Jenkins to run again

While Minnan-Wong coy about possible mayoral bid

Don’t let his absence from the municipal election nomination list fool you: Cliff Jenkins is throwing his hat back in ring for Ward 25.

On Jan. 4, the councillor confirmed he is seeking re-election for a third term in Don Valley West.

Though it was the first day to register to run for school trustee, councillor or mayor, Jenkins wasn’t in a hurry to do so.

“I plan to get in before the end of the month.”

He says his biggest motivation for seeking re-election is the inevitable change an open race for mayor will bring.

“The possibility of having a new administration … has given me greater hope that we can change the direction of Toronto,” Jenkins said.

The former high school teacher says he’s been frustrated with how the city has been managed, and wants to put it back on sound financial footing.

“We’ve let pet projects just burgeon and we’ve got away from the basics,” he said pointing to the recent council push to improve Jarvis Street, while other neighbourhoods, like Lawrence Park, have been waiting years for road and sewer upgrades.

Jenkins said he is also hoping for a greater emphasis on neighbourhoods at council.

“We’ve seen one-size-fits-all kind of administration from the city, and in fact, we have unique neighbourhoods that have unique needs and I think we really need to get back to that.”

Locally, Jenkins is proud of his accomplishments like helping to get a pedestrian and cycling path along an old CN line, a project that he credits his predecessor Joanne Flint with getting off the ground.

“We finally got the money to do that and that project is underway now, and should finish largely by the end of 2010,” he said.

Jenkins was also key in getting election finance reforms passed at council this year.

While Jenkins was clear about his intentions to run, ward 34 councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong remained coy in early January. While he did confirm he will be on the ballot, Minnan-Wong stopped short of saying whether it would be for councillor or mayor.

Many have speculated that the frequently outspoken Miller opponent is contemplating a stab at the city’s top political job.

“I haven’t made any final decisions,” he said.

Minnan-Wong said regardless of what position he seeks, getting more recreational facilities built is a priority.

“We need to focus more on community infrastructure,” he said. “That’s roads, community centres, swimming pools and ice rinks.”

As of press time, no one was nominated as a council candidate for Jenkin’s ward or ward 34 Don Valley East.

About this article:

By: Karolyn Coorsh
Posted: Jan 19 2010 3:39 pm
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto