Overflowing Town Hall Packed with Residents, Outnumbered Bused-In Porter Employees. Unable to find enough Toronto residents to support his dangerous jet plans, Robert Deluce was forced to bus in his employees for Thurday’s town hall, some in uniform. Regardless, two thirds of town hall speakers denounced the jet proposals for the waterfront.
“Porter owner Deluce is getting so desperate that he is busing in his employees for the public consultation,” NoJetsTO chair Anshul Kapoor noted. “With little interest from Torontonians to stand up for Deluce, he had to resort to using his employees.”
Despite intense mobilizing efforts from Porter with emails, phone calls and social media, only a handful of genuine supporters of the jet plans came out. Almost all Porter folks turned out to be employees while dozens of residents were directed to an overflow room.
“Deluce seems to disrespect the whole democratic process – from rushing City Council to stacking public meetings,” Kapoor continued. “Meanwhile crucial questions from Toronto residents remain unanswered after four public meetings.”
“In front of the cameras, Deluce was forced to admit he bused in his employees,” Kapoor said. “Instead of cheap tricks, Deluce should answer urgent questions about the health and safety impact of the jets.”
Top concerns for residents were the risk of bird strikes as well as the health effects of jet pollution. Various physicians raised issues with the short timeline of the planned health impact assessment.
“Typical health studies take around a year – this one is being rushed through in 9 weeks,” the NoJetsTO chair commented. “City staff will not have all the data for Council to make a fact-based decision in December – period.”
NoJetsTO is a coalition of concerned citizens dedicated to preserving Toronto’s mixed-use waterfront and a boutique Island Airport. Representing residents across Toronto, the non-partisan organization NoJetsTO opposes the expansion of the Island Airport through jet aircraft and extended runways. NoJetsTO’s goal is to preserve the status quo at the Island Airport by protecting the Tripartite Agreement that governs it.