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TTC essential service issue should be mayoral debate, McGuinty says

TTC streetcar

The Premier is putting the public transit ball in the city’s court.

Dalton McGuinty said the debate over making the TTC an essential service should be part of the city’s mayoral race.

“I don’t think there’s ever been a better time for a good public debate on this issue,” he said.

McGuinty said its up to the city to decide, but taking away transit worker’s right to strike, is something Queen’s Park will consider.

In the race for mayor Giorgio Mammolitti told 680News he’ll make the issue front and centre.

“It has to be part of the mandate and we have to know what direction the city would want us to go as mayor,” Mammolitti said.

Mammolitti plans to unveil his plans for the TTC later this week, something he’s calling a major shake-up.

Candidate Rocco Rossi said there are other priorities with the TTC right now.

“Certainly if someone can show me how, by doing this that actually can lead to lower costs and better service, then I’d be delighted to hear about that,” Rossi said.

Meantime, there have been suggestions the premier has gotten involved because his former deputy premier, George Smitherman is in the running.

Mayor David Miller Miller said the premier is interfering.

“The premier did something else – you know – he intervened in the municipal election, that’s what he said and that’s not right. You know, is he going to do this in Ottawa where a former cabinet minister is running, is he going to do it in Windsor, Hamilton – that’s not right,” he said.

Calls to George Smitherman’s camp have not been returned. 

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