FQM meets with Prime Min­is­ter

Stanstead Journal - - NEWS - Vic­to­ria Vanier

Mem­bers of the Fed­er­a­tion Que­be­coise des mu­nic­i­palites (FQM) met with Prime Min­is­ter Trudeau and sev­eral min­is­ters and deputies on Fe­bru­ary 23rd, in Ottawa, in­clud­ing Min­is­ter of In­ter­na­tional De­vel­op­ment and the Franco­phonie, Marie-Claude Bibeau, Rev­enue Min­is­ter Diane Le­bouthillier, the par­lia­men­tary sec­re­tary of the Min­is­ter of Fi­nance, Fran­cois-Philippe Cham­pagne, and the par­lia­men­tary sec­re­tary of the Min­is­ter of In­fra­struc­ture and Com­mu­ni­ties, Pablo Ro­driguez.

The FQM is ask­ing that the money that will be avail­able through the re­newal of the Canada Works pro­gram be more eas­ily ac­cessed by small mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties. “Al­though their in­fra­struc­ture projects are not as flashy as those in the big cities, they guar­an­tee the dy­namic oc­cu­pa­tion of the vast ter­ri­tory of Canada,” said Richard Le­houx, the pres­i­dent of the FQM.

The FQM asked the fed­eral govern­ment to re­spect its elec­toral prom­ise of in­vest­ing $200 mil­lion per year to cre­ate strate­gies that fa­vor in­no­va­tion and green tech­nol­ogy in the forestry sec­tor. “We men­tioned last week in our tour of the Abitibi and re­peated in Ottawa that the govern­ment must act quickly re­gard­ing the for­est in­dus­try and dis­trib­ute the money promised in the last elec­tion. More than 20,000 Que­be­cers have lost their jobs in the last ten years in this sec­tor; the govern­ment must act to al­low the in­dus­try to re­launch and mod­ernise for the good of ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties,” said Mr. Le­houx.

Since the sign­ing of the Trans Pa­cific Part­ner­ship by the for­mer Con­ser­va­tive govern­ment, the FQM has come to the de­fence of the sup­ply man­age­ment sys­tem in the food in­dus­try. “We know that the abo­li­tion of the sup­ply man­age­ment sys­tem would hurt badly the food in­dus­try and the re­gions of Que­bec. The Cana­dian govern­ment must be sure to de­fend the sup­ply man­age­ment pro­gram in its en­tirety,” con­cluded Mr. Le­houx.

The pre­fect of the Mem­phrem­a­gog MRC and mayor of Ste-Cather­ine-de-Hat­ley, Jac­ques De­mers, was among the eight per­son del­e­ga­tion that met with Prime Min­is­ter Trudeau and the Min­is­ters.

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