Election campaign: Chamber of Commerce debate shunned by business people | Elections Quebec 2022
The Chamber of Commerce and industrie de Québec held an election debate in front of a sparse room.
Discussions on labor scarcity, mobility and climate change took place in front of a sparse audience.
This is usually an expected event during an election campaign. This year, the Chamber of Commerce debate brought together only a handful of business people. In the room, there were more political personnel or candidates in the electoral race who had come to encourage their colleagues on stage than entrepreneurs.
However, the stakes for business people are very real. Labor shortages are slowing economic recovery and delaying mobility projects are reducing the area's attractiveness to workers who would like to settle here.
Two weeks ago, the same exercise sold out in Lévis. Something to delight Mayor Gilles Lehouillier who was present.
In the opinion of the President and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce, this should not be seen as a lack of interest on the part of people in #x27;business. Steeve Lavoie says that this type of event attracts at most a hundred people from one election to the next.
Despite the low participation of business people, Mr. Lavoie believes that the Chamber has a duty to organize this type of event in the Capitale-Nationale. We have a role to play, he says. He said he was satisfied with the ideas that had been discussed.
The debate opened on the commitments of the parties for the development and influence of the Capitale-Nationale. It is the results of the Coalition avenir Québec (CAQ) that have been taken to task.
The CAQ's flagship project in the region is to transform the river station into a public market near the river. The Champlain market, I call it the pain syndrome, said Jeanne Robin, Parti Québécois (PQ) candidate in Taschereau. So, rehabilitating a heritage site, don't you believe in that? Asked his CAQ opponent.
Jonatan Julien replied that his party was the only one to have presented a complete platform for the Capitale-Nationale region. A phrase he repeated a few times during the evening.
The debate was more diversified on the issue of mobility. The five parties offer different solutions to reduce traffic: tunnel, bridge, light rail, tram and SRB. The CAQ candidate also had to explain the lack of studies on the third link.
Jonatan Julien tried to calm things down by repeating that studies will be made public in the next year. Nothing tells us that the project will be the same in six months, replied the PQ candidate. The Liberal candidate in Jean-Lesage, Charles Robert, criticized the CAQ for having created a toxic climate around mobility projects in the region by torpedoing ties with mayors Labeaume and Marchand. All major projects are in neutral because we are in a “chewing” relationship. ragged.
Asked about the possibility of building a bridge on Île d'Orléans against the wishes of the islanders, the candidate of the Conservative Party of Quebec (PCQ) in Taschereau, Marie-Josée Hélie, replied that it is not 6,000 citizens of Île d'Orléans who must decide for all the people of the greater Quebec region.
A statement that startled the candidate of Quebec solidaire (QS) in Jean-Talon. Olivier Bolduc then wonders why the PCQ supports the group Québec deserves better, which is campaigning for the abandonment of the tramway project. They are less than 6000 and they can block a structuring transport project. I don't know how they are more legitimate.
Marie-Josée Hélie is also not worried about the impact of a third link on urban sprawl. Densification, the more people we put in the same package, the more we increase the social problems.
The House would have liked to hear the candidates speak out on the future of the Quebec Bridge, whose file is bogged down between Ottawa and Quebec. Three times, the host of the evening, journalist Julie Couture, tried to call them to order to find out their position.
This is not the right debate for that, replied the CAQ candidate, Jonatan Julien. The federal government should be invited, he added. The issue of the sustainability of the bridge is not part of the CAQ's commitments for the Quebec City region.
The President and CEO of the Chamber, Steeve Lavoie, is once again pleading for decision-makers to find a way to protect the Quebec Bridge, a jewel of the region. The only thing we want with the Quebec Bridge is not to embark on another whirlwind of 10 or 15 years.