.k.a. Karen Stintz — who pulled another neat little “Stintz Stunt” while I was on vacation down in steamy Florida.
It seems the very same Ms. Stunts who loudly proclaimed at a Scarborough Town Hall in early March that a subway was not in the cards for that neck of the woods is now proposing — under her new, improved OneCity plan — that the Scarborough RT be replaced with, you guessed it, a subway.
This is also the Ms. Stunts who declared at the very same March Town Hall — organized by the Toronto Taxpayers Coalition — that she supported a plan (meaning LRTs) that would “keep taxes down.”
I know. I participated on the same panel that night and watched her being booed over and over again for her stubborn insistence that LRTs were The Better Way.
Mind you. That was then. This is now.
Under Ms. Turncoat’s grandiose 30-year, $30-billion OneCity plan (of six subway/train lines, 10 LRT lines and five bus and streetcar lines totalling 170 kilometres) a “CVA Uplift” model would be used to raise at least $250-million a year towards funding it.
It seems Ms. Stunts has not only discovered a tax solution, but one that will raise property taxes for every single property owner by an average of $180 every year.
“I don’t think people understand that we’re talking about a 2% hike every year for the next 30 years,” says budget chief Mike Del Grande. “When you add it all up, that’s a lot of money.”
I’d laugh at the surrealism of it all and her blatant hypocrisy if it weren’t for the fact that this dingbat (Stintz) and her sidekick Councillor Glenn De Baeremaeker are supposedly in charge of bringing the TTC into an Era of Enlightenment.
With nonsense like this diverting the attention of council and the media (as it will this week), is it any wonder so few city projects get done on time, on budget and dare I say, to a quality standard.
Considering that shovels are already in the ground to build the Eglinton-Crosstown LRT and there is a great debate as to how much of a role the TTC should take on with respect to that project, I’d be focussing my time and attention on that massive project, if I were Stintz and her Sidekick.
Ms. Stunts did not return my phone calls Monday, not at all surprising considering I haven’t been a fan of her unabashed flip-flopping and her lack of loyalty to those who put her into the driver’s seat at the TTC in the first place.
But really this has nothing to do with leading Toronto to a better future, or uniting all of the city, or finding a creative funding model, as the OneCity hyperbole suggests.
For if Stunts and her Sidekick truly wanted to make our transit system better, they’d proceed in a practical way with a reasonable approach that builds one station at a time — and looks at all funding possibilities (P3s and the like).
What this is about is saving the Sidekick’s butt in Scarborough — seeing as his constituents weren’t exactly amused with his decision to so arrogantly dismiss their interests.
“This is about saving Glenn DeBaeremaeker’s a--,” says Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong. “He’s getting the snot pounded out of him.”
Minnan-Wong thinks the Stunts plan is a “fairy tale” which will have an “unhappy ending” especially if the TTC with its “unblemished record of cost overruns” gets involved in the construction.
Councillor Doug Ford said he preferred to remain polite about Stintz’s latest flip-flop except to say her plan wasn’t well thought out, is not sustainable and will end up costing far more than the $30-billion she’s promoting.
He thinks it could easily end up turning into a $120-billion project.
Stintz reverses on her own TTC Scarborough plan | Toronto & GTA | News | Toronto Sun