Sixty-two tenants attended the annual tenants’ association meeting at Manoir Roger Bernard in Pierrefonds on Tuesday afternoon, January 31. This is the association that tenant Daniel Palladini has been questioning in the last year. Palladini did attend the meeting, but he didn’t speak.
A budget with revenues of $17,426.55 and expenses of $18,383.14, was presented and unanimously approved, with questions and comments in English, French and some Chinese. Five officers, including the president, Carol Padulo, were acclaimed in their positions.
Members of the press were requested to remain in the hall during the meeting so that tenants could choose to close the door if discussions became heated, but that didn’t happen. Few people questioned the budget and one tenant tried to make a motion to pass it before the agenda for the meeting was accepted.
The most contentious question came from a tenant who asked how members could trust the figures in the budget.
“Administrators with the OMHM [Office Municipal d’Habitation du Montreal] audit the tenants’ association budget,” said meeting moderator, Stéphan Corriveau. Corriveau is a community organiser with the Féderation des locataires d’habitations à loyer modique du Quebec, which represents tenants in subsidized housing throughout Quebec. “This is normal and something that all associations in Quebec face.”
After that, the treasurer, Anne Belisle, spoke about the figures in detail. The two highest figures were more than $3,000 each: fees for six dinners and a grant of $17 per unit, minus fifty cents for insurance. The rest of the income consisted of fees for the community kitchen meals ($2 each for 400 meals), six dinners, two lunches, two brunches, trips, a craft sale and rental of space to Elections Canada.
Expenses included the cost of a new bingo machine, transportation for trips to Mont Tremblant and a sugar shack and kitchen expenses. The swimming pool is operated by a separate members’ association, so expenses for it were not mentioned.
“What difference from three years ago, when I was here last,” said Corriveau, after the meeting. “Three years ago, there were 100 people in the room, but the feeling wasn’t positive. The general trend now is positive. There are lots of activities, even beyond the ones that influenced the budget. People are involved. They have a good team here.”
Note: This article appeared in the West Island edition of the Suburban yesterday.