The Adventures of Nenshi in Eastern Canada
The mayor has been busy in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Halifax this week and the media has enjoyed covering it -- sometimes with a little too much joy. Here, we've rounded up much of the coverage, plus a selection of Tweets.
Mayor Naheed Nenshi started his tour in Toronto on Sept. 20. His mission: promote Calgary, entice businesses and individuals to relocate to Calgary to help even out an expected worker shortage in the years to come, plus encourage other municipalities to ask for more support from their provincial government.
Nenshi told the Globe and Mail that cities should share revenue with the province. Property taxes don't cut it in a city that's growing as fast as Calgary, he says. And he wants Calgary and Edmonton to be treated differently from other Alberta municipalities because, "I'm the mayor of a city that has more people in it than five provinces, yet I have the exact same legislative authority as any village of 30 or 40 people."
When Nenshi talked about the importance of arts and culture for a city and the building of Calgary's new Central Library, Torontonians got jealous, because their libraries aren't looking so lucky right now.
The Toronto Star asked Nenshi to tell them why Calgary was better than Toronto. The mayor instead stuck to saying nice things about Cowtown, which left the Star to make their own rather biting comparisons.
And with that, the adoration hit a wall. OpenFile Toronto dubbed local coverage of Nenshi a "slobbery man-crush" and edited his face onto teen mag Tiger Beat.
To be fair, Calgary media does its share of fawning too. Just last week, CBC columnist Shelly Youngblut compared Nenshi to Kate Middleton, citing his "va-va-voom" (Audio linked below.) before calling him "the perfect mayor for our time."
Before he left Toronto, His Worship sat down to talk with George Stroumboulopoulos. Nenshi tells George unless the Jets revitalize Winnipeg, Calgary's population will be higher than six of the country's provinces.
In Calgary, "No one cares who your daddy was or where you went to school," Nenshi says in Ottawa.
Calgary is beginning to sound like the land of opportunity, thanks to Nenshi's announcement that Alberta will have 77,000 job opportunities in the next decade, with most of them in Calgary.
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