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The Star’s endorsements for Toronto Council in Wards 1 to 8
Oct. 19, 2022

Change is coming to Toronto Council in Monday’s election, if only because seven councillors opted not to run again. We will miss the perspectives and experience of several of these veterans. But their departure does offer the promise of renewal, opening the door to newcomers with fresh viewpoints and solutions for the challenges that confront Toronto.

In casting their ballots, Toronto residents can bring about even more change. Some incumbents deserve to be returned. It’s time for others to retire. Toronto needs councillors with progressive viewpoints, who can give voice to the city’s rich diversity, city-builders ready to make the investments needed in Canada’s biggest city.

Here are our suggestions for Wards 1 through 8:

Ward 1, Etobicoke North: This is a historic election of sorts with no Ford on the municipal ballot after Michael Ford jumped to provincial politics. Vincent Crisanti, who lost to Ford in 2018, is seeking to make a comeback. But this diverse ward in northwest Toronto needs fresh perspectives. The better choice is Charles Ozzoude, a researcher at St. Michael’s Hospital. His platform puts a focus on the needs of the ward, such as improved transit connections and advocating for new immigrants.

Ward 2, Etobicoke Centre: We disagree with many of incumbent Stephen Holyday’s positions, which includes his opposition to Bloor St. bikes lanes and the proposal to allow responsible drinking in parks. However, there’s no strong challenger we can recommend.

Ward 3, Etobicoke-Lakeshore: It’s time for incumbent Mark Grimes to go. We enthusiastically endorsed Amber Morley in the last election and she’s got our support this time too, based on the strength of her plan for the city and her experience working with south Etobicoke residents. She is the best choice here.

Ward 4, Parkdale-High Park: Two strong candidates are challenging incumbent Gord Perks -- Chemi Lhamo, a human-rights activist, and Siri Agrell, a former journalist with experience working at City Hall. Both Agrell and Lhamo have the skills to serve the ward well. In our view, Perks deserves to be re-elected. His experienced progressive voice will be needed on council.

Ward 5, York South-Weston: Incumbent Frances Nunziata has a long history of municipal service and supporting constituents. But we think Chiara Padovani, a human rights and housing advocate, deserves serious consideration. Between her work at a food bank and her role as co-founder of a tenants’ union, she has a good handle on the needs of vulnerable families.

Ward 6, York Centre: Incumbent James Pasternak is a centrist and loyalist of Mayor John Tory. Some of his ideas, like ensuring large parking lots around transit stations, are concerning. But in the absence of a strong challenger, he gets our backing.

Ward 7, Humber River-Black Creek: Incumbent Anthony Perruzza faces two challengers, Amanda Coombs, a community worker who created a program to assist youth, and Christopher Mammoliti, a school trustee who is the son of former councillor Giorgio Mammoliti. Coombs’ background gives her viewpoints that would be a valuable addition to council debates. But Perruzza’s work in the ward gives him the edge.

Ward 8, Eglinton-Lawrence: Mike Colle has experience at the municipal and provincial levels. Most recently, he’s brought a spotlight to the delayed Eglinton Crosstown LRT project that runs through his ward and the impacts on businesses and area residents. He deserves to be returned to council.

Thursday: Our choices for Wards 9 to 16.