CAQ reveals reforms to Montreal's management

CAQ leader Francois Legault thinks he can relaunch Montreal's reputation after corruption and collusion which plagued the city got exposed. The CAQ hopes to save millions of dollars by streamlining operations, citing concerns for the November election. Legault says the new style of management won't only apply to Montreal and the unfolding changes in Montreal are important for all Quebecers.

The CAQ propose the following changes to Montreal's management:

  • replace borough mayors with elected presidents by a peer-nominated process
  • Cut elected official positions from 103 to 61
  • Merge existing 19 districts to create 12 new super-boroughs
“A review of how Montreal is governed is a matter of public interest, not only for Montreal, but for Quebec,” said Legault in a statement. “It would ensure that the largest city in Quebec would be run in the most honest, transparent and efficient way possible.”

CAQ Métropole critic Stéphane Le Bouyonnec mentioned he has already discussed the plan with Métropole minister Jean-François Lisée and Liberal Métropole critic Pierre Arcan.

"J'ai aussi échangé sur nos propositions avec les directions des principaux partis politiques actuels de Montréal qui se préparent pour l'élection de novembre," Le Bouyonnec said he even discussed the changes with the main political parties in Montreal who are preparing to head to the polls this November.  

Vision Montréal leader Louise Harel agreed with CAQ changes, stating it is important Montrealers knew they elected too many people.

Projet Montréal leader Richard Bergeron, on the other hand, called Legault's proposal unreasonable saying not to expect changes to happen before 2015, but stated Montrealers can have a debate on the matter.

Current Mayor of Montreal, Michael Applebaum, said the proposal shows Legault's incomprehension of Montreal affairs.

"La priorité pour Montréal est la lutte à la corruption, le développement économique et l'efficacité de l'administration, pas les débats superficiels sur le nombre d'élus et d'arrondissements. Nous l'invitons à arrêter de casser du sucre sur le dos de Montréal," Applebaum said, saying Montreal's priority should not be focused on hypothetical borough mergers and how many elected officials are there.

The business community praised Legault's changes stating it would fix Montreal's fiscal problems.

"Cette proposition s'inscrit directement dans la foulée du dépôt du rapport Léonard sur l'octroi des contrats à Montréal et répond à certaines recommandations soulevées par le rapport Côté-Séguin sur les enjeux de gouvernance et de fiscalité de Montréal," said Michel Leblanc, President of the Montreal Chamber of Commerce.

The plan isn't new, in fact, it was part of Legault's campaign in the last election.

One one hand we are being told the change to Montreal's structure would save taxpayer money, on the other  we are being told reorganizing Montreal is reckless and unnecessary. Where do you stand? Should Montreal adopt the changes proposed by Legault or do they go too far? Share this article, join the discussion and let us know what you think: Facebook, Twitter, Google+