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'Less talk and more action,' says Beaches-East York Coun. Brad Bradford, as run for Toronto mayor confirmed

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Brad Bradford has officially said he will run for mayor of Toronto.

A member of his campaign team confirmed to CP24 on Wednesday morning that the Toronto councillor intends to toss his hat in the ring once nominations open next month.

Bradford’s team said he is “promising less talk and more action.”

The decision to run for Toronto’s top job is not surprising. In late February, the 36-year-old Toronto councillor announced that he launched an exploratory committee with more than a dozen advisors, including Conservative Political Strategist Kory Teneycke, Navigator executive Jamie Watt, former councillor and TTC Chair Karen Stintz, and Liberal strategist Bob Lopinski as he considered a run for mayor.

“There's a lot of belief that Toronto needs strong, decisive leadership right now,” Bradford told CP24 in an interview at that time.

“It's an opportunity for generational change and a new chapter in Toronto and somebody who has the energy and the enthusiasm to tackle the big issues.”

Speaking with CTV News Toronto Wednesday morning, Bradford said he spent the last six weeks speaking with thousands of Torontonians about their concerns with the city.

“I think we all have to acknowledge Toronto is at a breaking point. It is time for less talk and more action, and I will be a strong mayor of action for the city,” he vowed.

“There's a lot of hot air, but there's not enough action.”

Bradford, who prior to becoming a local politician worked as urban planner with the city, said Toronto is in a “dire financial situation” as it grapples with a nearly $1 billion budget shortfall, adding to address the deficit residents can expect “double digital” property tax hikes.

He also pointed to concerns with community safety, which he called a “top priority.”

“We see the chaos that's happening on the TTC right now. Folks don't feel safe,” he said, pointing to several recent violent incidents on the city’s transit system, most notably the fatal stabbing of 16-year-old Gabriel Magalhaes on March 25.

Bradford, who noted that he’s “not afraid to make room at the table and listen to those voices and hear different perspectives and work with people to get things done,” also pointed to Toronto’s lack of affordability as well as the challenges people face to get around are other key areas he’d focus on.

“We spend so much time here at the city in endless debate and discussion, deferral and delay, and we don't see enough action moving things forward. It's about time for less talk and more action,” he said, adding Toronto’s next mayor is going to have some “very serious conversations” with other levels of government to help close the financial gap the city is now facing due to the pandemic.

First elected to Toronto City Council in 2018, Bradford is currently serving his second term and is the chair of the city’s planning and housing committee.

City Council, which is set to meet today for the first time since former mayor John Tory resigned in late January, is expected to officially declare the mayor's office vacant and pass a bylaw requiring a byelection.

The city clerk previously announced the byelection would take place on June 26 pending city council approval. Nominations for the mayoral race are expected to open on April 3.

With files from CP24's Joshua Freeman and The Canadian Press. 

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