LASALLE, QC, Nov. 23, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - At a time when the National Assembly is discussing Bill 120 aimed at amending the Charter of Montréal in order to allow Montréal to take back the powers currently in the hands of local administrations, Mayor Manon Barbe is enjoining the Québec government to honour its 2004 commitments. "A deal is a deal," commented Mayor Manon Barbe. "In 2004, the Liberal government asked residents to choose between demerging or remaining in a Borough equipped with real powers. It is on the strength of that commitment that LaSalle residents opted to remain within Montréal at the time. Twelve years later, Mayor Denis Coderre wants more powers for Montréal. I respect his opinion, but I don't share it. I am asking Minister Martin Coiteux and the Liberal government not to give in, and to honour their 2004 commitment."
Mayor Manon Barbe insisted on mentioning, as a reminder, that at the time of the referendums on municipal demergers back in June 2004, she clearly told her residents that remaining within Montréal was the most advantageous option for LaSalle. "In the days following this referendum, I assured them that I would be just as determined as ever to listen to them and defend their interests, and that is what I am doing today. My role as Mayor is to make sure that LaSalle residents won't be penalized, that they will continue to obtain the best services," Mayor Barbe clearly stated.
At Montréal City Hall, on November 22, at a press briefing held with other borough mayors, Mayor Barbe expressed her disagreement over the Coderre Administration's desire to take back a number of Borough powers. Like her colleagues, she wants LaSalle residents to have a say in this matter, which will have a significant impact on local services. Mayor Barbe also insisted on making it clear that she didn't want a referendum to be held on the demerger of her borough as a result. "What I told Minister Martin Coiteux last June, at his office, is that if he wants to change the 2004 agreement in such a fundamental way, then out of respect for residents, they must be consulted again, by referendum."
And lastly, Mayor Manon Barbe stressed this point: "We have benefited in many ways from being part of Montréal in the past 14 years and I continue to believe in Montréal. I agree with Mayor Coderre that the bylaws need to be harmonized and that we must work together so that the City operates well. I have supported the Coderre Administration on 90% of the votes on Council for the past three years, but I don't approve this will to centralize without the agreement of local elected officials and without real proof of efficiency. So YES to harmonization, YES to a city that operates well, but NO to this type of wall-to-wall centralization."
SOURCE Borough Mayor's Office - Borough of LaSalle
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