New PC candidate: Mark DeMontis

The Progressive Conservatives have long been total also-rans in York South–Weston, but that looks about to change. Mark DeMontis has announced his candidacy for the PC nomination.

DeMontis, a Westonian, is well known for rollerblading across Canada to raise money for Courage Canada, a charity that helps blind and low-vision people get into hockey. DeMontis was a promising hockey player himself before losing much of his sight in early adulthood.

Past PC candidates have been total duds, and have barely campaigned. DeMontis, by contrast, has been present in the community and has been increasing his presence on Twitter for several months. He may prove a challenge in this traditionally centre-left community.

Liberals hiding embarrassing report on UP Express

The Liberals are hiding a document that could make the UP Express look like another gas plant debacle, the Progressive Conservatives and NDP say. Rosario Marchese, an NDP MPP, says that they are filibustering his motion to produce documents that would embarrass them.

Marchese is asking Metrolinx and the Ministry of Transportation to produce their market studies for the Air Rail Link. These documents would show the projected ridership and revenue—and just how bad the expected losses will be. The Auditor General said last year that it is “not feasible” for the UP Express to break even.

Marchese first asked the government to produce the documents on December 3. On December 10, the Liberal members of the committee ran the clock down so that they couldn’t vote—leading PC Jeff Yurek to say the fillibuster is “disgusting and in bad taste”. On February 18, they did the same thing.

In last week’s Committee on Government Agencies meeting, Marchese said “it is clear that the government doesn’t want this to be dealt with, and so they are deliberately stalling.” And his Liberal counterpart, Mike Colle, did just that—speaking, at length, on an unrelated point, and trying to extend the deadline of  Marchese’s motion from 30 days to 60. Mitzie Hunter, another Liberal, took over for Colle and ragged the puck until the meeting ended, delaying the vote until the next meeting of the committee—at the earliest.

The Liberals may be trying to postpone the report until after the imminent election. Laura Albanese, our MPP, is on this committee.