Planning for the City of Toronto needs expert, independent oversight. The activities of City Planning Staff must be directed and reviewed by an expert, independent, professional body, whose mandate is protection of the public interest.
Politicians are not experts in planning matters, and are subjected to continuous “lobbying” by parties whose primary interest is profits. This exposes the public interest to potential corruption, together with incompetent planning and a failure of good governance for the residents of the City of Toronto.
The Local Planning Appeal Tribunal constitutes a failed, unfair, outdated component of the City planning process, which favours moneyed Parties, who purchase the services of lawyers and planners. The decisions of a single Adjudicator can only be over-turned by Divisional Court, another costly venue. LPAT ‘litigation’ constitutes a serious barrier for the public, and represents an unnecessary, expensive and undemocratic process that is not in the public interest.
City and Provincial governments exist for one purpose only: to manage and protect public assets and the public interest.
Residents are always the primary stakeholders.
Unfortunately, the situation presently exists where residents are expected to pay taxes BUT otherwise be ignored by Municipal and Provincial Governments.
Governments that accommodate only “special interest groups” or their “personal” interests and opinions, or “pet projects” are failing their mandate to fairly manage and protect the public interest – the “public” incudes all residents, not just a few.
City of Toronto Review of Governance Structures to July 26, 2019 – Take action here:
Toronto is the 4th largest city in North America with more than 2.7 million residents, while New York City is the 2nd largest city in North America with more than 8.6 million residents.
In the 1960’s and 1970’s, New York City addressed the issues of potential corruption in the planning process; the requirement for expert, independent oversight of planning matters; and democratic input by residents. Strongly influenced by the ideas of Jane Jacobs, the NYC Planning Commission (CPC) and 59 NYC resident-based Community Boards, implemented decades ago, continue to operate satisfactorily in 2019. On an annual basis, approximately 450-500 planning applications are reviewed by the CPC within five months (150 days), with direct input from residents through their Community Boards, and no appeal of CPC decisions, which are final.
It is time for residents of the City of Toronto to work together to remedy the current, significant failures of planning and democracy in our City.
Click on the following links for:
1. Failure of the LPAT system when compared with Good Governance objectives.
2. A summary of how a new City of Toronto Planning Commission will interact with City Planning, City Council and residents – similar to the operations of the NY CPC.
3. Draft legislation for a City of Toronto Planning Commission for inclusion in the City of Toronto Municipal code.
4. Download the full report for a City of Toronto Planning Commission to replace LPAT for Toronto.