No Wind Towers for now
Public and political pressures have paid off, says MP for Compton-Stanstead, Jean Rousseau. Encore Redevelopment confirmed today it would abandon its wind turbine project in Smugglers Hill, a site in the U.S. located some 250 metres from Quebec residences.
“This is excellent news for the residents of Stanstead,” said Jean Rousseau. “Citizen mobilization and numerous political initiatives with Canadian and American authorities made Encore Redevelopment listen to reason. They had no choice but to face the facts: their project was located way too close to Quebec residences and wasn’t socially acceptable.”
New Democrat MP, Jean Rousseau, and Mayor of Stanstead, Philippe Dutil, got a guarantee from the company that the wind turbine project located closest to the border would be abandoned. The decision comes after a meeting between the two elected officials and the U.S. Consul General, Andrew C. Parker. Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister, John Baird, also got involved in the issue at Jean Rousseau’s request.
“It’s an issue we’ve taken seriously from the beginning,” said Jean Rousseau. “With the help of citizens and the mayor, we succeeded in mobilizing the political class. Even if we still have to remain vigilant on projects on the other side of the border, I think it’s an important victory for Stanstead.”
In an interview with the Stanstead Journal after visiting the Kingston Penitentiary on Monday, Mr. Rousseau continued: “Encore Redevelopment still wants to replace the small wind tower in Derby Line with a 400 foot tall one, but they will have to go through the entire procedure again and this time the VPSB (Vermont Public Service board) will have to invite Stanstead. This procedure would take between eighteen months and two and a half years which would give us more time to organize, especially to research the technical aspects of the projects such as the effects of sound vibrations. This is the first time that Canadians were listened to on that type of project…We’ll have to keep an eye on the Americans; they have a very aggressive plan to put windmills across the United States.”
NewDemocrat MP Jean Rousseau (Compton–Stanstead) says the back-to-work legislation imposed by the Conservative government forcing Canadian Pacific unionized employees back to work is “disgraceful”.
“The Conservatives promote a laisser-faire and non-intervention economic doctrine. But at the first opportunity, they interfere in a private labour dispute in favour of management,” he said. “It’s absurd and undemocratic.”
“According to Alexandre Boulerice (Rosemont–La Petite Patrie), Official Opposition Labour Critic, the special legislation threatens the current labour relations balance. “No one in a company wants a dispute, but when they occur, a strike is usually the ultimate way for workers to put pressure on management,” he said. “Why would the employer make any concessions to the union when it knows the Conservative government will force workers back to work in a few days?”
Not only are the Conservatives preventing workers from asserting their rights, but they have the insolence to use the legislative bazooka that is the special law, said New Democrat MPs.
“Unlike Stephen Harper and his MPs, I won’t be taking the side of either party,” said Rousseau. “We can agree or not with the striking workers, but we can’t be against the free exercise of collective bargaining between workers and their employers.”
AsecondAnnual Shotgun Vegas Golf Tournament, to be held on June 15th at the
is being planned as a major fundraiser for the CAB RH Rediker. This year’s organizers are Robert Galazzo, André Gaulin and Arhtur LaPenna. “We get a lot of help, especially with the paperwork, from Mylene and Josianne at the CAB,” said organizer Robert Galazzo.
The tournament fee includes 18 holes of golf, the cart, and a delicious mechoui supper. “We’re using the same caterer as last year and a member of our Club, Eddy Pomykala, will be the emcee,” said Mr. Galazzo. The golfers will also get a chance to win participation gifts and special prizes along the course. “We’ll have room for about thirty-three foursomes on the course and already twenty-eight have registered,” said the organizer about the popular tournament. Since it is a ‘Shotgun’ tournament and all teams start at the same time but on different holes, there isn’t room for any more players. There is a little more room in the Golf Club’s dining hall for the supper, however, but people must reserve their tickets by Friday, June 8th.
Companies taking part in the tournament can send a maximum of only two teams because of the tournament’s popularity. The registration deadline for teams is June 1st.
Money is also raised for the RH Rediker Volunteer Centre through sponsorships and donations during the tournament. “So far about 90% of our sponsors from last year are all in and we found a new one in Sherbrooke,” Mr. Galazzo was happy to report. Donation receipts will be issued in the amount of $40 per player by the Volunteer Centre.
“This golf tournament is a very important fundraiser because, traditionally, we don’t fundraise for ourselves. Most of the money we operate with is from grants and donations, so it is great to have been invited to be the beneficiary of this tournament,” said Mylene LaBonté, the director of the CAB RH Rediker. “Some of our activities are not funded at all by the government, like the food bank, the income tax clinic, the orthopedic equipment program and others. We’re not mandated for those services but because we are a community that is far from other centres, there is a need. There are also new government regulations, like submitting income tax reports and the new pay equity exercise that we are required to do, that we aren’t getting any extra money to do. They are not bad exercises, but we had to hire someone to help us with the pay equity exercise. So fundraising and donations go a long way!” added the director.