Councillor Nunziata has long been a vocal supporter of Rob Ford, but she is now drawing quite a bit of flak for propping his transit plan up.
Karen Stintz, the Chair of the TTC, led a very public mutiny against Mayor Ford that brought back to life the plan that would build light rail tracks around Toronto. Rob Ford had famously said that Transit City was dead, and that all new rail transit would be underground. Stintz, who was appointed by Ford, gambled her political future against her paymaster and won: Transit City lives.
Nunziata gave press conference after the debate in which she said that Transit City meant “destroying my whole community, expropriating lots of homes and businesses on Eglinton and Weston Road, and we were totally against that. Councillor Stintz putting that forward again is very disturbing for my community.” According to Steve Munro, a transit guru, between 10 and 18 homes will be destroyed under the current plan to make way for the LRT station at Weston and Eglinton. Munro, however, thinks the current station plan is not very good.
Though it was clearly Stintz’s day, Nunziata angered many from her Speaker’s chair. She said, “Councillor Stintz should be ashamed of herself!”, and gave City Council what some critics have called a children’s time out. Her criticisms caught the attention of journalists like Marcus Gee (of The Globe and Mail) and John Lorinc (of everywhere). Lorinc, in your humble narrator’s estimation, got rather too caught up in the debate and when he said, that Nunziata “demonstrates a bottomless capacity to #missthepoint“, but his was one of the less inflammatory comments that followed.
Less well known bloggers and Twitterers set fire to the wires. “Nunziata” earned a coveted ‘trending topics’ spot on the Twitter homepage as her critics lambasted her for her perceived imperiousness. The comments ranged from the quite nasty to the, well, less nasty. Very few people came to her defence.