City Council Candidate JP Boutros Shares Views on Island Airport

Candidate for Toronto City Council Ward 16 Jean-Pierre Boutros Expresses concerns with Island Airport Expansion

photo_jpboutros TORONTO - A former advisor to Councillor Karen Stintz, Jean-Pierre Boutros, is running for City Council in Ward 16. He intended to depute at Tuesday's Executive Committee meeting but was not allowed - like dozens of other residents. He has shared his prepared remarks with NoJetsTO: Good afternoon, Members. Most oppose Porter’s Plans because of physical manifestations: Jets. Runways. Overcrowding. My primary objections, however, are related to business policy. Through its media blitz (and lobbying of an intensity I have never witnessed in Toronto’s recent history), Porter refused to disclose that Mr. Deluce’s untested scheme would require up to $300 million taxpayer dollars. That said, these are my two key concerns: 1) Should taxpayers invest $300 million dollars if the prime beneficiaries are Porter shareholders? Mr. Deluce wants us to fund expansion of his company. Because Porter is private, its financial records are secret. We cannot be assured of its investment potential; its constant seat sales don’t reassure. (Porter has perhaps learned from the supplier of its unbuilt, unflown jets – Bombardier – that it can pay to be a corporate welfare recipient.) Ask yourselves: If the great niche business Porter built its success on satisfies its shareholders, why do taxpayers need to give those shareholders a $300 million gift? If its shareholders are NOT satisfied, why should our leaders contemplate such a huge taxpayer investment to benefit a private company, especially one which may be struggling? 2) An Agreement is an Agreement. Until last year, waterfront residents knew the Tripartite Agreement would protect them until 2033. Today, Mr. Deluce wants you to rush into totally rewriting the rules, to benefit his private company. Moreover, he is audacious enough to use OUR money to do it. Ultimately, a deal is a deal. Without a thorough review of compelling reasons, I feel it is simply wrong to reopen the Tripartite Agreement 19 years early. Knowing the leanings of this body, it is likely the vote will be at least nine members in favour of EX40.1 as it stands right now. With that, I ask, on behalf of all fair-minded business people, that the Executive Committee formally moves a motion today with this condition: Mr. Deluce and Porter should immediately agree, in writing, to relinquish its current Billy Bishop takeoff/landing slots in exchange for any change(s) to the Tripartite Agreement. It can then rebid for those slots – which would become far more valuable – on the free and open market. I believe that support of the Porter Plans, as they stand now, equals support of the type of sole-sourced deal this administration and most members of this Committee said they abhorred, a deal which may help the airport Mr. Deluce controls at the cost of the waterfront we should continue to control. Corporate welfare? Broken deals? Sole-sourced skies? These choices – which would result from what the Deputy Mayor calls “pure politics” – should not be Council’s preference, not on three billion of our dimes. Thank you. JP Boutros Website: Twitter: @BoutrosTO