ACTUALITÉ / NEWS
On several occasions, some of the more
Richer cited a comment by Councillor
vociferous critics of the four have called for
DianeMonette – “The showbegins” – when
Saywell began his defence. “This is not
Still, other ratepayers have been more
respectful. I do not accept this. Often people
measured in their rebukes, suggesting that
here are treated impolitely,” said Richer.
the bickering was distracting council from
Councillor Noël Baril said that the group
the real problems facing the municipality.
Citizens of Grenville-sur-la-Rouge are
of four was also fed up with the hostile
During another heatedmeeting recently,
worried infighting is preventing their
atmosphere. “We are tired of being insulted
Jacqueline Richer, a long-time community
municipal council from dealing with the
and criticized,” he said.
activist, urged council to end the
municipality’s pressing issues.
The irony, of course, is that “harmony”
confrontational tone that prevails at the
While four councillors have approved
was a main plank of Saywell’s platform in
a vote of non-confidence against Mayor
the December, 2010 mayoralty election
Members have demonstrated a lack of
John Saywell, residents have also
campaign which was held after Jean-Marc
respect for each other and taxpayers, she
expressed their lack of confidence in their
Saywell (above), Baril exchangebarbs,
Fillion stepped down because of health
reasons, one year after succeeding Gary
Relations soured shortly after Saywell
became mayor by defeating Michel
Brosseau, a former mayor, by a margin of
574 to 445.
Tension came to a head in late January
when Baril, Monette and Councillors Alain
Carrière and Pierre Lessard approved the
vote of non-confidence against the mayor.
Councillors Teresa Ogle-Foreman and
Daniel Gauthier have backed Saywell, who
has dismissed as “frivolous” claims that he
is autocratic and disregards regulations.
According to the four, the vote of non-
confidence means that the mayor cannot
take any action or make any promises
without the approval of council.
Meanwhile, Saywell, who has
maintained he has merely been doing his
job, has threatened to take legal action
against his detractors. Baril has threatened
to sue Saywell for alleging he had ordered
the municipality to deliver sand to Les
Sources Véo, a Rouge River business where
Baril is manager. The delivery of eight tons
of sand, purchased at a cost of $128, was
done by a private contractor who hadmade
arrangements with a municipal employee,
says Baril. “I paid for the sand. There was
no freebee,” he insists.
for the resignation of the four, says that
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Baril has broken the council’s code of ethics,
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which stipulates no member can use
municipal resources for personal purposes.
“You are not above the law,” declared
Gary Cowan, stating that if Baril does not
quit he ought to be forced to step down.
One of themany complaints the group of
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to a tax arrears payment with Villégiature
Lac Carling. Under the January 10, 2011
agreement, the company paid $99,739 in
taxes in three instalments in January,
February and March. The mayor said he
was merely signing a receipt for the three
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However, Brosseau, who also chastised
the four, allowed they had a point. The
mayor cannot incur an expense greater
than $25 without the approval of council,
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the non-confidence vote. In 2009, she did
not back Brosseau when he brought a non-
confidence motion against Cowan.
The next elections are scheduled to be
held at the end of 2013.
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