WATCH: Province moves forward with plan to cut Toronto city council
Ontario's Progressive Conservative government has re-introduced a bill to slash the size of Toronto's city council, invoking a rarely used constitutional provision to ensure the plan progresses.
Municipal Affairs Minister Steve Clark tabled the legislation and invoked the notwithstanding clause after a judge ruled this week that the initial bill cutting council in the middle of Toronto's election campaign violated freedom of expression rights.
Members of the Opposition caused a commotion in the legislature right before the bill was re-introduced and were ejected from the house.
Hours earlier, protesters interrupted the morning session at the legislature, where Premier Doug Ford defended the council-cutting plan.
Ford says the charter override is necessary to ensure the will of elected politicians trumps the judicial ruling.
The constitutional provision has never been used in the province before and critics have condemned the move, saying the clause was not designed to deal with this kind of issue.
The legislation would cut the size of Toronto city council from 47 to 25 seats with the city's election set to take place Oct. 22.