A sit down with councillor Anthony Perruzza

On Oct. 22, seasoned politician Anthony Perruzza defeated long-time incumbent Giorgio Mammoliti to take the council seat for the newly combined Ward 7/8 Humber River/Black Creek.

The Emery Village Voice sat down with Perruzza to ask him what his vision for the future is, and how he plans on representing you, the residents of the area.

EVV: So Mr. Perruzza, how are you feeling after your victory, and what is your vision for the future?

AP: First of all, I’m excited about the opportunity to represent an area I grew up in and continue to live in – the old Ward 7. The big concern I had going into the election and it is still somewhat of a concern, how does a city councillor represent, on the books, 150,000 people, and off the books when you include employment areas like Emery Village and York University, which we all know is close to 65,000 students and staff and then add to it Seneca College, you’re probably up in the neighbourhood of 220 to 230,000 people, how do you effectively represent a riding that big? And given that our role, our job, is focused on neighbourhoods, neighbourhood by neighbourhood, street by street, that will be the challenge for all of us. I’ve always thought this area is the future centre of the GTA. Just simply because of the way the city is now growing.

We have lots of growth potential with York University and Downsview, the challenge for us becomes how do we manage it, how do we manage it so that we don’t just let that growth become rampant? So it doesn’t become run away growth that just simply taxes local services and leaves us with nothing but more traffic and more woes locally. That’s really the challenge and if there is a big vision to it all, that’s really the big vision. If you look at Toronto and how it connects to the regions of the GTA, we are the centre of that.

EVV: So what will your leadership style be?

AP: My style has always been an inclusive one. I believe that's the only way we’re going to be able to do our job. We need strong community groups that are going to deal with their neighbourhood issues and problems. They’re the ones that are going to define what those issues and problems are. They’re the ones that are going to develop the plan of action for managing their own neighbourhoods and I fundamentally believe it is the role of the Councillor to work in tandem with those groups to solve those issues.

I’ve been traveling around and communicating to those people, asking them, how good do you want your neighbourhood to be? If you want it to be a well managed and well maintained neighbourhood, you need to get involved and together with you, we’re going to do that job.

The other thing I’ve said to people is you need to have a transparent process.

If there’s anything that’s happening we need to get together, we need to have meetings, we need to share information and I will connect them to whatever is going on at the city level.

It’s the only way we’re going to get things done, it’s the only way that we’re going to be effective, is by doing it together.

Residents can contact the councillor at the constituency office at 3470 Keele St Unit #3 or call: (416) 338-5335. You can also email: councillor_perruzza@toronto.ca