Councillor Monette says he won’t run for re-election in Orléans
Orléans Coun. Bob Monette says he won’t seek re-election in the October municipal vote.
Monette, 66, who had registered for the election, made the announcement Wednesday morning, saying “family decisions” compelled him to put an end to his political career at city hall.
“Public service is ultimately a family business. During my time in politics I have been blessed to be able to count on many friends and neighbours, but most importantly I have enjoyed the unequivocal support of my wife Pat, three children, two grandsons and a new grandchild arriving in June,” Monette said in a news release. “In recent weeks I have been reflecting on the decision to run for reelection and came to the conclusion that the time has come to put my family first. It is never easy to reverse a decision of this kind but it is made easier knowing that it is the right one.”
Monette was first elected in a byelection in January 2006, replacing Herb Kreling, who became a justice of the peace. Monette won in the general municipal election later that year. He ran and won again in 2010, and despite promising he would only serve two full terms as councillor, he sought reelection in 2014 and again won.
He previously served on the old Cumberland Township council for six years in the 1980s.
Monette, who’s co-deputy mayor with Coun. Mark Taylor, might be best known for his unwavering support of bringing CFL football and professional baseball back to Ottawa.
He was also a leading advocate of cleaning up the Ottawa River, as combined sewer overflows threatened the quality of the water around Petrie Island.
Monette has been part of the “eastern bloc” of councillors in east Ottawa who have been advocating for an LRT extension and more employment opportunities.
Monette said he wants to work on getting more employment opportunities to Orléans with his time left at city hall.
Last term of council, he fought to save a plastic cow when city hall ordered a now-defunct cheese boutique to remove the “sign” from its roof in an Orléans plaza.
Monette said he’s open to new opportunities outside of elected politics.
“I’m not going out in the pasture field or anything,” Monette said before a council meeting. “We’ll see what happens, what’s offered in the future. I don’t think I want to do anything as time consuming as council, but I will be open if approached in the future to look at something.
“I have no idea right now. My No. 1 priority right now is my family, kids and grandchildren.”
Monette said the notion of pursuing the PC nomination in Orléans ahead of the recent provincial election “never came into the equation.” Liberal Marie-France Lalonde held her seat, beating PC candidate Cameron Montgomery.
“My political career ends at the end of this term,” Monette said.
Mayor Jim Watson saluted Monette’s work on major files, such at the Ottawa River Action Plan and Lansdowne Park.
“It’s personally for me sad because I think Bob is a very good member of council,” Watson said.
The municipal election is Oct. 22.
Miranda Grey was the only other candidate who had registered in Orléans ward as of Wednesday afternoon. Candidates have until July 27 to file their nomination papers.
Orléans councillor Bob Monette was first elected in a byelection in January 2006.