Les conseillers de Hawkesbury sont divisés dans leurs opinions et commentaires concernant la manifestation de la mairesse Paula Assaly contre l'atmosphère toxique qui règne à l'hôtel de ville, affectant le personnel et elle-même.
Les conseillers de Hawkesbury sont divisés dans leurs opinions et commentaires concernant la manifestation de la mairesse Paula Assaly contre l'atmosphère toxique qui règne à l'hôtel de ville, affectant le personnel et elle-même.

Councillors comment on protest

Gregg Chamberlain
EAP
Mayor Paula Assaly has spent the week conducting a noon-hour protest march in front of city hall against what she calls the “toxic atmosphere” there for both employees and herself. Hawkesbury councillors are divided in their opinions on the mayor’s action.  

The mayor sent copies of a letter explaining the reasons for her protest to council and to the media. The letter is printed verbatim on page 2 of this issue’s Le Carillon section. 

Councillor Lawrence Bogue supports the mayor’s action. He said some employees have talked with him and Assaly during their walks about the situation. 

“They are talking to us and they are scared,” Bogue said. “They don’t like the toxic atmosphere.” 

Bogue agrees that part of the problem at city hall is the conflict relationship between the mayor and Dominique Dussault. Assaly claims that a four-member majority of council voted to have Dussault appointed as the new director general, knowing that a conflict already existed between her and Dussault when the latter was employed as the municipal human resources director. 

Bogue also criticized other members of council for past voting on items, like the recent integrity commission reports, that hamper or criticize the mayor concerning her behaviour and relations with municipal staff. 

“They (four councillors) always claim to be protecting the employees when it’s the opposite,” Bogue said. “The only real employee they’re protecting is the director general.” 

Other councillor views 

Councillor André Chamaillard declined comment on the situation. He said the subject would be part of the November 16 committee of the whole session and he preferred to wait until then to discuss the matter with the rest of council. 

“If she wants to protest all and all night, it doesn’t bother me,” said Councillor Yves Paquette “I just wish that we could work together and finish the (current) term on good terms.” 

“The only thing I can say is it’s her idea,” said Councillor Raymond Campbell. “She doesn’t work with the council. She works for her own ideas.” 

“It’s unfortunate that we find ourselves in this situation,” said Councillor Antonios Tsourounakis. “I’m always of the opinion that issues can always be solved if enough dialogue happens between the parties. When there are disagreements and we need to get the lawyers involved, only the lawyers win which means no one wins. I still hold out hope that we can reach an amicable solution and move forward as a united town.” 

“It’s her choice,” said Councillor Robert Lefebvre, adding that all the documents related to the investigations and costs to the town are on the municipal website for residents to read. 

“I’ll let the people judge for themselves,” said Lefebvre.