• Stuart Benson

Chemin Clark resident raises alarm over dumping ground

Benoit Hudon’s view from his cottage on Chemin Clark in La Pêche has been hard to stomach ever since he bought the property with his brother in April 2020.


The property across from his, at 447 Ch. Clark, has been an eye-sore ever since he moved in, filled with rotting and weather-worn debris, including everything from old discarded children’s toys, outdoor athletic equipment, Christmas decorations to an abandoned minivan and camper van.


“Ever since we moved in, there has been a pollution problem,” Hudon told the Low Down. “The visual pollution is bad of course, but it’s all next to a nearby creek as well.”


Hudon added that he is also concerned about freon leaking from the abandoned freezer on the property and contaminating the creek.


Hudon said that he has been in contact with the municipality multiple times, informing them of the issue. He shared his communication from the municipality with the Low Down, which is dated Feb. 7, 2021.


“We always receive the same answer,” Hudon explained. “They're saying that there are steps in the process, but to be frank, there's not much communication,” he added about the municipality following up with him.


Hudon said an inspector from the municipality had been by last fall taking pictures of the trash and told him that the owner of the property would be contacted and that, if action wasn’t taken within 10 days, would proceed with legal action.


“Then it was radio silence for a few months,” Hudon recalled, adding that he had assumed initially that the snowfall had been the reason no action had been taken last winter. “Then the whole summer went by and we’re still at the same point.”


In September, Hudon was contacted by the municipality telling him that another inspector had visited the property to survey the dumping site. Unfortunately, two months after he was contacted on Sept. 24, the trash still remains and Hudon expects it will be covered in snow for a fourth consecutive winter.


“The previous owner apparently engaged in a process with the municipality several years ago now,” Hudon told the Low Down, but added, “nothing has changed.”


In response to the Low Down’s request for comment from the municipality, communications agent for La Pêche, Évelyne Kayoungha, said the case was being handled by the Urban Planning and Environment Department.


“In case of non-compliance with municipal bylaws and lack of cooperation from the [property] owner, sanctions will be taken to remedy the situation,” Kayoungha explained.