Citizens desperate to save their neighborhood

News 17 July, 2017
  • Photo Geneviève Quessy
    Michel Guérard is concerned that the assessment of damages does not exceed 50 % of the value of its municipal evaluation of $60,000.

    Geneviève Quessy

    Monday, 17 July 2017 22:10

    Monday, 17 July 2017 22:10

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    POINTE-CALUMET | citizens of Pointe-Calumet, whose homes were damaged by flooding prepare to say no to a possible expropriation. They want to be able to rebuild their flood-prone area.

    In the eastern sector of Pointe-Calumet, near the lake of Two Mountains, the citizens are still in the process of cleaning, and the streets are full of rubbish and items destroyed by the floods of spring.

    The owners of 58 homes fear they may be forced to rebuild elsewhere, because Quebec could force them to destroy their residence and that a municipal bylaw prevents them from rebuilding in that location.

    In a flood-prone area

    The owners wanted the government to allow them to stay in a flood risk area, than others had obtained, after the flooding of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu in 2011.

    “The decree of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu was perhaps not perfect, surely there is room for improvement, but it is still better than what we announced last week,” says François Fex, a resident of 12th Street, which has decided to convene a public meeting to meet citizens today.

    Assessment low

    Like all its neighbors, it was learned on July 10 that his residence will be demolished if the damage caused by the floods amounted to more than 50 % of the municipal assessment. However, houses of this sector, which are not served by either sewer or water, have a valuation low.

    “There are houses whose municipal valuation is set at 3500 $, here. Just remove and replace the drywall wet, and it exceeds the 50 % “, said Francis Fex.

    Roger Moussa, owner of 10 homes and cabins that they offer to the rental, think very clearly that the government is attacking the poor.

    “It is like that everywhere in riparian zones. We built increasingly large residences that provide a lot of taxes to municipalities, and the districts of small poor, as here, one wants to get rid of it. There, what one sees with what the government wants to do, it is that the poor will lose their homes. “

    The urban planning regulation of Pointe-Calumet, adopted in April 2013 prohibits the construction of residences in flood-prone areas 0-20 years, and the 58 residences in this district are in one of these areas.

    No money

    “It is the evacuation at a discount. At the limit, you don’t want, money, we just want to have the right to stay at home, ” lance Francis Fex, ready to fight until the end to stay with him.

    Many regret now having said the damage to the government.

    “Having known this before, I would have closed my box, lance Michel Guérard, a resident of 7th Avenue. It was believed that the inspectors were there to help us, we trusted, and we feel betrayed, now. “

    For the past 36 years, he lives in his house, it was the first time that her basement was flooded. Same thing for Francis Fex, of which a portion of the foundation collapsed. “Are we going to declare our neighborhood dangerous for reconstruction just because a year worse than the others ?” he asked.

    What they said

    Photo Geneviève Quessy

    Jacques Henry

    “All I want is to be able to give the house in the state it was in before the flood. I don’t want a castle, I just want to live as before, to continue fishing. “–James Henry

    “It’s been 36 years that we live here. Despite the flooded streets every spring, there had never been a drop of water in the basement before this year. And then, all of a sudden, it would force us to demolish it. We have raised our children in this home, it is our life, our memories, we feel betrayed. “–Michel Guérard

    “This is the house of my father, who passed away 8 years ago to the day today, that I might lose. I’m freaking strong, there, with all the stress and depression that come along with it. It disgusts me at the highest point to feel that we play as well. “–Steven Cloutier

    Photo Geneviève Quessy

    Annette Hebert, François Fex, Robert Moussa and Marlene Farah resident in the Royal Domain, a neighbourhood of Pointe-Calumet strongly proven by the latest floods.

    “It’s been 46 years old that it is there. I lived there for my childhood, my adolescence, my life is here. Floods, as we have seen, and even that you like it. This year, it is the worst in 100 years. And then ? Are we going to penalize everyone ? At worst, I don’t want that, the government’s help, but don’t require me to from home. “–François Fex