Toronto Casino Decision Delayed; Godfrey Discusses Process

Published: March 12, 2013 02:52 pm EDT

In a report that flew under the radar late last week, it was announced that the vote that would've seen Toronto City Council decide whether it wanted to take the first step toward the possibility of casino expansion in the city has been delayed. Since then, Ontario Lottery and Gaming heavyweights Paul Godfrey and Rod Phillips have sat down with the editorial board of The Globe & Mail to discuss the lightning-rod issue.

In a Globe report published Friday, March 8 --- the same day as Premier Wynne's Ontario horse-racing announcement --- it was learned that the Toronto decision has been delayed. The topic was set to be debated during a March 20 meeting of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's executive committee, but it will now be next addressed either on April 23 or earlier, depending on whether a special meeting of the committee is called.

The delay, according to the March 8 report by The Globe, has come due to the fact that the city has not been able to complete its report to Ford's executive council. The report has not been able to be completed because the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. has yet to hand needed additional information over to the city.

The initial article explains that critics of downtown casino expansion are calling the delay a 'political ploy.' Officials both for and against downtown Toronto casino expansion have said on the record that they believe if a vote on the issue were to be taken today that it would not pass.

In their meeting with The Globe's editorial board, Godfrey and Phillips made it clear that a 'yes' vote by Toronto Council to explore casino expansion at the next juncture does not mean the city is beyond a point of no return on the issue. They made it clear that the city would still have the opportunity further along in the process to opt out of casino expansion.

The Globe's follow-up report clearly quoted Godfrey about how some of Toronto's neighbouring municipalities would be glad to play host to casino gaming if the City of Toronto ultimately opts against the undertaking. If neighbouring municipalities are in fact chomping at the bit to play host to a casino, it has not been reported in any fashion by the mainstream media.

“They are going to keep trying to drag this out to get their way,” anti-downtown-Toronto-casino Councillor Josh Matlow was quoted as saying regarding Mayor Ford's office. “If a vote were taken tomorrow, I don’t believe they would win.”

(With files from The Globe & Mail)

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Elected officials voted in by the people should maybe start listening to the people. Democracy in ontario has never been this bad that I remember.

Realize that Paul Godfrey does NOT make the OLG policies. He is told what to do by the Liberals that are currently in power.

Good call, Peggy!! I would like to hear what 'the process ' was whereby this unelected egotist gets to make policy for our government. And wreck our industry.

Perhaps a change of political bosses for Mr. Paul Godfrey would really send him into damage control. So many people, who vote, are really disappointed with the present and past regime at Queen's park. Some surveys say not much will change in the next election. Some thing tells me there are going to be a whole lot of changes after the next election. Not always a bad thing to have a change of bosses. Just thinking Bruce T. Winning

Godfrey wants to give the lobbiest more time to convince a few more members of Toronto City Hall to see things his way. He is relentless and ruthless. No good will come from Godfrey for anyone. Do you remember how many tax dollars the SKY DOME cost the people of Toronto and beyond? I do.