County native Benway running to be Toronto’s next mayor

County native Glen Benway is on the ballot in next month's byelection to pick Toronto's new mayor. (Submitted Photo)



While City of Toronto’s mayoral race may not draw much attention in these parts, locals will be interested to note a Prince Edward County native has tossed their hat into the ring to replace John Tory.

Glen Benway is one of more than 70 people running to replace Tory who stepped down in scandal late last year. Torontonians head to the polls on June 26.

Originally from Hillier having grown up on a dairy farm, Benway works in the Big Smoke as a Chartered Professional Accountant and has worked continuously in the financial services industry since he graduated PECI. Benway started as a lowly pension clerk at trust company by day and toiled to earn an accounting designation on nights and weekends.  Benway is currently a Director of Audit with another trust company.

County native Glen Benway filed his papers to be Toronto’s next mayor late last month. (Submitted Photo)

“I was never interested in running for elected office but the City of Toronto politicians are literally running the city into the ground,” Benway told the Gazette.

The County native points to the construction of a light rail transit system that will hook into the city’s subway system. 

“It’s half below ground and half above ground. The above ground part takes away two lanes of traffic along Eglinton Avenue, a major cross-town street,” Benway said. “It was supposed to be completed in 2020, but 3 years later and billions over budget it is far from completion and they have stopped estimating when it will be completed.  Meanwhile construction along the route has driven businesses into bankruptcy and traffic into side streets creating massive traffic gridlock.”

In terms of the city’s budget, Benway points to a $1 billion shortfall in the 2023 budget and while candidates in the 2023 runoff are promising to spend even more taxpayer dollars on “pie in the sky” endeavours, it’s clear to Benway some restraint is sorely needed.

“I and those in my circle have been criticizing so much that I was feeling like a hypocrite for at least not putting forth some quick and practical fixes. I thought the best way to get real solutions out there is to enter the campaign,” he added.

In terms of Benway’s overall platform, he wants to cancel the upcoming Mandatory Vacant Home Tax Property Status Declaration, calling it unconstitutional and also has strategies to help Toronto’s homeless, address crumbling city streets and increase TTC ridership.

“As an accountant with experience in finance, risk and audit I see Toronto as a great city with many things that need to be fixed,” Benway says in his platform material.  “We need to evaluate risk and cost effectiveness before spending tax payer money and after money is spent there needs to be accountability. Our leaders have to stop sensationalizing for political benefit every issue that gets public attention and come up with rational common sense solutions. We have to remember that we are a democracy, stop letting the vocal minority bully the silent majority. The way I see it, right now we have so many issues where the tail is wagging the dog.”