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Four Council members planning Toronto trip

Wednesday, September 30, 2015 by Jo Clifton

Four members of City Council will be visiting Toronto, Ontario, with a delegation from the Austin Chamber of Commerce on Sunday. Their return to Austin is scheduled for next Tuesday night, according to chamber spokesman Jeremy Martin. Martin said the Austin delegation would include about 100 people. Among those are Council Members Sheri Gallo, Pio Renteria and Ellen Troxclair. Jim Wick, spokesman for Mayor Steve Adler, told the Austin Monitor, “Mayor Adler is traveling to Toronto at the invitation of Mayor John Tory, who we hosted here during South by Southwest of this year. It happens to coincide with the Austin Chamber trip, as well.” The chamber sponsors a similar trip to an urban destination every year, with the goal of educating its members and other attendees about how other cities solve their problems. According to Martin, “The sessions we’ve scheduled will feature Toronto’s best practices on affordable housing, regional transit, special events, the creative economy, workforce development and a special presentation featuring Richard Florida.” Florida, a social scientist and economist who developed the Creative Class concept, is also the researcher who published a study earlier this year saying Austin is the most economically segregated large metropolitan area in the U.S. and Canada. He is also on the faculty of the University of Toronto. City management types have been wondering how many Council members would go on the trip because they needed to know whether there would be a quorum for next Tuesday’s work session. Apparently there will be. In case you were wondering, Martin said the high temperature in Toronto is expected to be in the 50s, with the low in the 40s.

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