Canada's Don Valley East (Ward 33) city council candidates speak

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This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.

Saturday, November 4, 2006

On November 13, Torontonians will be heading to the polls to vote for their ward's councillor and for mayor. Among Toronto's ridings is Don Valley East (Ward 33). One candidates responded to Wikinews' requests for an interview. This ward's candidates include Zane Caplan, Shelley Carroll (incumbent), Jim Conlon, Sarah Tsang-Fahey, and Anderson Tung.

For more information on the election, read Toronto municipal election, 2006.

Shelley Carroll (incumbent)

Shelley Carroll

49-year-old Shelley Carroll is the incumbent for Don Valley East, Ward 33, and has served either in this position or as a school board trustee for the last decade. More information can be found on her website, or her blog.

Q: Describe the three most important issues in your campaign.

A: Locally, completing a storm-water retention system for North York's flooded areas. Controlling and mitigating the impacts of subway-induced development. Globally, completing a long-term solid-waste strategy for the city of Toronto. A comprehensive environmental assessment process has already been launched, under my leadership of the Works committee and I intend to see it through.

Q: What one election issue do you feel is most relevant to your ward in this election?

A: Part of mitigating development impact is bringing about better traffic and transit management. Residents of Don Valley East are passionate about both these elements of city life.

Q: Why have you chosen to involve yourself in the political process?

A: I entered politics in 1995, concerned about a better education system and ultimately a better City for my own children. I felt that a better future for them could only be achieved by building a stronger community for everyone. After 10 years, I find the work constant but endlessly rewarding.

Q: Why do you want to represent this particular ward on council?

A: Ward 33 always feels like a microcosm of the whole City of Toronto to me. Residents of all backgrounds are engaged in civic issues like never before. They they [sic] want a city that supports the next generation economically and socially, and we need a City that supports their hard work.

Q: How are you currently involved in the community?

A: Serving first as a School Board Trustee and now as City Councillor has spread my community involvement across a broad range of activities. I visit and participate in multi-cultural seniors organizations, childrens' service providers, and residents' associations. I have created two new additions to the list of resident/ratepayer associations as well as running my own Ward Advisory Council.

Q: What does Toronto mean to you?

A: Toronto is at the edge of becoming the North American City that shows all of the others how to grow without compromising the quality of life and the environment. The decisions we make will serve as an example of how a progressive city should act. Our Youth Strategy, which I helped author, asks that we never create another City initiative without asking if we are leaving youth or the marginalized behind. As Works Committee Chair, I always ask, "How does this benefit the environment?" We have to lead by example, and I hope to build a city that does.

Q: Which council decision (since the 2003 election) do you feel the city/your ward should be most proud of, and which was least desirable?

A: A high point was when Council supported my Civic Youth Strategy. They approved not only a strategy which demands meaningful employment and empowerment of Youth, but also a process to allow Youth themselves to determine the membership of our Toronto Youth Panel. This panel will report to council as well as have council's initiatives reported to them for direct input.
A low point was when Council turned down my motion to start an office of Civic Engagement attached to the City Manager's office. This is absolutely crucial to a more engaged, united and more equitable City. Informal and upstart community groups need help, advice, access to resources, and networks — things we have to offer, but aren't equipped to share. I will be bringing the concept back to a new term of Council.

Anderson Tung

33-year-old Anderson Tung is has served "as a University of Toronto Governor, consultant and advisor to city council, and unofficial lawyer that enforces laws on MP, MPPs, City council, and political parties." Most recently he has been a strategy consultant and "enviro-entrepreneur".

Tung's answers have not been abbreviated, despite the fact that the questions clearly ask for specific numbers of issues. Wikinews is not aware whether this inconsistency is due to ignorance or lack of numeracy skills.

Q: Describe the three most important issues in your campaign.

A: Here is a summary of the major social, political, and economic reforms I will execute in the coming years:
1) Dismantle TTC and Police Unions and ban all "essential services" from strike without arbitration of wage compared to other public professions. AND Freeze all unionized wages for next 10 years. Upload 50% of toronto police officers, resources, and budget to federal RCMP jurisdiction.
2) cut child poverty by 50% this year in TO, by cancelling gardiner demolition and uploading 50% police cost to feds.
3) Reform of justice system, and media so that it cannot be used as a weapon of terror by any public office.
4) Make environmental power generation, biodiesel, ethanol30, and Recapitalize transportation projects and offer strategy for unified transit system in GTA.
5) Engage province to reopen Kirkland lake mine as enviro-friend waste disposal option for longterm
6) Raise property taxes or surcharges on Walmart, Costco, and other multinationals by 100% or more, as permitted by constitutional law. While cutting small biz property taxes by 50% over 5 years.
In short, I am here to ensure that ignorant, incompetence, corruption are not tolerated in government and ensure political power is balanced by informed decision making - not simply fiscal myopia. Please visit my website for a more detailed outline of my priorities at

Q: What one election issue do you feel is most relevant to your ward in this election?

A: 1) child poverty at 33% in ward 33, above TO's average of 30%
2) Transit and traffic chaos - Simply adding more buses on roads is an insufficient long-term solution.

To meet the rapid transportation reforms, public transit and public policing must be PRIVATIZED. It is the only means to rapidly build subway/RT capacity on a GTA large scale, and require a $10 billion dollar plan.

3) Affordable housing.

Q: Why have you chosen to involve yourself in the political process?

A: I engage politics for a few reasons:
1) I lack of confidence in politicians all too willing to compromise for the sack of money.
2) I bring the legal authority to execute rapidly upon the demands I make upon three levels of government.
3) I bring the integrity, accountability, and resolve to see my demands through.
4) I stand up and defend those who cannot defend themselves - our youths
5) I fight for equality, justice, democracy at every level, and defend those who cannot defend themselves
6) I fight for our city, province, and nation, when no politician, lawyer, journalist, nor media network is willing to do so for political reasons. I do not believe in politics, but my life will be an example of the greatness of our city, province, and nation, when we our minds and resources to clear objectives.
My heart lies in the political and judicial realm, as I have been fighting 3 levels of government the past 5 years on the most fundamental of reforms. Only by threats of impeachment have I achieved rapid results in meeting the demands of our dynamic, multicultural society.
Not one politician, nor lawyer, nor journalist for that matter, would even attempt to do the things I have done the past 5 years. Though the successes are great, the personal cost mirrors this. Though I could have settled the expanding legal issues long ago, and compromised my position for money. Instead I choose the long hard grinding road of INTEGRITY, ACCOUNTABILITY, AND RESOLVE. The people of Toronto, Ontario, and Canada, will come to appreciate my efforts.
It is not the unions, nor councillors, nor mayor, nor realty firms that run this city. It is the free democratic societies right to remove officials that refuse to stand up for justice, who aid and abate fraud, conspiracies, and obstructions on a scale as unproven till now. I am no politician, nor officially a lawyer, but I run with equivalent knowledge and experiences in making the fair, equitable, and just decisions that city council lacks in judgement. I will continue to resolve the challenges that face our city, province, and nation in the twenty-second century - wether [sic] or not I am elected.

Q: Why do you want to represent this particular ward on council?

A: I live in ward 33, so it was convenient, but also it is next door to my long standing home in scarborough where I grew up the past 30 years. I understand the social, political, economic, and cultural fabric of toronto, ontario, and canadian society. I have lived almost my entire life in East Toronto, so am familiar with all the issues and cultural demands. In short, East Toronto is not a theater for police to terrorize in the media, nor a war games playground, whereby asians are used as an instrument to justify excessive police budgets.

Q: How are you currently involved in the community?

A: I have focused my life's work on understanding and publishing on issues of big picture importance to 3 levels of government to ensure that Canada does not become the social, political, economic, and moral bankruptcy of the United States. And I am content to see the benefits of my hard work the past few years. I am a very charitable time giving person. I committed my time and abilities to the causes I feel will most benefit society, for instance:
-Daily bread food bank, -Ont. Council for Int. Cooperation, -World Vision Refugee Center
-United Way fundraising and CN Tower climb supplier.
-Sueing three levels of government for environmental, transit, education, health, justice reform issues.
-resolving traffic issues at kennedy+steeles, 404/401 ramps, Leslie/401,
-federal funds to rebuild the poorest region in Canada - Regent Park,
-Youth justice system reforms - mitigating 600% Criminal code conviction rate more than adults.
-2004 Canadian police per capita budgeting model to reduce excessive police budgets - ignored by city council todate.
- Environmental groups, researching and publishing papers to local MP, MPPs, and city council that are urgent.

Q: What does Toronto mean to you?

A: The past decade has been one of stagnation for several reasons: First, fiscal slash and burn policies by Federal Liberals, and Ontario Conservatives. Second, Police and TTC unions rape and extort the tax payers for unending higher wages. Let me be very clear, THE PUBLIC IS NOT A BANK ROLE FOR UNIONS TO MAKE RIDICULOUS WAGE DEMANDS UPON SO THEIR SALARIES KEEP PACE WITH INFLATION - this is the role of banks and financial markets! The result of this is Toronto has become a welfare state that is headed for bankruptcy - if things do not change quickly.
Toronto must be a model mega city in our global village. Toronto must demonstrate leadership in private and public sector innovation to ensure social, political, and economic growth. A homeless man or young child should be able to walk into a court and find justice -with little or no cost, and without fear of persecution.
Toronto must be a place where police serve and protect everyone, all interest groups, all religions and races, not simply the politicians and lawyers that protect their excessive budgets.
Toronto must be a place where anyone can ride public transit for a small fee to anywhere in the GTA.

Toronto City council must be a place where everyone has a voice, and who's ideas may be shared in resolving the challenges that face this nation in the twenty second century, and not simply a voice for the realty firms and lawyers that charge outrageous service charges. Toronto is this, but can be much more.

Q: Which council decision (since the 2003 election) do you feel the city/your ward should be most proud of, and which was least desirable?

A: 1) Great to see sheppard subway built to fairview mall, and integration of VIVA tertiary transit system with TTC.
2) I believe building Daniels condominiums along 401 and bayview was more financial than environmental. It would be better to alleviate transit congestion by building along steeles ave east and west, including a steeles subway extension from keele to mccowan. The 401 cannot grow further, and adding more transit chaos to it is not good for environment, nor city planning. Further growth must come from Etobicoke and Scarborough fringes - if not a merger of Toronto and York region for tax revenue purposes.
3) I do not agree with city council that the greatest value in expanding the subway system was from fairview mall to yonge. If this city and province had given the global authroity to the GTA transit authority as I demanded in 2003, we would have a GTA transit system second to Tokyo or New York,

Q: If you were elected as a "rookie" councilor, What would you bring to the table beyond the incumbent?

A: I am no rookie in any sense, in fact I have been the advisor and consultant that has not charged Toronto a dime for all of my research and publications the past 5 years. I transformed the University of Toronto into Canada's pre-eminent R+D institution, fully integrated with downtown hospital infrastructure. I am the one that told Ontario to reform gaming laws so hospitals and charities could fund this transformation today. I am the one that has forced the Attorney General to offer NO FEE courts, funds to rebuild Regent Park, VIVA tertiary transit system, and a host of other achievements.
1) 10 years of business, IT, Finance, and Environmental solutions consulting in applying to Toronto's current problems.
2) The knowledge, experience, and innovative ideas that have transformed this city, province, and nation in the past decade.
3) I hold the balance of power against all three levels of government and police service unions. When I choose to use that power, it will result in swift, decisive reforms as those within the past couple of years.
4) Broad understanding of federal, provincial, municipal, and environmental legislation and to sue for immediate remedies to urgent issues.
5) Broad social, political, and economic understanding of toronto, ontario, and Canada in global village.
6) Broad understanding of how to better build this city, and balance the biased views of special interest groups on toronto committees and boards.
7) Focus on unprecedented social, economic, and justice reforms, cutting child poverty in half this year.
8) Ensure all interest groups in society have a balance of power, to express, and prosecute in a fair and just manner.