Frances Nunziata is asking for you to give the province input on payday loan, rent-to-own and cheque cashing stores—what she calls “predatory lenders”. The proposed changes would make payday loans less attractive.
For payday loan shops, province is considering
Extended payment periods for repeat borrowers
Lowered lending limits
An extended, six-day waiting period
Clear display of the cost of borrowing and credit counselling information
Most intriguingly, the province is also asking that credit unions be exempt from these regulations.
You can provide feedback on all the proposed changes.
The third and final phase of the City of Toronto’s Participatory Budgeting Pilot Project will kick off in early-September 2017.
In the final phase of the pilot, Rustic has a lot to look forward to. Several light posts, along with water bottle filling stations, will be coming to both Rustic and Maple Leaf Parks. Some of the more “fun” ideas voted in include a movie wall, which was championed by local youth, in Maple Leaf Park, and a ping pong table in Rustic Park.
Rustic, one of York South—Weston’s six Neighbourhood Improvement Areas (N.I.A.s) (formerly known as Priority Neighbourhoods), was chosen as one of the three areas in Toronto for the pilot to take place in. Rustic is located in the northwest end of the riding, bounded by the 401 to the north, Culford Road to the east, Lawrence Avenue West to the south, and Jane Street to the west.
Participatory budgeting is exactly what it sounds like; it lets members of the community decide the allocation of city funds for infrastructure. While this is the City’s first time officially trying participatory budgeting, it has been used by other cities such as Boston and New York. Toronto Community Housing also has a Participatory Budgeting program for tenants.
In Rustic, $150,000 was allocated to the N.I.A. for the project’s first phase, and $250,000 has been allocated for each of the final two phases.
Before participatory budgeting came to Rustic in 2015, most of its parks were dilapidated with worn out playground equipment and a dire need for more lighting.
Once the final phase of the project is complete, a report will go to City Council on whether the City should continue with the project or not.
Weston should keep an eye on participatory budgeting. Like Rustic, Weston is home to several different demographic groups, and is always looking for new infrastructure. Participatory Budgeting can promote social cohesion and community relationships, but it can also expose decades-old community divisions. When involving ourselves in civic engagement, we should look to what makes the community—and city—more liveable for everyone as opposed to what might make it a little bit better in the short-term for ourselves and a few of our neighbours. This is the lesson that participatory budgeting teaches.
If you want to see the full list of ideas or if you live in Rustic, you can submit ideas here.
Among other services, Weston King Neighbourhood Centre serves and helps people in the community who are coping with economic or social barriers. In this regard, WKNC provides housing support, harm reduction, hygiene wellness and counselling. Part of the WKNC vision is to have everyone (clients and community members) serve as a volunteer. Currently, they are looking for people to serve in the following roles:
Promotion and Marketing
Janitorial / Maintenance
WKNC provides clients with breakfast and lunch every day except Sundays and is looking for donations of plates, cups and cutlery.
TRCA Project Coordinator, Courtney Rennie was true to his word (see yesterday’s post). As of Tuesday August 15, the south end of the Cruickshank Park trail is open and workers are beginning to remove the fencing.
No doubt work will eventually begin on replacing the path which has taken a beating all the way down to Raymore Park thanks to various construction projects, the last of which (sewer re-lining) should be winding down soon.