(Remember back in the olden golden days of 2012 when we posed a couple questions to our city councillors? No? Well we did. Today Councillor James Pasternak, Ward 10 York Centre responds!)
1) The Gift of Councilling: What is the one moment in 2012 that struck you as the best example of why it was you became a councillor?
During the 2012 budgetary process, a number of councillors – including me – had deep concerns about the service cuts being proposed to Council. As the concern spread through the corridors at City Hall, a small group of us – the so-called centrist councillors – worked on a motion that would reverse about $15 million in cuts. Our goal was to maintain and expand priority centres, protect community grants, put more money into the TTC, save child care spots and homeless shelters, promote the arts, among other initiatives. In the end my vote certainly mattered. The motion passed 23-21. If one vote have moved over to the “Against” column, the motion to save these programs would have lost on a tie. This was the best early example of why I became a councillor.
2) Going Forward: In 2013, what is the one aspect you would like to see happen that would help develop better civic discourse?