Michel Lalonde knows municipal services from the front line. He has 30 years of experience working for four different local municipal governments, and now he wants to be on Champlain Township council representing Ward 3, Longueuil.
Lalonde chose to run because at first, there was not going to be an election because only two candidates were running to fill the two Longueuil seats. He thought voters should have a choice, so he decided to run as a third candidate. Eventually, a fourth candidate also decided to enter the race for the ward as well.
Lalonde, 57, currently works as a building inspector for the Town of Hawkesbury. When asked if his role as an employee of a neighbouring municipality could be a conflict of interest if he becomes a member of Champlain council, Lalonde said he discussed the matter with the clerks of both municipalities and they said it was not a problem. Lalonde said that as a council member, he would always declare a conflict of interest if any issues jointly involving Champlain and Hawkesbury were being discussed.
According to Lalonde, he has worked in facility maintenance or building inspection for Champlain, the United Counties of Prescott and Russell, Alfred-Plantagenet, and Hawkesbury since 2013.
Communicating with residents is important to Lalonde.
“I want to be the eyes and ears of the voters at council meetings,” he said, promising to always listen and respond to calls and questions from residents, and saying “I’m a very easy to reach person.” Lalonde wants to keep an especially close eye on budget and spending matters if he’s on council.
As far as ideas go, Lalonde said there are not many recreational facilities in Longueuil but because cycling is so popular along Bay Road, it would be a good location to create a rest area for cyclists to use. He said that when he’s been going door to door, residents were suggesting that such a facility be built. Lalonde said it could be constructed affordably as well. Longueuil voters can share their opinion on that idea and others when they vote on October 22.