Letter to the editor 1, Oct. 5, 2017

Slippery slope

Dear Editor,

“The landslide issue in Chaline Valley has been resolved,” according to Mayor Robert Grimaudo. However, in order to move forward St. Lazare must obtain the legal consent and compliance of home owners for the work to start and when they do go out for residents’ approval, it will be opening a Pandora’s Box, not something the administration wants to face in an election year.

- After 102 signatures on a collective ‘access to information’ to release the Provincial landslide risk report on Chaline Valley, it still has not been released. - The request for release of the report is before the ‘commission d'access d'information,’ an administrative court in Quebec. - St. Lazare has not yet produced the agreement for the residents to give their ‘consent’ or ‘authorization’ to the Provincial government to work on private properties. - Numerous residents will be losing parts – and in some cases half – of their backyards to facilitate the new slope. - Some residents have already stated they will not sign the consent agreement, will not permit work do be done on their property, and will hire lawyers to protect their rights. - The preparatory work to resolve the landslide risk is scheduled to start in the fall of 2018 with most of the heavy work being done in the winter of 2018. - The Provincial government has stated that it is up to the administration of St. Lazare to enforce compliance and encourage the residents to sign the agreement. - The Provincial government has stated that once the work is completed in 2018, it will not return to complete the work on properties that have refused, or not allowed the work to be done on their properties.

So why has the ‘consent’ agreement from St. Lazare not be issued to the Chaline Valley residents yet? Who is responsible if one neighbour does not sign and his decision puts another property at risk? Who do they sue? Some people have been waiting for years to have their property removed from of the ‘landslide zone’ but may be stuck in the high risk zone because of their neighbour. What happens to property values is any ones guess. The landslide issue is hardly a ‘problem resolved.’

Alan Nicol St. Lazare

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