John Richardson – Independent Judgment – Ward 29

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ward 29 All Candidates Debate – October 5, 12, 14

Meet John Richardson and other Toronto Ward 29 candidates at the Ward 29 debates.

The remaining debates will be held on:

Tuesday October 12 – Goldhawk live

Tuesday October 14 – Pape Avenue



For a debate flyer click here.

“Our Six Candidates


“There are six very good people running in this election in Ward 29.  They will join each other for an all candidates meeting at Eastminster United at 7:30pm on Tuesday October 5th.  The candidates in alphabetical order:

Chris Caldwell

Mary Fragedakis

Jane Pitfield

John Richardson

Mike Restivo

Jennifer Wood

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hello world!

Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging!

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Home field advantage seen as key for council hopeful

By Joshua Freeman

April 15, 2010

Originally published in our Riverdale-East York print edition(s).


Mary Fragedakis shovels her own driveway.

It may seem like a trivial detail, but in fact it says something about the message the Ward 29 candidate wants voters to hear in the upcoming city elections: she is a woman of the people, specifically the people of Toronto-Danforth. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ootes retires – Toronto Danforth – Ward 29 – The Hottest Race in Toronto

On Wednesday January 6, 2010, Veteran City Councillor Case Ootes made it official: he is retiring. He will not be running again in Ward 29 or anywhere else. This caps a remarkable career in City Council. During the Millers years, Mr. Ootes became the “conscience of common sense” and a symbol of “fiscal responsibility”.

Even so, John Richardson (one of the candidates for City Councillor for Ward 29) in an interview for the “East Toronto Observer” commented that:

“I think he has been an asset to the city. He is one of the few councilors who will be missed. But city politics should not be a career for life”. For that reason, Richardson also commented called “Ootes decision to retire commendable”.

Those Councillors who view their seats on City Council to be the equivalent of University Tenure, should take note.

On behalf of the residents of East York – Case Ootes we thank you for your years of service!

But now, onward.

There are currently six candidates running to replace Mr. Ootes. They are (in no particular order – but “Ladies before Gentlemen”):

Jane Pitfield

Jennifer Wood

Mary Fragedakis

Mike Restivo

Chris Caldwell

John Richardson

If you are a candidate who is not listed on this blog, rest assured it is an oversight. Fire off an email ( with your information and we will get you a page.

Feel free to comment and ask questions.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A new sheriff in Ward 29

By: Matt Shott

“The challenge here is getting these incredibly diverse people, in this incredibly diverse ward to get out and express their preference” – Toronto  Ward 29 Candidate – John Richardson

For the first time in over 15 years, the city of Toronto’s Ward 29 will see a new city leader since current councillor Case Ootes has decided to retire from politics.

Upon hearing of the retirement, former Ward 27 councilor and 2006 Toronto mayor candidate, Jane Pitfield, despite living outside Ward 29’s boundaries, decided to throw her name onto the candidates list, along with four other candidates including John Richardson, who feels the voters will vote for the issues rather than the experience.

“I think the race is totally wide open,” Richardson said, “I feel the people are uncomfortable voting for someone who lives outside of the Ward.”

Pitfield became a city councillor of Ward 27 in 1997 after she initially lost the election by a close margin, but was later elected when it was decided the ward she ran for needed a third councilor.

With seven years of experience as a councillor under her belt by 2005, Pitfield decided to run for Mayor of Toronto in 2006.  Pitfield ultimately lost the election by over a 24% margin and had only recently decided her knowledge of politics would help Ward 29 become a better place to live.

One voice hoping to be heard is that of Chris Caldwell, a 41 year-old business analyst who registered as a candidate two days prior to Ootes announcing he would not be running for re-election.

“I looked forward to running against him,” Caldwell told the Town Crier publication in February, “There’s a lot I didn’t agree with Ootes on, but it runs deeper than that.  It is how people are engaged in the planning process.  They want to see their desires reflected in policy.”

Caldwell’s main issue is getting the community within Ward 29 more active in the decisions made by the councillor regarding the development of their part of town.  He is encouraging the residents to be involved with the issues within the city.

While his issues are quite similar to his opponent, Richardson’s biggest concern is that not enough people are voting, claiming that only 1/3 of the people who live in Ward 29 voted during the last election.

“The challenge here is getting these incredibly diverse people, in this incredibly diverse ward to get out and express their preference,” he continued.

Richardson admitted his biggest concern for the ward is the lack of voting and went on to say that if he wasn’t elected that it would not be the end of the world for him, as long as people went out and voted for the right issues and his issues were heard.

“My top priority would be to have the councilor represent the residents of the ward.” Richardson stated, “That includes actively seeking people’s views and concerns  on particular issues.”

“I would expect and hope that people understand that I am completely independent when it comes to political parties.”

Then there is the candidate Mike Restivo, a Toronto native who has lived in Ward 29 the entire 59 years of his life, who claims to know what the perfect candidate consists of.

“Each candidate needs to have three colors of strength,” Restivo explained, “Experience in the real world, education and intelligence, and a moral foundation.”

The main points in Restivo’s campaign mainly revolve around monetary issues, such as lower property taxes, yet raising TTC fares in order to make it a profitable business.

Restivo is well aware that a possible increase in TTC fares may not go over well at first, but he feels increased prices are a necessary step to take and claims it is still cheaper then parking downtown every day.

Though money is a sensitive subject for citizens of Ward 29 Restivo does not think it is the province of Ontario’s responsibility to just open their check books.

“No one should expect the province to bail out the City of Toronto,” he told the Town Crier. “We have to carry our own weight.”

The fifth candidate is the literally unknown candidate, Jennifer Wood, who has no website or information regarding her issues or philosophy of her campaign.

It seems to be a consensus among the candidates that their biggest goal during this election is to make the city they live in a better place not just for themselves, but for every person who lives in it.

“Toronto is my home and where I live,” Richardson said, “and I have great interest in trying to contribute to it”.

Matt Shot is a journalism student at Centennial College.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Races worth watching

Saturday, March 6, 2010

National Post

Mike Layton will be seeking to represent Trinity Spadina on city council. Brett Gundlock, National Post

The municipal election campaign is just getting started, but many wards already have hot matchups. The Post’s Natalie Alcoba highlights some worth keeping an eye on.


A small crowd gathered in the press gallery this year to hear the venerable Case Ootes announce he is retiring from politics. Then, a blast from the past — Jane Pitfield — announced she would like to pick up wither Mr. Ootes left off. Ms. Pitfield is back after a four year break from city politics, after she lost a bid to unseat Mayor David Miller in 2006. She faces off against lesser-known individuals Chris Caldwell, Jennifer Wood, Mike Restivo, John Richardson and Mark Dewdney.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Toronto Ward 29 Candidates – Caldwell, Restivo, Richardson

Toronto Danforth Ward 29 candidates

February 16, 2010 ·

Councillor Case Ootes not running in To-Danforth
Four candidates running to be new Ward 29 rep
By Kris Scheuer
(Written Feb. 11 for Town Crier.)

Former Leaside councillor Jane Pitfield is running in Toronto Danforth’s Ward 29 and I wrote about her Jan. 6 the day current rep Case Ootes announced he would not seek re-election. But she’s not the only one seeking this seat.
Now meet a trio of candidates running here: Chris Caldwell, John Richardson and Mike Restivo. Scroll down to read each profile.

Chris Caldwell for Toronto-Danforth Ward 29Candidate Chris Caldwell wants to involve residents more in planning process.

Chris Caldwell registered as a candidate on Jan. 4 before Ootes made a decision not to run.
I looked forward to running against him,” Caldwell said from his home 180 metres outside Ward 29. “There’s a lot I didn’t agree with (Ootes) on but it runs deeper than that. It is how people are engaged in the planning process. They want to see their desires reflected in policy.”
He wants the community to be involved in any development planning application from beginning to end.
“We make better decisions with more information,” said the 41-year-old business analyst and consultant with a background in urban planning.Caldwell said it’s not good enough to hold a public meeting and have people line up to ask questions.
He also spoke about wanting to reform city hall to bring integrity, ideas and passion for progress while striking a balance for social, environmental and financial progress.
Caldwell wants to encourage residents to be more engaged with local and city issues.
“A lot of my priorities will be set by the community,” said Caldwell. “To create change, you need to do the work.”

Candidate John Richardson wants to keep property taxes down.

Candidate John Richardson also registered early so he can knock on as many doors as possible, he said in an interview at a city hall café.
The fact there is no incumbent makes it a race he said.
One of the key issues for him is keeping property taxes low and that means looking at the cost of city services and how they are funded.
“Put garbage (service) out for bids, not necessarily the lowest bid will get the contract. There’s a difference between the lowest bid and best bid,” said Richardson.
On the transit issue he said, “The TTC is worth investing in. The issue is where the money will come from. The TTC needs to look at all possibilities,” he added.
One suggestion he had is leasing more space to businesses at TTC stations to raise revenue, said Richardson, a part-time lawyer who also runs seminars for university students preparing for their next stage in life.
With no incumbent Richardson sees the ward as up for grabs and says that voters should choose a candidate they have confidence will show good judgment when voting on city and local policy.
“No one knows for sure what issues will arise over the next 4-8 years.”

Candidate Mike Restivo would consider road tolls.

Candidate Mike Restivo has lived in the ward his whole life. The fact Ootes is not running was the last push he needed to register, said the retired 59-year-old.
“People want lower property taxes and more jobs,” said Restivo, who used to work as electronic technician and designed his own computer programs.
He said the TTC needs more revenue to be profitable but said asking the province for money is not the answer.
“No one should expect the province to bailout the City of Toronto,” he said. “We have to carry our own weight.
“TTC fares will have to be double,” he said. “I am not married to raising (TTC) rates. It will cause some earthquake rumblings. (But) it’s pay if you use it.”
He said transit should not be subsidized by government and is still fairly cheap compared to driving instead which can cost $30-50 a day to park a vehicle downtown, he said.
He also floated the idea of road tolls.
“The city will get valuable money through road tolls and this will keep property taxes down,” said Restivo. “I suggested these as options that should be seriously considered.”
The election is Oct. 25 so more candidates may step forward and profiles will be updated as the campaign progresses.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Veteran Toronto politician Ootes to retire

Veteran Toronto politician Case Ootes has announced plans to retire.

Veteran Toronto politician Case Ootes has announced plans to retire. The Globe and Mail

‘I want to pursue some other things in life,’ says 68-year-old city councillor

Jennifer Lewington

Toronto — Globe and Mail Update Published on Wednesday, Jan. 06, 2010 9:56AM EST Last updated on Wednesday, Jan. 06, 2010 1:43PM EST

Veteran Toronto politician Case Ootes, who played a major role in merging seven municipal governments into one jurisdiction 12 years ago, has decided to retire.

“I want to pursue some other things in life,” the 68-year-old city councillor (Ward 29, Toronto-Danforth) said this morning. He will make a formal announcement when he meets with city hall media this afternoon.

First elected almost 22 years ago, the veteran politician led a right-leaning minority on council in opposition to the majority led by Mayor David Miller, who is not seeking a third term.

Mr. Ootes, who suffered a near-defeat in 2006 but won by a margin of 20 votes, said he made up his mind about a year ago to leave local politics.

“I’ve had a wonderful career as a councillor,” he said, adding “I felt this was time to let people know.”

Another veteran councillor, Kyle Rae (Ward 27 Toronto-Centre Rosedale) announced last month he will not run again either.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment