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3rd Edition - September 2009
IN THIS EDITION
Memoirs:
Nearly 600 Were Sent
Like Never Before!
The Demand is Clear: Preservation!!
Some Greatly
Appreciated Work
The Great Seduction
A Sensible Choice
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Some Chateauguay citizens' memoirs are online at:
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Nearly 600 people have submitted their written opinion to our city's elected members
SOS Fernand-Seguin Honours Citizen's Efforts Towards the Conservation of the Forest

The SOS Fernand-Seguin Woods committee honours the great number of Chateauguay citizens that have taken position for the preservation of the Chateauguay-Lery forest during the consultation process held by the City council this summer. Obviously, the fate of one of the last forests of the province's southern area is a matter that mobilizes the population.

Nearly 600 people have written to the municipal authorities, informing them of their thoughts and opinions concerning the future of the natural habitats along the south-west area of the city.

Citizen's Determination!

The mobilization of the people is even more amazing considering that the consultation process conducted by the City of Chateauguay was held under awkward and often criticized conditions: summer time, limited access to often incomplete and biased information and information nights being inaccessible to many citizens.

We therefore must acknowledge the citizens' solid determination to express their opinion in favour of the conservation of these natural habitats.

Like Never Before!

The people's participation has been exceptional and (as our own little investigation shows) could even represent the best turnout in history of such consultation processes.

Under the best possible conditions and in comparable cities, public consultations that gather even 100 memoirs are praise-worthy and considered as being very, very successful.

Comparing Participation Rates:

In 2008, l'Office de consultation publique de Montréal (OCPM) held a public consultation regarding the future of the Mount Royal Park. More than 3,500 people out of a population of 1,877,693 partici-pated in this effort, meaning a rate of 0.19%. This represents the biggest population mobilization since the foundation of the OCPM in 2002.

In Chateauguay, during the consultation process, 593 people out of a population of 44,045 submitted their memoirs, meaning a par-ticipation rate of 1.35%! 7 times more than the best performance.

That's something!

Sources : Rapport annuel de l'OCPM 2008 and Institut de la statistique du Québec
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The Demand is Clear: Preservation!
Of these 593 citizens, more than 90% chose to preserve the forest land by either favouring the most conservationist scenario of the suggested three or by actually demanding the total preservation of the area.

The equation "Development • Tax Income • Profitability" often put forward by traditional administration models was being questioned and most of the time rejected by the citizens.

The thought of a park that would bring these natural spaces to the foreground is now making its way through our community. The idea of the high value of such natural spaces is only beginning to grow.

SOS Fernand-Seguin would like to mention two local organi-zations, among others, that commited and took part in the researches that now support the option of a total preservation of the area.

  • Héritage Saint-Bernard, floristic inventories coordinator and author of a strong memoir advocating total conservation of all the natural habitats and their promotion for educational, recreational and touristic means.
  • The Chateauguay Ornithologists Club, in charge of making an inventory of the avifauna.
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The Great Seduction!
As all candidates to the upcoming municipal elections are currently defining their priorities, the SOS Fernand-Seguin Woods committee is confident that the results of the consultation process and the 10,000 signatures gathered in the petition started last year will surely convince the aspiring mayors and counsellors to join the movement and to commit to protecting the green-belt in its entirety.

We also are confident that a good conservation park project in an election program will prove to be a great asset towards seducing Chateauguay and Lery voters.

A Sensible Choice

In the month of October, we will send you an overview of each of the candidates in the Chateauguay and Lery city's election plans regarding the protection and promotion of the forest.

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Write us to sos.fern@sympatico.ca