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Newsletter. Issue 2003-1. Jan.10, 2003
 
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People Places and Things

Brampton's Maria Britto

From: Toronto Star.
Jan. 3, 2003. 07:28 AM

Brampton's biggest booster
Took on Toronto as board of trade's youngest president

BILL TAYLOR
STAFF REPORTER


Photo: Andrew Stawicki/Toronto Star

"I sing for weddings," she says. "My mother was a trained opera singer in India. I was born in Bangalore. And I'm classically trained."

Three decades later, Pierre Trudeau's famous comment about living next to the United States still rings true for Maria Britto ... "like sleeping with an elephant. No matter how friendly and even-tempered is the beast, one is affected by every twitch and grunt."

Except Britto sees Brampton sharing a cot with Toronto. Who knows when it might roll over and take all the bedclothes?

"Toronto," she says with conscious understatement, "is always there. And some things Toronto does will always affect us."

http://www.goacom.com/news/news2003/jan/msg00007.html


Mississauga Mayor Hazel (82) Keeps Going

TheStar.com - Editorial: Don't stop, Hazel
Toronto Star Editorial: Don't stop, Hazel
Jan. 8, 2003.

Click to see Photo of Mayor at International Goan Convention Mass in 1988 http://goacom.com/community/associations/goaont/convention/photos9.htm

Mississauga's tiny, perfect dynamo is set to extend her dynasty. Hazel McCallion has made official what many had been hoping -she intends to run in November's municipal election.

Of course, don't expect to see her campaigning at bus stops or putting up lawn signs.

What's the point in a city where you're known simply as Hazel? Her certain victory will make it 10 straight elections, an impressive, well-deserved political legacy.

McCallion has always said she'll quit the day she tires of the job. Remarkably, after more than two decades as mayor, there's no hint of that happening.

Of course, political longevity isn't always a good thing. Toronto Mayor Mel Lastman is an example of a veteran politician past his prime.

Why would there be? Mississauga is thriving. Its population grows by leaps and bounds and now tops 600,000. New businesses spring up daily. The civic administration is well-run and the city is debt-free.

And while the sprawling subdivisions are not everyone's example of sound urban planning - even McCallion admits that mistakes have been made with suburban sprawl -there's no denying Toronto's western neighbour has become a big influential city in its own right under her stewardship. Not that McCallion is content to rest on this enviable record. This year she wants to make Mississauga a stand-alone city, independent of Peel Region. She's already preparing the campaign to make it happen. No Florida tans for this mayor, who rarely vacations. No chauffeur either. McCallion still drives herself.

McCallion, who is 81 going on 35, keeps a pace that would have someone half her age stumbling. Her appointment book is filled and her days typically stretch 12 hours and more.

To local politicians, especially in other 905 communities, McCallion is a lesson in how to get things done. And candidates for the Toronto mayor's seat should also take heed of how she gets things done.

To seniors, she's a shining example that life doesn't stop at 65. It doesn't even have to slow down. She makes all of us wish we had half her energy.

It's great to hear she's sticking around.

 

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