Tuesday, March 19th Commentary
Would you ever let an 8-year old girl walk to school alone? What if she lived really close to the school.
Yesterday morning, an 8-year old was walking near Denlow Public School in the area of York Mills Road and Leslie and the way police tell it, she was sexually assaulted by a man.
Police have not acknowledged that this young girl was walking to school on her own but it's difficult not to jump to that conclusion considering it was just before school started and just down the street from the school. As a parent I would never let my kids go to school alone at that age. As a grandparent, I know my young granddaughter is driven to school and back everyday.
UNPAID TRAFFIC FINES
15 years ago when Mike Harris was Premier, Queen's Park turned over the administration of the Provincial Offences Act to municipalities, but gave cities and towns no realy way to collect the fines.
The predictable result was a lot motorists don't bother paying those fines and the delinquency rate to municipalities grows at a rate of $100-million a year.
The new Kathleen Wynne Government is ready to change that. Legislation is to be tabled this week to expand the list of offenses for which motorists are denied a license sticker renewal. It won't just be unpaid red light camera tickets, or unpaid 407 tolls or unpaid parking tickets. It will also include speeding, improper lane changes, illegal turns, careless driving, driving with no insurance. They'll be able to hold back the sticker until you pay up as far back as 7 years.
It is about time. There is no excuse for not paying your fines period and municipalities can sure use the money.
It is looking more and more as though the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation's dream of having a casino-entertainment complex in downtown Toronto won't fly at City Hall.
More and more of the so-called mushy middle are saying their constituents don't want it so they won't go for it. A few are hinting that the dollar could persuade them but it would have to be big dollars. Matlow, Bilao and a few others are saying upwards of $100-million to the city alone per year or no go. We sitll have to find out the final number the OLG is suggesting but it doesn't look like it'll be $100-million plus. I guess the gamblers will just have to drive to Mississauga or Markham, which of course is close enough to Toronto to cause a lot of the grief the critics want to avoid by having it downtown.
MAN SHOOTS FINGER
If you were to drive about an hour and a half due south of Buffalo you'd reach Bradford, Pennsylvania, a little town near the Alleghandy National Forest. One of the big employers is the McKean medium security federal penitentiary.
31-year-old Alfredo Malespini is guard at the prison. It seems Alfredo had an affair three months ago and got caught. He and his wife have been arguing a lot ever since including all day March 2nd. Alfredo was drinking heavily that day and by 9 that night he'd had enough. He told her he didn't want to be married anymore and tried to remove his wedding band. It wouldn't come off. Alfredo is drunk remember. He has this great idea. He'll shoot it off. He gets his gun, goes into the backyard and fires at the ring. His wife calls police. When they got there they found him in the house, blood covering the floor around him. Most of his finger had been blown off and the wedding ring was still on. He's in hospital first for the wound and then for a mental exam.