(TLN) Laval city council’s monthly meeting on Feb. 2 became a “tennis match” between the mayor and members of the opposition.
The reason was persistent demands by opposition members that Sainte-Dorothée city councillor Ray Khalil resign after newspapers and television newscasts reported that back in June 2013 police found contraband tobacco and firearms at the residence of his father, George Khalil.
Opposition councillors Michel Trottier and Alain Lecompte demanded Khalil’s resignation since he is the manager of his father’s restaurant, Lordia.
The mayor repeatedly reassured them that Khalil, from the moment he was elected Saint-Dorothée’s city councillor, has had no relations or interests in the Lordia restaurant.
“I was for 30 years in the police force and I learned that before accusing anyone there should be an inquiry,” said Mayor Marc Demers. “If someone is going to enquire on the subject it will be the ethics officer of the City, but it is not ethical to accuse someone purely on allegations,” he added with an angry tone.
Ray Khalil: I have nothing to do with the restaurant any more
It was inevitable for Ray Khalil to address the council. In a short speech he explained that he has no shares in the Lordia restaurant and he withdrew from the restaurant long ago. Sometimes, though, he goes to give them a hand when it is really busy, he added.
“I am neither an administrator or a manager of the restaurant,” he emphasized.
Sablon in bad shape
Among the various questions coming from citizens, one had to do with the deterioration of the infrastructures of the Centre du Sablon community centre. The question came from Sainte-Dorothée citizen Josée Gauthier. Gauthier informed the council and the citizens present that since 2011 the Centre du Sablon has been waiting for funding to do major renovations.
“In September 2014 we were promised by the sitting mayor a renovation budget of one million dollars but nothing (has been seen) yet,” she said. According to Gauthier, the money is badly needed since the swimming pool facility is in a terrible state. She said the lockers are also broken, the showers don’t work, and with those that work the water temperature is not stable, but on the contrary is extremely hot. “Imagine little children using the showers what could happen to them,” she said. On top of that the dryers do not work plus there is a problem of insulation and heating in the rooms used by the Jardins des enfants, she continued.
“I understand your concerns,” responded the mayor. “There was a legal problem that delayed the transfer of funds. It had to do with the 100-year so-called lease of the centre. I assure you that very soon it will be resolved and the appropriate funds will be transferred for the renovations to take place in 2016.”
Laval to Dorval Airport
Chomedey councillor and official opposition leader Aglaia Revelakis presented a motion for the Laval transport authority to implement a direct transport service – shuttle – from the city to the Dorval airport. “This will help many citizens in their travel plans,” she said. Unfortunately since there was no one to second the motion – even among the independent opposition councillors – the motion was dropped.