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News & meetings

Mayors of the United Counties of Prescott and Russell voted in favor of the amendment to the Official Plan

The United Counties of Prescott and Russell (UCPR) are more divided than ever!

cupr meeting 25 jan 2017

On January 25th 2017, the mayors of the UCPR voted in favor of the amendment to the Official Plan.  Eastern mayors: Champlain (Garry Barton), Hawkesbury (Jeanne Charlebois) and East Hawkesbury (Robert Kirby) voted AGAINST the amendment to the Official Plan while the mayors of the West: Russell (Pierre Leroux), La Nation (François St-Amour), Casselman (Conrad Lamadeleine) and Clarence-Rockland (Guy Desjardins) voted IN FAVOR of the amendment to the Official Plan.  The mayor of Alfred-Plantagenet was absent. The amendment to the Official Plan opens the door for the Colacem cement plant to be established on the site.  In addition, UCPR have 12 months to invalidate the Champlain Township's vote which would allow for the zoning change required for a heavy industry such as the cement plant.

It goes without saying that the whole population is dismayed by this decision.  Several questions are still unanswered.  How is it that the mayors of the west, who have nothing to do with the cement plant, have not been in solidarity with their eastern colleagues?  This is incomprehensible, not to say unacceptable, in terms of solidarity between mayors. These people are elected municipal officials and the citizens will ask their rights to be respected as we live in a democracy.  People have the right to demand and know the truth and will do whatever is possible to be heard.

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A Big Thank you!

As you probably know, the hearings concluded December 18th, 2020.

During the past year, Action Champlain and our team of lawyers and experts have worked to update and consolidate the defense elements. We cannot give any details, for obvious reasons, but we can say that our preparation is solid and, as you already know, we have very good lawyers and experts in rural planning and other fields of expertise.

It must be said that, if we are in such a good position today, it is thanks to the strong mobilization of our community, to our unwavering desire not to see this cement project ruin our quality of life and our health, our environment and the future of our children. This extraordinary citizen mobilization involves more than a thousand signatures, thousands of hours devoted by each and every one to find out about the facts, to discuss the issues together and to express our opinions. Just think of the milestone launch of the No Cement Plant in L’Orignal by Action Champlain campaign, with 500 people at the L’Orignal church.

Support for our cause has also come from neighboring communities, on both sides of this jewel that we share, the Ottawa River: citizens, but also environmental defenders and many elected officials at the federal, provincial and municipal levels. There is also the invaluable contribution in services by local resources, citizens and businesses. Finally, it is the financial contribution of this large community, to the tune of $ 400,000, which allows us to cover the legal and expert fees for the defense of our cause.

Clearly, there is no social acceptability with regard to this L’Orignal cement plant project of which, should be remembered, goes against a number of policies, laws, guidelines, regulations, official plans, etc.

But the UCPR decided to ignore not only the massive rejection of the project expressed by the population within the framework of the public consultation, but also the decision of the Township of Champlain to refuse the project on its territory because it is incompatible with the existing zoning and contrary to its zoning by-law.

The announcement of this project and then this arbitrary decision caused a still tangible shock in the community, of course, but we remained strong and more than ever determined to uphold the Township of Champlain's decision to reject the project.

We can be proud of all that we have accomplished collectively and individually to protect the character and assets of this beautiful region where we have chosen to live.

A big thank you to all for your commitment and solidarity.

Action Champlain

LPAT audiences ended Dec 18th,2020

Updated December 18th, 2020

The hearings in front of the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT, formerly known as OMB) took place November 9th to November 25th, with the exception of November 11th, then December 10,11,16,18th.


Dec 18th hearing will be available on YouTube probably till Dec 19th or later.

           Select YouTube

This will give you the option to 2 new links - one to follow in English, one to follow in French. Suggest to look at French muted (it has full screen), and listen to English.

 

Chairperson Robinson can now take 3 months or more to render his decision, well informed. 

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