Dragons’ Den star inks deal to save the El Mocambo. Prosecutors drop charge against AC/DC drummer. TTC will close Line 1 this weekend. Chief Blair recommends police budget be frozen, cut 43 officers. Royal Agricultural Winter Fair opens today.
DRAGONS’ DEN STAR INKS DEAL TO SAVE EL MOCAMBO
A stay of execution for the legendary El Mocambo. Investment advisor and Dragon’s Den panelist Michael Wekerle has bought the venue for nearly $3.8 million and plans to keep the music playing. After making his grand announcement outside the College and Spadina bar, Wekerle and his band took to the El Mo stage in celebration last night. “I had numerous beers here back in my youth,” Wekerle said of the bar. “I saw some great Canadian acts . . . I want to give the kids a chance to look up and say, ‘I’m going to play the El Mocambo.’ That’s what it’s all about.” Wekerle says he wants to put in a wraparound bar renovate the rooftop patio.
PROSECUTOR DROPS CHARGE AGAINST AC/DC DRUMMER
AC/DC fans can breath a sigh of relief. Drummer Phil Rudd, initially accused of trying to hire a hitman, has had the charge dropped by prosecutors in New Zealand because of a lack of evidence. Although the most serious charge has been dropped, Rudd is still accused of threatening death and drug possession. ”There was insufficient evidence to proceed with the charge of attempting to procure murder,” prosecuting lawyer Greg Hollister-Jones said in a statement early this morning. Rudd’s lawyer said police did not consult the prosecutor before laying the charge of attempting to procure murder. ”The charge alleging an attempt to procure murder should never have been laid,” Paul Mabey said, Rudd’s lawyer. The 60-year-old Rudd was arrested in New Zealand and apparently said nothing during his brief court appearance Thursday. He also wore no shoes. The names of the men he allegedly wanted murdered and the alleged potential hitman have been suppressed by the court. At the request of his defence lawyer, Rudd was remanded on bail until November 27 when he will reappear in court. Bail conditions include that Rudd must stay at his home in Bureta and have zero contact with any of the complainants.
TTC CLOSE LINE 1 THIS WEEKEND
There will be another closure by the TTC this weekend when they close Line 1 or the Yonge-University-Spadina Subway line between Blor-Yonge and Eglinton. The closure is for track replacement and will see trains turn back northbound at Eglinton Station and southbound at Bloor-Yonge Station on Saturday November 8 and 9. Davisville, St Clair and Rosedale will remain open for fare transactions and connecting surface routes. Frequent shuttle buses will stop at all stations in between Bloor-Yonge and Eglinton. Service will resume on Line 1 Monday morning.
CHIEF BLAIR RECOMMENDS POLICE BUDGET BE FROZEN
Police Chief Bill Blair is recommending the police budget be frozen in 2015 along with cutting the number of uniform officers by 43. If the freeze is approved by the board it would be the first time in 10 years the budget hasn’t increased. Chief Blair is on his way out as chief after the police services board decided not to renew his contract. The board will consider Blair’s freeze of the 2015 operating budget at $957.76 million at a meeting next week.
ROYAL AGRICULTURAL WINTER FAIR OPENS TODAY
The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair Opens this morning and runs for 10-days at the CNE grounds. It’s the largest indoor house show in North America. The first 1,000 people through the doors this morning get butter tarts.