Sunday, December 6, 2015

What is wrong with the mayor of Toronto?

I sent this letter to John Tory four weeks ago. He still hasn't responded. I know that Toronto thinks they are the centre of the universe, but really? I hate to break it to them, they aren't.

The least the mayor of Canada's largest city could do is respond to a letter from a visitor of his city.

I guess I'll now have to send this to the newspapers. Or something.

Dear John Tory,

I'm on the VIA train on my return trip to Ottawa from Toronto. My daughter was married here this weekend. It was a beautiful wedding.

But when I checked out of our hotel this morning I was surprised to learn of a $3.43/day fee on my hotel bill. Actually I heard about this yesterday when my sister checked out, and she was also charged this fee.

Apparently it was to pay “to market” your city. There were 120 guests at the wedding, the majority of whom would have also stayed in hotels. So I must assume that they all paid a similar fee of $3.43/day. The hotel clerk did reverse the fee when I questioned it, but that's not the point is it? At least when I go to Walmart or Loblaws, and they hit me up for a donation for the charity flavour of the week, at least I am asked if I'd like to donate.

I suppose I am one of those funny people who like to decide for themselves which charitable organization (or city) that they would like to donate money to.  And I can tell you, I would never voluntarily donate anything to any city, including yours. I am pretty sure that between my property taxes, my income taxes, my GST, I pay far enough taxes without feeling the need to pay for an arbitrary tax to sleep in a city where I am also paying for all of my restaurant meals, for which by the way, there are also taxes on. 

In fact a quick review of property listings in Toronto tells me that I pay almost twice as much property tax as people in Toronto do. If you'd like to squeeze more taxes out of citizens, I suggest you start with your own. 

Then when I arrived at the train station I discovered that all of the food places in the concourse had disappeared. I had to run out and purchase some lunch from the nearest Tims, because frankly, I don't like to buy train food. It isn't very good. I know that the train station is under renovations and has been for, what, five years now? But this is ridiculous.

I hope that you see fit to make some appropriate changes. 

1) Hotel clerks should be informing their clients of this charge and they should be asking guests if they would like to pay these fees. It is rather sneaky to just add the fees to the bills, in the hope that nobody would notice.

2) How about a restaurant, at least a Tims, or some place where you can purchase some food in the train station? It's not rocket science. Surely Canada's largest city could manage a this. Your train station is just plain embarrassing.

Looking forward to hearing back from you soon.


Patricia Maloney

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