Letter to the editor 6, Oct. 26, 2017

The disinformation continues

Dear Editor,

Elections notwithstanding, I feel the need to correct the disinformation that was printed in the letters to the editor in last week’s paper. I don’t understand why people insist on spreading falsehoods, especially when all the information is available online in resolutions passed in council. The truth is easily accessible. In resident Alain Bruneau’s letter, he mentions an “over $11 million town hall.”

The resolution passed at council (public information) was a construction contract of $7.9 million. We must then factor in an approx. $1.2 million provincial government subsidy in light of the community halls and storage space. The writer also mentions a “$4 million fire hall.” Public information shows that including the subsidy, the actual loan by-law for the fire hall was approx. $2.8 million. He inflated the true cost by almost 60 per cent, hence the “disinformation.”

A letter by Mr. Masys talks about a salary raise for the town manager. Again, the public resolution passed was for an “adjustment” to his contract, there was no mention of an increase, again simply more disinformation. If that writer wanted to know the truth about the modifications made to the manager’s contract, he had simply to request the information from the town. Unfortunately, truth is an inconvenience to those wishing to spread disinformation. As for the comment on the equestrian festival, we have all read many previous letters to the editor from the same five people continuously complaining about this event. As one of your more enlightened readers wrote, “how can you knock something that brings 15,000 people to Saint Lazare and gives our community that kind of visibility?”

Another regular letter writer, Mrs. Ackland may be frustrated (and rightly so) at the fact that she bought a house that had not been properly inspected, but that is not the town’s fault (buyer beware). The town is not responsible, legally or morally, for people who purchase defective properties. These are the responsibilities of the builders, or the previous owners, and not of your neighbours. Nevertheless, the town worked to help her and others and it should be noted the town requested (resolution available) $200,000 and the Société d’habitation du Québec only granted $171,000.

This again is not the town’s fault, quite the contrary; the town should be credited for having forced the hand of the provincial government with a “Séance Extraordinaire” in May to apply for the SHQ subsidies. I am surprised that Mrs. Ackland is not praising the town for its efforts which resulted in the Province and Town giving $10,000 each (total of $20,000) of tax payer’s money (these are “our” tax dollars) to fix defective homes that some citizens willingly bought. Again, these defects were not the fault of the town or your neighbours and taxpayers, yet funds were given to help in this private issue, and that is fine, we are a community after all. However a simple ‘thank you’ to the town (and fellow taxpayers) would have been more appropriate.

Making false blanket statements without fact-checking is irresponsible. Doing so when you actually know the facts is actually disrespectful and deceitful to all citizens.

Let people vote November 5 based on the facts and let the best person win. Get out and vote, and encourage your neighbours to do the same, regardless of who they vote for, but let’s all vote to ensure we get the leadership we really want and deserve.

Anna-Maria Conte

St. Lazare

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