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Ontario’s legislature has passed a bill to give the leaders of Toronto and Ottawa so-called strong mayor powers, which the Progressive Conservative government has pitched as a way to get housing built more quickly.

It gives the mayors of Ontario’s two largest cities veto powers over bylaws that conflict with provincial priorities, such as building housing.

A council could override the mayor’s veto with a two-thirds majority vote.

Toronto Mayor John Tory has expressed support for the plan, while the outgoing Ottawa mayor and two of the top contenders to replace him have said they are not in favour.

The opposition parties say the legislation amounts to Premier Doug Ford interfering in municipal politics right before the October municipal elections.

Mr. Ford has said he is planning to expand the powers to more municipalities.

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