Toronto at Your Service
City of Toronto’s new website
You may have noticed that the City of Toronto has a new service-focused and user-friendly website. The City’s site delivers information and services to more than 19 million visitors each year and is one of its main customer service channels. Feedback from the public helped shape the new design and navigation, which bundles information and services by topic and audience. The site’s content is more concise and it’s easier than ever to interact with the City online. Visit the new toronto.ca and become a Digital Citizen Advisor to help us continue to evolve and improve the City’s website!
Municipal Election 2018 – Key dates
Toronto’s next municipal election is on Monday, October 22. Here are some key dates to keep in mind:
- May 1: The first day that candidates for the office of Mayor, Councillor or School Board Trustee can file a nomination paper.
- May 22: Recruitment begins for election voting-place staff.
- June 19: Candidate information sessions begin. Residents interested in attending can register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 416-338-1111.
Up-to-date information about the 2018 municipal election can be found at toronto.ca/elections.
City approves 2018 tax-supported budgets
On February 12, Council approved a 2018 tax-supported operating budget of $11.12 billion and a $25.98 billion 10-year capital plan. The 2018 budgets maintain or improve all service levels and make unprecedented investments in social infrastructure and housing. The budget includes a 2.1% property tax increase as well as a 0.5% increase for the City building fund. Factoring in tax policy and reassessment impact, the total municipal tax increase is 2.91 per cent or $82 on the average house assessed at $624,418, which will pay $2,907 in municipal property taxes in 2018. There will be no increase for multi-residential or rental apartment buildings.
Youth job fairs
Are you between the ages of 16 and 29 and looking for work? If you are, or know someone who is, the City is hosting spring job fairs on April 17 (downtown) and May 9 (Scarborough). The job fairs are part of the City’s ongoing efforts to work with employers and community partners to connect young people with jobs and training opportunities. For more information about these and other events, visit the City’s employment-related events calendar or call 416-397-JOBS (5627).
Celebrating new Torontonians
Family fun, activities and entertainment will fill Nathan Phillips Square as the City celebrates its fourth annual Toronto Newcomer Day on Tuesday, May 29 from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Mayor John Tory will attend the free public event, which will include musical performances, activities for children, City Hall tours, food trucks and more. Interested in volunteering at Toronto Newcomer Day or hosting a display at the event’s information fair? Email Muna Gaye or call 416-392-8944.
Photo: Mayor John Tory addresses the crowd at the 2017 Toronto Newcomer Day
New videos explain open data in Toronto
A series of YouTube videos is now available explaining what open data is and why City Council’s decision to approve the first Open Data Master Plan and Roadmap will improve life in Toronto.
Thought-provoking new library series On Civil Society
We are in the midst of tremendous political upheaval around the world. On Civil Society, the Toronto Public Library’s new idea-based program series, explores Canadian civil society through a variety of lenses, including democracy, media, wellness, urbanism, equality, security and more, in order to further discussion about where we are headed as a society. Attend a free in-person talk (upcoming topics include Is the Expert Dead? and What Is the New Masculinity?) or spend time on the website exploring related events, podcasts, videos and workshops.
Enjoy spring at the Toronto Zoo
There are lots of fun spring events at the Zoo. Celebrate Earth Day at Party for the Planet festivities taking place from Saturday, April 21 to Sunday, April 29, come out to the Spring Toad and Salamander Festival on Saturday, May 5 or take part in the Zoo’s Science Rendezvous on Saturday, May 12. And if you’re looking for something special to do with your mom on Mother’s Day, bring her to meet some of the Zoo’s wild moms, including greater one-horned rhino Ashakiran and her male calf Kiran. Don’t forget to check out Zoo Education Programs, too!
The evolution of Toronto’s jazz scene
The storied history of Toronto jazz is brought to life in the City of Toronto’s Market Gallery exhibit Notes in the Night: The History of Toronto Jazz Clubs Since 1946. Featuring photographs and posters, materials from collections of music-scene personalities and moving images, the exhibit reveals and illuminates the vitality and evolution of Toronto’s jazz scene. It runs Tuesdays through Saturdays until June 23.
‘Bring it!’ to a Community Environment Day event
Do your part to create a cleaner, greener and more livable Toronto. Bring unwanted household items and hazardous waste to a Community Environment Day event for donation or proper disposal. We’re looking for electronic waste, old clothing, books, craft supplies and household hazardous waste such as old paint, cleaning supplies, pesticides and more. Gather your things and bring them to an event near you.
Clean Toronto Together – April 20 to 22
It’s time for the big spring cleanup! Clean Toronto Together – Canada’s largest community cleanup – will take place April 20 to 22. Pick your favourite public space, organize a cleanup and join the fun!
- Friday, April 20: Corporate / School 20-Minute Makeover
- Saturday, April 21 and Sunday, April 22: Community Cleanups
Sign up now. Registering your cleanup event online eliminates duplicate cleanups. Thanks for pitching in!
Become a 3Rs Ambassador
Do you live in a condo, apartment or co-op with City waste pickup? Want to help your building divert more waste from landfill? If so, we have a role for you to play! Join our growing team of 3Rs Ambassador Volunteers and receive training and support to help your building reduce, reuse and recycle more.
Don’t wash dirt from your car into Lake Ontario
The dirt on your car can contain toxic chemicals, heavy metals, oil and grease. When you wash a car in your driveway or on the street, dirty water runs into the storm sewers and straight into local waterways. Using a commercial carwash, however, ensures the wastewater is fully treated. Check out other car washing options that will get your car clean and help keep the environment green.
Get prepared: Basement flooding is on the rise
Here are some tips to help prevent your basement from flooding:
- Ensure that water on your property drains away from your home.
- Disconnect your downspout from the City’s sewer.
- Keep eavestroughs clear of leaves and other debris.
- Fix cracks or leaks in your home’s foundation, basement walls and windows.
- Keep fat, oil and grease out of drains to help prevent clogged pipes.
- Consider installing a sump pump and backwater valve to help prevent sewer backup.
Awards and Accolades
City recognized for diversity programs and initiatives
The City of Toronto was named one of Canada’s Best Diversity Employers for the third consecutive year. This annual competition, managed by MediaCorp Canada Inc., recognizes leaders from across Canada who create exceptional workplace diversity and inclusion programs for employees from five groups: women, members of visible minorities, persons with disabilities, Aboriginal Peoples and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered/transsexual (LGBT) people.