A new group is pushing to make extended liquor sales and service hours in the city an issue in the upcoming municipal election.
LastCallTO says on its website that as a leader in tourism and immigration, Toronto should extend its nightlife hours to 4 a.m. — aligning it with cities like Chicago and New York City.
Last week, Toronto City Council voted to allow local businesses serving alcohol to open early for the Olympic gold-medal men's hockey game.
Coun. Adam Vaughan’s ward includes the entertainment district, which would likely experience the biggest impact of the proposed change.
'If you were to ask me right now I`d say no because I don`t know the cost of the policing two o`clock in the morning, three o`clock in the morning, four o`clock in the morning...' - Mayor Rob Ford
"It’s going to be very difficult to tolerate disturbances at four in the morning when they can’t control disturbances at two in the morning," he said.
Mayor Rob Ford was the first mayoral candidate for the fall election to weigh in on the issue Thursday.
"If you were to ask me right now, I'd say no, because I don't know the cost of the policing two o'clock in the morning, three o'clock in the morning, four o'clock in the morning…" he said.
Police said they’ll deal with whatever the city decides and make any changes required.
LastCallTO spokesperson Chris Spoke said people out drinking still know the law applies no matter the time of day.
"There are still rules against public intoxication, there are still rules against noise violations, and those are still on the books and should be enforced. This is just allowing people the choice to drink responsibly later than 2 a.m.," he said.
TTC spokesperson Brad Ross said the subway wouldn’t be open later no matter what happens.
"We can't for the very simple reason is that we need that time — between 1:30 a.m. and 5:30 a.m. in the morning — to maintain the system, to maintain the subway in a state of good repair," Ross said.
If Toronto were to extend the hours that businesses can serve alcohol, the city would have the latest last call in the country.
Those supporting LastCallTO's position can visit their website and sign an online petition.