Kyle Rae vs. the Sun, round 97. Once more, with leather

Kyle Rae vs. the Sun, round 97. Once more, with leather

A screen shot from yesterday's Toronto Sun home page

The Toronto Sun and Kyle Rae, the outgoing councillor for Ward 27, have a simple relationship based on mutual loathing and suspicion. The relationship has been particularly chilly since the paper called out Rae on his $12,000 going-away party, and now, with yesterday’s release of councillors’ expenses for the year, things have become even nastier. The Sun has discovered that Rae paid for a parks permit for a non-profit out of his office expenses. What’s the problem? For the Sun, the problem is that the non-profit is what it calls a “leather-bound fetish party.”

Over the summer, retiring city councillor Kyle Rae charged his office budget $421.18 to pay the city’s own parks department for a permit to hold “Leatherball in the Park.”

The Allan Gardens event, held Aug. 14, was put on by Mr. Leatherman Toronto Competition Inc. – a not-for-profit corporation which produces some of Canada’s largest leather events including the annual Mr. Leatherman Toronto Competition every November.

A letter included in Rae’s expenses from Mr. Leatherman’s director Howard Levine, thanked him for the “very kind offer to pay the permit fees” for the August event.

Because of Rae’s contribution, the event raised more money than expected for Youthline. But in this anti–gravy train environment, the Sun is enjoying another swing at the piñata that is councillor expenses. Yesterday, it even had a new tab on its home page labelled—and we couldn’t make this up—Gravy Train.

Settle in, folks. This is going to be a long four years.

• Taxpayers foot bill for fetish party permit [Toronto Sun]
• Mr. Leatherman lashes out at Sun [Toronto Sun]