THE HUDSON GAZETTE, WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 5, 2005
Council hopeful stresses water quality
by SARA E. BAXTER
Archie Joseph Martin has registered for the November 6 municipal elections and will compete for the spot as councillor of District 1.
With Mayor Réal Brazeau at the helm throughout the last mandate, Martin said council did a lot for the town's parks, trails, green space, and activities. Unfortunately, however, they fell short when it came to maintaining the town's water, he said.
«I've decided to run because of the ongoing problems we have had with our water and the gravel pits,» said 58-year-old Martin who has lived in Rigaud for 35 years. «They have been digging so low that they've gotten into the Raquette River and they're bringing up soot from the river and pumping that water into our homes.»
Martin said these actions are unacceptable.
«I feel the water is being polluted, not so it's undrinkable, but so it's unusable,» he said. «My mandate is I’II do what my people tell me and I will be their ears, their eyes and their voice at council.»
Martin will be running for District 1 as an independent.
«I think I can bring about certain changes for my area,» he said. «Can l make a difference? Yes, I can. I'm retired. I know the area and I walk a straight line.»
According to Martin, Rigaud residents have been complaining for a long time about their discoloured water, which is a result of digging at the Raquette tar pits stirring up silt.
«I'm not looking to close down the gravel pits, just to make sure the laws that govern them are applied I 00 per cent,» he said. «I want to make sure there is no noise pollution, no air pollution, and the quality of life is restored. Quality of life is why a lot of us move to the country.» Although he has never sat on Rigaud Council before, Martin is no stranger to municipal politics.
He was president of the Native Alliance of Quebec in Montreal for the 2004 2005 mandate. From 1969 to 2000, he was a security officer for Nortel Networks. He also worked as a volunteer firefighter in Rigaud for eight years in the 90s, and was an officer with the Hudson Police Department from 1981 to 1984.
«My number one priority is water for my district,» he said. «Number two is to control the gravel pits.»
Brazeau, who will be seeking re-election, has been Mayor since 1999 when he challenged Jean-Guy Faubert. Prior to that, he was a councillor since 1991.
Martine Paquette will be seeking re-election in District 2. Aline Chevrier, councillor of District 3 since 1999, will also be seeking re-election. Robert Pelletier will be running for a second mandate in District 4 and Yvon Faubert, a councillor since 1999, will be seeking re-election in District 5. Mario Gauthier, councillor of District I since 1999, will now run in District 6 which became vacant when Roger Beauséjour left in December 2004. Michel Sauvé is hoping to return to municipal politics, in District 1, after taking a four year sabbatical. He was a Rigaud councillor for two terms, and is president of the Festival des Couleurs. Also, he is very active in Rigaud's tourism projects.