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February 8, 2002
Toronto a priority for some leadership hopefuls
TORONTO, Feb. 8, 2002 - Four out of five provincial Progressive
Conservative leadership candidates have replied to questions sent to them and
have identified Toronto as a priority, Mayor Mel Lastman said today.

In response to a series of questions on "matters of the utmost importance to
Toronto," candidates Tony Clement and Elizabeth Witmer submitted complete
answers to the Mayor's Office. While Jim Flaherty did not submit formal
answers, he has addressed the issue of a shared gasoline tax publicly. Ernie
Eves did not submit formal answers either, however he has addressed some
municipal financing issues. Although Liberal Leader Dalton McGuinty has not
responded to the questionnaire, he met with the Mayor and has made informal
remarks regarding these issues.

"I'm encouraged," said Lastman, who has been pushing the province for
sustainable funding for Toronto since 1998. "I am however disappointed that
Chris Stockwell failed to respond. I believe his silence speaks volumes about
where he stands on Toronto's future."

The questionnaire, sent to all five leadership hopefuls on January 29th, asked
whether they would make Local Service Realignment revenue neutral, improve
funding for the TTC and support a deposit return system for the LCBO. It also
asked whether they would share the gas tax with Toronto, help pay for the
City's enhanced emergency plan, remove public housing from the tax base and cap
welfare expenditures.

The Mayor has shared the candidates' responses with other members of Council.
The Mayor and members of council will continue to raise municipal issues
throughout the leadership campaign.

Candidates' responses:
Elizabeth Witmer
Tony Clement

Media Contact
Media contact:
Scot Magnish, Mayor's Office



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