TORONTO - City council has ordered city legal staff to try to intervene in a gun registry court fight despite being warned it would be a costly move.
It voted 20-13 on Friday to order the city solicitor to seek leave to intervene in support of the Barbra Schlifer Clinic’s motion for an injunction to stop the destruction of long-gun registry data.
The Toronto legal clinic wants to save the registry the federal Conservatives have voted to scrap.
Councillor Pam McConnell, who moved the motion, suggested it was important for the city to provide its perspective on why the gun data should not be destroyed.
Before the vote, Mayor Rob Ford called any fight to maintain the gun registry "a waste of taxpayers’ money."
His brother, Councillor Doug Ford, told reporters the issue was a federal one.
Speaking before the vote, Ford indicated councillors were told by city lawyers that a legal fight would be costly and futile.
"They want to go out and spend half a million dollars on a case that we’re going to lose," said Ford.
"You don’t get into a fight that you know you aren’t going to win.”
Deputy Mayor Doug Holyday said when the gun registry was implemented, the city's position was that it was a federal responsibility.
The chances of the city changing anything by getting involved were "slim and none" said Holyday.