Office de consultation publique de Montréal

Office de consultation publique de Montréal

March 23, 2006 23:59 ET

2005 annual report - Office de consultation publique de Montréal wishes to receive mandates from all agglomeration governing bodies

MONTREAL, March 23 - This morning, Office de consultation
publique de Montréal President Jean-François Viau released the annual report
of the Office for 2005.

Since it began operations in 2002, the Office has held 240 consultation
sessions on 55 projects, allowing over 15,000 Montrealers to gather
information and express their opinions on a great variety of local and
metropolitan files. The year 2005, like the previous year, was dominated by
metropolitan projects, such as the consultations on the Cultural Development
Policy, the Heritage Policy, and the McGill University Health Centre and
Shriners Hospital.

This state of affairs is due to the adoption, in December 2003, of Bill
33, transferring from the OCPM to the boroughs the responsibility for
consultations on amendments to the Urban Plan. On that subject, the Office
maintains the recommendation it made last year that any amendment to the
planning instrument that constitutes the Urban Plan may be initiated in the
boroughs but should be subject to the OCPM's public consultation process. This
would ensure uniform application of the Policy on Public Consultation and
Participation policy recently established by city council.

Moreover, the Office is extremely pleased with the recent Québec
government decree providing that the Agglomeration Council will have the power
to evoke section 89 of the City Charter for the realization of projects
related to the exercise of its jurisdiction, and therefore to entrust to the
OCPM consultation mandates for those projects. In the same vein, the Office
believes that it should play a statutory role in the management of projects
affecting more than one borough or reconstituted city, or emblematic,
protected or strategic areas such as Old Montréal, downtown, and Mount Royal.

Public consultation in cities is constantly evolving, and 2005 saw the
adoption by city council of a public consultation policy. Montréal is one of
the first cities to adopt such a policy. The OCPM was closely associated with
the work leading to this text, and urges the boroughs to apply it in their
respective fields of jurisdiction.

"The Office reiterates its desire to collaborate closely with the
boroughs and other city and agglomeration governing bodies to consolidate the
place of Montrealers in the decision-making processes of the metropolis. We
believe that Montréal's democratic life, both representative and
participatory, is essential to ensuring the harmonious development of our
quality of life," says Mr. Viau. The OCPM also invites the legislator to adopt
provisions allowing it to receive consultation mandates from all agglomeration
governing bodies on matters under their jurisdictions.

The OCPM is willing to be involved in all steps leading to the
improvement and strengthening of public participation mechanisms. The
citizens' right of initiative figures prominently among those future means.
The OCPM is extremely pleased that this right is enshrined in the Montréal
Charter of Rights and Responsibilities, and hopes that the future by-law that
will define and set out guidelines for this right will also be submitted for
public consultation.

The Office de consultation publique plans to continue its work to allow
Montrealers to benefit from effective, credible and transparent public
consultation mechanisms.

The mission of the OCPM, created by the Charter of Ville de Montréal, is
to carry out public consultation mandates pertaining to the various
jurisdictions of the City of Montréal, notably on urban and land-use planning
projects, and on any projects designated by the city council or executive
committee. The consultation are led by commissioners, appointed by city
council, who are neither elected officials nor officers.

Contact Information

  • For further information: Luc Doray, (514) 872-3568, Cell.: (514) 977-8365