Montreal Mayor steps down -- Committee takes control
The Charbonneau Commission has claimed yet another political casualty. Following Laval mayor Gilles Vaillancourt’s decision to take a medical leave of absence Montreal mayor Gerald Tremblay has now announced his resignation. After weeks of mounting political pressure and negative public opinion Tremblay held a press conference at city hall on November 5th . At that time he confirmed rumors that he was indeed resigning the mayoral office effective immediately.
The long time mayor said that although he was reluctant to vacate his post he felt it was a necessary measure given the recent allegations lodged against him at the Charbonneau Commission. During his announcement on Monday Tremblay remained adamant regarding his innocence in terms of the corruption charges leveled against him and his party, Union Montreal.
The 70 year old Tremblay was involved in politics for 25 years. During his long career the former mayor has had his share of critics and supporters alike. Recently, however, Tremblay’s character and integrity has come into question in the wake of some damning testimony at the Charbonneau Commission. The charges against Tremblay include that while in office he was personally aware of municipal corruption and illegal financial contributions given to members of his Union Montreal party.
During his press conference Tremblay continued to defend his reputation. After listing several of his proudest accomplishments while in office Tremblay said that his resignation was, “…for me, the ultimate sacrifice; my last act of love for the best interests of our Montreal”. He also maintained that as mayor he’d done his best to fight against government corruption.
With Tremblay stepping down as mayor the city’s executive committee was quick to reassure Montréalers that it’s business as usual in terms of the city’s daily business. The committee is now in charge of making all the decisions at city hall until such time as an interim mayor is named. The next municipal election isn't scheduled to take place until November 3, 2013.